December 17, 2003
insert appropriate festivity
OK, seems like most of the blogs I read curently have disclaimers and apologies about posts being few and far between because of the time of year. So I'll use that excuse too.
But here are some of the things I've been doing the last few days, and what is coming up, Style Master and otherwise.
I ran another workshop on Friday of last week, and again had a good turn out of interesting folk, from many different aspects of web design, development and management. Hobbyists, people in government, in private practice, people working for corporates. Big up to Markus who came all the way from Queensland (that's like coming to LA from San Francisco) just for the day. Hope I'll be running a few more of these in the early part of next year, in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, and hopefully also running a two day XHTML + CSS workshop next year too. Drop me a line if you are interested in any of these.
A few weeks ago, Sara and I bought an apartment, in sunny Bondi Beach. We are settling today, and moving in tomorrow. Exciting, scary, and so on. Hope people keep buying Style Master :-)
beta testing Style Master 3.5
Currently we are beta testing Style Master 3.5 for both Mac OS X and Windows. Underneath it all they are the same code base, but with many a tweak for each platform. Each is genuinely targeted at its platform. So while the underlying functionality and feature is very similar, the way they work can be quite different.
On Windows, for instance, we use an Office XP style of interface, with tabbed document windows for style sheets, and dockable, detachable floating windows for editors, toolbars and so on.
That's not the Mac way, so on the Mac, style sheets have their own window, with editors which slide out as drawer windows. More common tools, like the preview toolbar, the core properties toolbar and so on are floating windows. We've tried to follow Mac OS X human interface guidelines as much as possible.
The beta test is going pretty, well. We are running it via a closed blog, where I posts news and questions, and people answer questions, comment, and report bugs using comments. While its not the perfect solution, it has real advantages. Beta testers can subscribe via RSS, and so there is no need to set up and manage a mailing list. Users can see what bugs others are having, so they don't need to report a bug that is already reported, but can add more if they want. and it keeps us honest, cause everyone can see all the bugs.
I'll give a sneak preview of new features soon. There is much that is new, and much improved.
I have a little confession to make. Until now, I have had dial up internet. As of next week, I'll have cable. Maxine has cable and frankly the difference is ridiculous. So here's hoping it will make me smarter, more productive, better looking, the whole box and dice.
So, until I move it complete, and I get connected, that might be all. Happy [insert appropriate holiday/festivity here] and see you soon,
December 11, 2003
westciv's famous free CSS1 course starts up this week
Quick note to let you know that our CSS 1 course, which normally you have to pay to take, is running over the next 12 weeks or so at the House of Style.
If I do say so myself, it is a really useful course, that covers the core concepts of CSS in a very hands on way. By the time you finish, you really will be quite proficient with CSS.
December 06, 2003
A busy couple of days
Web Standards Group
Thursday night I spoke at the Web Standards Group's end of year get together. I had a great time, and it is a really interesting group of smart people.
I hope to edit my talk and publish it at westciv, or maybe somewhere else in the near future.
I'll just say one thing for now
iTunes for Windows.
Yesterday's CSS workshop went well. A very smart bunch of people who kept me on my toes all day.
We have another next Friday, which is just about booked out. A couple of places left, so get in now if you are interested.
Style master Beta
In the meantime the first Mac and Windows betas are out for Style Master 3. At present its a closed beta, hopefully it will be public after Christmas. If you'd like to take part please drop me a line.
December 02, 2003
Speaking this thursday
This Thursday, as I might have mentioned once or twice :-) I'm speaking at the final Web Standards Organisation's get together for the year in Sydney.
If you are a local, join up (for free) and get along. The night costs only $5, which includes beer, wine, soft drink and nibbles, at the salubrious Australian Museum. Got to be the best value in town.
I'm talking about the past and future of CSS, from largely a personal and idiosyncratic point of view, with plenty of scope for discussion. Bring your opinions with you
Love to see you there.
December 01, 2003
What's going on
Quite a few good things have happened in the last few days.
First up, all our trainee lifesavers passed their exam yesterday at Bronte Beach. They were fantastic and will make wonderful North Bondi lifesavers.
On Friday we released Style Master 3.02 for Mac OS X. It fixes some compatibility issues with Panther.
We also released the first beta of Style Master 3.5 for mac OS X. Hope that the first windows beta will be out the door today.
You can sign up for the beta program here.
On thursday I ran a great workshop at UTS, for their Interactive Media and Learning Department.
It was a great day and a really interesting bunch of people.
And I've finally got around to using Mac OS X 10.3 as my primary Mac OS, up for 10.2.6
Never have I seen a software improvement like it. Everything seems so much more responsive. Everyones favorite gripes with problems with performance in Style Master (window dragging and resizing and drawer window performance) have simply disappeared.
Do yourself a favor, Upgrade now.
And if that ain't enough, I had my first golf lesson this morning. Sara got me some golf lessons for my birthday. I played a little bit when I was young, very badly. I wouldn't have swung a club in early 20 years. It was great.
Just for the record, lest you think writing software has made me any more than moderately comfortable (if that), golf is a great Australian sport, where reasonably priced public golf courses, run by local councils are common place.