Insufficient data from Andrew Fryer

The place where I page to when my brain is full up of stuff about the Microsoft platform

Pimp your website for IE9

Back in the day of windows X (where X tends to 3) I used to do loads of icon design as part of the project I was working on. What goes around comes around and now I find there are other uses for icons namely favicons in IE9.  Now that you can tear off tabs and pin them to the taskbar they can be a good way to promote your brand even if that is an internal brand for your in house application, like mine was.

Someone in the IE team has noticed this possibility and has decided to bring out a free utility, X-Icon to make this as easy as possible.  However rather than creating an application it’s simply one of the html5 test applications for  IE9 so it runs in the browser

To try it out I went to the SQLBits website and saved the log to my desktop. I then navigated to the X-icon page


and selected import.  I then cropped to the bit of the logo I wanted and checked OK..


closing this dialog shows you a preview of the icon, and you can see each size you selected by highlighting them..


I just need to use the rubber to get rid of the orange bit on the right on each of the icon sizes by clicking on each one in turn. Once I have finished I can then preview the result in a new tab to see what it will look like for each of the possible uses, as a popular site, on the taskbar and in IE9 itself:


Finally when I hit the export button I get instructions on how to embed it in my site..


..before saving it as an .ico file.

So three things to note here:

1. favicons are a nice way to show off your site in IE9 

2. X-icon is a simple tool to do this.

3. X-icon is written in html5 with <canvas> and shows how far you can go with an application using this new standard. However it does have its limits (e.g. no right click) and that is why extra functionality from frameworks like Silverlight