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Review of

 |  Interwebs, Review

Reviewed: Mysti
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Oh my, 458Kb worth of over-used celebrity top image. Unoriginal and repetitive are my first impressions. Even with the “trendy” brush effects you’ve added, it doesn’t exactly strike me as interesting. Already I wonder if the rest of your site will be this over done. Just a note; I saved your top image as a .gif as an experiment, and there was virtually no difference in quality but the size was reduced to about 140Kb. Still too big, but a fraction of the original size. Think about that.

The black text is too small. When I knock my screen resolution up to full, the text is virtually illegible. You need to increase the size, even if it’s only by a pixel or two. If you are determined to have small text, 8pt Arial is good. It’s still viewable in higher resolutions, and is quite a nice font to look at I guess. Try and aim for at least 9pt in future though.

It’s hard to tell your links from normal text; because you’ve simply made them bold. You have bold text under “.Currently.” for example; how am I supposed to know if that is a link or not unless I waste time hovering over them? A dark yellow-orange or something similar to tie in with the layout may work wonders.

The text is crammed into the tables that you’re using. It’d be nice if you could add a bit of padding so the text is ‘away’ from the border. You can add padding with both HTML and CSS, more on this later though…

I was disappointed by your “about me” page. It didn’t tell me anything about you that I’d want to know. I don’t really care if your favourite colour is red, I want to know more about your personality. Maybe a bit about what you enjoy doing and such. In fact, you could remove that blurb about you from the sidebar (it doesn’t need to be there), and put that content in the “about me” page. Expand on it, talk about why you like/dislike certain things/etc. Some of your pages could be compressed to save space; “bad habits” could be added to “about me” for example.

Some of your “you” content is about as over used as your top image. It’s on almost every page on the Internet, you don’t need to have it to. Your blank buttons for example; if anyone uses one I can guarantee they won’t link you back because they can be replicated in PSP7 with ease. Your fonts, or rather; the fonts you have collected, don’t belong to you and therefore you have no right to redistribute them. Alternatively, you could always place a link to the page they are available from on “official” fonts sites.

You have lots of “coming soon” notices. Instead of taking up pointless space with all these things, you could create a “coming soon” page with a list. I suppose you could always remove them altogether, that’d work too. People don’t like seeing broken links/coming soon signs.

I noticed quite a few spelling errors while going through your pages. You might want to check each page with a spell checker before uploading them/adding them to website. Here are just a handful of the ones I picked up on:

Page Paragraph Typo Correction
index.php .Layout. blurb pics pictures
index.php .The Digital Gurl. blurb pisces Pisces
index.php blog – p1 I’ve been wanting I’ve wanted
index.php blog – p2 brothers brother’s
index.php blog – p4 foward forward
aboutme.php n/a arouund around
facts.php fact 4 grade,lol. grade, lol.
facts.php fact 12 eventually,lol eventually, lol
facts.php fact 17 pisces Pisces
facts.php fact 18 wierd weird

In general, I was disappointed with your content and it’s presentation. Everything you’ve got, I’ve seen before. I was really looking forward to reading some interesting stuff on you and I ended up with “Only In America..”, which I’ve seen so many times it’s unbelievable In fact, I could probably recite the list off to you now…

Your coding is messy. You have <br> tags in your head which shouldn’t be there and multiple body tags. You need to fix this up; you can start by adding a doctype to the top of your documents. Here is an XHTML doctype:

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" "">

As it’s an XHTML doctype, you also need to replace your <html> tag with this:

<html xmlns="">

You need to move your CSS into an external stylesheet. Not only will it help keep your pages tidy, but it then means you can change your CSS (and thus your layouts), just by altering one file. There is a tutorial on external stylesheets here. Once you have placed your CSS into a stylesheet, you can think about validating it.

You now need to remove:
<div style="position: absolute; left: 0px; top: 0px">


<DIV ID="overDiv" STYLE="position:absolute; visibility:hide;z-index:2;"></DIV>

..from before your <body> tag. You shouldn’t have any HTML in your head, other than the title of your page and meta tags/external document (javascript/css) links. If the HTML is integral to your design, place it AFTER the body tag. While I’m on the topic of body tags; you currently have three:
<body background="">

<body style="background-repeat:repeat-y">
<body bgcolor="#EFE3AA">

This information can be added to your stylesheet. Here is your CSS for the body of your document, with invalid coding removed and the information above entered correctly (you can change your current ‘body’ CSS information for this):

body {
background-attachment : fixed;

background-image: url('mandylaybg.jpg');
background-repeat: repeat-y;
padding: 0px;

margin: 0px
font-family: arial, sans-serif;
line-height: 10px;

Now you simply need to replace your three current body tags, with one: <body>.

You need to sort out the code which is improperly ‘nested’. For example, you are currently using:
<b><p align="right"><u>______NAVIGATION/SITE INFO</u></b><p>

This is incorrect. HTML tags must be opened and closed in the correct order. Tags are closed in the opposite order to which they were opened; your tags should look symmetrical. That means your code should actually look like this:
<p align="right"> <b> <u> ______NAVIGATION/SITE INFO </u> </b> <p>

Be sure to alter this for any incorrectly nested HTML tags.

You have tags without quotation marks around the variables. Look at this table tag I extracted from your source code:
<table border=0 bordercolor=black cellspacing=2 cellpadding=1 rules=NONE>

Not a single quotation mark. What’s more, you have coding that contradicts other coding, and coding that doesn’t even exist littered in there! First, you need to learn to put every variable (width, background, etc) into these quotation marks. You also need to start using CSS to customise things, instead of HTML. Here is your table tag, I’ve given it an ID:
<table id="table1">

This is now much smaller, and we can use CSS to alter anything you need to change. You can add this to the bottom of your stylesheet:

#table1 {   (this tells the css which element we're editing)

border: 1px solid #000000;   (this gives a black border, 1px thick)
padding: 3px;   (this gives padding, stopping overflow into the border)

You need to remove all of the filter/alpha/gradient coding that is inserted by Microsoft programs, as it’s basically useless. I opened your site in both Firefox (which doesn’t allow most of these things), and Internet Explorer which does, and your page didn’t look any different. Don’t forget to close <td> tags before <tr> tags too!

Everywhere you have uppercase in your coding, it needs to be switched out for lowercase. HTML should always be typed in lowercase. The only exception to this rule is the doctype. You also need to replace the & entity in some of your URLs (e.g. guest map) for &amp;. It will still display &, but it will allow the browser to generate that entity itself, instead of relying on keyboard inputted symbols which may not show up in some browsers. The same goes for symbols/entities such as © and ™.

It would take me absolutely ages to go through your coding and correct every little error, because you’ve made too many. I am going to ‘cheat’, and point you in the direction of my newest tutorial; validating xhtml. Even if you don’t want to validate your coding to that standard (it can be hard), it is still wise to follow the regulations set out in XHTML, as it will generally improve your coding, and make it easier to modify.

In summary, your site is “okay”. It doesn’t give me much in the way of entertainment, because everything you’ve done I’ve seen before. The site works across my various browsers, which is shocking really, when you consider the state of your code. Your presentation is quite untidy; you need to sort out your links so it’s easier to tell what is actually a link. You should try browsing some of the more popular websites to get a good feel of the sort of information you could add about yourself and suchlikes to add a real personal feel to the site. Decrease the size of your top image, and correct the spelling mistakes to improve the overall quality of your website.

Jem Turner +44(0)7521056376

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