About this site's lack of design: Yes, it's supposed to look this way — I'm using a sandbox theme for WordPress (see it on GitHub).

Dan Rubin's SuperfluousBanter

Design, random musings, and the Web. Since 1977

Archive for 2006


Blogger. Template. Fixed.

Sunday, August 6th, 2006

Blogger template questions? Please search and/or post to the official Blogger Help Google Group—you are much more likely to get a response there than by emailing me.

A little over 2 years ago, Blogger relaunched, and featured all-new templates designed by some of your favorite designers. I was lucky enough to be included in that list, and my template set, Thisaway, was well received and has enjoyed some popularity over the last few years. That is, unless you’re an IE user who happened to put italics in a certain parts of your posts.

Woe is IE

IE/Win suffers from a curious bug (gasp!) related to the use of italics in certain situations. The wonderful folks at Position is Everything have documented this as much as possible (or as one would want to), and, as luck would have it, their fix works on Thisaway.

Why now?

I’ve been emailing the fix to people for quite a while now, on a case-by-case basis, and it’s also been posted to the Blogger Google Group, but I finally coordinated with the nice folks at Blogger a few months ago to start incorporating the fix into the live templates, so new users of the template would get the fixed version. Happily, I can now say that as of a few weeks ago, the fix is now live, and seems to test out just as it should.

Fixing existing blogs

What if you’ve been using one of my Thisaway templates for a while? If you want to update your blog to incorporate the fix, you have two options.

Option 1: Start from scratch

If you haven’t made any customizations to the blog template (e.g. adding elements to the sidebar, changing the CSS, adding a custom header image, etc.), you can simply log into your Blogger admin area, select the “Template” tab, then click “Pick new” in the template sub-nav, and select the same Thisaway color scheme you are currently using. Then just republish to update your blog with the fixed version.

Option 2: Apply the fix manually

This isn’t as scary as you might think, though it takes a few more steps than Option 1. After logging into your Blogger admin area, click the “Template” tab, and then focus your attention on the text editing area on that page.

You’re looking for the following CSS in the upper portion of the template code:

.post-body div {
font-size: 13px;
line-height: 18px;
margin: 10px, 0px;

Change that to match the following:

.post-body div {

The last line of the original is changed, and two additional lines have been added.

Click “Save Template Changes” and then republish to update your blog.


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Podcasting with Bryan

Saturday, April 22nd, 2006

Hot on the heels of my trip to San Francisco, I had the chance to spend nearly an hour as a guest on Bryan Veloso’s “Live from the 101” podcast Wednesday night (although, come on Bryan, isn’t it time to change the name? j/k…) We talked about trying to record it in person while I was in California, but it didn’t work out (this trip), so my apologies to all Bryan’s listeners who were miffed at having to wait a few extra days for this episode :)

Bryan is a talented designer (one who now owns a shiny new MacBook Pro), but he knows how to shoot the shit, which is exactly what we did for 55 minutes. Curious to find out what two designers can talk about for that long?

Check out the ‘cast.



Heading to San Francisco

Thursday, April 13th, 2006

No, I’m not moving there (yet, though there’s always the chance), but I will be visiting the City by the Bay this weekend, along with a quick side trip to Cupertino and 1 Infinite Loop (if I can make it to some of the other companies in the surrounding area that will be a bonus).

I’m looking forward to spending time with some friends and making new ones, and in general getting a taste for the city. I have a lot of friends in the world of a cappella who live on the west coast, and now a growing list of friends and collegues, so the temptation to move is definitely growing.

Expect new pics on Flickr in the very near future…

Update: The photos are now online (just a straight dump from the camera).



Web Designing Magazine

Thursday, March 30th, 2006

book coverUPDATE: It seems there’s also a book based on this series of articles (“CSS Analysis”) titled “CSS Professional Style” (thanks Toru). I’ve placed an order, but I’m not sure if the SB article is in the book… the SB article is indeed in the book, thanks again to Toru for the confirmation…

Let’s turn back the clock a little, shall we? And I do mean a little: February 2005 to be exact. Apparently, thanks to a few Minty-fresh referrer links, I’ve discovered that the late-2004/most of 2005 design of SB was featured in the February 2005 issue of Japan’s Web Designing magazine, in an article about XHTML/CSS. In fact, from the screen shots scans that I was sent (and now can’t find… grr… found them!) the entire article was about SB.




Word of the Day

Tuesday, March 28th, 2006