Amazon fail

Web standards fail

Web standards fail

Recent website design work has caused us to do some research into the current design techniques and trends among website authors regarding web stanards. We looked into the definitive guide on the subject, Jeffrey Zeldman‘s Designing with Web Standards, and were excited to find that a third edition is coming this year. While imagining how it would soon sit on the shelf next to the well-read first and second editions, we saw that Amazon had a graphic inviting us to preview part of the book. Click to LOOK INSIDE! it invited.

Shown to the right is the result of clicking to look inside. It shows what happens when you try to deliver content in something other than an open and, dare we say, web-standard method.

Your web browser does not support this feature. Please visit our Frequently Asked Questions for a list of compatible web browsers that support the Amazon Online Reader.

It’ll be a great book. For those curious readers who don’t have one of the previous editions, they’ll have to use a compatible browser to view the preview. It’s too bad that Amazon can’t figure out how to deliver content to everyone. Perhaps their designers might do well to actually read some of the books they’re selling.

Posted in design, theory, websites | Tagged , , , , |

Proxibid launches new website, embedded bidding

Image representing Proxibid as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

We’ve been following the new features and website from Proxibid for the last few weeks. Today they’ve launched the new website and announced that you can start reserving the embedded bidding solution. Here’s the release.

Omaha, NE – September 22, 2009 – Proxibid, the world’s largest provider of live auction webcasting services, today announced that the Company will now offer embedded solutions as part of its online auction service offering. Beginning today, auctioneers can reserve their embedded solution, which will be customized to fit seamlessly into the Web sites of auction companies that request this value-added service.

“An embedded bidding solution from Proxibid is a feature for which auctioneers have long been asking. Allowing bidders to participate directly on an auctioneer’s website creates a more seamless user experience that is a win for both the auctioneers and their customers,” said Aaron Traffas, editor of AuctioneerTech.

Proxibid’s embedded solution allows bidders to create an account, register to bid, launch the online bidding application and place bids through the auction catalog without leaving the auctioneer’s Web site. The embedded solution fits seamlessly into the auctioneer’s Web site, enabling auctioneers to offer a full-service online auction experience to bidders from across the globe. Proxibid’s embedded solution enables auctioneers to develop a more strategic relationship with the bidder similar to the relationship that is created when the bidder is sitting in the live audience.

“Proxibid’s embedded solution is exactly what the market has been asking for,” said auctioneer, John  Schultz.  “The business implications of this are huge. Seamless integration means bidders can participate in an auction without leaving our Web sites, allowing us to create better relationships with our online bidders, while also significantly enhancing the services available to our sellers.”

Proxibid’s embedded solution was developed using an in-line frame. The design is built to allow some customizations by auctioneers, to ensure Web site aesthetics are not compromised. For example, auctioneers will be able to choose the color scheme which best fits their Web site. The solution includes new features developed for Proxibid’s newly-designed Web site, which launched this morning, including the new multi-bid mode that allows bidders to place pre-bids and online-only bids for multiple items in the same auction catalog at the same time.

“Proxibid is committed to providing our auction house customers with the best technology solutions in the industry,” said Bruce Hoberman, Proxibid’s CEO. “Our embedded solution is the next logical step in bringing auctioneers online in a manner that allows them to feel as connected to the bidder in the virtual world as they do when that bidder is sitting in the live audience, and vice verse.”

Posted in announcements | Tagged , , , , , |

Don’t shill bid. Just don’t.

thou shalt not shill
Image by duncan via Flickr

If you’re an auctioneer and you’re bidding on behalf of yourself or your seller, there’s nothing illegal about it provided it’s disclosed properly and that it’s not an absolute auction. However, if you’re going to do it, don’t be sneaky about it. Don’t create a fictitious name or bidding account. Don’t try to sneak the disclosure in the small print in the auction terms. Tell your customers what you’re doing and that it’s legal. Tell your customers who you’ve appointed to bid on behalf of the seller. Don’t let your bid-caller bid, and make it clear what’s going on.

True, creating a situation where bidders are competing against a seller or reserve may disappoint or even upset some of them, but they’ll be nothing short of furious if they find out you’re trying to be sneaky in an attempt to keep them from finding out.

Regardless of the legalities of the methods, sneaking around and trying to accept bids that don’t come from legitimate bidders is an easy way to turn your bidders against you.

parts of this post have been removed due to inaccuracies in the original source material

Posted in theory | Tagged |

2009 Kansas Auctioneers Association bid calling championship recap


Back stage before the contest

The top five places for the 2009 – 2010 Kansas Auctioneers Association bid call contest are as follows.

  1. Charly Cummings, Yates Center, KS
  2. Megan McCurdy, Wichita, KS
  3. Justin Schultis, Fairbury, NE
  4. Lance Fullerton, El Dorado, KS
  5. Aaron Traffas, Sharon, KS

The other participants are listed below in appearance order.

Setting up before the contest

Setting up before the contest

  • Eric Blomquist, Assaria, KS
  • Lance Kinderknecht, Almena, KS
  • Thomas Lindsay, Jr, Shawnee, KS
  • Kevin Ediger, Windom, KS
  • Todd Borgmeyer, Norfolk, NE
  • Brady James, Council Grove, KS
  • Jeffery Temme, Petersburg, NE
  • Mike Boesker, Halstead, KS
  • John Kisner, Hays, KS
  • Russell Puchalla, Rosa, NE
  • Ty Mitchell, Oxford, KS
  • Douglas Kasselman, Spearville, KS

Waiting to draw for position

Waiting to draw for position

Posted in announcements, bid calling | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Live blogging the Kansas Auctioneers Association bid-call contest

Last year’s live blog from the Kansas State Fair worked, but we tried to go completely live using last August for the regional competition. We weren’t impressed, mainly because it required Flash. This year, we’re going to try for both live and simplicity by using our favorite real-time device, FriendFeed. You’ll get the status updates as they happen through FriendFeed, as well as the pictures from Flickr. Because it’s a FriendFeed group, anyone can login to FriendFeed and comment, so feel free to jump in and ask questions or leave comments.

Flickr pictures

FriendFeed room

Roster in contest order:

1. Eric Blomquist, Assaria, KS
2. Lance Kinderknecht, Almena, KS
3. Thomas Lindsay, Jr, Shawnee, KS
4. Justin Schultis, Fairbury, NE
5. Kevin Ediger, Windom, KS
6. Lance Fullerton, ElDorado, KS
7. Todd Borgmeyer, Norfolk, NE
8. Brady James, Council Grove, KS
9. Jeffery Temme, Petersburg, NE
10. Megan McCurdy, Wichita, KS
11. Mike Boesker, Halstead, KS
12. Charly Cummings, Yates Center, KS
13. John Kisner, Hays, KS
14. Russell Puchalla, Rosa, NE
15. Aaron Traffas, sharon, KS
16. Ty Mitchell, Oxford, KS
17. Douglas Kasselman, Spearville, KS

Tonight we’ll aggregate the activity and update this post to include all the comments and pictures in the actual post and remove the FriendFeed widget.

Posted in community