Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Don't fill my screen

Allow me a short rant. I've been selected to be a judge in an upcoming Interactive Design competition (more on that soon), and I've been looking at a lot of Web sites. Strangely, I don't mind the ones that blast music at me, since the ones I've seen at least choose music appropriate to their content (instead of annoying midi versions of their favorite 80's songs). Instead, I'm extremely ticked off by sites that insist on expanding my (that's MY) browser window to fill my screen.

Note to web page designers: If I wanted my browser window to fill my admittedly oversize screen, I would have completed that task personally. The way I dispose of my monitor real estate is as particular to me as the way I organize my desk, though not as messy. I like to have several windows open to the sizes that I choose. I am not only not impressed that you fill my monitor with your Web site (and every other site I open in that window), but equally dismayed at your manners. Keep your hands to yourself.


Anonymous said...

Is that still an issue these days? Don't most web browsers have a way to disable window resizing?

Liz Castro said...

Perhaps. But I don't feel like going to find it.

I think what bugs me the most is that the Web designer is not choosing a size that is ideal for their site, but is being lazy by using all of the available space, regardless of what I have chosen in that respect. If they resized the window to a particular size, that wouldn't bother me half as much as simply filling up my screen.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, you can't trust a lot of amateur designers not to do crap like this, so you have to use a browser that you can configure to ignore it.

Firefox can be told to stop Javascript from doing annoying things including resizing/moving/raising/lowering windows, messing with the status bar etc.

Anonymous said...

Hola simplemente para mandarte una felicitación por todo el trabajo hecho. respecto al tema el objetivo de una página web es el comunicar una idea y creo que todavía falta mucho camino para comprenderlo y es ahí donde los usuarios al querer llamar la atención les queda como una fiesta de ventanas y colores, pero aprendiendo los estilos y codigo es un gran paso.

Why not in English my comentary? why yes?

Nuevamente felicidades y sigue hechandole muchas ganas.

Keijo Ahlqvist said...

I make blog in comics. It is large enough to be readable at one glance. If smaller, it can't be read.

(But not your problem because it is not in english.)

Anonymous said...

Yes, I absolutely hate it when a site tries to resize a window. I use Firefox and have disabled javascript window sizing. Here's how:

Go to Firefox>Preferences (on a Mac)
Then, under the Content tab, look down at "Enable JavaScript". To the right, click the Advanced button. Here you can disable Move or Resize Existing Windows. I find this very useful.

But still, I agree that one should not have to go to all this trouble.

jim said...

Oui, oui! This [window re-sizing] is especially annoying ... as well as those miscreants that make the window smaller (as if they were ashamed). I also have very specific window sizing and placement (and usually have at least a half dozen applications running) so re-sizing my browser is a definite "no more visits to you buddy" flag.

@senor precious: Firefox does indeed have that setting but a few manage to get around it FYI. I had forgotten the setting was there [thanks for the reminder] so I will report the next site to the Firefox bug people in case they can do something about it, eh!

kostya said...

I hate my windows being resized, moved, or displayed without an address bar. Pages like that suggest to me a designer who has just figured out his/her first bit of JavaScript and is fascinated and intoxicated by the power.

Anonymous said...

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Liz I hope you read this comment.....
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Salut i força a tots!!
I'm sorry for this this catalan entry but I need to say that!!!
Si vols veure el meu mini blog entra a http://www.entremaqueros.net/bitacoras/sans/ o bé busca per el meu nom al google!
Upsss com mola veure que estas per aqui.
AH! congratulations and thanks for your wonderful and funny books.

Anonymous said...

It's another example of the arrogance of certain designers. They want to be in control, in total control, of the "user experience" as they call it. They forget that their job is to communicate information and motivate action; instead, they want to drag the user through something resembling Mr. Toad's Wild Ride run amuck. Websites are not push content, like TV commercials; they are pull content, like catalogs. Confusing one for the other is a design catastrophe.

Also, to some extent, I think it's insecurity on the part of the same designers. They can't design a flexible page, or one which the user can interact with the way he chooses. They can't make it work any way other than the very strict, rigid way they laid it out in. They're thinking like display ad designers, not website designers. So they use graphicized text "to maintain the formatting", they use inappropriate Flash, they force underlining on links even if is turned off in the browser, and, yes, they resize your browser window to whatever they want it to be, because, y'know, it's all about them, them, them.

The underlining one is a big deal to me. I'm one of the millions of people who have difficulty reading underlined text on a screen, especially big blocks of it (like most navigation menus), and therefore I have underlining turned off in my browser. Yes, sometimes it's a nuisance to find links that are not designated in any other way, but I know I have to look for them, and I can deal with it. Some designers, however -- much like the page-resizers so justly condemed here -- are so in love with their underlines, and think them to be such an important part of their design, that they override my browser settings and force underlining on me. So, yes, the page looks exactly like they envisioned it ... and I'm on some other website entirely, having left theirs because I couldn't read it with the bleeping underlines! This is not a win for them or their clients.

The Web is not a printed page.

The differences between the Web and a printed page have nothing to do with the fact that you can put a clock in someone's status bar or play bad MIDIs in one but not the other. Anyone who does not comprehend these differences should stick with building printed pages, because they (and the websites they perpetrate) have neither place nor purpose on the Web.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Yes, Yes

I also HATE web designers that want to act like Microsoft and decide how I want to see things.

Positioning is ok, but I absolutely HATE anyone that makes the window full screen. Now I can't see the other stuff I am vewing.

I also dislike tabbed browsing for the same reason, I want to see many windows at once, my brain works and so I do not need to view just one thing at a time like I was a moron or something.

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