Outlook, Email Newsletters, and Elections

I’ve been doing some work with email newsletters of late. It is, of course, a bit of a challenge, given how email is even less reliable at properly interpreting standards-compliant CSS code and the like. (Seriously, one of these days, all these companies will get together and start implementing code consistently, across the board, and web designers across the world will suddenly find that what used to take ten hours now only takes one. Companies like the fabulous BrowserCam will go out of business. Why is so much of our economy built on busy-work? Screw the unemployment rate, I want efficiency!)

Anyway. Two things I’ve learned:

  • Gmail doesn’t care about your CSS text-formatting. That’s right, that means you’ll need to use <FONT> tags. Gross. I haven’t used those in at least five years!
  • Outlook 2007 will make things look ugliest. Apparently, this is because it uses the MS Word rendering engine. Now, seriously? Why? If you’ve ever tried to design anything in Word, well, you know how impossible it is. They do, however, provide this handy little “validator” to check to see how/if your code is going to work, which is nice for those of us who get the shakes just opening Outlook. And it’ll plug into Dreamweaver!

On a vaguely related, but mostly unrelated, note: remember to vote, kids! This is the first year in a while I haven’t been directly involved in doing design work for a campaign, and as a result I’m less jazzed about the election than I usually am, but it’s starting to get to me as the day goes on. Go! Vote! (Or at least spoil your ballot (though it’s illegal to do so). Or vote Libertarian, if you can! Efficiency 2008! Down with Busy-Work! Alright, now I’m excited.)

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