Is there a web app exception to the target _blank UX rules?

Experts can give you list of reasons why including target=”_blank” on links is bad for UX/accessibility and they’re mostly all right, but they tend to ignore the 5B pound gorilla in the room: Social media sites + Gmail all open external links in new windows and users (including saavy users who understand middle-click etc.) expect them to, and a huge part of UX is doing what the user expects.

My hypothesis is that users see some sites as applications (especially those that have popular app versions) that they would not generally close just to read a story. This change is also surely influenced by the fact that there is no instant way to context click on touch devices as there is with a mouse.

My point is we need to study this phenomenon with real users, who are rapidly moving to touch devices, and not let our preferences and value judgments, formed over years of desktop PC browsing, take over.

We must be willing to admit that in some scenarios the game has changed and we no longer know what is “best”. And this could be a case where what is best for UX is not best for accessibility or for promoting the understanding of browser technology. It would not be the first time.

Analyze my dreams

Kristen Schall plays an adorable tourist in a film shot in soft-focus Europe in the early 1900s. In a stunning/terrifying scene she rides a rickety ski lift contraption hundreds of feet up a mountain, with the steep path twisting and turning to follow a busy street that wraps up the mountainside.

Later: I’m in an abandoned storage unit and find an amazing 80’s drum machine made by a kitchen appliance manufacturer. It’s all black and grey plastic, has tons of knobs, most of the labels are worn off, and I need to get my hands on batteries and a cassette 4-track ASAP.

Guitar tunings: Am9 and D6add9

I like to make small alterations to standard tuning that allow smaller intervals in the lower register.

Am9 (detune the D to C)

Some chords (note the 3rd intervals between the A and C strings):

Cm7 x-3-3-3-4-3
C x-3-4-5-5-x
Cm9 x-3-3-3-3-3
D6/9 x-5-6-7-0-0
A 5-4-4-6-x-x (or just 5-x-4-6-x-x)
A7 5-7-7-6-5-5 (standard E bar shape!)
Emaj9 0-9-8-8-0-0 (nice 2nd interval between the F# and G#)

D6add9 (detune the G to F#)

This gives you an open major 3rd interval and an easy D6add9 in the upper 5 strings. Some chords:

D6 x-0-0-0-0-2
G6add9 3-x-0-3-0-0
Aadd9 x-0-9-7-10-0
A6add9 5-4-4-0-0-0
A/C# 9-7-7-7-10-x
A13 x-0-5-5-7-0
Em x-7-5-5-5-x
Eadd9 x-7-6-5-7-x
D x-0-0-0-3-5  OR x-0-0-0-7-x
Gmaj9 x-5-5-5-7-5