Archive for July, 2008

* Drop Down Menu Affordances

Posted on July 12th, 2008 by Dave Johnson. Filed under Uncategorized.

It seems like drop down menus are moving back towards having down arrows on them.


It seems like in the early days of Web 1.0 people would do all they could to get away from the select box and use all sorts of fancy DHTML menus (remember anyone?). However, these days we are seeing most applications that have drop down menus - while not using the HTML select element - are reverting back to the down arrow visual affordance.

For example, GMail, Zazzle, LinkedIn and Amazon are all using the down arrow on their drop down menus nowadays. This simplification of user interfaces becoming a common theme in the latest web based applications.


* Open Source Optional

Posted on July 6th, 2008 by Dave Johnson. Filed under opensource.

One of the more interesting things I came across in my blog reading this weekend was the release of the second generation Openmoko phone. The Openmoko phone is the phone for the FOSS community with even the CAD files for building the phone available under a Creative Commons license and a price just shy of $400 USD.

The question that I have is how many open source developers and evangelists out there that are building their applications on free and open source software like Linux, Apache and Ruby on Rails or that work for open source organizations like the Mozilla Foundation or that are evangelizing open standards like OpenID are going to get on board with the most open mobile device available? How many of them are going to trade in their fancy closed source IPhone - for which Apple has applied for more than 200 patents - for an Openmoko phone? I would wager that very few will.

I would expect that all open source proponents who refuse Microsoft software because of their closed, software patenting ways would likewise refuse a proprietary hardware device form Apple in favour of an open alternative and yet people are still probably more than happy to stick with their favourite pomaceous fruit designed in California.

So who swears by open source and is going to keep their IPhone or other smart phone?

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