Sam Newman's site, a Consultant at ThoughtWorks

Archive for ‘May, 2004’

Now that this site properly “validates (W3C Markup Validatior – validation results)”: as XHTML 1.0 Strict (with a little help from some PHP and the “W3C validator”: I’m now starting to look at the markup itself. As you may know, the idea is that the XHTML should contain the semantic markup, and the CSS the presentation, which is a pattern I have used here. I have become concerned however about the quality of my markup. Lets look at a simple example. Currently, the links for each post are marked up like this (I’ve omitted @href@’s or the MT tags that generates this content):

May 4th in General | Permalink | Comments

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I’m slowly working my way down my website todo list, and today came to the topic of webpage compression. Webpage compression, when done right, is a robust solution to decreasing the size of your pages and hence speeding up page load times, all whilst coping with older browser types. Thanks go to posts at “Textism(Textism – Bigsmallbig – 21 November 02)”: and “Mark Pilgrim(Mark Pilgrim – A warning to others)”: for putting this on my radar in the first place.

The conventional approach to compressing your webpages is to use “mod_gzip”: This module is run by Apache after all other modules have run – so it will work on dynamic content. Firstly, it determines if the client can understand gziped content – if it can it the webpage is compressed, otherwise the normal page is sent. This does require you have mod_gzip installed however and you have to associate the correct mine with the module. An excellent overview of mod_gzip can be found at “Web Compression(Compressing Web Output Using mod_gzip for Apache 1.3.x and 2.0.x)”:, which is an excellent resource on the topic of website compression as a whole.
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Inspired by the rather enjoyable “meme(LaughingMeme – page 23, sentence 5: an autopsy)”:, I decided to integrate an ongoing series of Page 23 posts on my sidebar. To summarise the original aim of the meme, it has each participant write the fifth sentence on the 23rd page of the book they are currently reading. My slight subversion of the meme is to do the same for various books which I have read or am reading that I can recommend. The aim is to have a picture of the book, the sentence in question, and a link through to Amazon on my sidebar. I alsowant to vary the book displayed as often as possible. What I really want is a dynamic slideshow – which is what we are going to build now.
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