Feb. 27 2015: K.I.S.S. Me, You Fool!

Keep it Simple Stupid. Not only good life advice, but applicable to web design as well. As cool as it was using decaying nitrate film for a wrapper background, my fits-and-starts to get the website looking the way totally messed up my HTML. I get why your HTML and CSS files can’t look like a hazmat junkyard. If you have to go back and change something you can’t wade through all sorts of garbage to find your active code. So on Dr. Petrik’s advice, I started with the basic Columbine structure and Columbine Screen.css and worked from there. The latest Columbine page she sent is in HTML5, so that will be the language I will use. There are a couple of mistakes planted in there which we were tasked with rooting out, but having spent many hours with Columbine, I was able to quickly correct them. I will upload my redesigned web page tonight or tomorrow to my new domain name: kinohistory.com!

Inspired by the simplicity of Dr. Petrik’s Archiva.net, I started looking through the domain registry combinations of a cinema-derived word and history. Not surprisingly, most of the good ones were taken and I really didn’t want to get into new-fangled suffixes like .info or .me. Also didn’t want to use hyphens like cinema-history, so when I saw that Kinohistory.com was available for $9.99, I grabbed it.

A chance to use my color readings in a real-world application arose today. I am videotaping our County Manager at 2:00. In the past we have not worried about what she was wearing because we have a deep black curtain which we typically pull behind our subjects and, as we all know, black goes with anything. As luck would have it, the County Manager is wearing purple and black. We want her to dominate her background but, thanks to chroma-key, I have an endless choice of virtual backgrounds. I leaning toward a very muted, dark burnt brown perhaps with some red tinting to it. I’ll have a couple of other virtual options on my flash drive in case that doesn’t work. But the analogous color pairing chart in our reading should yield pleasing results.

Arlington County Mgr Barbara Donnellan

3:00 pm update: Here’s what we ended up with. My virtual background was much more midnight blue and the swath of light was lighter than what you see here. Unfortunately our engineer had to bring the background contrast and intensity way down in order to disguise the chroma-key artifacts that were present once our County Manager stood in front of the green screen. It will do the job, but I think there should have been more contrast between her purple jacket and the background. She kind of disappears into the background. In retrospect, the black velvet curtain would have made her stand out more. Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best.

By the way, I can’t let this week’s blog pass without mentioning “The Dress of Indeterminate Color” that’s gone viral. For the record, I see blue and brown.

My comments on classmates’ posts here.


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