One Avatar To Rule Them All

by @edent | # # # | 7 comments | Read ~141 times.
A photo of Terence wearing a hat. He look gorgeous!

Someone took a nice photo of me recently. I'd like to use it as my avatar photo everywhere to present a consistent image. This is not easy to do. I've had to manually change it on a dozen different Slacks, a bunch of social networks, a few forums, all my email accounts, and I'm still…

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Should panoramic images be part of the HTML5 specification?

by @edent | # # # # | 8 comments
360 view of the inside of the concert hall.

Noodling thoughts. The humble <img> element is one of the oldest parts of HTML. It allows you to put a static image in a document. Later revisions allowed for animated images - like GIFs. And the <map> element made parts of the image clickable. But what about interactive images? Like panoramas and photospeheres? Here's a…

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The future of the web, isn't the web

by @edent | # # # # | 9 comments | Read ~5,046 times.
A fist emerges from a computer screen and punches the user.

My friends, and former employers, at the Government Digital Service have written a spectacularly good blog post "Making GOV.UK more than a website". In it, they describe how adding Schema.org markup to their website has allowed search engines to extract semantic content and display it to a user. For example, the "Learn to drive" page…

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Introducing the new HTML element - welcome <clippy>!

by @edent | # # # # | 13 comments | Read ~46,489 times.

Hello! It looks like you're writing a blog post - would you like help with that? chuckles Me and my colleagues at Microsoft have decided that the world needs more Clippy - the adorable animated paperclip. To help with that, we're bringing a new feature to Edge 6.0. Web Developers can now use <clippy> to…

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How much would it cost to buy every domain name?

by @edent | # # # # # | 1 comment | Read ~1,006 times.
Glowing computer text showing dot com dot info etc.

The ridiculous proliferation of TLDs (Top Level Domains) continues unabated. I wondered how much you'd have to spend to secure your name on every TLD. tl;dr;tld Over $300,000! (Roughly €280.000 / £245,000.) But... This estimate is pretty rough. A few caveats: This only covers one version of your domain name - it doesn't cover misspellings.…

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A report from the AMP Advisory Committee Meeting

by @edent | # # # # | 12 comments | Read ~6,775 times.
A lightning bolt logo.

I don't like AMP. I think that Google's Accelerated Mobile Pages are a bad idea, poorly executed, and almost-certainly anti-competitive. So, I decided to join the AC (Advisory Committee) for AMP. I don't want them surrounded with sycophants and yes-men. A few weeks ago, a bunch of the AC met in London for our first…

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Automatic preview image based on screenshot

by @edent | # # # | 3 comments | Read ~539 times.

When you share a URl on services like Twitter and WhatsApp, they often display a preview image. This is usually accomplished by the author of the page selecting an image from the page, and adding it to the Page's metadata like this: <meta property="og:image" content="http://example.com/preview.png"/> (See the OpenGraph Protocol and Twitter's Guide for more detailed…

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Limitations of HTML's title element

by @edent | # # # # | 7 comments | Read ~221 times.
The raw HTML displays in the tab.

How much do you know about the humble <title> tag? It has been there since the earliest HTML specification. The 1995 spec says: There may only be one title in any document. It should identify the content of the document in a fairly wide context. It may not contain anchors, paragraph marks, or highlighting. Remarkably…

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The Browser Is The User's Agent. But Who Is The User?

by @edent | # # # | 1 comment | Read ~128 times.
An alert box saying "⚠ Be careful when playing MP3s - check your country's copyright laws before proceeding ⚠"

I spent 15 years in the mobile phone industry - working variously for big mobile operators, with phone manufacturers, and consulting with industry groups. I say this not to brag, but to let you know that I have experience with these matters. Web browsers are often called a User Agent. They are a software agent…

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Mapping in HTML - a proposal for a new element

by @edent | # # # # | 17 comments | Read ~4,897 times.
Two men are confused by a paper map

This is a sketch of a proposal for a new HTML element to simplify displaying maps on a website. I'd like your comments and criticisms before I submit it. This is born out of my frustration of using different JavaScript mapping solutions - my phone has a mapping app, why do I need to share…

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