The blog of Chris Peters · Web design, web development, and tech stuff · About Me

Posts About Technology

2 types of web developers

I’ve had this sense that there are 2 different types of web developers: artists and robots. “Artists” can think abstractly and design solutions that really feel good. “Robots” obsess over details that often don’t end up mattering to anyone other than themselves.

There are trade-offs to working with either though. Read on to find out what they are.

Read the rest of this entry ›

CAPTCHAs with a purpose

reCAPTCHAAs a user of the Web, you’re probably familiar with CAPTCHAs. They’re the little word puzzle with the squiggly letters that you are required to type in when signing up for various services.

It’s estimated that 60 million CAPTCHAs are solved around the world each day. In light of this, Carnegie Mellon has created a program called reCAPTCHA that actually puts all of this superfluous work to use.

Read on to see what this is all about and how you can help out.

Read the rest of this entry ›

What else does your message say?

I submitted a support ticket on behalf of a client today in their e-commerce system. After filling in the fields and submitting the form, I got this message:

In very alerting red text: "Your support request has been submitted."

At first, I thought I had made a mistake. An exclamation point icon? Bold red text? All of these visual cues tell a completely different story than what the message says.

What do your messages really say in context with visuals? And do you really want for your message to make someone feel undeserved panic, even if it’s just for a couple seconds?

Read the rest of this entry ›

The disposable interface

Imagine a world where your work is disposable. That’s right, trashed. You’re a COBOL programmer, and everyone wants to rewrite your applications in Java. HTML is all the rage.

A few years pass, and HTML isn’t good enough anymore. So that work gets entirely replaced by a Flex application.

Where does it end?

Read the rest of this entry ›

RSS demystified

If you’ve done any reading up on Internet marketing, you’ve probably run across the term RSS. This video by Common Craft does the best job of explaining RSS, so I’ll just leave it up to them. Now that you know how to use a feed reader, why don’t you subscribe to my feed?

Read the rest of this entry ›

Rant: The early adopters are grumbling about the Web’s going mainstream

As techies are starting to see more widespread adoption of web standards, they are starting to run out of things to complain about. They have been fighting the good fight for years!

Now we have a cluster of comments on Signal vs. Noise complaining about how standards and RSS are making designs and content on the Web “boring.” Some have gone as far as saying that they miss the inconsistent page designs found on 1990s Geocities sites. I know at some level that it’s just conversation, but give me a break.

Read the rest of this entry ›