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Enough to make you turn to something else

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It never rains but it pours: I get an email suggesting I take a look at the new FaulknerBrowns site at www. faulknerbrowns. co. uk and then another comes in straight after.

The first email comments: 'This seems to me to get a lot wrong. Not least having to turn your head on one side. And you have to go through about three stages of looking at a project before you find out what it is.' The other says, in part, 'one of those 'intuitive' - ie guess what's going on - sites', and points out that once you click on a topic a fuller-sized image comes up on the right-hand side and the topic label disappears on the left-hand side, never to reappear.

Okay, the home page is a tall rectangle with the practice name and a very pale multicoloured strip down the left side, the injunction to enter the site and, in a faint, pinkish sans-serif text, a note to download the Flash 7 plugin.

And then in similar text, so faint that I missed it the first time around, 'site by the Roundhouse'.

Intrigued, you click on this and discover a similar penchant for really pale and thus semi-readable text and multicoloured selection bars - which here at least are horizontal. Back at the architect's site you wait while various things upload, then the rectangle gets a series of explanations for the sections of the vertical multicoloured bar, a new strip on the right and two think bubbles: the top one 'imagination' and the bottom one 'reality'.

Deep stuff this. The bad news is that the text on the left is pale blue, non-resizable, and sideways. With books and magazines at least you can physically turn them 90 degrees.

But to read sideways screen text you have to turn you whole body and head sideways. It is not only the disabled (the new Disability Act applies to websites as well as door handles) who will find the prospect of gyrating in their seats to the FaulknerBrowns tune so irritating that they won't bother.

sutherland. lyall@btinternet. com

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