New and Improved Design

I’ve been working on a redesign for the site for quite some time now. Well “working on” implies that it has been a constant effort. In reality it’s been sporadic at best. I wanted to do a redesign because the site was too bulky. There were too many areas that required updating that I had neither the time nor the inclination to maintain.

So what’d I do? I threw away everything but the blog. That’s it. That’s the site. I’ve done away with all the extraneous crap that was taking up space and nobody ever read, anyway. Eventually I will add back the photo albums. However, I won’t do that until I figure out how I want to handle the assembling and publishing. So for now, it’s only the blog.

I decided to stick with the basic color scheme and banner from the last incarnation (incidentally, all the old posts are still around), and only made some minor layout changes. To be honest, I’m not terribly happy with it yet, and there may be some additional tweaking that happens. Or possibly major overhauls. Same thing. Right?

Blogger is my current tool of choice, and I am giving some of its more advanced features a shot (listen to all the Moveable Type users out there laughing). Besides the refined visuals, some of the new features on include:

  • Each post now has it’s own post page, for permanent linking (click on “link to this item” to see a post-page in action).
  • The site now uses conditional blogger tags to provide varying content between the main, archive, and post pages.
  • The site now uses Blogger comments. While Enetation has been very good to me, I decided to give Blogger’s comments a whirl. I feel strongly that the comments I receive add a lot to each post. By using Blogger comments, I am ensuring that the comments will always and forever (unless my hosting company blows up their server) be tied to the post. Also, I can turn on the feature where blogger sends me an email when a comment comes in. So the bottom line is: easier for me, no smileys for you. So sorry!

As always, I wanted to give credit where credit is due. The following resources were immensely helpful in creating the new design. While it doesn’t look like much, parts of it were a real pain in the rear.

Smooth Curves in Photoshop, by Jim Amos (@ Graphikjunkie)
Faux Columns, by Dan Cederholm (@ A List Apart)
W3C Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) Specification

I’m done geeking out now, and will come back with something entirely mundane and/or entertaining at a later date.

10 thoughts on “New and Improved Design

  1. As I said yesterday, I truly think the yellowish-brown and pale-blue are warm colors. I think it gives a very natural and inviting look to your site. Don’t do the James thing and go “all shades of blue”

    The rounded boxes and shadowing was very well done.

    Nice job.

  2. (Note to self: the Blogger identity for comments is kinda annoying. I’ll be using ‘Other’ from now on)

  3. A) I only really looked at the blog anyway, so I’m okay with that.
    B) I’m sad that the smilies are gone.
    C) You HAVE to bring back the photo albums. You probably don’t realize that I look at them on occasion when I’m missing my Campbells. Plus, when Modesty (or Mo-Dest) comes along, we’ll be expecting pictures.

  4. Photo album: I use jalbum. It’s very cool, although I haven’t gotten into customizing the layout templates to make my photos page look like the rest of my site.

    You should ask to rip my commenting code — then you could have smilies and the comments would reside on your server!

  5. 1) i agree with carrie–i like to look at the pics every now and then…
    2) NO SMILEYS???? 😮 🙁

  6. You know which smiley I’d be using now, to protest the fact that you no longer are allowing the smileys.

  7. I eventually drop off people who don’t upda. . . hey, WAIT A SECOND!!!

    Congratulations, Amy & Sammy!!! How awesome for you!! I believe you are now officially a people I know again. 🙂

  8. I must admit that I’m a little sad to no longer be a person you know… 🙁 But I’ll get over it…and I do like your re-design quite a lot! 🙂

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