Re[2]: Project X-long relpy, and more questions

Subject: Re[2]: Project X-long relpy, and more questions
From: Iain Harrison <iharrison -at- SCT -dot- CO -dot- UK>
Date: Tue, 3 Sep 1996 15:10:19 GMT

I read with interest your ideas:

The 3-D
> "flight" through a site gives me a feel for how it's organized, sort
> of like a "You are here" dot on a map. It lets me explore an
> unfamiliar site (if it supports it) looking for points of interest

I have been thinking of some way of navigating around a web site by
providing some kind of 3D map so the reader does not get lost in
How do you implement it?

I'd do it as simply as possible

Would you use VRML?

Absolutely not!

How would you implement the "You are here" so when you are on a
different page it will show you a different location?

You include some location information on each page, which
would solve the problem without any difficulty

Is there some way of using vector graphics such as CorelDraw *.cdr,
instead of a compressed bitmap, such as *.gif, or *.jpg? I would
prefer to use a vector graphic because I think it would load faster,
and take up less space on the server? If there isn't how would I use
a java applet to load the Corel Vector graphic viewer?

There is a CDR viewer available (for Netscape I think). You could
possibly write one in java. Very few people have it, and who wants to
download a special viewer for one site? A better alternative would be to
make the bitmap files smaller by careful design, and the
platform-independence of HTML would be retained. A bitmap with
restricted colour depth, careful design and decent compression can be
very small.

Could you create a template page as a generalised object used
throughout the web site.

Yes, you could, but beware of making auto-pages. They very
rarely look good to the reader. If you can't find the time to
write each page, it is a bit much people to read it!

Could you provide the text in compressed form, so the server would
decompress the text before inserting it into the template page? If
so, how would you do it?

IMHO a good web page consists of less than 3k of text and 5k
of graphics. To go to the trouble to compress text to save
space on the server suggests that the writer has forgotten
that many web connections run at 900 cps or slower - there
always seems to be a slow link in the chain somewhere. If
the file is to be decompressed at the server end, it'll
arrive very slowly. Think of the user - compress your
writing, not your data!

Any suggestions I am grateful for, as I redesigning my Web site. I
want to make it easy to use, but also easy to change and update by
using a more object orientated approach.

Use a naming convention that you will find easy to follow and maintain,
re-use graphics to maximise the reader's browser cache, and Keep It

Try to resist the temptation to use features because they are available.
Keep your file sizes tiny. Avoid frames, java and imagemaps.

Make the page snappy and interesting to read, easy to navigate and
useable with text-only browsers (or ones with graphics switched off).

Personally, I like a small left indent on a page, done with a couple of
<UL> markers or a narrow left-hand column in a table, but simple text is

I hope this helps!


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