OT: ajax image galleries

Cindy Mottershead cindy at mottershead.us
Wed Jun 4 18:39:12 CEST 2008

The ones you pointed to do lack the visual cues but that is due to the 
implementation, not the design. These usually are not implemented in 
AJAX, it is simple javascript. Most implementations supply the visual cues.

The big advantage to using this 'lightbox' display is it focus all 
attention on the image being viewed and allows the maximum size of the 
image to fit your view. Older style galleries require you to click to a 
new page to see the large version of the image, with a lot of other 
screen real estate used up by menu's, header etc. The lightbox display 
(should) resizes your image to fit whatever screen size you are viewing 
it with, and overlay it over the top of all your other screen real 
estate. That way, you always see the whole impact of the image without 
having to scroll to see the rest of the image if it is larger than your 
viewing screen. Also, it is much faster to have the javascript load a 
large version of the image on the same page (it doesn't reload the 
entire page when you click through the images, just the large version of 
the image).

A lot of web 2.0 galleries use this technique, it is quite popular on 
photography web sites as it allows for the best presentation of the 
photos. See this for example:


Which shows that you can easily bookmark or link to an image.


Chris Wright wrote:
> 2008/6/3 "Marco Trevisan (Treviño)" <mail at 3v1n0.net>:
>> There are some pics and videos by Einstein from freeyourphone.de:
>>  - http://tinyurl.com/66ktzl
> (URL maps to http://freeyourphone.de/portal_v1/gallery/menu.php?gallery=members&album_id=8
> )
> Those AJAX image widgets seem to be designed adversarially. They
> prevent tabbed browsing of images, make it difficult to link to an
> image, impose additional delays on the viewer, and introduce a new UI
> for navigating the galleries that doesn't fit in with any existing
> browser. Viewing a large image and then a small one requires
> additional scrolling, unlike any non-ajax solutions I've seen. The one
> that that link goes to allows you to click on the right half of the
> image to go to the next image or the left half of the image to go to
> the previous, with no visual clues that that is what is happening.
> Do they have any recognizable merit whatsoever? Why do people use them?
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