Transparent gifs. I hear you sigh as your mind wanders back in time, to days long gone, when there where only 2 browsers and both of them had layout quirks that demanded the use of transparent 1×1 pixels gifs. every. where.
The return of the GIF
GIF was huge in the early days of the web. It was the one format that could be used to send images over slow connections and still have an acceptable page load time. It could do animations! And most of all, as web developers, we used them to artificially inflate our table cells so IE and Netscape would leave them as we intended them.
Then, some company claimed ownership of the format and people called for the banning of GIFs from the internet. Browsers grew up and the 1×1 transparent GIF faded away…
I’m stretching the meaning of ‘doesn’t take no for an answer’ a bit here in order to make this post fit into the broader series of posts I’ve been making on this subject recently, but apart from the fact that this time the dialog does offer me the choice of ‘Never’, the dialog *forces* me to make this choice on it’s terms instead of mine.
And the series continues. This time it’s T-Mobile.
The dutch consumer authority is investigating the telecoms provider for pushing the company’s ad platform onto the phones of its users, without giving them the option to decline, or even any warning beforehand. The investigation was requested (dutch) by the dutch consumer watchdog, de consumentenbond.
This is definitely turning into a series. I just reported recently on Microsoft’s aggressive tactics in pushing their users to upgrade to Windows 10 and today the Redmond-based firm has turned its aggressive campaign up a notch yet again.
Juli is the last month of free upgrades to Windows 10. And Microsoft is reminding it’s users of that with a dialog that asks you to upgrade to Windows 10, that has two big buttons, “Upgrade now” and “Remind me later”.
It seems this topic is turning into a series…
I wrote before about Picasa and Netflix not taking no for an answer, but it seems this is actually a widespread phenomenon. The state of our industry today is that we found ways to turn something as straightforward as asking a Yes/No question into an overly complex, almost fraudulent even, user interface, that seems to be ‘targeting’ inexperienced users, attempting to take advantage of their lack of computing knowledge.
Today it’s Microsoft turn to be confronted with the unethical way into which it has been deceiving users into upgrading to Windows 10. Paul Thurret describes on his blog how Microsoft has apparently, in it’s quest to get people to upgrade to Windows 10, stooped as low as turning that most universal NO button in Windows, the red close button with the white cross in it, into actually doing the opposite from what it always does.
Just like Picasa, Netflix doesn’t take No for an answer.
Maxmind is a cool company that offers location services for a small monthly fee. In addition, they offer a subset of the databases their services use to the public under an Open Source creative commons attribution licenses. If you download and load one of these databases, you’ll be able to do IP to location lookups. Cool stuff!
For Bridal App, the platform for the bridal industry that I’ve been working on, we want to show the visitor those bridal dresses that are actually available in their area. For highly detailed location data (provided by the W3C Geolocation Api) we need to ask the user’s permission, but we can get a rough estimate of where the visitor is based on their IP address so we can start out at least somewhere in the right area.