July 12, 2010

HTML isn’t about Web pages

Or rather, it isn’t just about Web pages.  Responding to my post about CSS as the new Photoshop, Neven Mrgan makes some good points about HTML & CSS as a general purpose graphical system:

That assumption is that Nack is talking about creating web pages. I don’t believe he is… This is not the web Zeldman is interested in. It’s no web at all, in fact. [...]

Look at any of Apple’s stores on the iPad – App Store, iTunes Store, iBookstore. Heck, look at the iTunes Store on your computer: it’s all made with HTML and CSS. Why? Because in the year 2010, if you’re going to be describing layouts, it’s not a bad call to describe them using very well adopted, rapidly developing technologies. [...]

There’s no pride or glory in tweaking number after number and reloading a page to make sure my drop shadow looks nice.

On this last point, I’m hopeful that if Photoshop made it possible to copy/export styled text and objects as HTML/CSS, developers would accept the generated code.  There are only so many ways to specify box dimensions & borders, right?

More broadly, people are clearly interested in doing demanding, print-quality typesetting using HTML, the better to create things like magazines for tablets.  I’m encouraged to see work that enables better text breakingkerning pairs & ligaturesproportional leading, and more. Onward and upward.

One other thing: I’ve gotten to know Neven a bit after he (justifiably) needled Photoshop for its admitted hodgepodge of UI elements. I’ve never managed to finish my long and detailed response, but in it I talk about how using Web elements (e.g. embedded WebKit) makes it hard–if not impossible–to match everything with OS-native controls.  I go on to cite numerous examples of Apple’s Web content not matching Aqua, etc.  The point is, the more powerful & ubiquitous Web content becomes, the more we’ll deal with the challenges of making the complete desktop/online experience feel cohesive.

8:57 PM | Permalink | Comments [8]

Behind the scenes of “AT-AT Day Afternoon”

Having logged lots of childhood hours with these toys, I really dug Patrick Boivin’s AT-AT Day Afternoon when it made the rounds a couple of weeks ago:

Now he’s shared some background info in a CNET interview & has posted a behind-the-scenes video, briefly showing Photoshop video layers in action:

8:04 AM | Permalink | Comments [1]
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