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Assists - Tips 'n Tricks
Assists - Tips 'n Tricks

 Comitato design and techniques

Starting redesign the third time I was fed up with all kind of fancy free script-stuff that all the suppliers are stuffed with. There were two tasks to be fulfilled -
1) Using the eJanus tools to its extremety. 2) More use of stylesheets (CSS).
Reasons were to minimize maintenance and style code, secondly to develop a site with minimum of delayes.
If any delay should occur you have to blame your modem or your ISP provider (So far NextGenTel is a pleasant experience). Finally you have to find a web host that really supports your needs (Can't make any complaints against Cwebs).

I was also tired of heavy coloring, keeping tracks of all shades of green and blue was a vasted work. Simplifying having one basic color to work out from, the sketches turned out to be a parent window with simple navigation that links to different children according to selections.
See  Screenshot 1 and  Screenshot 2
The children itselves should also have the ability to link to other children even across the direct parent.

How the small windows are popping up when rolling over with the mouse, are explained under JavaScripts.

Using a lot of different font styles to make the site fancy are only irritating the eye. Be stuck to one or two fontstyles. The best control is to redefine the font-tags H1 - H6. Go for slightly different fontsizes instead of fontfaces. You may define left and right boarder offsets and much more. Look for some simple tricks in the StyleSheets section that saves you a lot of time and code. Secondly it's easy to redefine the attributes if necessary.


IFRAME

Back to modularity - to obtain optimal flexibility shifting the children windows there are two way - frames or iframes. The regular frames has limited support by browsers, iframes are supported by the three major browsers. The iframe technique is quite simple and became the major part of the design. You may find the example in the JavaScripts section.


OVERLIB

A few sites are included with special effects. Overlib is one way to emphesize or explain text - very effectful. It's a small window popping up when the mouse is rolling over. If you move the mouse over the underlined text, there is no better way to let you experience the effect - overLIB. How to implement these effects are explained in the JavaScript section.


Chromeless window

Chromeless window is a new browsing technique that has its own "protocol". MS is not especially fond of CLW v/3.5 as XP SP1 hardly works with this version. Therefore the old v/2.1 is functional though you may observe variations in window sizes as MS NT4.0 is ignoring the window size parameters.
Clicking the underlined text will examplify a  Chromeless window. You may even design your own site using CLW, but be careful.


APPLETS

I really admire one designer and I couldn't lay off including a few of his artworks in these sites. Actually the Home-page is including two applets - one general preloader that takes care of not only the graphics, but also entire sites or scripts you will launch later. This is a commercial product well worth to spend a few bucks on. The other is a random formed tree. It's always a thrill to see which one is the fastest. More about this in Applet section.


STATICS

What is more annoying - seeing the menu disappear when you're scrolling a long text. To meet this "malfunction" you have to make the menues static. That means the menu is floating in the foreground when you are scrolling the page in the background. Look at the menu in this site. More about this in CF section.


LABELS

Linking to labels to get a direct "address" to a section is a must and a neat little trick. Use it when you feel to ease searches in the text either you navigate up or down, and you get satisfied visitors coming back to you. There are a few examples in this site. More on this later.





That should complete the basic tools and necessary effects. If you feel a little disappointed not finding more, you havn't opened the sections to study the variety in use. The only limitation to make functional and sophisticated sites is the fantasy. But calm down, you have to experiment and make a lot of sketches before you snap ideas and place them in the right spot.

Stay tuned
EriX