[thelist] maximum page load for users leave?

Liam Delahunty ldelahunty at britstream.com
Wed Dec 4 17:07:01 CST 2002

rudy wrote:

>by the way, i don't buy the "under 10 seconds" argument

I do. Sometimes. In (real-life real people), user tests I performed, I've
found that if the page takes a while to show *anything* (nested tables with
images and nothing has appropriate sizing for the browser to best guess the
layout), the user often thinks something is wrong and hits back or refresh.

On the other hand if the page has been crafted so _something_ starts to load
and the user is aware that more is to come then they'll wait more than 10
seconds quite happily; especially if they've been prewarned on a previous
page that the following article/design is whatever KB and will take a while
to download.

>not everybody's on cable, and people who aren't have more patience

That's true, but so is the converse, (A)DSL, cable, etc has made users even
hungrier and less patient. A sites problem _could_ be impatient cable users
who are looking for a broadband fix promised by the telecom adverts that the
Internet just can't deliver to regular users at present. Most ads I've seen
show fantastic 3D game like graphics... Web sites just don't do that. If the
telecomm industry continues to mislead the public about what the information
superhighway (remember when that was THE phrase) has to really offer,
they'll put more people off than they turn on.

>also, ordinary people don't adjust their settings (like turning off images)

Very true. Most "real people" are just using bog standard IE whatever that
came with their machine... I installed IE 6, at home recently over 5.5 and
my girl friend noticed something was "wrong".

>the trick here is to make your main text show up quickly, and so what if
>images take a while to download? it's your text that has to grab people's
>attention, and if it does, the images will arrive soon enough

Don't forget the old tricks - you can preload some images on previous pages.
A well thought out path to a complex page could end up with it loading
almost instantly as much is already cached.

Kind regards,
Liam Delahunty
# Love me, love my Corx. #
# http://www.corx.co.uk/ #

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