locked Favicon?


Laurence Marks
 

A favicon is a 16x16 pixel icon, sometimes packed with a 32x32 pixel icon (and rarely a 48x48 pixel or larger icon) into a file customarily named favicon.ico. Browsers display this icon on tabs open to their website. See the date-on-shield on a Google Calendar tab, or the rainbow-colored suitcase on eBay's tab.

There are dozens of online free favicon generators that pack the multiple images into an appropriate file, easily enough for a novice to use.

Has any thought been given to accommodating user-provided favicons? 
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Larry Marks


Michael Pavan
 

On Jan 17, 2020, at 9:36 PM, Laurence Marks <marks@bellsouth.net> wrote:

A favicon is a 16x16 pixel icon, sometimes packed with a 32x32 pixel icon (and rarely a 48x48 pixel or larger icon) into a file customarily named favicon.ico. Browsers display this icon on tabs open to their website. See the date-on-shield on a Google Calendar tab, or the rainbow-colored suitcase on eBay's tab.

There are dozens of online free favicon generators that pack the multiple images into an appropriate file, easily enough for a novice to use.

Has any thought been given to accommodating user-provided favicons?
Do we really trust or want these...


"Due to the need to always check for it in a fixed location, the favicon can lead to artificially slow page-load time and unnecessary 404 entries in the server log if it is nonexistent.[6]

The W3C did not standardize the rel-attribute, so there are other keywords such as shortcut icon that are also accepted by the user agent.

Favicons are often manipulated as part of phishing or eavesdropping attacks against HTTPS webpages."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Favicon#Limitations_and_criticism


Gerald Boutin <groupsio@...>
 

On Fri, Jan 17, 2020 at 10:36 PM, Laurence Marks wrote:
A favicon is a 16x16 pixel icon, sometimes packed with a 32x32 pixel icon (and rarely a 48x48 pixel or larger icon) into a file customarily named favicon.ico. Browsers display this icon on tabs open to their website. See the date-on-shield on a Google Calendar tab, or the rainbow-colored suitcase on eBay's tab.

There are dozens of online free favicon generators that pack the multiple images into an appropriate file, easily enough for a novice to use.

Has any thought been given to accommodating user-provided favicons? 
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Larry Marks
Larry,

I am curious as to how this would be used.

As far as I can tell, GIO pages already have a favicon. For example, I bookmarked the page with your post. Here is how it shows up as in my bookmark manager in Chrome.



If you don't like that icon, you can change it. For example, there is an extension for the Chrome bookmark manager to change the icon. I've also used this feature in other browsers.

https://beebom.com/how-change-bookmark-icons-chrome/
 
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Gerald


Laurence Marks
 

Michael, Wikipedia is not always an authoritative source.
  1. The "danger" is that someone might create a favicon that looks like a padlock and causes them to think the site is secure. You and I would not do that, of course, on our Groups.io website.
  2. It would be configurable for each group, of course. If you chose not to configure it for your group, there would be no link, and you would be no less secure than you are today.
  3. There's a concern that a favicon in the root would somehow make it easier for malicious folks to compromise the website. Favicons for groups.io would not likely be implemented that way, of course, They would use the alternate syntax that looks something like this:
    <link rel="icon" type="image/png" href="https://groups.io/g/NC-LTRGs/favicon.png" /> which just gets the bad guy to the group that designed the icon. An even more secure option would be to have all the favicons in one spot, referenced by group name or group number, like this:
    <link rel="icon" type="image/png" href="https://groups.io/i/12345favicon.png" />
  4. Wikipedia also mentions that the "rel" attribute mentioned above has not been standardized. There's a difference between what W3C accepts and what browsers implement. That's an argument for purists, not realists. W3C deprecated <b> for bold at least a decade ago, recommending the much-longer-to-type <strong> attribute, but every browser still accepts <b>. Same with the open-in-new-tab link attribute target="_blank". W3C says don't use it, but there are billions of web pages that do, so the attribute will be accepted forever..
  5. There's a longstanding criticism that favicons are inefficient because browsers request them on every web page and are hence wasting bandwidth on every site that lacks them. I'm afraid that horse has already left the barn. There is no way you are going to get Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Safari, Opera, Yandex, Brave, et al. to stop checking for favicons.

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Larry Marks


Laurence Marks
 

Gerald Boutin wrote:
I am curious as to how this would be used.

As far as I can tell, GIO pages already have a favicon. For example, I bookmarked the page with your post. Here is how it shows up as in my bookmark manager in Chrome

Gerald, I am referring to tab icons provided by the website you are visiting, not user-defined tabs. For example, right now I have open
  • A blue sliced globe (AT&T-Yahoo mail)
  • A tab with a serif black "W" in a white square (Wikipedia)
  • A tab with an orange circle with a small face in it (Reddit)
  • A tab with a shadowed white circle with a red cross in it (American Red Cross)
  • A tab with a rainbow suitcase in it (eBay)
  • A tab with a white square with rounded corners containing a black lower-case "a" above an orange swoosh (Amazon)
  • A tab with a yellow tag (Best Buy)
  • A tab with a white circle with a rainbow colored "G" (Google)
  • And a couple of unlabelled tabs which are Groups.io
I set NONE of these. They all rendered automatically from the associated websites. It would be nice if (for example) GMF had a wrench (It helps you fix things), and my group had a tornado or flooding house (my group is concerned with disaster recovery).

I right now I have three Chrome instances open. This one has 26 tabs. The others have 16 and 25. With the favicons. I can tell at a glance which tab I want to switch to. It has nothing to do with bookmarks.

Larry

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Larry Marks


Gerald Boutin <groupsio@...>
 

On Sat, Jan 18, 2020 at 08:13 PM, Laurence Marks wrote:
They all rendered automatically from the associated websites. It would be nice if (for example) GMF had a wrench (It helps you fix things), and my group had a tornado or flooding house (my group is concerned with disaster recovery).
Larry,

Sorry, my explanation was not clear. These are the same favicons that also show up on tabs as well as in bookmarks. As I mentioned, you can use an extension to override what the website provides.

Here is an example where I set the website beta.groups.io to one icon and a specific page to a different favicon. This is what shows up in the tabs. I used the "Favicon Changer" extension in Chrome.



 
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Gerald


Laurence Marks
 

Gerald, 99% of users do not have the expertise or time to sit around and design favicons for their favorite websites.

But 99% of the users do benefit from favicons designed by the website designers.

And you are free to override them with your own designs if you prefer.



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Larry Marks


Duane
 

On Sat, Jan 18, 2020 at 06:13 PM, Laurence Marks wrote:
A tab with a serif black "W" in a white square (Wikipedia)
The difficulty I can see is that if you have, say, 3 pages open on Wikipedia, you still don't know which one is which, especially if you've got so many that they all squish together.    I sometimes get as many as 30 tabs open, though never when I'm doing any "work", but only when browsing.  I have no problem using the GIO (envelope) icon on all tabs.  I'd probably get more confused by having a different one for each group!

Duane


Laurence Marks
 

Duane wrote: "I have no problem using the GIO (envelope) icon on all tabs."

It might be a good default. And since each tab is also a tooltip, you can "hover" the pointer over the envelopes to see which is which (unless you're using a touchscreen device).

Maybe one of those things where group owners are the best judges of what their groups should do.

I would venture to say that many of the users are members of only one group. Mark probably has that statistic or could generate it in a few keystrokes. For those users, a group-specific icon makes sense.

For people in GMF and Beta and the other spots where function and administration are discussed there are arguments on both sides.
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Larry Marks


Gerald Boutin <groupsio@...>
 

I think I understand what you are asking for. No more info required.

Thanks.

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Gerald


Michael Pavan
 

Larry,

On Jan 18, 2020, at 6:31 PM, Laurence Marks <marks@bellsouth.net> wrote:

Michael, Wikipedia is not always an authoritative source.
Agreed, of course.
Having never heard of them, I took a quick look there.
I understand Wikipedia is written by anybody, not necessarily experts - and even experts can be wrong.

• The "danger" is that someone might create a favicon that looks like a padlock and causes them to think the site is secure. You and I would not do that, of course, on our Groups.io website.
You seem to agree that someone, other than you or I, could.

• It would be configurable for each group, of course. If you chose not to configure it for your group, there would be no link, and you would be no less secure than you are today.
I have no objections to them, as long as there was a simple setting to not permit them in my groups.

• There's a concern that a favicon in the root would somehow make it easier for malicious folks to compromise the website. Favicons for groups.io would not likely be implemented that way, of course, They would use the alternate syntax that looks something like this:
<link rel="icon" type="image/png" href="https://groups.io/g/NC-LTRGs/favicon.png" /> which just gets the bad guy to the group that designed the icon. An even more secure option would be to have all the favicons in one spot, referenced by group name or group number, like this:
<link rel="icon" type="image/png" href="https://groups.io/i/12345favicon.png" />
This is above my IT competence, but I understand you say that they are indeed a legitimate concern.

• Wikipedia also mentions that the "rel" attribute mentioned above has not been standardized. There's a difference between what W3C accepts and what browsers implement. That's an argument for purists, not realists. W3C deprecated <b> for bold at least a decade ago, recommending the much-longer-to-type <strong> attribute, but every browser still accepts <b>. Same with the open-in-new-tab link attribute target="_blank". W3C says don't use it, but there are billions of web pages that do, so the attribute will be accepted forever..
Again, this is above my IT competence.
I only included this concern in what I quoted as it was in the middle of it, and I didn't want to 'interrupt' the short quote so that it might appear I was manipulating its meaning.

• There's a longstanding criticism that favicons are inefficient because browsers request them on every web page and are hence wasting bandwidth on every site that lacks them. I'm afraid that horse has already left the barn. There is no way you are going to get Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Safari, Opera, Yandex, Brave, et al. to stop checking for favicons.
You seem to confirm this could/should be a concern.

Michael


 

This topic has run its course. Locking.

Mark