Books and Tears of Joy

First, let me apologise for the lack of posts recently. However, I do have a couple of good books for you to check out and a post on the IE blog that almost brought tears to my eyes.

As the podcast has grown in popularity, I have found it increasingly hard to strike the balance between my work for Headscape and my passion for boagworld. On one hand, I get to write for various magazines (like .net or Practical Web Design), speak at conferences and contribute to other sites, which is all very exciting. On the other, I could easily become divorced from the day-to-day process of building websites, which would be a real shame. I get concerned about how the more "vocal" and "active" members of the web design community, end talking about design and development more than they actually doing it. That is why for the last few weeks I have been a bit more quiet on boagworld and have been focusing more heavily on client work.

Of course, you don’t care about my personal woes so I will move on to a couple of things that have caught my eye recently.

Books of note

Firstly, I have seen a couple of books you might want to look at. I cannot say I have read either of them personally yet (I am still ploughing my way through "Prioritizing Web Usability" by Jakob Nielsen) but they have both received excellent reviews and I respect the opinions of their respective authors:

Beginning JavaScript with DOM Scripting and Ajax

I really want this one as my DOM Scripting knowledge still has significant room for improvement. Also Chris is an excellent writer and talks a lot of sense.

Web Accessibility: Web Standards and Regulatory Compliance

Sounds dull doesn’t it? However, from what I can gather it is actually a lively read. A number of excellent designers and developers have contributed to this one so it is well worth your attention. If you want to finally nail this accessibility issue once and for all then this is a good place to start.

Tears of joy

On a completely different note, I wanted to draw your attention to a recent post on the IE 7 Blog. This post lists all of the bugs and problems from IE6 that have now been fixed in IE 7. Credit, where credit is due, IE 7 is an excellent browser and I can’t wait until it is officially rolled out.

  • I admit that I’m definitely excited about IE7 coming out, but I’m not sure I’m quite ready to shed tears of joy over it.
    Now, if you told me that IE7 was coming out, and everyone in the world was going to be forced to upgrade their version of IE, then we’d see Niagra Falls!

  • I am little more than luke-warm in terms of happiness for the IE7 browser.
    Yes it fixes a few bugs, it has some basic increase in CSS support.. but it tends to break sites that worked previously with IE6.
    This simply means that now we get one more browser to test for, and we still have to fully support IE6 because it is not a critical update.
    Honestly I would rather there just be IE6, since I know I have to support it anyways and IE7 is barely and improvement nor will it be widespread anytime soon.

  • WHY can’t microsoft make ie7 look about the same as ie6 so they can roll it out as a critical update because “it is not forcing a new gui on poor sods that dont know that a computer uses electricity.”. Why can’t microsoft be mor e sensible?

  • You miserable sods! IE 7 is a gigantic step forward and we should celebrate that. Okay its not perfect but then neither is Firefox and Safari. As for take up I think you will be surprised. There is no way they could force users to upgrade but i think it will be faster than you think. I have never met such a group of grumpy old men ;)

  • It is an improvement, but should we be happy for a polished turd because we previously had to use an unpolished turd?
    Microsoft made a profit of 40 BILLION dollars last year, I think they could assign a large team to smooth out the software.

  • I have to agree with JRichmond. I know they can’t force it but it sure would be a dream come true if they did. I am excited to see IE7 get released. I just hope that we get what we have been promised.
    On the book note I know I’m no body but I must re-endorse the Web Accessibility book. Not a bad read but very usefull I actually just got it a couple days ago.
    BTW I’m a long time lurker always a good read here at Boagworld. Keep on doin what you do babe.

  • Eric

    I can’t get the IE7 link to work.
    “We are currently unable to serve your request”

  • Cindy Lionwoman

    I have been using the Beta version of IE7 for about 6 mths and I can’t imagine using IE6 anymore. IE7 is such an improvement. Of course there are a few settings you have to fine-tune to make it right, but you can search these workarounds on Google and you’ll get the answer quickly, as I did. I still like Firefox better, but as we all know not all sites work perfectly using Firefox because they were not tested for Firefox accessibility. In any case, I really like IE7 and think it is a big improvement over IE6.
    BTW, Paul, don’t worry about it. You are focusing on the right things. Work is important and while we appreciate everything you do for us, you have to strike a balance. Many of us have come a long way since listening to your podcasts, make no mistake. It is not a fruitless effort in the big picture.

  • Ben Moorhouse

    I’ve been using IE7 for a few months now, and it’s been a pure godsend. My main reason may seem trivial, but is a big issue when I have to remember 13 x 8 character, mixed case, alpha numeric passwords for work, I dont want to be doing the same at home but also dont want to be less secure, so using a fingerprint reader deals with all of my passwords. Only issue is that since it’s on a microsoft keyboard, it doesn’t recognise login fields in non microsoft browsers! having tabs like firefox, and the ability to use the fingerprint reader is perfection in its truest form. ok.. so maybe that’s a bit OTT.
    I’ll be interested to see whether or not my company (HBOS plc) will be upgrading to IE7 – we’re finally moving to XP, but people are crying out for a browser which doesn’t fill the taskbar when you open lots of pages/tools.

  • Oliver Treend

    Hey! What’s happened to this weeks podcast? Doesn’t it usually come out on Monday?

  • Ben Moorhouse

    But it was bank holiday Monday! – These lucky developers get bank holidays off.

  • Its on its way. Editing now.

  • just thought i would add something that my friend was talking about the other day.
    Due to the security improvements , aparrantly, IE7 will soon become a Mandatory update, and if you have auto-updates on, then one day soon you will litterally wake up with it.
    Whilst im not sure how valid this information is, Micro$oft has released a program for sys-admins to ‘delay’ the installation of IE7 until they are ready to roll it out, this prevents the auto-updater from installing it.
    So, a mandatory update would be good imho :)