Thoughts on branding, design, writing and life by Kevin Potts. Established 2003.

Dive Into Accessibility

Mark Pilgrim disappeared from the Interwebs and took all of his material with him. Others have brought up mirrors of Dive Into Python and Dive Into HTML5. That’s cool. I brought up a mirror of Dive Into Accessibility from 2002.

In 2003, I stumbled across Mark Pilgrim’s original Dive Into Accessibility site ( for the first time. I discovered Mark’s writing via Zeldman or Joe Clark or Dean Allen or one of the other original gangstas of standards advocacy, and was a year removed from unteaching myself <font>.

It would be dramatic to say the site changed my life, but it would be an understatement to say it didn’t. I consumed it. Every word. Then I read Joe Clark’s book. Then I came back and read DIA again. The advocacy for an accessible web, an open web, made everything I was reading about “standards” click into place. (I even wrote a bit about it on this site.) Today, the same concept is garnished with terms like “adaptive”, “responsive” and “progressive enhancement”, but the underlying message is the same: build a website anyone can use. It spun up a philosophical about-face in my approach to building websites.

It was with dismay and frustration that earlier this week (October 2011) Mark effectively deleted himself from the internet.,, and all return a status of 410. (“Gone”, as in dead and gone.) His email addresses bounce, his Twitter handle is gone, his pinboard account is disabled. He is alive, happily. But gone.

So I took it upon myself to grab archived versions of Dive Into Accessibility and move them to a new domain: The content is untouched; the goal is one of preservation to what I consider a seminal text in the annals of web development. Many external links are broken. The search no longer works. But I am not going to edit/fix/change/tweak anything; a librarian does not provide editorial on what he/she is curating.

Nine years later, much of what Mark wrote remains absolutely applicable to today’s web. It’s still a great read, and still educational. I encourage you to visit.

Others have mirrored Mark’s more recent work: now exists as an ongoing living text from the community, and his writings on Python are up on Github.

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commentary + criticism


wrote the following on Friday October 14, 2011

Any thoughts on his sudden info-suicide? Nobody seems to have a clear answer as to the thought that’s raging on everyone’s mind: Why?

Ben Clarke

wrote the following on Monday December 5, 2011

He was a great mind in the web and wrote some very influential and informative pieces that inspired me to begin learning more about the web and what makes it work.

Im glad people still keep sites up with all his writings around to allow new people to read and old people to recap! Thanks alot!