OK, we've got some pretty serious stuff to go over today, so I hope you're appropriately caffeinated.
- Cynicism Alert: I want to propose a new law, similar to Murphy's Law or Godwin's Law. My new law would read thusly: "You've lost the argument in the precise instant that you resort to 'just because you have the right to do something doesn't make it the right thing to do'." Really, is there anyone, anywhere who is willing to give up their rights in order to do the right thing? *cough*Ground Zero Mosque*cough*
- Speaking of rights and doing the right thing, Midland's City Council unanimously hiked next year's tax rate over the vocal protests of as many citizens as could be fit into a marathon hearing. A couple of local bloggers who are more astute and plugged in than me have weighed in on the process and implications. I recommend this post by Ospurt over at Jessica's Well, and George over at Sleepless in Midland has a couple of good articles on the subject, one serious and one less so (but still insightful).
- Of course, one has to be naive to think that hearings immediately before a final vote would result in any budget cuts (which is the only way taxes get cut). If the Council truly wants meaningful citizen input to the tax rate, the time to get the public involved is at the beginning of the budget cycle...and good luck figuring out how to do that.
- OK, on to more interesting topics, such as whether the internet is making us stupid. (We must blame someone or something.) By the way, number 2 on the list is awesome.
- Here's another list: Some reasons you might not want to become a web designer. Thanks, guys; you're about ten years too late. Actually, the writer left off the best reason to stay away from website design, and it was picked up on by a commenter: Internet Explorer.
- However, there are a few things that are making designers' lives easier, and one of them is Adobe's recent announcement that it is partnering with Typekit to bring some of its classic fonts to the web. If the implications of that announcement escape you, don't worry. It just means that whereas before we designers could fill your screens with ill-advised combinations of crappy fonts, we can now do the same with high-quality fonts. Seriously, though, this is a big deal, especially since Adobe has optimized those fonts for screen display. It's even convinced me to sign up with Typekit, and I'm now using that service on a new project.
- In addition to the new law above, I want to suggest a new bumper sticker: "Friends don't let friends use their browser's search bar instead of the address bar." Pretty catchy, huh? Anyway, if you're in the habit of typing a URL into the search bar, my advice is simple: STOP IT! That's not what it's designed for.* (Of course, if all browsers would follow Google Chrome's lead, we wouldn't need two input fields anyway. But, apparently, Google is the only browser maker smart enough to figure out whether you've input a URL or a search term.)
- And speaking of Google Chrome, I'm this close to finally making it my default browser. As it stands, I have it open continuously and simultaneously with Firefox, with each running on a different monitor. I have yet to find an area where Firefox is clearly superior, although its web developer plugins are good enough that I'll never let it go completely (until they're ported to Chrome, anyway). If you haven't yet tried Chrome, well, as Mal would say, it's shiny!