Archive for the ‘Web’ Category

Ninjawords dictionary

Sunday, January 17th, 2010

Online dictionary has no adverts and is fast

Customise the header image in the default WordPress theme

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

Use the GIMP to copy an image into the blue gradient area of the Kubrick theme, now the WordPress default

Play it again

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

The students have realised why I’m YouTubing certain parts of the Maths course… I’ll do some more over the weekend.

CSS comments in MSIE v6

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

MSIE v6 ignores the two forward slash style comments in CSS, and Firefox and Safari don’t. You can have different styles on different browsers…


Tuesday, June 24th, 2008

Make tag clouds from text

Wiki Games

Saturday, June 7th, 2008

Wiki definitions. Slippery.

Modifying Oddmuse

Thursday, May 24th, 2007

Oddmuse is a wiki script written in perl. It is based on the Usemod wiki script, but can produce valid xhtml. Oddmuse does not need a database, page data is stored in text files.

To get a wiki running on a Web server that runs Apache (1.2 upwards) and that can run perl cgi scripts, you [...]

Column theme

Wednesday, January 17th, 2007

Liquid layout with four columns on the home page

Paparazzi App for Mac OS X

Monday, November 27th, 2006

This small app allows you to enter a Web address and then save a PNG graphics file of the whole page – screen grabs that are a couple of thousand pixels high.

Kubrick with white background

Saturday, November 25th, 2006

Change two image files in the default WordPress theme to produce a white page area with sparse header image. I wanted a high key look with plenty of space and no ‘boxes’.

Your name on toast

Tuesday, November 21st, 2006

Auctioning the fold for charity. These people will write your name on toast, then photograph it and then put the toast and a link to a site you nominate on their page. The rounds of toast are listed in descending order of contribution. All proceeds go to charity. They are auctioning the space above the fold – well neat.

Liquid layout or 960px width?

Monday, September 18th, 2006

Many people now use 1024 by 768 or slightly narrower as a screen resolution. 960px has been suggested as a width to design to as it has a lot of factors and allows a range of grid sizes.

River of News

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2006

Minimalist pages show just the news stories as they update

GCSE Map finished (well, begun)

Thursday, July 20th, 2006

Now I have the topics mapped, it is time to start adding bits of content

MSIE Beta 7

Wednesday, July 12th, 2006

Tabbed browsing and RSS feeds in a side bar…

Seeing your content through someone else’s eyes

Saturday, July 8th, 2006

Winner of recent BBC redesign contest does a Being John Malkovich

Flash: Consolidation

Wednesday, July 5th, 2006

This timeline is all my own work and I didn’t look at the textbook… Lesson 2 and 3 applied to an animation showing how the area of a parallelogram is calculated…

Flash Lesson 2: Animation using motion tween

Sunday, June 25th, 2006

If you have any version of the Flash Player from 5 upwards installed on your browser, then the yellow and blue grid above should show a blue square and a red triangle moving around and changing their opacity.

The animation loops once and then stops, and the frame rate is 15 frames per second. According to [...]

Simple summer theme

Saturday, June 24th, 2006

Simple template from Open Source Web Design can be adapted as a WordPress theme

Different kinds of Web site

Friday, June 23rd, 2006

A list apart article provides a metric for Web sites and a classification: handy for Web page course.

Learn to Write

Thursday, June 22nd, 2006

Being able to express thoughts in writing is key to any career

Flash Lesson 1: drawing tools

Thursday, June 22nd, 2006

Flash Journalism by Mindy McAdams, lesson 1. Why is a maths teacher using a book aimed at journalists?

Processing applet maps HTML code

Sunday, June 4th, 2006

Show the HTML mark up of a web page as a graph

Blogs and VLEs

Saturday, June 3rd, 2006

Does the blog act as a gateway to the VLE or does the VLE contain the blog?

Tuesday Whiteboard: reflections and edges

Tuesday, May 16th, 2006

We were looking at finding a value for the intercept of a straight line graph when the scale of the graph made it difficult to have an X axis that started at zero – we were setting up and solving a simple equation within a context.

This second whiteboard processed using ScanR was taken in [...]

The one page Web site

Sunday, May 14th, 2006

There is an interesting discussion about one page Web sites on the Signals vs Noise blog published by the Web programming company 37 Signals. I especially chimed with the comment by Geoff Harris

“I agree with Wilson’s comments about distilling information down to the most basic requirements and leaving as is.

Doing so is a fantastic exercise [...]

Moodle on a stick

Wednesday, May 10th, 2006

Moodle 1.53 and 1.6 can be ‘installed’ on a USB stick. Just make sure the drive letter assigned to the stick stays the same on each machine

Pictures for PowerPoints

Monday, May 8th, 2006

Yotophoto is a search engine for copyright free or free use images

Tuesday, April 18th, 2006

Anyone going?

Prime number podcast

Monday, January 16th, 2006

BBC radio program about history looks at prime numbers

Cool or crap?

Thursday, December 22nd, 2005

Zeldman’s article from 5 years ago asking for usability in web design is updated and given a new home – some change for better

Wikis in school

Wednesday, December 14th, 2005

MeatBall wiki page about educational uses of wikis and other links

MP3 interview – Simon Wheatley

Sunday, December 11th, 2005

Podcast interviews – DIY Studs Terkel?

Dr Gonzo’s theme

Saturday, December 3rd, 2005

Wordpress theme uses tables layout with light styling and one main file

Digital divide: Southern Africa

Saturday, November 19th, 2005

Some projects in Southern Africa aim to reduce the impact of the digital divide

Course planning: Tinderbox

Monday, November 7th, 2005

Tinderbox – soon for Windows – is worth the money, deep software

Writing for the Web: Paul Ford

Sunday, November 6th, 2005

Use a spreadsheet to write each idea in a cell with a heading….

Intellectual property blog

Sunday, September 25th, 2005

Lawyer in Huddesfield uses Blogger to record case law


Monday, September 12th, 2005

Who are you writing your Web page for? Specify and pin down different audiences.

Changes in sites over time

Wednesday, September 7th, 2005

The big three e-commerce sites have moved to home pages with a lot of information and a high link density

Interactivity on Web pages

Wednesday, August 24th, 2005

Java applets and some DHTML Javascript can be used for educational purposes- and you don’t have to code a line

HTML entities

Wednesday, July 20th, 2005

Maths on the Web is a problem – html entities can provide a limited range of symbols – and I like the immediacy of a blogging approach to Maths. Else it is down to PDFs or scans or Whiteboard captures.

Bodmas goes Jakob

Sunday, July 3rd, 2005

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and the new Bodmas design is borrowed from Jakob Nielsen’s personal site at

User focus with goals

Friday, July 1st, 2005

“Many sites submitted had no concern for the user on the most basic levels. Rarely could you identify an idea or purpose behind the site, or name a possible user goal the site was intended to facilitate. There was no flow, no legibility, no usability. It wasn‚Äôt so much that the designers had contempt for [...]

Unusual writing style

Sunday, June 26th, 2005

A Quick (and Hopefully Painless) Ride Through Ruby (with Cartoon Foxes) actually starts at Chapter 3. It has cartoons and an unusual style (for a programming book).

A sample: “Most variables are rather temporary in nature. Some parts of your program are like little houses. You walk in and they have their own variables. In one [...]

Copyright free images

Sunday, June 19th, 2005

LaTiS Centre Image Archive from Essex University

Thanks for this resource – about 400 free pictures. Mostly .jpegs and around 400 to 600 pixels wide with white backgrounds.

Recent History (Web security)

Thursday, June 9th, 2005

It all started in May of 2001. I began getting calls from companies I had tried selling security services to in the past but were never interested. Now they needed my help because something happened. It seemed like dozens of people had their websites defaced with the words: “fu*k USA Government, fu*k PoizonBOx.” It was [...]

300,000 Words

Wednesday, June 1st, 2005

“It seems like I wrote “Alertbox Five Years Retrospective” just yesterday, but another five years have passed. Since writing my first column in June 1995, I’ve published 247 columns comprising almost 300,000 words. That’s a lot of writing and a lot of content to give away on the Internet. Has it been worth the effort? [...]

Sense of place

Tuesday, May 31st, 2005

David Kolb has produced a hypertext essay on the nature of modern spaces in cities called Sprawling Places
This hypertext has 100,000 words, 600 pages and 1,000 images
The work is multiply linked and threaded by a number of outlines or themes
It is possible for two (or more) people to ‘read’ the work in quite unconnected ways [...]

Map the Web

Tuesday, May 24th, 2005

The OPTE project provides views of the distribution of Internet connections and routes

Fierce blogging

Monday, May 23rd, 2005

Performance arts event sets up a public blog to get audience feedback.

How Google works

Thursday, May 19th, 2005

A couple of sites with information on the Mother of all Search Engines

Just Breathe (Zen of hacking?)

Saturday, May 14th, 2005

Forensic ICT lesson
Students searched for information about Adrian Lamo, the ‘homeless hacker’
Then we read page 3 and 4 of Marc Roger’s essay A New Hacker Taxonomy
Students were invited to analyse aspects of Lamo’s ‘career’ using Rogers’ roles
Disagreements! Arguments focussing on what the roles meant! Useful!
Lamo’s minimalist home page provides an example of embedded hypertext – [...]

Web design interview

Thursday, May 12th, 2005

Zeldman has this link to a Web designer called Joe Clark. Ten Questions for Joe Clark is a thought provoking piece in the style of a pop mag interview. Should get Web design students at least thinking about the issues. Mr Clark links to Techniques for Accessible HTML Tables

And I definitely need a haircut – [...]


Sunday, May 8th, 2005

An olive oil can leads to choice of colours

Apple and sweet papers

Friday, April 29th, 2005

“When researching new processes we often find ourselves working with different industries. It was interesting working with a confectionery manufacturer. Their experience in the science of translucent colour control helped us understand processes to ensure consistency in high volume.”

From Jonathan Ive’s account of the 1998 iMac design (this would be the slot loader judging by [...]

Processing 1.0 β

Thursday, April 28th, 2005

Processing is a programming language and environment for people who want to program images, animation, and sound. It is used by students, artists, designers, architects, researchers, and hobbyists for learning, prototyping, and production. It is created to teach fundamentals of computer programming within a visual context and to serve as a software sketchbook and professional [...]


Saturday, April 23rd, 2005

Tinderbox is a note taking application for Mac OS X. A Windows version is in the works – in fact the author Mark Bernstein’s blog includes a link to his development peekhole for Tinderbox.

Tinderbox has a range of powerful features for organising and visualising relationships between notes – such that I am going to try [...]

Children using the Web…

Monday, April 18th, 2005

The NFER has a long term project (started in 2002) tracking students’ experience of citizenship education. The most recent report is referenced as follows….CLEAVER, E., IRELAND, E., KERR, D. and LOPES, J. (2005). Citizenship Education Longitudinal Study: Second Cross-Sectional Survey 2004 Listening to Young People: Citizenship Education in England (DfES Research Report 626). London: DfES

The [...]

Thinking with type

Wednesday, April 13th, 2005

Ellen Lupton’s book Thinking With Type is supported by a useful and thought provoking Web site. A table links to short pages of information on various concepts to do with typography and page layout, mainly for printed pages. The table columns move along a logical sequence of scales (Letter – Text – Grid). There is [...]

Being Analog(ue)

Monday, April 4th, 2005

Don Norman is the other half of Nielsen and Norman the usability consultants. He has provided Chapter 7 of his book The Invisible Computer as a Web reading. The title of the chapter is Being Analog – which we as humans are… You can also read other chapters on the MIT Press site and [...]

FTP upload script (perl)

Sunday, March 6th, 2005

Andrew Hunter provided a simple and ingenious perl script that will ftp a directory’s worth of files to a remote Web server
Well done that man
This script worked fine on Windows under Active State perl and works (without modification) under Mac OS X using the perl that comes with Panther

MyMind mind mapper

Monday, February 21st, 2005

Sebastian Krauss provides MyMind 1.2 a small free outliner and mind mapping tool for the Mac OS X platform. Very simple and basic which actually makes it more useful than the all singing mind mappers around.

MyMind can export its map views as Web pages with a client side image map coded in. Site maps like [...]

Short headings and summaries

Sunday, February 20th, 2005

Gerry McGovern suggests (see Secrets of great Web headings )

Headings and titles less than 8 words, nearer 4
Summaries less than 30 words
Online research indicates most summaries coming in at 17 words with a low of 10 and a high of 25

Idea for lesson activity: take typical Intranet news item text and write a page title [...]

216 colour cube

Saturday, February 19th, 2005

“The Netscape palette for foreground colors usually (but NOT always) consists of all the combinations of 00, 33, 66, 99, CC, FF for each of the red, green, and blue elements of the color descriptor. This results in 216 (6×6×6) distinct colors.” – Victor Engel

The Browser Safe Palette
Colour palette map
Color Primer

A colour taken [...]

What is good hypertext writing?

Saturday, February 12th, 2005

Jutta Degener’s What is good hypertext writing essay is still relevant 7 years later, even though Web pages tend to look more like interfaces and less like documents.

The rest of her homepage looks sort of antique but still interesting. I like the paintings.


Thursday, February 10th, 2005

” It never occurred to me that the techies writing the software would try to use the computer to simulate paper Ôø? actually not even paper, but paper under glass. ” quoted in Grand Text Auto blog

Ted Nelson suffered character assasination in a well known Wired article about Xanadu. Anyone who can dismiss Word [...]