Mark Bult Design: San Francisco, CA, Established 1988

Web design and development for small and large business, e-commerce, b2b, b2c, SAAS, and community websites. User experience design and usability testing.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Typos on Google Maps

Google Maps is pretty great, but it seems even the almighty Goog is susceptible to typos. I alerted Google (and Navtech and TeleAtlas, which both provide map data to Google) of the errors I spotted on this stretch of Highway 280 in San Francisco named after former CA State Senator and Deputy Attorney General John F. Foran.

At least four labels on the short stretch are incorrect.


Thursday Top 5

45 Beautiful Motion Blur Photos

As if being a sports mascot wasn’t bad enough

History of the browser user-agent string
Aaron Andersen explains one of the many reasons why web developers get grumpy.

Blogging from 25,000 feet
Virgin introduces in-flight Wifi.

Holy zeppelin!
Airship Ventures offers rides over the Bay Area in a real zeppelin, taking off from historic Moffett Field.

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Thursday Top 5

Worst. Day. At. Work. Ever.

“He’s doing it all wrong!”
Holy shit.

Um, uh oh. Uh oh! UH OH!
I’m not sure if this guy is the most dedicated or the most stupid radio announcer ever.

Repower America
Al Gore is advocating a U.S. goal of 100% carbon-free electricity in 10 years (New York Times Op-Ed: “The Climate for Change”). So am I. If you agree, sign the petition, or write a letter to the editor.

Kevin Rose interviews Al Gore for Digg Dialogg
Gore takes questions from the Digg users on subjects ranging from marijuana legalization/regulation to Net Neutrality whether he would accept a position in the Obama cabinet or heading the EPA.

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Friday, November 14, 2008


I spent much of this week coding and testing a new site for my friend (and client) Diane Choplin.

Diane is a longtime friend whom I met through BAA, where she was the coordinator of the Schools Group for a year or so. These days she directs the documentary photography program at SF’s Academy of Art.

I bought Diane her first domain years ago as a gift, and put up a rather rudimentary gallery featuring some of her photos from her time in the Peace Corps in Niger. We’d both neglected the site ever since, but a few months ago we decided to do something about it.

While I’d been working on the designs here and there for a few months, we had a mad rush to finish this week as Diane was applying for a fellowship and had a deadline. So the site was built entirely in the last week and a half, using Photoshop, Lightroom, SlideShowPro, Soundslides, Dreamweaver, and W3C-compliant XHTML Strict and CSS.

It’s not completely finished. There are always some loose nails to be nailed down (although I’m just happy it validates and works in all the major browsers), Diane didn’t have time to finish some of the galleries yet, we need to tweak some little things in SlideShowPro, there’s a Discussion section to be added later, and the whole thing needs to be converted to Wordpress.

But it was done (enough) for her deadline, and all the pages but one validate. The one that doesn’t contains some poorly generated code from Soundslides, the Flash app she used to make her multimedia slideshow (their fault, not Diane’s), so I’ll have to fix that later.

Let me know what you think of Leave a comment.

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Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thursday Top 5+1

Yes We Did
MoveOn’s pimping a commemorative “Yes We Did” poster and sticker by Shepard Fairey (of Obey Giant fame). You can get one sticker for free, although I’m pretty sure it’ll put you on MoveOn’s email list. I contributed $35 to get two posters. BTW, MoveOn’s new home page design is a leap forward, I hope they’ll extend it to the inner pages soon. [via Jason]

Candid pictures of Barack Obama
By Time photojournalist Callie Shell, who’s been photographing Obama for four years.

Pomegranate Phone
Awesome! Screw the iPhone, this is the one I want! It even makes coffee!

Mission Blues
Conceptual artist Daniel Dancer transforms 200 Presidio Middle School kids into an endangered mission blue butterfly. Pics and video. User Sues
Anthony Michaels has filed a class-action lawsuit alleging that used deceptive marketing to get him to sign up for a premium account, when former schoolmates weren’t actually looking for him.

Best man drank a bit too much last night I guess.

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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Peace One Day

Through LinkedIn I learned that BAA Schools Group alum Megan O’Grady Greene is working for London-based nonprofit Peace One Day.

From the website: “In 1999 filmmaker Jeremy Gilley decided to try and establish the first ever Day of Peace with a fixed calendar date. In September 2001 the Member States of the United Nations unanimously adopted the first-ever annual day of global ceasefire and non-violence — Peace Day, 21 September.”

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Sunday, November 09, 2008

Web 2.0 Summit focuses on how the Internet has altered the future of politics

TechWeb and CNET’s Webware bring us some great coverage of some of the discussions at the just-ended Web 2.0 Summit.

On one panel, Democratic campaign organizer Joe Trippi noted that official Barack Obama campaign videos on YouTube garnered over 14.5 million hours of viewing, which would be the equivalent of paying for $47 million of advertising time on broadcast television.

“Just like Kennedy brought in the ‘television presidency,’” said Trippi, “I think we’re about to see the first wired, or connected, or Internet — I don’t know what we’re going to call it — but it’ll be the first networked presidency.”

Arianna Huffington agreed: “Were it not for the Internet, Barack Obama would not be president.”

“By contrast, the McCain campaign really didn’t have a clue,” she continued. “The problem with the McCain campaign was not the age of the candidate, it was the age of the ideas.”

Over 90 minutes of videos on Webware (broken into segments) include Al Gore, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, and PayPal and Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk.

Labels: , , , Obama–Biden transition team hits the ground running

Less than a week after the election, the media has been filled with news of how the new administration is shaping up, including a list of about 200 Bush administration actions that Obama could reverse by executive order come January’s inauguration (I can hardly wait!).

While it garnered less attention than news about how the Obama cabinet’s shaping up, the transition team launched immediately after election day, an indication of how the Obama presidency views the Internet as key to its long-term strategies.


Friday, November 07, 2008

“60 Minutes” follows illegal e-waste from U.S. to China

This Sunday’s “60 Minutes” episode takes us to Guiyu, China, one of the world’s most toxic cities, thanks to e-waste exported from countries like the United States. In Guiyu, pregnant women are six times more likely to result in miscarry, and seven out of ten children have overly high levels of toxic lead in their blood.

Importing e-waste is big business in developing countries, where it’s either landfilled (causing massive toxic waste dumps) or “recycled” by workers (often children) earning little to recover gold and other metals by burning the plastics off of electronic parts, exposing workers and the local environment to cancer-causing toxics.

The “60 Minutes” crew filming in China was accosted by thugs who didn’t want them filming at the e-waste site in Guiyu (see preview below, sorry about the commercials).

Some U.S. “recycling” companies are no better. The “60 Minutes” investigation learned the Colorado recycling company they caught on tape exporting CRTs illegally, and “42 other American firms just like it, were recently caught in a government sting. They all offered to break the law by selling such e-waste when solicited by a federal agent posing as a foreign importer.”

Watch the full “60 Minutes” investigation on Sunday, November 9, at 7 p.m. ET/PT, on CBS.

More about e-waste:
Coverage at CNET News
Basel Action Network
Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition

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Thursday, November 06, 2008

Thursday Top 5

Jetpack Dreams
Trailer for a book.

Shatner–Hasselhoff ’08
I shoulda voted for these guys instead.

Interesting ad for a bank
Featuring treesitters.

Imapatient Texas cop tazes a woman in 45 seconds
Is he a bigot, a bad cop, or just having a bad day? Trick question. Those attributes are not mutually exclusive. Yet another example of why people distrust cops.

Funny Graduation Musical Speech
I wish the speech at my graduation had been half as creative as this.

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Monday, November 03, 2008

Election Eve

I did it. I voted for a democrat for president.

Tonight I sat down at the kitchen table, spread out all the election junk mail, voter guides, newspaper recommendations, and my four local, state, and federal ballots, and set to work. About two hours later, I was done.

Tomorrow, all I have to do is walk down the block and pop it in the box for absentee ballots. I’m interested to see whether there’s a big line at my polling place. Fortunately for me, you don’t have to wait in line to turn in an absentee ballot. That’s one of the many reasons I choose to vote this way.

Below you can see all the election mail we got this year, it’s the entire right half of the table; 64 pieces. On the left is the stuff I actually use to finalize my votes on any issues I’m still undecided about.

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