lineto.com

lineto.com
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Image by schoschie
Just to balance out all my posts about horrible websites, here’s an excellent one. It is excellent not so much for its visual style, but for its uniqueness in terms of user interface.

It’s lineto.com, a swiss font foundry and design bureau.

For navigation, they use a floating palette imitating the OS X Finder’s column view . Also, there’s the TypeWriter, a tool to test out their fonts, and it’s controlled by another floating palette that feels completely like – and is just as powerful and functional as – the text/type palettes from some of the professional design applications.

But the best thing is: IT IS NOT FLASH.

Yes, they built it using pure HTML, and what makes this a lot more impressive is the fact that they did it quite some time before such luxuries as JavaScript libraries became popular (although they do use one – CBE v4.20, the Cross-Browser DHTML API, from 2002!, and they modified it themselves to fit their needs.)

If I recall correctly, this interface has been online since around 2002 (coinciding with the date on the JS library). It was extremely impressive back then, but it’s still hot today.

(The only thing that I’d complain about is the fact that they use that horrid old frameset trick to hide the current page’s actual URL from the browser. There is really no need to do this, and it causes all kinds of issues. Also, because of the way their javascript-controlled content is generated, the current state of the website would not be reflected in the URL anyway. Nowadays, this is possible even with Flash.)

lineto.com/