Benjamin-Newton Overview: Book of Secrets (Design Style Guide) Introduction

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Fighting and Making Fun of Ambiguity

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BEN-NEW's Network
BENjamin-NEWton Challenging Projects Network
by Ben Huot
Academic Non-Fiction E-Books & More Free Stuff

Informational Website

This is an Old School Informational website

General Book Statistics

  • 2,686 pages of unique text written over 20 years
  • average of 1 essay or poem written every week for over 20 years
  • average of 134 pages written every year for over 20 years

Book Statistics by Period

  • 789 pages written from 1998-2007
  • 1,111 pages written from 2008-2011
  • 786 pages written from 2012-2018

This website adheres to the following

No Money

Entire E-Book Downloads, in Multiple Popular Formats

  • No Cost
  • No Ads
  • No DRM

I get no money for this website from any means, not even to pay for this website. I have put a lot of my own personal money into the website, but have not received any funds from outside sources.

Privacy Respected

  • No Tracking
  • No Ads
  • No Personal Information

No Bugging You

  • No Selling
  • No App
  • No Newsletters

No Subtle Ads/Selling

  • No Memberships
  • No Sponsored Articles
  • No Donations Accepted

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Written Work or Main Navigation Starts Below

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Style Guide

Definition of Style Guide

A style guide is the same as design patterns. The guide is designed to document repeated elements in design, so that they can be used consistently, especially by a group of designers. One of the reasons why I have created this is to show other people how to achieve the same effects I use on my websites. The other major reason is to document my design ideas, so that it will help potential future maintainers of my website. Some of these I have come up with all by myself, some I found somewhere else, and others I got the idea somewhere else, but adapted it for my use.

Not as Complicated as it Looks

The code in here looks long and complicated, but as you get used to it, it becomes much simpler, than it appears at first. First of all, this is not computer programming - you are not telling the computer how to work. Essentially, you are doing desktop publishing or word processing, but with code, instead of visually doing it. Most of the long numbers represent colors. Also, if you look closely, you will see the really long stuff is repeated several times over, which is only necessary, to include, to support older versions of web browsers.

Why Code Rather than Photoshop?

Most of these graphical effects can be done in Photoshop, but it is actually faster and easier for me to implement as code, so I don't have to remember the whole set of menus and graphic interface elements to draw out the effect. One of the beauties of doing this via code is that you can simply copy and paste the code, and then make minor changes, without having to figure out how to recreate it yourself.

Another good point about not using Photoshop is that there are no extras graphics files to download and manage. Another great thing about doing effects via code is that the code will expand and contract, with any length of text, or change in formatting, so that you don't need to adjust it, every time you change surrounding formatting. The final major advantage of coding is that the effects are always, at the highest resolution, that the device supports, automatically.

Viewing Requirements

Most of these designs elements require a newer browser, to see the effects. To see the effects, in action, on my websites, you need to use a desktop computer, that is at least 768 px wide or an iPad, iPad Mini, iPad Air, or iPad Pro (everything but the first generation iPad). The browser requirements are Google Chrome, (Mac) Safari 7, Internet Explorer 10, or iOS 7 or higher.

Most my design elements use gradients extensively. Any other browser should work, that can handle linear, radial, and repeating gradients. I also heavily use CSS Counters (auto-numbering and auto-lettering with custom parameters), CSS Generated Content with CSS Pseudo Elements Selectors (inserting arbitrary text, with "before" and "after"), and various other CSS Selectors (including CSS Pseudo Class Selectors, like "odd" and "even," and CSS Attribute Selectors, like "ends with").

If you see textures, instead of solid colors, you likely have a good enough setup. At this point it is just code. I haven't added graphical previews yet. If your browser can't handle these effects, just disable Javascript and the advanced effects will be "turned off".

Generic Android devices (any device the announces itself as Android) and all phone or handheld devices (including iPhones) will automatically not load the advanced effects, so as not to overpower these lowest end devices and not to add effects to devices too small to see the effects. For tablets, this affects mostly Chinese off-brands and does not affect tablets sold by major Android manufacturer brands, as they report themselves erroneously as Apple iPads.

Internet Explorer Situation

Internet Explorer 8 and 9 fall into an entirely different and much worse category, as most of the even basic formatting of my webpages will not show up on these older browser versions. This is mainly due to Microsoft actively sabotaging web development, because the web allowed other companies to effectively compete with Microsoft, like Apple, Google, Facebook, and Amazon.com.

I have done my best to support Internet Explorer over the years, for those who cannot get out of their clutches, but there are now so many things that every other browser supports that Microsoft doesn't, that it is very difficult to even perform basic formatting for both Internet Explorer 8-9 and modern devices, like Apple and Google devices. Designing for modern devices and for Windows is like going in two opposite directions at once.

As I have to choose between supporting Windows or losing the users who cannot or will not upgrade, I am not willing to stress myself out enough to get it to work. I would have to at the very least sabotage Android users and I choose the future over the past. Google devices are underpowered and not very high quality, but they will get the basic formatting correct and turn out to be much easier to support.

I no longer support Internet Explorer versions 8-9. Internet Explorer 10 is a free upgrade, available for Windows 7 and higher. Windows 8 comes with Internet Explorer 10 pre-installed. The lowest version I still support is Internet Explorer 10 (on Windows 7). Most websites, especially the big name ones, are making very similar decisions for very similar reasons.

It is Time to Move On

The big outlier has been China, but they have now moved on, as well. Businesses may still use older versions of Internet Explorer, until the end of time, but you probably shouldn't be viewing my website at work, if you have an employer that forces you to use only old versions of Internet Explorer (and that is usually exactly the reason why they have that policy).

I provide everything for free and spend a huge amount of time and a significant amount of money on my websites and I have never and never will make any money off of any of it. My time is worth something, to me, though, so I am not going to spend time going down that rabbit hole anymore. It is a direct threat to my mental health to be under stress and this stresses me out. I enjoy creating things, not fixing them, so I will concentrate on that.

All computers and software have a limited amount of useful life and Windows is coming to the end of its life, for most home users. If you have a computer that is not made by Apple, or can't run a Google web browser (like Android), than now would be a good time to upgrade. Keeping with old versions of Windows is just going to keep getting more painful, over time.

And older versions of Apple devices will perform much better, than brand new Android/Google devices. As with any other electronic device, you get what you pay for. Everything electronic is considered obsolete within 3 years and I will never support anything older than 5 years. If you can't afford that, then you cannot afford a computer or the Internet.

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Website Card Data

  • Benjamin-Newton Overview
  • My About Section Website
  • The Source for My Smallest Projects
  • Design Code and Techniques; and Schizophrenia, Theology, and Sociology Articles
  • © Ben Huot 1998
  • www.benjamin-newton.us
Re-Designing Our Future

My Work at a Quick Glance

ADD/ADHD Young People

Website Description

Benjamin-Newton Overview: the place for most of my content on web design and graphics. I have actual code, design advice, and my color and logo choices (that I learned in 20 years of web design). I have a very unique approach which I guarantee you will not find anything like this anywhere and it is all available at no cost.

I also have my introductions to my basic theology, advanced theology, and introductions about myself (including information about my personal experiences with having Schizophrenia for 15 years) and other people, on this website.

I also have most my pictures here, including world religion and art with pictures and nature photography in air brush and watercolor. Most other pictures are at the Benjamin-Newton Oregon website cows graphics and abstract drawings sections

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Detailed Notes

Quick Help Remarks

E-Books

All Books are Only in E-Book formats (digital files)

How to Download Files?

On an iPad or iPhone, for PDFs, Double Tap on the Document and choose Open in iBooks, in Upper Right Hand corner. For JPEG or PNG images, on an iPad or iPhone, Touch and Hold for a Second and choose to Save from Pop-up Menu.

On a Desktop or Laptop Computer, the PDFs will Download Automatically after Left Clicking on Link in Web Page, and Right Click on Link in Web Page and choose Save As to save JPEGs or PNGs for Direct Links to Bare Images. On a Desktop or Laptop Computer, for JPEGs or PNGs In a Webpage, Right Click on Image and Choose Save As.

Can't Find Downloaded Files?

Look in Your Downloads or (My) Documents Folder on Desktop or Laptop Computer and iBooks (for PDFs) or Photos (for Images) on an iPad or iPhone.

Want to Ever See this Website Again?

  • Always Reload or Refresh each of my pages, when Returning to any part, of any of my websites, after your first visit, as I Update my websites very frequently (often multiple times a day).
  • Unfortunately, web browsers save the version of the webpage, as it was, when you first visited it, and shows this this Old version to you, upon every following visit, until you hit Reload or Refresh.
  • Also remember, to Bookmark my website, right now, as you might find it hard, to Find my website again.
  • Unfortunately, computers in general and Search engines, in particular, are not as capable, as they seem, which means that my website cannot be reliably found, if you are depending on Google or Bing.
  • No one can get their website reliably featured on Google, for appropriate search terms, no matter how much they pay, or how big a brand they have.
  • Google constantly changes and will never release the criteria they use, to determine who get featured first, on the search results, for a given set of keywords.
  • Even typing in the name of my website, in your location/search bar, without the exact syntax, will give you unpredictable results.
  • You can add my website, as an icon, on your Apple mobile device (iPad, iPad Air, iPad Mini, iPhone, or iPod Touch only), with all your app icons, like just another app.
  • Click on the first icon to the left of the address bar on your Apple device, where you add bookmarks, and choose "Add to Home Screen."

Website Compatibility

Software Requirements

My regular websites work well on any Windows, Mac, or Linux laptop or desktop running Chrome or Firefox, a Chromebook, or any Apple device (iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch) that is running iOS 10 or later. If this website does not work on your browser or device, try the simpler/mobile version.

Javascript Settings

My websites work fine without Javascript or plugins enabled, or with ads or scripts blocked (my websites have no third party content or ads nor do they make use of any plugins). To get a simpler version of most of my websites, try "Disabling Javascript". On my website, you won't be abe to adjust the website appearance or have it read aloud, with Javascript disabled.

Consequences

Disabling Javascript will both increase the security of your computer or device and get rid of annoying things like malware, ads, pop-ups, and comment sections. It will also make your computer or device browser run much faster and use many times less of your monthly quota, from your cell phone plan. On the other hand, with many popular sites, you won't be able to use them at all, with this setting, so change it back afterwards.

Downloads Situation

I just found out yesterday that most my downloads (which I have on a different server/service) have been unavailable for 1-3 months, due to a change in credit cards. Although I only owed $2, they decided to cut off my service and not tell me.

The service is completely restored, but I am moving things over as fast as possible to the main site. Things may not be as fast as otherwise, but things will at least be accessible.

The problem with the other service is that they billed monthly, so I was not able to make sure everything was right and pay the bill ahead of time for a year (like I do with all my other services and websites). I will never again depend on a monthly billed service, so this problem should never happen again.

Sorry for the inconvenience. I know how annoying this is, when I run into it on other websites. The lesson is to depend upon as few people as possible, because everyone seems to screw up the most simple things, no matter how reputable the brand is.

Everything is currently available now, but I am being proactive. Everything is finally moved over to my server hosting and I do not depend on or use this service for anything anymore. This will make downloading things slower in places like China, India, South America, and Africa, but this is still better than not being available at all.

Security is a Serious Issue

Celebrating No Ads, for at Least the Last 10 years. I only had ads, for the first few years, when I could not afford to pay for a website, when I started out on Tripod, in 1998. I currently use about 10 ad blockers at once, for my web browser, on both my iPad and iMac. None of these ad blockers interferes with my website display or functionality in any way. I encourage you to use them.

I recommend you use ad blockers and do not feel sorry about it at all, as the online advertisers have forced our hand. You cannot even see content, on many websites, because of the ads. Now there is even malware, that comes with ads, even on legitimate websites, like Forbes.com.

I use no cookies, trackers, ads, analytics, or collect any personal information from users, for any reason. None of my downloads have spyware or adware in any of them. I use a Mac and an iPad, so there should be no viruses or worms in them, either.

At one time, I offered people to buy print versions of my books, at cost, but I have removed this capability, because of no interest. There are currently no things to buy from my website. I am not trying to make any money off my website, or even to pay for its creation and hosting costs. I never thought I would and I never plan to, in the future.

I only use a couple different light utility functions in Javascript, like for loading the CSS file and search. If you ever experience ads on my website or anything annoying like that, they are not from me. If you use a free wifi from Comcast, they unethically may insert ads into sites, that don't have ads, like mine. I will be putting in a major upgrade, that requires a huge amount of work, to block anyone's ability to do that, verry soon.

Do not trust anything you see online. Expect everything to be a scam, unless proven otherwise and give out as little information as possible, no matter what the reason. Anything can be faked. Just because something looks legitimate doesn't mean it is. The future of malware is likely ransomware. Randsomeware is when someone takes control of your data or device and make you pay money to unlock it.

Remember, there will be a more and more scams and security problems, over time. You will need to do things, to increase your security, over the years, to fix new threats. It is very easy to hack computers and very difficult to secure them. Computer security could be much better, if even basic industry standard security practices were followed. The problem is that people are too cheap.

When your information gets stolen, it is usually not from you, but from someone else, who has your information. If you were a hacker, would you target one person's individual computer, that has, at the most, one person's information, when you can attack a big store like Target and get millions of people's private information, at once?

Do whatever you need to protect yourself. Never buy any software from anywhere, except from a curated app store like Apple's. Avoid free software, as many open source software packages now even include malware in them, as well. Uninstall Flash and Java and never install any plugins or any other software needed, to see a website, for any reason.

Avoid accessing websites from within app store apps, not preinstalled by your OS. Avoid giving personal information to social networks or free services, as the never actually delete anything and have poor security. Do not give apps access to any personal information, including contacts or photos.

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Network Overview

Network Introduction

Confused about the world today? Want a simple, direct, and clear explanation? Read my books. My writing is like poetry meets encyclopedia. You will find nothing like this online or in print. All of this writing is available at no cost. I have a steady income and a lot of time, as well as an unusual perspective. This website network and these books are my way of trying to make the world a better place.

There are a lot of other (non-fiction) things I write about, as well, like what it is like to have Schizophrenia, secrets to my website design, and a completely different political and religious point of view. My point of view is partially based on my experience enlisted in the military and later living with Schizophrenia for over 15 years. It is also heavily influenced by my decades long (and continuing) study of world religions and world history (after ancient history and before modern times).

I follow my theories with practical advice and do what I recommend others do. You can make the world a better place. Just remember to think for yourself (this is what studying philosophy should teach you). Learn from my writings and experience, but come to your own conclusions. I am likely wrong on a lot of things, as are even the greatest thinkers, throughout history. I write what I believe, but you need to make your own choices, based on your own experience and your own understanding of yourself and the world.

I teach the exact opposite of the medieval philosophy of Thomas Aquinas. Instead of understanding God, to the limits of reason and then using faith, to reach beyond that, I believe that faith is the primary means with which we should understand God and the use of reason, to explain the Bible and God, is a secondary and subordinate pursuit. It is dangerous, to base your faith on reason, because someone could then change your mind, just because they are better at arguing.

One of the things people often assume is that arguments are all based on reason, and to understand how I explain things, it is important to understand that I am not trying to be rational. I do not believe that you will change your views, even if I was able to form a superior reasonable argument for it. The basis for my faith is not rational either. If you think pursuing truth without using reason is nonsense, then you probably won't agree with what I have to say. Yes, I actually believe that and yes I do see some humor in that as well.

Start reading here today.

Opening Thoughts

Exactly the same but completely different. Slightly worse, but many times better.

For those things we know are true, but we thought were impossible to put into words. Always be kind and work hard. Learn as much as possible and be creative in solving problems. Over all, in making important and morally significant decisions, think long term. The best you can do in life is follow your conscience.

On Certainty in Life

I am sure about everything everyone else doesn't understand, but I am confused about everything everyone else is certain of. Everything you have seen and heard is wrong. What we were taught was true in school is irrelevant. The things we think are really important are very unimportant and the things that we think aren't very important are the most important of all.

About Me

I am a former soldier (army) and have been living independently with Schizophrenia for over 15 years. I live in Eugene, Oregon (United States) I have spent much of this time writing a number of books on various non-fiction topics based on my experiences, what I have read, and the insights I have had over the last (almost) 20 years.

I have also designed these Benjamin-Newton websites from scratch, with all my own code and graphics and updated them daily for that entire time, as well. I code directly to CSS in a text editor and avoid anything that slows the site down or causes unnecessary security problems.

Want to Think Critically?

I am a Christian cynic and pessimist in that I believe in everything in the Bible, but nothing else except Murphy's Law (anything that can go wrong will). I consider this positive, because when anything goes well in any aspect of my working with other people doing their jobs, I am pleasantly surprised.

Explore my website and learn to think critically about everything (history, religion, psychology, ethics, design, technology, and disaster survival). Be sure to be critical of everything you read, including my ideas.

Beyond Reason and Facts

When making decisions, expand your worldview and use your heart and soul, as well as your intellect. Think critically, but do not limit yourself to just the rational and the empirical. Use all the other methods of discovery, that come from the major world belief systems.

Decide what is true based on: your conscience (as determined by your faith, scripture, tradition, prophecy, paradox, intuition, history, and feelings) what you have experienced (in your relationship with God by worship, ritual, prayer, mystical experience, visions, and divine healing), and the practice of your faith (in the way you express your loyalty and respect for God by a code of conduct/ethics, fasting, living a life of poverty, taking vows of silence and/or chastity). This will lead you to ask tougher questions and make more difficult decisions, with your now bigger understanding of reality, but it will also bring greater peace and purpose to your life.

Philosophy Inspired Solutions to World Problems

Some people work too hard and need to rest, while others are lazy and need to work harder. How do you determine which problem is yours? It is usually the opposite of what you think. Ask people who know you well, and be prepared for a surprise response.

The following are examples, of the kinds of practical things you can do, to reduce suffering in the world, in things you have control over.

Economically Based
  • Make Ethical Decisions in the Products We Buy
  • Find Creative Way to Reduce Our Expenses
  • Get Supplies and Training to Survive Disasters
  • Promote Internet Usage to Empower Individuals
  • Give Away Free Content to Support Alternate Opinions
Socially Based
  • Network to Expand Our Circles of Influence
  • Form Relationships with Our Neighbors
  • Encourage Others
  • Stay Positive and Increase Our Positive Influences
  • Avoid Mainstream Assumptions
Spiritually Based
  • Pray for God's Will to Be Done
  • Improve a Specific Animal's Life
  • Increase Our Understanding of the World
  • Raise Our Kids to Be Good Citizens
  • Take Time to Relax

Philosophical Influences

Biblical
  • Apostle Paul
  • Apostle John
  • Prophet Jeremiah
  • Prophet Nehemiah
  • Prophet Elijah
  • King Solomon
  • King David
Chinese
  • Chuang Tzu
  • Hsun Tzu
  • Bodhidharma
  • Dogen
  • Han Shan
  • Li Po
  • Tu Fu
Other Asian and African
  • Al-Ghazzali
  • Hafiz
  • Kabir
  • Kebra Nagast
  • Archbishop Desmund Tutu
Existential
  • Kierkegaard
  • Camus
  • Viktor Frankl
  • Tolstoy
  • Dostoevsky
  • Nietzsche
Renaissance and Enlightenment
  • Meister Eckhart
  • Erasmus
  • Montaigne
  • Berkeley
  • Locke
  • Spinoza

Why am I so Critical of the Church and Christians?

You cannot change other people's minds, but you can change your own mind. We can defend our theology and dismiss unbelievers as being intellectually lazy and/or in rebellion against God, and likely be entirely correct. The things is if we choose to do anything necessary, to bring about faith in Christ, we can re-examine our cultural interpretations of Scripture and its application to our lives and society.

Not only can we make Christianity more appealing, to those who are seeking God, but at the same time need not compromise any core theology, related to salvation, in order to do so. If we change the way we approach politics and society, without changing our core beliefs, is this not a success in evangelism?

Society is now going through a major technology revolution that is as profound and far reaching as the agricultural revolution was. Every institution and industry has, is now, or will be transformed into a different form, if it even survives. The Church will survive and thrive, but it would help grow the Church, if we can find things that we can change, while still holding to our Biblical faith.

The Bible is definitely not wrong and our theology has been preserved, at great cost in the major divisions of the church, but people can and are often wrong. There are also many ways to implement theology and express our faith and when we have such major cultural and technological changes, it is appropriate to adjust things like liturgy and political stances.

What we have today works for many people and we will have to fight very hard, for maybe only a small increase in numbers, but isn't the salvation of any one person worth changing how we think about non-critical aspects of theology and the Bible?

The many things that seem so odd to modern day people about the society in the Bible are almost all culturally adapted expressions of the same theology that we hold today. Being culturally relevant was important enough for God to build the entire Old Testament around the ancient Middle Eastern ways of thinking and social conventions, so it must still be equally important today.

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