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Feed Icon

Rogers Cadenhead: I’ve adopted the icon on Workbench this afternoon, because I think it could spark greater adoption of syndication with the general public

To date, I’ve avoided the garish orange icon because quite frankly, I always thought it was ugly.  I prefer a less graphic intensive page.

Until recently, I’ve allowed myself two images: 119 byte one blue and white pinstripe at the top of the page, and a 1420 byte Atom icon as I both support the effort and it matches my color scheme.

Once Firefox 1.5 makes it into the default Ubuntu install, I may look into replacing both with SVG or Canvas, along with the poorly pixelated curves on my post titles.

Anyway, I thought I would look into the syndication icon.  As I do with most things, I approached this with an eye towards standards and an ability to work with Firefox.  It seemed to make sense to use CSS and data: URIs to minimize the change to each page, and to minimize the number of requests to the server.

Even so, the orange still seemed to scream out “look at me!”, “look at me!”.  I know that some say “the feed icon is recognizable enough that it doesn’t need to be restricted to one colour.”, but I don’t want to go there.

So I progressively selected smaller and smaller versions until I found I could tolerate the result.

At which point, I started to think about degrading gracefully for backlevel browsers.  As always, these days that means IE.  The requirements are for a PNG with a transparent background, CSS2, and data URIs.

That’s when it hit me.  I had defaced my page (OK, admittedly strong words for a page that doesn’t look all that great to begin with), but the defacing would generally be only seen by people who were running browsers that already support autodiscovery.

Feh.

So while all this may end up getting backed out, I decided to do something productive.  Like adopting the feed icon as the favicon for the Feed Validator.


I like the adoption of the icon on FeedValidator.

After a few days of looking at the orange blibbet, I’m thinking that it needs to be accompanied by text when used on a web page. Microsoft will be using the tooltip text “Subscribe” when it’s a button in MSIE and Outlook.

Posted by Rogers Cadenhead at

Bleh... it looks out of place.

Posted by James Snell at

The idea of the standard icon is not to tag anything that has to do with feeds, but to be put it in browser chrome when a feed is discovered. A favicon is also in browser chrome, in a place that can easily be confused for the autodiscovery icon in Firefox (i.e. left side of location bar vs. right side). Using that icon as the Feed Validator’s favicon is just plain confusing.

Posted by Lenny at

Hm. Don’t you think it’s kinda confusing to suddenly have the same icon pop up in the left side of the location bar? Isn’t this icon supposed to mean ‘Feed found! Click here to subscribe!’ or something like that?

Posted by Thijs van der Vossen at

Oh, please no. I’m not all that delighted about the rush to stick browser chrome in page content, where it will behave completely differently (the equivalent of using a browser “Add Bookmark” icon to link to your site’s home page), but I’m willing to bow to the inevitable. But sticking browser chrome in browser chrome? Unless you’re doing it as an object lesson in how we shouldn’t have moved autodiscovery to the addressbar, or shouldn’t allow site content into the addressbar from favicons, that’s just begging for confusion.

Posted by Phil Ringnalda at

I kinda-sorta like it, but frankly, I think any favicon would work fine for the validator.  You’re not going to be subscribing to the feedvalidator, so it doesn’t really matter that much I don’t think.

Posted by Bob Aman at

Unless you’re doing it as an object lesson in how we shouldn’t have moved autodiscovery to the addressbar, ...

Now that you mention it, if FeedValidator had an autodiscoverable feed, it would have the blibbet on the Firefox address bar twice, but only one could be clicked.

I’m guessing that would kill every usability guru who saw it.

Posted by Rogers Cadenhead at

Yep, I’m off to see where the secure site padlock icon lives: time to freshen up my favicon, and develop a little more reader trust ;)

Posted by Phil Ringnalda at

I agree with everyone who says that using it as a favicon is inviting confusion.

And further, I think sticking the icon on a link that points to a page with feeds on it is semantically broken anyway. If you put it in page content at all, it should be on links to actual feeds, not on any old link that points to something that has even remotely to do with feeds.

Posted by Aristotle Pagaltzis at

WATCHING PAINT DRY HAS NEVER BEEN MORE EXCITING!

Posted by Mark at

For the public, I think we should follow the advice on: [link]

an atom icon means nothing. RSS means nothing to people.

“Subscribing” they can get.

Cheers,

Dion

Posted by Dion Almaer at

Has the favicon been removed? I am unable to get any, using Firefox 1.5 under Windows XP.

Posted by Giulio Piancastelli at

Has the favicon been removed?

Yes, the favicon on the Feed Validator and the use of the feed icon on this weblog have been removed.  Once again, the web is safe to live another day.

If you want to see the favicon in its original context, check out feedicons.com

Posted by Sam Ruby at

New Syndication Icon

Rogers Cadenhead: I’ve adopted the icon on Workbench this afternoon, because I think it could spark greater adoption of syndication with the general public. Sam Ruby: I decided to do something productive.  Like adopting the feed icon as the...

Excerpt from The RSS Blog at

How about if the Feed Validator favicon were, say, green?

Orange means “Subscribe” (or regurgitate line noise consisting primarily of characters with sharp edges).

Green means “Validate”?

Posted by Sam Ruby at

Works for me: intarwebnet law requires that someone mention red-green colorblindness, but hey, they’re quite used to having to remember the meaning of relative object position already.

WATCHING PAINT DRY HAS NEVER BEEN MORE EXCITING!

If they haven’t already, someone really ought to create a wiki page for “Design for the bike shed.” It’d be a handy pointed link, and therapy as you add a few more baroque features, all in one.

Posted by Phil Ringnalda at

That feed icon

Subtitle: Boring weblogging minutiæ noone cares about. Subsubtitle: Redundant qualifications. Where was I? Ah, yes. There has been some pondering about that orange blob lately. Here’s what I did on plasmasturm.org: a[type="application/atom+xml"] {...

Excerpt from plasmasturm.org at

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