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The Daily Sucker - Current examples of bad web design

The Daily Sucker

Sites featured in articles like Worst Websites of 2010 often are redesigned, which explains why some sites mentioned in my articles don't match their current look. The Daily Sucker features current examples of bad web design which haven't been fixed (yet).

If you see a site that you think sucks, email the URL to me. No personal pages (personal pages are supposed to reflect the individual's personality and artistic freedom) or web site designers (it would look like a conflict of interest), or others of their ilk.

If I think there's some merit to your selection, I may post it along with some commentary. If you know of a site that qualifies, let me know.

hyperbubble – An Example of Bad Web Design for November 27, 2012

November 27th, 2012 1:01 am by Vincent Flanders

A bad website

Submitter’s comments: Here’s a site meant to help promote the band hyperbubble.

Hyperbubble (official web site) combines Mystery Meat Navigation (MMN) and multiple pages that contain MMN to create fun, funky splash pages that guard users from ever finding their actual content. They’ve also never heard of text on the Internet and rely on images for gig announcements. Not that you’ll ever find one.

Vincent Flanders’ comments: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I know. It’s a band site and they’re allowed to be stupid. Fortunately, the music community has, in large part, stopped creating stupid websites. For example, the person who submitted U2’s site back in 2000 said the following:

Although I LOVE U2! The site designer should be ASHAMED!

These guys have plenty of money to work with and the site just doesn’t run
properly and looks completely devoid of artistic merit… ( I know typically artists
sites are a little flashy but they also usually WORK ) In addition to the dreaded
*mystery meat*… I find myself trapped, when I enlarge pictures as instructed,
and when I attempt to enter the different *rooms* it hangs up and you have to
click on the window to register then click exit to get out! VERY VERY POOR! Check
it out!

When you go to U2’s website today, it looks, for the most part, like a regular website. Especially when you get past the splash page.

You don’t keep information away from your customers.


Posted in Usability, Web Design, Worst Web Sites |

Rice University School of Architecture – An Example of Bad Web Design for November 21, 2012

November 21st, 2012 12:12 am by Vincent Flanders

A bad website

Submitter’s comments:. I came across this hot pink beauty that is slow to load, horrible to read, and all around miserable for the end user to experience. I’m sure you will not be surprised to learn that it is an Architecture site, but I thought I would share. Keep up the great work! :-)

Vincent Flanders’ comments: I was impressed that Rice University not only has their own mobile app, but their website works on a mobile phone—even without using HTML5. Apparently, I was under the mistaken impression that HTML5 was necessary to use the Viewport tag. I sit corrected. On the other hand, the school of architecture is not impressive in a positive sense.

The site has no mobile app or even a mobile version. That’s the least of its problems. The most serious is the contrast clash of the flaming pink color with the white links below. Your eye is immediately drawn toward the pink section with the school’s logo. Then, when your eyes go toward the text your eyes blur momentarily. There must be a scientific name for this, but I don’t know its name.

We also have Mystery Meat Navigation toward the bottom of the page in the Publications section. Maybe these book titles (when you can read them) mean something to other architects, but I can’t be sure.

The home page is HUGE. It clocks in at 7.1Mb. Not only is it fat, but it’s slow. It takes over 3 seconds for the first byte to show up and then takes an additional 3.5 seconds to start to render. The page takes 44.5 seconds to fully load. Here’s a waterfall of the page (this link is the same as the one above) showing what’s wrong.

Rice isn’t alone. Lots of architectural websites suck. Check out Architecture — An Industry With Sucky Websites.

Rice University School of Architecture

Posted in Daily Sucker, Usability, Web Design |

Cardiff Contemporary – An Example of Bad Web Design for November 19, 2012

November 18th, 2012 10:10 pm by Vincent Flanders

A bad website

Submitter’s comments: I learned about the site below in a local council publication as a ‘portal’ to what’s happening in Cardiff. So, I went to visit it.

This site is a complete turn-off right at the home page. It is so poor, starting with Mystery Meat Navigation (MMN), that I didn’t even bother delving any deeper.

Vincent Flanders’ comments: I’m surprised by the MMN. Normally, when you click one of the mystery links, you’re taken to a complex page—often Flash-based. Nope. You’re taken to a strictly text-based page. Huh? Why couldn’t Cardiff Contemporary use a simple menu for navigation? Of images that were labeled?

Oh, a really serious mistake that’s uncalled for has to do with clicking the logo on the subpages. It takes back to the Mystery Meat home page—where you have to mouse over the “X’s” once again.

Cardiff Contemporary

Posted in Daily Sucker, Usability, Web Design |

Habitrail – An Example of Bad Web Design for November 14, 2012

November 14th, 2012 3:03 am by Vincent Flanders

A bad website

Submitter’s comments: A “mascot” worse than Clippy; hamsters; Mystery Meat Navigation; Flash; and happy, bright, obnoxious colors.

Vincent Flanders’ comments: If there’s one thing that scares the bejesus out of me, it’s the use of “hamsters” and “mystery meat” in the same sentence.

The worst of the two designs is the one on the left. It’s pretty frightening. Take a look and you’ll agree.


Posted in Daily Sucker, Usability, Web Design, Worst Web Sites |

Sarcasmistan – NSFW – An Example of Bad Web Design for November 12, 2012

November 12th, 2012 3:03 am by Vincent Flanders

A bad website

Submitter’s comments: As far as bad taste goes, my candidate is on par with The Afterlife, though at least it won’t trigger epilepsy attacks.

Better close other tabs before opening this web page in Firefox (under 64-bit Windows 7); it brings down the browser despite the available 16 GB of RAM.

This is a 2.6 MB heavy HTML page containing nearly 4,000 image links in one huge table.

Each image is shown as a 200 x 200 thumbnail, but the referenced pictures are full-size images averaging 100 Kb. That means that the renderer has to handle no less than 400 MB of data to display the page.

So you can’t blame Mozilla for the crashing of Firefox. Firefox faithfully tries to load all the resources on the page and the renderer simply can’t handle the 400 MB. You can start loading the page though, but make sure to abort it after a couple of seconds.

Since most pictures are not square, the scaling to a square distorts them, with an extreme example at the bottom left of the screen. This is a 454 x 12,432 pixel JPEG image, weighing in 2.2 MB. Horizontally it’s scaled by a factor of 2, vertically by a factor of 60.

Internet Explorer doesn’t crash because it quickly stops downloading images. If you try to save the complete web page, IE downloads the images one after another without rendering them, yet it also gives up after 2 hours(!) of downloading, and removes the 2,700 images it got so far (260 MB).

I estimate the whole page to be around 500,000 pixels high, so it’s no surprise the screen capture program SnagIt also “failed scrolling capture”.

Vincent Flanders’ comments: There’s nothing funny about this website. In fact, there are a lot of “humor” websites who use the same horrible web design techniques.

I ran the page through WebPageTest and the page crashed the test. It stopped at 10Mb and 25,000 DOM elements. The Page Speed Optimization Test scored a marvelously low 19 out of 100. The page is a big, fat POS, which is what an old girlfriend once called me. Hmm.

Sarcasmistan NSFW

Posted in Daily Sucker, Usability, Web Design, Worst Web Sites |

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