QBullets have a purpose. They are more than just pretty icons and they shouldn't be used simply to dress up your pages.

QBullets are true interface elements which serve the purpose of clarifying ambiguous hypertext links. QBullets should not be added to links simply to re-inforce the highlighted text, but to add an extra layer of information.

QBullets should always be used in accordance with their meanings and appearance on the legend.

For example, in the Matterform Web site, there are many links that let you download the QBullets. Why aren't those links Q'ed with a little ? Because those links don't actually start downloading a file, they just take you to a page that tells you how to download the file. And anyway, what good would it do to add a QBullet? The word and the icon both mean "download" so a QBullet in this context wouldn't say anything new.

On the other hand, once you get to the download page, there is a link that looks like this: Binhex format for Mac. Now there's a QBullet, because this link actually connects to an FTP site and starts a download. And since the icon means "download," we don't need to use the word "download" in the link. This is an example of how QBullets let you write clearer and more concise hypertext links.

QBullets should always be placed after a hypertext link. Some people don't like this, mainly because a list of links generally has a ragged right edge and the QBullets don't line up nicely. But this is not the purpose for which QBullets were designed. Take a look at the Sites Page on the Matterform Media Web site. The outlink QBullet isn't used on that page, because every link is obviously an outlink. The QBullet wouldn't say anything that isn't already clear and would only result in the annoying raisin toast effect.

If QBullets are to be of any value, it is vital that they be used consistently. If you disagree, then please make your own icons and let the QBullets stay QBullets. We welcome your comments.