Dispatch from the Razor's Edge lives to serve! You ask, we respond. (Well, when we can scrape the time together. And when we can be bothered. Basically, when we get inspired.)
It has been pointed out (by, well, Sara) that my clever little system of having pop-up images, and pop-up footnotes, embedded in the text of dispatches is really great - except for the small matter that you haven't the vaguest idea what you're going to get when you click on something. You might get a big picture in your face; you might get a small ocean of overlaid text; and you might get whisked away to another web site. [Well, in fairness to me (and I always try to be fair to me), the status bar at the bottom of your web browser window will say something like "view image" when you put your pointer over one of those links; but who looks at the status bar?]
Under the new regime, however! when you put your pointer over a link in a dispatch, that pointer will change to one of three (hopefully intuitive) custom pointers to let you know what you're in for:
- Little hand pointing up and to the right, with "image" written on it. For instance, here's a link to an image (of a girl in a cage in a museum).
- Little hand pointing straight down, with "note" written on it. Here's a link to a happy footnote.
- Little hand pointing right off to the horizon, with "web link" written on it. Here's a link to something cool on the web you might not have seen (and which opens in a new window).
Just place your pointer, and you'll know what you're in for. (Links to other pages on michaelfuchs.org stay the default little hand; as do, um, links for other things like closing pop-up images and footnotes.)
I'm not 100% happy with this implementation, but I am done with it for the moment, and I think you'll agree it's an improvement. (And we can all hope together it works on Internet Explorer.)
I've also had to add a bit to the Comments tool, whereby you now have to type in a word you'll see displayed beside in a graphic. This is to prove you're a human being, and not one of the postbots who have gotten quite interested in Comments from the Razor's Edge specifically in selling anti-depressants and drugs for enhanced sexual performance to its readers. (Really, one wonders what these postbots think of us.)
In news that couldn't be any less related, but as long as I'm writing, and on the odd chance that you're still reading: my publisher has just let me know that they've completed a deal for distribution and promotion of THE MANUSCRIPT in the U.S. and Canada. (And Turkey. But I don't believe there are any Turks subscribing to Dispatch at the moment.) I say this in case you are located in the U.S. or Canada and were thinking of ordering it from overseas; now, if you can wait until the spring, you can get it locally. Yay.
There's a placeholder page on amazon.COM, which is exciting. But I wouldn't pre-order it if I were you until A) they announce an official publication date; and B) they get clear on the format - I thought it was going to be a trade paperback release (which I expect will sell a bit better), though Amazon apparently thinks it's (initially at least) going to be hardcover . . . I'm having drinks with my editor next week, at which time I will beat him about the head and shoulders with a hardcover copy of the book, and suggest how much more pleasant the experience would be with a trade paperback . . .
Okay, one last thing, speaking of the book. You'll be very pleased to know that that annoying post-it note advert that currently appears on virtually every single page of michaelfuchs.org (and which you doubtless had to banish before reading this) will now leave you alone after popping up three times in a session, or after you've broken down and clicked on it. (It was actually always supposed to work this way, but my code to make it happen didn't work on the first couple of goes, and I couldn't be bothered to spend more time on it, at the time.)