Arts & Letters Daily – ideas, criticism, debate

Another Tufte favorite. He singles this site out as having exemplery design because it uses a single page that just scrolls downwards. New items are added to the top and as you move down the page, you move back in time. I think that this is not a great design. Even my weblog, which has that same format, only carries a few days on a single page and uses the calendar on the side to give you access to the other entries. And that makes sense because this is an inherantly chronological website. A site with news and ideas and more is not necessarily chronological and should be based on some more useful concept. I find the New York Times and the Washington Post to be excellent sites because they organize news by category.

Also, for a new user, A&L is quite daunting. It’s information overload at its worst.

Now, all that said, I’m looking forward to getting into it. I think that if you are a daily reader, the format is quite good. Just not for the casual visitor.