Wednesday 26 June 2013

What a Wonderful Web-site [1]

We all remember the great Bud Flanaghan and Chesney Allen.

Flanagan and Allen's songs featured the same, usually gentle, humour for which the duo were known in their live performances, and during the Second World War they reflected the experiences of ordinary people during wartime. Songs like 'We're Going to Hang out the Washing on the Siegfried Line' mocked the German defences, while others like 'Miss You' sang of missing one's sweetheart during enforced absences. Other songs, such as their most famous, 'Underneath the Arches' coupled with "Scrolling", had universal themes such as friendship.

Their lack of enthusiasm for new technology is legendary so their song "Scrolling" has a surprisingly prophetic twist in the rarely published third and fourth verses.
Scrolling, just scrolling,
On my laptop hour after hour,
I don't envy the rich with their smartphones and pads,
Some web sites are phoney.
Full of lots of baloney,
So I'm scrolling, still scrolling,
With the light of the moon above,
Ev'ry night I spend hours scrolling,
And when the midnight bell is tolling,
I'm still scrolling; that's the thing I love.

Clicking, much clicking,
On my laptop hour after hour,
I don't enjoy these sites with pictures and twiddles,
Web designers they're employing.
Who are really annoying,
So I'm clicking, still clicking,
With the light of the moon above,
Ev'ry night I spend hours clicking,
And when the early hours are ticking, 
I'm still clicking; that's the thing I love.

Fellow blogger Busing (of the long-standing and high-quality "Omnibuses" blog) is known to write enthusiastically about the quality of bus operators' updated web sites, comparing them with others that are "old fashioned" and "tired".

Our recently appointed Isle of Wight correspondent (that's another Alan, famed world-wide for his summer attire) ...
... tells the chubby one, factually, that the Southern Vectis web site has been "refurbished". Whilst another blog reader, David, expresses considerable disappointment and frustration with the new set up at

So fbb gives it the "once over."
Obviously, despite the inexorable advance of years and decay of brain power, fbb can still remember the Isle of Wight! A test might well be to see how easily the new site could guide an innocent visitor to the former fbb mansions at Nettlestone.
So, here goes ...
... we can search for a location ...
... and the site fails to deliver. So we click on the the list of services ...
... in large print, thus much scrolling; there we find Seaview which the enquirer might know is near to Nettlestone; there again, they might not! But we now have a timetable ...
... or, at least, a bit of it; and a lot more scrolling! Note also that the times do not align with the places and, however hard you scroll, you cant quite get to "Ryde bus station". Positively, however, you can download pages from the timetable book, although fbb could not find any reference to such a publication on any of the on-line pages.
Perhaps, like Bournemouth and elsewhere, Vectis are planning to stop providing such an old fashioned and old-hat guide to their services? And no mention of Nettlestone. Maybe the fares information will help. CLICK
Choose location. CLICK. Get a huge list ...
.. and there's more. SCROLL ...
... and another CLICK.

What is wrong with simply calling up one simple list on the screen? Why is all this scrolling and clicking necessary. fbb has the answer. It is so the web designers can show how clever they are and charge lots of money. It is almost all an unnecessary and frustrating encumbrance for those who want to find useful information.

Once upon a time, Nettlestone Roadside Inn ...
... was a Southern Vectis timepoint; but the bus no longer goes past the pub portals, quite, but calls within salted peanut pinging distance of the front door at the top of Seaview Lane; but the best you can get is Seaview Caws Avenue; which, as its name suggests, isn't at Seaview but is at Nettlestone. The unmentionable (apparently) Seaview Church is the real Seaview!

But, there is the map.

Tomorrow, we will explore the map and the rest of the "much improved" (?) web site. Treats in store all round.

If you like twiddly, scrolling and clicking.

 Next Bus Blog : Thursday 27th June 

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