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Subject: Re: Loosemore's law (was UKNM: Fast-loading sites)
From: Duncan Clubb
Date: Tue, 19 Oct 1999 11:56:06 +0100

> Steve Johnston wrote:
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > >From: Tomski [tomattomski [dot] com (mailto:tomattomski [dot] com)]
> >
> > >let's call it loosemore's law: intolerence of delay increases
> > >proportionally with speed of connection....
> >
> > Hmmm..
> >
> > This makes the point so simply that I may just be inclined to adopt it.
> > _If_ we can develop it a little.
> >
> > Metcalfe and Moore have simple metrics at the heart of their laws; you
> > know, things that sit comfortably on a graph, like squaring and eighteen
> > months. Can we get Loosemore to this point? I doubt that there are
> > agreed measures for intolerance, so we need to work on an agreed and
> > measurable symptom of intolerance. In terms of speed we need to think
> > absolute. How about an axis that holds a progression towards subliminal
> > delay ( this stuff will be familiar to this audience:
> > http://www.useit.com/papers/responsetime.html ).
> >
> > Symptoms of intolerance... now there's a can of worms.....
> % of visitors who abandon your site before the download completes?
> poor but easy measure; put a reference to a 1x1 gif as the last element
> in the html on your page, count the number of requests to it, relative
> to the number of requests for the page itself.
> of course, this becomes increasingly inaccurate if the simple html is
> full of requests to, say, 64K gifs, big flash documents etc.

Unfortunately, this technique will only work if the 1x1 graphic is further
down the list of requestable graphics than the user's browser is set to
download concurrently. Most Netscape browsers, for instance, are set by
default to download 4 graphics at a time, so the 1x1 graphic must be 5th to be
loaded or greater if it is to work as a measure. And like most things, users
can and will change this figure in the configuration screens. Also, they may
have switched off graphics loading, in which case it won't work at all.
I have always advised designers to limit (if possible) the number of graphics
on a page to be 4 or less, precisely because of the above. Designers,
however, always ignore me. Regardless, it seems appropriate for this list for
me to claim this, in a smug and pompous manner, as Clubb's Law of Concurrent
Graphic Download Limitiation.

In the spirit of trying to suggest a working solution, the only real way to
measure user satisfaction or tolerance is to look at the number of impressions
that any single user generates - the way the web works means that we have
almost no tools at our disposal except to look at whether users ever bother
loading more than one page. A good stats package should be able to generate
an average impressions per session figure, and in my humble, this is the best
we can do - if users are intolerant, they won't bother going any further and
the glue becomes unstuck.


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  Re: Loosemore's law (was UKNM: Fast-load, Stefan Magdalinski

  Loosemore's law (was UKNM: Fast-loading , Steve Johnston
  Re: Loosemore's law (was UKNM: Fast-load, Stefan Magdalinski

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