Thanks to Bedford/St. Martin’s

These entries, written by Traci Gardner, are copied from TechNotes, a free newsletter for writing teachers from Bedford/St. Martin’s. For information about TechNotes, go to

Slow Down. You Load Too Fast.

Is there any page that loads too fast? This morning, I decided to take a look at the iMac resources. Unfortunately, I didn’t have hours to wait for the pages to load. I actually had time to get up, walk to the kitchen and get my breakfast out of the microwave, come back to the computer—and the page still wasn’t loaded.

So why am I complaining about all this? I love my Mac, and I’ll look at those pages later from work where they’ll load faster. But the experience reminded me of the problems that we sometimes stumble into as teachers when we design or require complex Internet resources for our students. It’s important to design with the lowest common denominator in mind: in this case, dial-up access. And at the beginning of each term, we need to point out the Internet needs for the class and ask all students to try out the pages for speed, in addition to other issues. If they tell you that they have time to get their pizza out of the microwave before the pages load, it’s time to rethink that design!