Diving into Facebook’s Timeline UI

A couple of months ago, Facebook started rolling out it’s Timeline feature. For those who don’t know, it’s a new form of a Facebook profile, which displays a user’s profile in a very different way, based on their entire life’s history. It’s a very dramatic thing and is a very impressive endeavor.

I signed up the very minute it was announced and have had it as my default profile, though it hasn’t been viewable by anybody but me for some time, it’s dust has now settled a bit and I’ve been trying to digest it and form an opinion.

The Timeline is so interesting in so many ways. In one regard it’s got a very inconsistent UI compared to the rest of Facebook and it introduces a lot of UI concepts and ideas that have not been known to websites in general before but on the other hand it’s also a very pretty beast.

Read on if you’re interested in diving (probably way too) deep into the Timeline

Echo JS launched

A new Hacker News-style social news site has been launched focused exclusively around Javascript. It’s a nice source for some interesting JS libraries and articles.

If you are passionate about Javascript, you should check it out:


Interesting stuff coming up in Firefox 10 (Aurora)

Yesterday, Mozilla announced the availability of Firefox 10 beta, named Aurora. The version introduces a bunch of new HTML5 features and some of them sound very interesting.

Designing User Interfaces for “Normies”

When I was working at a small web development shop in Iceland, we developed a lot of applications. Some of those applications were used by what you would consider the “older generation” and/or “normal users”. Working at a small company like that you need to wear many hats, so usually what would happen is that I would end up teaching the end users to use most of the applications I developed.

I really hated it and I’m guessing most developers do, however, I would also say that it taught me a lot at the same time. It would even be safe to say that it shaped how I see user interfaces today.

In this post I try to cover a few of the common patterns that I noticed among users with less computer understanding.

The problem with “Lorem Ipsum” and What You Can to Do Instead.

Usually when designers are designing both print and website layouts, banner ads and other user interfaces, they need to have some text copy to work with. Most of the time, the client or the company they are working for doesn’t have text copy prepared, so designers usually place so called “Lorem Ipsum” content into their designs.

Lorem Ipsum has been used for many decades as placeholder content in print layout designs. It’s based on latin, but is actually just gibberish and doesn’t have any meaning. It’s purpose is to divert the reader’s attention away from the text itself and onto the layout and the design. That seems very logical.

I like these fonts

Two fonts I like.

Facebook’s “Problem”

My mom had a birthday gathering the other day (happy 52 mom). It was pretty uneventful as you would expect, but as sometimes happens these days, a conversation about Facebook got started.

Most techies you meet would say that they hate listening to normal people talk about anything technical – especially the older generation. I usually find these kinds of conversations rather enjoyable, especially if I can withdraw and not have to be a part of it and just listen. Because then you kind of get a sense for how normal people see things and what problems they run to, etc.

Having problems with motivation and getting things done? These links might help

These two links are pretty good for helpful motivational tips, tricks and hacks. Read on.

Closures and Other Great Powers of Functions in Javascript

Closures are functions that you define “on the fly” that have access to the same variables (the same scope) as they get defined in. You can store them as variables, pass them around between other functions, and generally get treated like a normal variable.

In general they are very powerful. Read on for a deeper explanation of how they are useful and creative way in which they can be used.

A git power feature that helped me 10 mins ago

I was setting up a new git repository (more on that in a later post) and I was using a wrong author, so the name was wrong on all the commits. I googled around and found this command which allow you to basically rename all the authors: It’s deep in dirty-commit-territory, so if there are […]

I have arrived in Palo Alto

Good news. I have finally arrived in Palo Alto.

I just got to my hotel and I’m getting my apartment later this week (hopefully), so you could say that I’ve officially moved.

Best vim Cheat Sheet in the World / Planet / Solar system

This is awesome for all Vimsters out there. A guy named Michael Pohoreski seems to have had a similar problem to almost every other vim user/beginner out there. He couldn’t find a good vim cheat sheet, so he made the mother of all cheat sheets. It’s damn ugly, but pretty good:

Commands for converting from TextMate to Vim

I saw this post on Hacker News today and thought it might be interesting to the TextMate users out there.

It’s written by this person, Jack Kinsella and he goes very much in-depth into how to convert yourself from being a TextMates to a vim user.

Link: textmate-to-vim

How to Draw an Equilateral Triangle in Photoshop CS5 (updated)

An equilateral triangle, in case you’ve forgotten, is a triangle composed of lines that are all of the same length.

For some reason I started thinking about those kinds of triangles the other day and wanted to create one, for use in a pattern or something.

I could have opted to just google for an image of one, but I wanted to draw one by hand. I started by creating a shape using the pen tool (p), but I found out quickly that it’s not intuitively easy.

Palo Alto

Picture from Palo Alto, Stanford University Palm Drive

On a professional level, the last year and a half has been pretty interesting. I’ve been managing my own projects, doing freelancing work, did some traveling, even some classes at a university, tried to work on a lot of side projects, etc. I can’t say I did everything I wanted to, but it’s still been pretty great.

However, times are going to get even more interesting in the coming months…

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