From HN comments: "Gemini sites load so fast, it's a little crazy". Not at all, what's crazy is that we've come to accept as normal that downloading O(1000) words of text that we actually care about reading takes long enough to notice and sometimes might make your laptop fan spin up a little - in 2020!
I feel like I am quoting Maciej Cegłowski's "The Website Obesity Crisis" every other week at this point, but it's such a super-condensed source of white-hot truth and insight that I don't feel bad:
"Let’s commit to the idea that as computers get faster, and as networks get faster, the web should also get faster."
This is the most obvious and natural idea in the world, but somehow it's a genuinely radical position. I think the battle is lost on the web, but if you start again and only put in what you need you just arrive by default at a situation of what feels like breakneck speed.
@solderpunk Sure, a typical 90s website is quite snappy with modern networks and computers. It is also rather ugly. The question that should be asked is, what is an acceptable load time? Let's say 100 ms is deemed fast enough. A speed-up to 10 ms would then be of little benefit. The extra capacity might be better spent making the page better in some other way. The trouble with too many websites is that they take seconds to load, not that they are larger per se.
@mansr @solderpunk They do take longer to load. To load js libraries, photos in ridiculously large resolution, ads and trackers, videos to play automatically…none of this is necessary to make a website useful *or* pretty. Just open a news website and watch the requests in your browser’s dev tools.
Also I’d argue that 10ms is hell of a speedup. Also remember that there are many people whose internet connection sucks, for who this will scale up to even more.
@irimi1 @solderpunk Maybe the problem is that in the 90s, even lean websites were slow to load (because modems), and people got accustomed to that. When bandwidth increased, web designers (besides becoming a thing) kept the load times and bloated the pages a lot instead of trying to strike some kind of balance. Since people were used to the web being slow, nobody complained.
It's true that you can take this principle to extremes and insist that an ugly, hard to navigate website remain exactly as ugly and hard to navigate as it is so that it loads in 0.1 ms instead of 1 ms, even though this is not a perceptible difference.
But I think that was has actually happened so far has been so far away from that extreme that I still feel comfortable endorsing the general philosophy.
A lot of what's added on top of a website to differentiate it from a typical 90s website has nothing to do with aesthetics or readability or usability, but instead to do with advertising or surveillance or influencing/hijacking mood/attention. Some of it *does* have to do with aesthetics or readability or usability, but isn't done proportionately. Of course this stuff is hard to quantify, but speaking loosely, making a website 100 times "fatter" (filesize, rendering time) to make it 10 times "nicer" is a bad trade off.
I could go on but my point is we came up with truckloads of crap even worse than in the 90s.
I went to a webdev meetup of a local company once to get a better understanding of development outside my domain. That’s where I first realised that all this framework/dependency/cruft-hole is so complex, that there are package managers built solely for the purpose of dealing with it. Told me a lot about the state of webdev.
Even accounting for caching that's a tremendous amount of waste, and bandwidth quotas are still a thing in most of the world so you're burning through users bandwidth for absolutely nothing. Not to mention battery on mobile devices.
With just HTML and CSS you've got really good looking minimalist websites, no bloat, fully semantic if you write your HTML right, loads instantly, etc.
We're not choosing between pretty fat sites and ugly slimmed sites, that's a false dichotomy.
We're choosing between bad sites and good sites.
@solderpunk The waste today is just infuriating.
Compared to when I started we now have infinite cpu, ram, and storage, and yet your UI is slower today than it was in the 80s.
@solderpunk Cegłowski <3
@solderpunk Take a look at my account's header image! I took it from that talk...
@solderpunk to put it into other terms: 60 years ago, 64k memory was sufficiant for a guidance computer on the Apollo moon mission. Today, your computer should have 8g RAM to browse an average website.
@solderpunk i certainly agree with that estatement. I think that people pay more attention to aestetic over funtionality and that's the wrong approach in my opinion. Don't get me wrong, I like pretty sites with a beautiful design but only wjen that aestetic and design does not get in the way of functionality. The mindset changed too much the functionality means something different compared to 20 years ago too.
masto instance for the tildeverse