Ian Hoar – Passion for Technology – Geeking Out - Technology, Web, Toys, Games, Design, Entertainment, Gadgets, & Geeking Out

IE6 specific CSS

When Internet Explorer 7 came out it was a huge disappointment to many web designers. It’s still littered with bugs and quirks, but a lot of things that were not recognized in IE6 are fixed in 7. This adds even more problems to the mix, because now we have to code for two bad browsers and IE6 still represents a huge chunk of users. With email design you also have to remember that many email programs render like IE6 or even use the IE6 engine.

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Apple iPhone, more news than actual interest?

Update June 18th: It looks like the iPhone search volume has completely spiked, surpassing original spikes, but I still think there’s a lot of saturation in the blog sphere. I will do a follow up after the phone is released.

Today I have been playing around with Google Trends and the BlogPulse tools. While trending some of the newest smartphones out there I noticed something odd with the iPhone data. It seems that last week when the new iPhone was announced there was actually a far larger spike in iPhone news than actual interest.

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Firefox – some website images do not load


I’ve had this strange Firefox bug happen on only a few occasions. I’ll be surfing the web when out of the blue some sites will not load images. Restarting the browser doesn’t seem to correct the problem either.

A quick fix for this this is to go to:

Tools / Options

Select the Advanced tab, then below that select the Network tab.

Under Cache click Clear Now.

This seems to fix the issue.

SEO tips for Google image searching

I have been trying to find ways of increasing traffic to my site lately and part of that includes SEO. Ever since I changed my domain name, traffic has dropped off the map and Google’s crawl rate is abysmal. I wrote about this in Where did all my Google traffic go?. That said, one article keeps pulling in traffic and at first I didn’t know why. At the time of this writing my most popular post is my Eternal Sonta Review. Every now and then I give a mini review to games I really like, but it’s a small part of my blog, and rarely generates much traffic, so the Eternal Sonata review really shouldn’t account for so much traffic, so why does it?

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Death of the Middle Click?

Okay, lately more and more I’ve been noticing that my middle click doesn’t work. Why do so many website developers and designers insist on breaking basic usability? Why on earth would you ever want to annoy your users and take away an expected browser behaviour?

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Bad usability – how to notice it on your site

It’s often easy to get carried away with criticizing what’s wrong with a website, because what’s wrong manifests itself in our personal user experience of that site. In order to understand good usability you have to train yourself to recognize it. When you’re at a great site, you usually don’t think “wow this is a really good user experience”, you just enjoy the site. When it’s a bad experience however you usually end up getting frustrated. Both these types experiences are valuable learning tools.

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Why do my pages trigger quirks mode in IE6 or IE7?

I was dealing with this a few weeks ago and it took me awhile to figure out. I had a proper doctype and viewing the source code showed that everything was okay. I was trouble shooting the php html and css, but to no avail. I’d dealt with this issue once in the past, I was sure of it. Finally it hit me when looking through the drop-downs of Notepad++. It turned out to be the character encoding, or the BOM in the character coding to be precise.

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Choosing the wrong web browser

BrowsersThe first browser wars ended years ago and now it seems they are back for a second round. I don’t think they will ever match the Netscape vs. Internet Explorer days, and today there are many more platforms to consider. Before reading this post further, I should mention that I am a web designer / developer and I have an axe to grind with Microsoft, especially when it comes to their browser. I will actually be completely blunt and say that this browser is downright horrible and the only reason it has any market share at all is because it is included with practically every mainstream computer sold on the planet. The very fact that Firefox has gained so much ground over the past three years against such incredible odds is testament not only to how great Firefox is, but also to how horrible Internet Explorer is.

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GTA 4 unknown contact bug fix

A friend of mine ran into a serious problem where they could no longer progress in the missions of Grand Theft Auto 4. When they went to the yellow way point arrows nothing happened and the mission would not trigger. It seems to happen after “The Puerto Rican Connection” mission when you receive a call from an unknown person. I did a few searches on the web and found several other people having the same problem. Many had to start the game over, but the good news is there is a fix.

In order to trigger the missions again you need to call one of your contacts. It’s probably best to call Roman and book something with him. This should trigger the stories progress. I’ve also read that a manual save can work too, but I know for sure a call too Roman will work. I have not actually experienced the bug myself, but this work for my friend. The bug also seems to effect both PS3 and 360 versions of the game. GTA 4 is still a fantastic game, and hopefully not too many people experience this bug and if they do I hope this helps and hopefully Rockstar will have a fix for it soon.

Photoshop Tip #4: How do I make arrows in Photoshop?

A co-worker asked me this a few weeks ago. It’s not something you often need in Photoshop, and the way it is done has changed over time. These directions apply to Photoshop CS 3, but they may work in other versions as well.

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