pipe and slippers or shiny suit and gelled hair?

In my two score and something years, I have experienced the modern world’s rapid succession of cultures and fleeting fads and adhered to a few of them as well.  And nothing makes you feel as if you’ve aged more than seeing a youth ‘cult’ revived, and realising that you were involved in it the FIRST time around.

Such it seems to have been with almost everything related to the 70’s and now 80’s – even progressive rock has had something of a rebirth with the direction of some of the new wave of bands such as Battles and The Mars Volta. So, given all the visual pollution one is forced to experience on the internet, it’s good to see a site every now and then that is truly basic and in total adherence to the principles of the initial internet aesthetic.

I posted once before on the American site ‘Crazy Guy on a Bike‘, which is a kind of repository for cyclists to post their stories, as long as they adhere to the principle that the story, or the actions behind it, are in some way either eccentric or plain mad.  But check out the design of the pages.  Beautiful, uncluttered HTML in a bog standard Times New Roman font.  Tables to make it a consistent design.  Black and white with minimal graphics, so that the page loads quickly and doesn’t cause the CPU to issue forth flames as it struggles to run yet another pointless Flash movie.  Hierarchical menus that allow you to see where you are and to navigate back again.  It’s a bit like having a conversation with a quiet, intelligent, polite individual as opposed to being harrangued by a young idiot in a shiny suit and gelled hair.

Once you have got used to the quiet, civilised aesthetic, the content is king.  Superb, varied writing that delights the reader.  I urge you to read it.  No, really.  Take my computer if you want, and let’s get back to a layer of the internet that speaks to us, instead of screaming at us and shining a strobe light in our collective face.

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