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Blog (July 2008)

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A franchise in web design, what is the web coming to?

Published | 12.35, 22nd of July 2008, by Chris van Aurich | Business

A recent trend of companies offering franchises in web design are becoming all too familiar. Our concern as a company that has been around since 1985, is that they will only bring the standards of  web design down and further dilute this specialist industry. As an agency striving to meet the latest web standards and designing real business tools for our clients, we use our passion, experience and training to deliver quality projects.

One thing is key, any business looking to invest in its next web project must make sure they are talking to industry professionals, with a real passion for what they do.

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Troubles with Microsoft opacity filter

Published | 14.51, 18th of July 2008, by Jay Vincent | Technical

Ergh! I just spent about a few hours creating a javascript fade-in slideshow for jpg images, and what seemed to be random white pixels kept appearing in the photographs.

After changing the containing element's background colour, I noticed that these random pixels were transparent - a very interesting occurrence for a jpg image - a format 'seemingly' incapable of transparency.

I did a little searching online and found that this isn't a very well documented bug, but a few other developers had experienced the same problem.

Turns out that when the MS-only opacity filter is used (either through CSS or javascript), areas of true black colour (#000000) incorrectly become fully transparent, no matter what the opacity value for the image. This problem occurs in both IE6 and IE7 - IE8 is expected to deprecate this non-standard approach and comply to W3C standards of opacity by implementing the 'opacity' style property - which netscape engines use without problem.

The only solution I can find is to edit the image in photoshop to slightly brighten any true black pixels, however, due to jpg compression, it can sometimes take a few attempts to rid the image of any #000000 occurrences.

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