Today’s comic features a hat. It’s not your ordinary chapeau, but rather the sort of stately headpiece that could keep an entirely family warm at night or help you sneak into Soviet-era Russia. Even if I didn’t have a web design-related topic to discuss (and I assure you, I do), the gravity of this hat would be enough to ensure that your visit to my site today was not a waste.
Joining the hat in today’s strip is Dave Shea and Jeff Croft. These fine gentlemen appear with the squirrel to help present to you a visual gag that points to one simple, inescapable truth: CSS gradients will break your brain.
I’m trying to get up to speed on CSS3, a goal which falls in the same category of absurdity as tasting every variety of curry in India; there’s simply too many modules piling up in that spec. At this point I suspect that CSS3 will not reach a finished state prior to the web being replaced by the psionic slave networks that our future robot overlords will use to broadcast their diabolical commands to the human race.
Nonetheless, I am digging out the fruits of the cutting edge of our darling cascading style sheets, especially the previously Webkit-only features that have been newly adopted by the recently released Firefox 3.6. One area I focused on this past Thursday was CSS Gradients. After all, how hard an a gradient be?
How hard indeed.
I present Exhibit A: my tweet less than five minutes after opening Mozilla’s tutorial on the topic. It starts out easy enough, then they start talking about things like color-stops, linear vs. radial gradients, starting points and angles, etc. It gets worse when you learn that Webkit and Mozilla each approach gradients differently, continuing the spaghetti western tradition of dueling methodologies.
In short order, my tweet was answered by Dave, then Jeff, each adding to my diagnosis: CSS gradients are a pain.
I’m currently working on a tutorial on the topic, something that hopefully explains it in a more digestible format than what I’ve seen thus far. Until then, the only way I can provide you comfort is to inform you that the hat in today’s strip is based in reality. Here is a picture of Dave in the hat.
If you did not spit your tea/milk/soda/liquor/pepto onto your computer screen just now, you have no sense of humor. I almost died of laughter when I saw that picture. Its existence was like a special jewel reminding me that dreams come true.
For the sake of equal treatment, I’ll share with you what I found a few minutes later while getting a reference picture of Jeff to touch up his character’s appearance. I stumbled upon this. Yeah… it speaks for itself. I’m not sure when I can fit that into a comic, but I’m certainly going to try.
If neither photo cracked your head, than I recommend checking out CSS gradients. If you’re feeling woozy, no worries. I’ll get back to you in a few days with some digestible tidbits on how to tackle them.