A fresh cut

If you’ve been spared my babble on twitter and facebook, you might’ve somehow missed the fact that I’ve been in Seattle all week learning at An Event Apart.

And y’all know what that means: I’m hacking the site again.

If you’re using Safari or Firefox, you might notice the header and certain aspects of the page design have changed. That’s all done in HTML 5 and CSS 3 — though there’s a lot more to do before the page would align with the current standards. Amazingly, the page now aligns with the way I pictured the header looking when I first started this design a few years ago.

If you’re using Internet Explorer, the page just got more boring looking. Sorry, but IE doesn’t support the new standards yet. (Though if you’re one of the ones on IE 8 tiny bits and pieces are working. And if you’re one of the 20% of my visitors below IE 8 we need to talk anyway, because dude, your browser is a security hazard. The other 80% of the folks here have gotten with the program, and it’s your turn.)

Anyway, everything still works on IE, just doesn’t look quite as fancy as it used to. On the other hand, since I just stripped a bunch of pretty darned large images out of my CSS (and shortened it), and cleaned up the sidebar and some other stuff, hey, you might actually see a performance boost out of it, even if the page did get more boring, and most people are willing to make that trade-off.

If you see anything whacko, snap a screenshot and send it to me at [my nickame] [at symbol] [my nickname dot com]. Or leave a comment. Whatever :)

Ow my brain.

I think the best way to qualify what I just woke up from was a “defrag dream” (thank you Jo for finally giving them a name), partially because it was a weird “will it blend?” of work, the conference, family, and hell, anything else my brain could come up with, and partially because after two awesome awesome awesome days of An Event Apart: Seattle, I have a hell of a lot to defrag.

I’d tell you about the dream, but I can’t remember it because of the end of the dream. And it’s really the end of the dream I’m writing about because I want to know if this happens to anyone else.

Last night, I went to a rockin’ party, where I didn’t drink (only relevant because we’re talking about brain behavior), came back to the hotel, watched about a half hour or so of SportsCenter while surfing twitter and catching up on my email, and fell asleep.

I woke back up, got into bed, and turn on the music I usually sleep to. (Look up Dan Gibson’s Solitudes on your music store of choice. No relation, btw.). I don’t remember setting an alarm.

Normally, that would be a massive error on my part. I regularly sleep through my alarms at home, which is why I set three of them when it’s something important.

As an added bonus, I neglected to actually plug the phone into the charger. It was down to below 45% charge when I went to bed, and I was playing music at the time. It had no shot of living to morning.

So I’m asleep, and I’m dreaming all kinds of crazy shit about trying to get something work-related redesigned using css3 on my iPhone while waiting on the tarmac of the plane back to Philly, except the plane won’t take off because the runway is packed with people who got off their planes to go to the IA Summit and decided to just sit down in the middle of the runway to eat lunch… there were many dogs involved, something about us actually being in Japan, I was being followed, a few bits were animated, the plane has hotel furniture in it… see? Defrag dream.

Anyway, the phone in the hallway of the hotel (which was somehow in the plane) (and which looks really cool, I’ll try to grab a pic shortly) starts ringing. I know it’s my sister, in that it’s-a-dream-you’re-psychic way, so even though I’m in a hallway of a hotel inside an airplane in Japan, I answer it.

Here’s where it gets weird.

(Don’t give me that look.)

The voice on the other end sounds like a hairy monster. Pick a male muppet not voiced by Frank Oz, make him sound gruff, turn him into a faceless scary thing (that’s only about 2 feet tall). He screams about four words at me. When I say screams, I mean THIS BIT OF THE DREAM WAS 10 TIMES LOUDER THAN THE REST and I didn’t even know dreams had volume controls. I can’t understand any of the 4 words because they’re cut off like bad cellphone connections.

Instantly, I wake up. And it’s the exact time my first alarm would’ve gone off, if I’d set it, on the iPhone that’s dead anyway.

So here’s my theory: Rational Brain and Emotional Brain are working together to clean the house, and Emotional Brain (which by the way is better at cleaning) is in charge. Neither of them is watching the clock, but Rational Brain slipped Dinosaur Brain $20 and a bottle of Bacardi Mojito earlier to make sure we get up on time, because it knows we’re in trouble. Dinosaur Brain is very good at keeping time, so when the alarm needs to go off, it cuts in Matrix-style and violently disrupts the dream with extreme loudness. But since it’s Dinosaur Brain, it can’t talk to me in words, so Emotional Brian translates the entire mess into the next closest thing: a bad signal from AT&T.