February 2009

Watch An Interview With Web Designer, Miriam Ellis

I was recently contacted and interviewed by Laura Leopard of Leopard Solutions, a legal resources firm in New York. Laura had read an article of mine that was nominated for the 2008 SEMMYs, Seeing With Web Designer Eyes: 9 Evident Errors and she felt this would make a great basis for a screencast interview with me.

Looking at websites in her own industry – the legal industry – Laura found plenty of examples of common errors in design, and I hope you will enjoy the 2-part screencast that resulted from our interview.

Part 1

Part 2

It was a pleasure to give this interview, and I hope the screencast will be helpful to Leopard Solutions’ clientele as they strive to publish professional websites that truly act as assets to their firms.

If, after watching the interview, you feel the time has come to begin improving your website, I’m ready to put my eyes on your project! Please, feel free to contact me at your convenience.

The Shy Little Google Man Who Won’t Walk With Me

Google Street View Man

It could be because I’ve just dangled him over the Pacific Ocean and he doesn’t trust me, but the Google Street View Man often disappears when you try to land him on a given street. He just vanishes. My guess is that this because Google has yet to map the street in question, but you’re give no message to that effect. The little man is wordless, and I’d suggest that Google implement a popup box of some kind that tells you when an area isn’t mapped rather than simply having your little man go missing in action.

I found this particular instance of using Google Maps kind of interesting because the road I was trying to view with Street View is in the tourist town of Mendocino, CA. My guess is that millions visit this destination a year. Google does have Shoreline Hwy, just above the village mapped:

Google Street View Man

I guess the Street View cars just didn’t make it down into the village? Kind of a surprise.

Google has put a lot of effort over the past few months into making Maps more usable and interesting, and I’d like to see messages from the Man if he can’t go for a stroll with me in certain places. The lack of communication is unsatisfying and is probably leaving new Google Maps users wondering if they are doing something wrong with the tools.