28 June 2009

How to remove toolbars

Toolbars really annoy the manure out of me. It is simply poor interface design to have some junk from your previous page hover over your next page. Upon navigating to a new page, the user expectancy is to see a new page, not clutter from the old page.

Why toolbars are bad

Jakob Nielsen is the guru of user interface design. He offers some heuristics to guide interface design, which make the peasant user experience much more pleasant. You may cast an eye on that list and see for yourself how many heuristics are ignored because some social networking Mafia wants to spam your browser. Tsk, tsk, social networking sites. David Bowie is very disappointed in you.

How to make toolbars go away

Yet one of the most useful heuristics I've learnt from real-life is that there are two ways to solve a problem: the political way and the technical way. The political way to make toolbars go away is to grovel and beg the social networking Mafia until they make the toolbar disappear. The technical way is just to remove the toolbar.

Removing the toolbar on Facebook

I'm on a few social networking sites. The same basic method seems to work for all of them, but since the whole world and the kitchen sink seem to be on Facebook, I'll only include the procedure to remove the toolbar on that site:

Remove the tool and keep the bar, I always say. Except when I'm saying something else like jam out with your clam out, or get your yah-yah's out or something.

From now on, Facebook's annoying toolbar will no longer haunt your external links. Unfortunately, they still malform the URL sometimes. Bloody useless bunch.

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