April 1st, 2013
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox: April 1, 2013 Mobile Usability for Cats: Essential Design Principles for Felines…
- Rapid double and triple taps are common among felines, especially kittens; any response from a multi-tap should be even faster/louder/blinkier than from a single tap.
- Swiping is expected to work from any and every direction, so ensure that your targets are extra responsive and include corresponding sounds.
- Animation is especially important, including blinking. In fact, if your site or app doesn't animate, it's pretty much useless.
- This is a revolutionary finding, considering that blinking has been contraindicated in web design ever since it was #3 on the list of top-10 design mistakes of 1996.
- A sensory-activated "pause mode" is highly suggested, as nearly half the cats randomly stopped what they were doing to lie down on their devices and stretch, nap, or self-groom for extended periods before resuming their tasks.
April 1st, 2012
Coming soon: Limited Edition "Remix Novel," Rule 35.
[Via Electrolite (Sidelights)]
April 1st, 2012
Michael Mace on
Twitter the telegraph at Gettysburg:
With our obsession for newness, those of us who work in the tech industry often fail to understand the historical roots of our technologies. Case in point: telegraph operators more than 150 years ago were sending short messages called "graphs" that were surprisingly similar in form and content to Twitter tweets.
One remarkable example was recently discovered in the Museum of Telegraphy in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. It is the transcript of a telegraph operator's comments during Abraham Lincoln's famed Gettysburg Address in 1863. The transcript was shared with me by a friend on the museum staff, and I'm pleased to reproduce it here:
Still waiting for the Pres. to commence his speech. #gettysburg
Good heavens, I should have foresworn that fifth corn dodger for lunch. #gas #dontask #gettysburg
Starting now. Pres. waves to crowd. #gettysburg
Four score and… WTF is a score? 25? #pleasespeakenglish #gettysburg
Okay, it's twenty. So "87 years ago the country was founded." Why not just say that? Duh. #gettysburg
April 1st, 2010
Announcing APDB: The World's Fastest Database…
The Relational Database is dead.
It had a long, distinguished life that started in 1970 with Dr. Edgar F. Codd, but it has since seen its day. Like the sextant, slide rule, and punch card, relational databases are becoming relics of the past as the industry moves towards better, faster, and awesomer.
Setting aside the fact that relational databases are incredibly, mind numbingly slow, they have a much more fundamental problem: they do not model reality. Take a look at the world around you. Go ahead, shift your eyes from the screen and survey your surroundings.
Did you see a perfectly rectangular world made up of rows and columns? What about schemas? And tables (i.e. the kind without four legs)? Of course not! The world isn't made-up of that stuff, nor is it very easy to model reality with such things.
Another inherent problem that relational databases have is that, fundamentally, they're designed for insecure developers. This whole notion of "data integrity" is a crutch for the weak that cripples the able-bodied. I don't need some database telling me what data I can and can't store: accept the bytes that I give you, and give them back to me when I ask. I know what they are, I know what they're supposed to be, and I know how to use them, thank you very much. [...]
That's all just the preamble: the real fun comes when we discover the … batshitinsane audacious … strategy APDB adopts in order to give us geeks the sort of database we secretly crave. It really had me going for a moment.
April 1st, 2009
Twitter switch for Guardian, after 188 years of ink:
[Celebrated Guardian editor] CP Scott would have warmly endorsed this – his well-known observation 'Comment is free but facts are sacred' is only 36 characters long, a spokesman said in a tweet that was itself only 135 characters long.
Almost as good an April Fool as the notion that Alan Shearer is Newcastle United's new manager.