Archived entries for Travel

Our Dumb World: The Onion’s Atlas of the Planet Earth

The Onion’s newest project has just hit the stores. It’s a hardcover book titled "Our Dumb World: The Onion’s Atlas of the Planet Earth." It’s hilarious.

I’ll admit a bias because my brother worked on the book as editorial manager and as one of the writers. But Newsweek loves it too; the book is so funny that even Newsweek’s glowing review made me laugh.

"Like any regular atlas, it profiles every country in the world and includes lots of facts, or "facts." Wales, the "land of consonant sorrow," is the birthplace of the "oldest, longest, least pronounceable language in the world. When spoken, it sounds like a beautiful song, but when written, it looks like the alphabet just vomited."

"Fearless, which is to say, they don’t care who they offend, the Onion’s cartographers and geographers also boldly tackle more controversial countries. In the section devoted to Iraq, for example, you learn that "Iraq-U.S. relations became strained in 1963 when Iraq leader Saddam Hussein assassinated John F. Kennedy." The Iraq map shows such sites as "family burning effigy to stay warm," "U.S. soldiers arguing over whose turn it is to wear armor" and "father threatening to turn this car bomb right around if kids don’t be quiet." The section on Iraqi history is titled, "From the Cradle to the Grave of Civilization." Equal opportunity offenders, this atlas’s authors do not spare their own country ("Tennessee: Like ‘Hee Haw’ but a State"). And no joke is too silly or too lame to merit inclusion. Taste, obviously, was never an issue."

My brother was in town a few weeks ago for my wedding, and he had a preview copy from the printer that I was able to flip through. My favorite line so far was "Chile: Preventing Argentina from enjoying the Pacific Ocean since 1818."

Our Dumb World: Argentina (page from new Onion book)

Go order a copy for yourself. Makes a great gift, too.

Speaking in Singapore

I’m scheduled to present two sessions at the upcoming Webinale conference in Singapore on April 23rd and 24th.

More details soon, but wanted to give you advance notice.

Speaking in Hong Kong at @media 2007 Asia

@media 2007 - Asia I wanted to let you know that I’ll be speaking at @media again this year, this time at the Hong Kong event.

There are only a few days left for discounted registrations, so sign up quick.

All the details here on the @media 2007 Asia site.

It will be tough, but I’ll do my best to stand tall next to all the great speakers:

…the influential CSS Zen Garden creator Dave Shea, multiple book author Molly Holzschlag, the W3C’s Shawn Henry, JavaScript expert Jeremy Keith, HTML Dog author Patrick Griffiths, and Andy Budd, the author of the best selling CSS Mastery book.

See you there!

How to Use YUI Grids for Fluid CSS Page Layout

For those of you not reading 24ways each day this month, allow me to point out that I wrote a tutorial for it that’s live right now. It’s called Intricate Fluid Layouts in Three Easy Steps, and teaches you how to build CSS layouts that work on all modern browsers effortlessly using YUI Grids. Enjoy!

Also, I suppose I should let you know that I’m flying out on a redeye flight tonight to start my winter holiday. I hope to write once more before shuttering things, but if I don’t get a chance let me be among the first to wish you a very happy new year.

My Two Refresh06 Presentations

Phil Palmieri, Chad Cole, and the Refresh Orlando team put on a great web conference this month in Orlando, Florida, called Refresh06. I presented two talks, “Creating Accessible DHTML” and “The Yahoo! User Interface (YUI) Library”. Descriptions and download links for both talks are below.

Creating Accessible DHTML

The Internet’s dramatic shift from static to dynamic sites presents a series of new challenges to those committed to and dependent upon accessibility.

The Yahoo! User Interface (YUI) Library

The YUI Library (http://developer.yahoo.com/yui, http://yuiblog.com) is an open-source, a la carte JavaScript library for building richly interactive web apps using techniques such as DOM scripting, DHTML and AJAX. This library – free for the world to use – contains the exact same code that we use on globally and at massive scale on scores of Yahoo sites.

Conference Review

I really enjoyed myself at this conference because it reminded me how lucky we are to have such a passionate and dedicated community in our profession. In my experience, the web design and web development communities are earnest, passionate, and collaborative. (btw, cookies to the person who identifies the origin of that triplet phrase.) Given a choice, I’d always rather surround myself with people who love what they do. It’s fun learning, it’s fun sharing what we learn, and it’s fun bonding over common struggles.

I appreciated all the conversations at this conference. Because it was a relatively small event – about 65 people I guess – we all got lots of quality time. The big group dinners of 40 and 50 people were good, as were the 10-top lunch outing and obligatory pub duty. Here are just a few of the people I wanted to give a thank-you shout-out too (with apologies to the many I’m fogetting right now: Cyndi and Brian Fling from Blue Flavor in Seattle. Bruce Cooke, Varick , Joey and all the cool guys at nGenWorks, and Varick in particular for the great sketch (above) and permission to use it. Cindy Li, the Design Rabbit herself. Mike Girouard, aka Mike G, had a nice style full of passion for the web (he teaches at Full Sail, among other things). Janet Lynn Ford came down from Minnesota (midwest represent!), and we had a great talk about the ongoing stuggle for Accessibility. She and I have definitely been through some of the same things. Dave Hime and Rhodes Gibson were great contacts to meet. Their company, go9media does good work with an Accessibility focus – I look forward to working with them in the future. Jared Smith and I have some nice talks – though not as much as I’d have liked. He posted his User-center, Standards-driven Web Accessibility presentation on the WebAIM site. Faruk Ates, Jeremy Keith, Paul Boag, Andy Budd, Cameron Moll (great chat – happy for your plans!), Jina Bolton, Garret Dimon, Dan Rubin, Jason Garber. Last but not least, I was very happy to finally meet Stephen Anderson in person. Sharp guy, and his talk on the last day was one of the very top highlights for me.

For more about the conference, try a technorati search for “refresh06″, the event page on Upcoming.org, and the flickr tag for “refresh06″ sorted by interestingness.

Hookytime: Yahoo! Developer Day / Hack Day on Sept. 29th and 30th

picture of the event's tshirt logo

I know, I know, you LOVE to go to work/school on a Friday. It’s your favorite day of the week and there’s nowhere you’d rather be than in your office/cube/classroom. That’s cool — I don’t judge — but, but, but next Friday (Sept 29th) you realllly should play hooky and sneak down to Yahoo for our first every public Hack Day and Developer Day. It’s gonna be quite the event, and I wouldn’t want you to miss it. Really, you should come.

Sold? Cool: learn more and request an invitation.

Developer Day, Friday from 9-5, is packed with 20 sessions across four tracks. They are not to be missed: Rasmus Lerdorf, the creator of PHP will be giving a talk. So is Iain Lamb, (an Ajax/DHTML pioneer who co-founded Oddpost which evolved into the new Yahoo! Mail product). JavaScript guru Douglas Crockford will be dropping knowledge, as will many others. Web-celeb and Flickr’s chief software architect Cal Henderson will be speaking. The plenary is by none other than Yahoo!’s VP of Product Strategy, Bradley Horowitz, (a very rare opportunity to hear him speak [for free]). Most of the authors of the open-source YUI Library will be guilding hands-on sessions dedicated to many YUI components (I’ll be teaching a hands-on session about YUI’s three CSS components.

But that’s not even the cool stuff!

We’ve got top-tier entertainment lined up for Friday night, and while they won’t tell me who it is, Michale Arrington (who’s in the know, and MCing this event) writes:

The entertainment lined up for Friday night is going to be incredible, although a non disclosure agreement prohibits us from saying who it is. I can say with confidence, though, that everyone attending the event will be very, very happy they were there for Friday night’s party.

Then the REAL fun starts: 24 hour hackathon.

Be there! (Tons of press will be, so if you miss it you can read or hear about it the next day.) We’ve got people coming in from Australia and everywhere between here and there, so beg borrow and steal and get yourself here too (You MUST register in advance – security will be tight… for real.)

Drop me a line if you want more info or whatever. Tons of people have blogged about this, so instead of linking to ‘em all I’ll just point you to Technorati: http://technorati.com/search/hackday.org?sort=authority



San Francisco, California | Creative Commons By-2.5 License | Contact

RSS Feed. This blog is proudly powered by Wordpress and uses Modern Clix, a theme by Rodrigo Galindez.