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Review of acidgloss.net

 |  Interwebs, Review

Reviewed: Krissy
Site URL: acidgloss.net

Faced with the choice of multiple skins, I am going to review ‘Purple Vector’. I have decided to review this one because it is simple (my current favourite style), and you say you adore it. (Note: it was later discovered that Krissy stole this vector, take this review with a pinch of salt because I’m not sure any more what was hers and what wasn’t.)

I can’t say that my first impression is a good one. The vector itself is great, and I’ve only just noticed the larger ’shadow’ version behind it. This leads me to believe that you’re talented at what you do, which makes me want to continue browsing. However, there’s no introduction text. No welcome, no “this site is for bla bla..”. This makes me feel unwelcome and out of place. A small introduction explaining what the site is/what it’s for would work wonders.

I’m a little disappointed with the rest of the layout. The vector is great, stands out, presents itself with a focal point which I expect from all graphics, but after that it’s just white. For some reason, your white just seems extra scary. There’s something about it that is driving me up the wall. I can only suggest a very faint background in your sidebar, or main content/blog to break this up. Squidfingers.com has some great patterns which I’ve recently fell in love with.

I’m faced with two navigation blocks. Which do I use? They’re both more or less the same, but assuming I was a web newbie, I’d probably leave at this point out of sheer frustration. The purple navigation system ‘in’ the image is good, if a little small, but the text-linked navigation is the kind of thing I’m used to browsing.

While we’re on the topic of navigation, I notice your links are the same colour as your bold text. Not only this, but your links are bold too. How am I supposed to be able to tell the difference between links, and simple bold text unless I hover over each individual thing? Either make the links darker, or add some kind of underlining. My personal recommendation is a very faint dotted line, it does the job without being intrusive.

My last comments regarding presentation is your blog ‘quick stuff’. It looks so untidy just plonked at the top of the blog like that. Either put it at the bottom, or on a page of it’s own.

The content is there. That’s about it, there’s nothing special about it. There’s nothing wrong with it either, of course. You’ve got an amusing/interesting biography which goes into enough detail without being a replica of your life story. You don’t waffle on about what you did when you were 12 to some guy in school, which seems to be a recurring theme recently. You have clearly stated your opinions, no beating about the bush here. Excellent. Sufficient information about your domain and layouts, a decent copyright notice (disclaimer) and some links out. That’ll do; no real comment or criticism, because your content does the job.

The only page I spellchecked was your biography, because to me that is the most important part of a personal website. Even if yours isn’t entirely personal, it’s still one of the ‘biggest’ pages you have. Funnily enough, I couldn’t spot a single spelling error, hoorah. I did spot a typing error on your received review pages; it should be courtesy, not curtasy. See, and I wasn’t even looking for that one. The only other content ‘error’ I could find was a broken link to Un Deux WPR on your Reviews page. Un Deux closed when the owner lost her data to a bad host.

Your coding is currently not validating. For someone who’s specified a doctype, and successfully uses divs/etc, I’m surprised. However, it won’t be too hard to fix.

For starters, take everything you’ve capitalised <head>, etc and put it into lower case. If you’re determined to use XHTML, you should change all non-closing tags (such as <img> and <meta>) and change them to self closing tags. This means adding a “/” at the end of a tag, just before the closing > sign. This is the first few lines of your code as it is now:

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd">
<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">
<HEAD>
<TITLE> !@# AcidGlossNET — Goes Vector!</TITLE>

<META HTTP-EQUIV="Content-Type" CONTENT="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1">
<META name="description" content="Misc journal domain of a bitchy sarcastic teen.">
<META name="keywords" content="sex, drugs, rock & roll, crack, whores, cam, whore, camwhores, fuck, shit, cunt">

<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="http://www.acidgloss.net/skins/1/style.css">
<SCRIPT LANGUAGE=JavaScript>
function gbook() {window.open(’http://www.acidgloss.net/c/book/guestbook.cgi’, ‘gbook’, ‘toolbar=no, location=no, directories=no, status=no, menubar=no, marginwidth=0, marginheight=0, scrollbars=yes, resize=no, width=400, height=400′)

}
</SCRIPT>
</HEAD>
<BODY>

This is what it should like, to validate XHTML compliant:

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd">

<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">

<script>
<title> !@# AcidGlossNET — Goes Vector!</title>
<meta http-equiv="content-type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1" />

<meta name="description" content="Misc journal domain of a bitchy sarcastic teen." />
<meta name="keywords" content="sex, drugs, rock & roll, crack, whores, cam, whore, camwhores, fuck, shit, cunt" />

<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="http://www.acidgloss.net/skins/1/style.css" />
<script type="text/javascript">
function gbook() {window.open(’http://www.acidgloss.net/c/book/guestbook.cgi’, ‘gbook’, ‘toolbar=no, location=no, directories=no, status=no, menubar=no, marginwidth=0, marginheight=0, scrollbars=yes, resize=no, width=400, height=400′)

}
</script>
</head>
<body>

You can probably see the difference. Just for your reference, here’s a list of musts if you want to validate XHTML compliant:

  • Close all non-closing tags with a “/”.
  • Use lower-case letters at all times.
  • Specify an ‘alt=""‘ for every image.
  • Always surround variables with quotes (<div id=layer1> should be <div id="layer1">, etc)
  • Properly nest and close ALL tags.
  • Replace special characters with the correct entity names. “&” should be “&amp;” and so on.

To save doing all this work, you could alternatively use an HTML 4+ doctype, as they’re not as fussy. You’d be able to get away with capital letters and no quotation marks. However, some of this stuff is just good practise and should be done anyway. I guess one saving grace is the fact that your CSS is valid.

After browsing your site and realising just how much you are involved in web design; with your various domains and server stuff, I am surprised you coding is so poorly done. In my opinion, while validating a normal site isn’t an absolute necessity, I’d expect you to use it to ‘boast’ your qualifications. There’s nothing like being one step ahead of the competition, as validation also comes hand-in-hand with cross-browser compatibility which in theory ‘extends’ your reach to the public?

Your site is good enough, personal enough, incorporates your personality enough/etc. It doesn’t jump out at me as overly professional though, and this may put your potential customers off. You are a kick-ass lady, and while I would promote reflecting this anywhere else, be careful how you do it while trying to get custom. Other than that factor, I have nothing else to say. Don’t stop anyone (including me) from expressing yourself like you do, and good luck with your various business activities.

Jem Turner jem@jemjabella.co.uk +44(0)7521056376

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