Lightbox can be confusing. Like one commenter said, it makes the user think it’s a new page and thus go “back” on their browser. What was needed was an intuitive way to display images and text neatly. With a little inspiration from Cabel Sasser and Apple, and the power of Prototype and jQuery, OrderedList just gave the web a spoonful of Fancy.
Nunemaker’s FancyZoom is different in four ways. First, it can work with both images and text, not just images as Sasser’s version is confined to. Second, it is built using Prototype (or Steve Smith’s jQuery version) as opposed to Sasser’s which was built from scratch, thus making Nunemaker’s weight being only 12k as opposed to Sasser’s 36k. Granted, as the Nunemaker states, you have the overhead of Prototype on top of the 12k, but if you’re already using Prototype then you already have the overhead. And lastly, it doesn’t use Ajax. What this means is that your text and images are loaded when the page loads. The last way is more of a personal design touch than a coding implementation. Its the Apple effect of rounded corners. This creates a padding effect which frames your image or text very nicely.
If you’re looking for the jQuery version of FancyZoom, Steve Smith (Orderedlist.com) modified Nunemaker’s to create a jQuery version. Be sure to use the jQuery or Prototype version depending on which library you’re already using.