Thanks for all the feedback

A little under a week ago, I requested some feedback on the old look-and-feel. I was delighted by the amount of feedback that came back. So after some half-assed futzing mid-week, I sat down in earnest (and indeed in the living room) last night to try to introduce a new look-and-feel. Around you are the results of a full battery-life’s worth of CSS work.

The graphic design for the new look is courtesy of Elise. Thanks! The coding has all been done by myself, which is a miracle, as it’s more a case of trial and error than anything more scientific. Padding and margins have been confusing, and I’ve little idea why some of the things work, but they seem to. The stylesheet feels to me a little like a house of cards, ready to collapse with the slightest breath of wind.

All of the futzing was done in Production (1. Make change, 2. Refresh homepage, 3. See what’s broken, 4. Go to 1.), mainly because I didn’t really listen when Rob told me how to access Dev. After all, it’s hardly a mission-critical site.

Anyway, there’s still some stuff to be done, but here are the main changes to date, in light of the feedback.

There are still a few things to do. Firstly, I need to talk to Elise about the possibility of her making a few tweaks to the look-and-feel. For instance, I want the Posted by bar to have a light-blue background, but when I try to do that myself in the stylesheet, loads of other stuff inherits the same background. Also, some of the spacing and sizing needs a GD’s eye, I feel.

Also, I need to work on the comment form, as per Rob’s advice. Rob: if you’re reading, it would be good to get some more input on how it could best be changed.

I need to figure out how not to repeat the date line for posts created on the same date. Some reading about the Smarty template engine needed for that.

And finally, I need to work on some new, more appealing left-hand modules. I can’t guarantee satisfying Dominic’s yearning for numbers, but I’m hoping to make a more useful sidebar. Again, this needs some template changes, which I find more difficult than the CSS stuff. If you make an error in CSS, it looks funny; mistakes in the templates and the site doesn’t work.

Your feedback (constructive) on the new look would be gratefully received.

Comments

5 Responses to “Thanks for all the feedback”

  1. Thomas Viner on October 29th, 2006 07:51

    The RSS logos under ‘Feeds and me’ appear too low somtimes. Like up to 3 lines too low, all in correct formation. But when I move the cursor over the text they jump in to the correct place.

    I’m using IE7 on XP home.

    I can provide a screen shot if necc.

  2. Jon on October 30th, 2006 09:35

    I like it Dan – nice work – only thing is the width – 17% ? Got to think target market here Dan – are these the people you are aiming at?

    What about the other 83% that have to suffer tabloid-itis?

  3. Francis on October 30th, 2006 22:34

    ok so Good Job Dan. It’s an improvement.

    I’ll make the following suggestions.
    a) I don’t like the top banner It does nothing to tell me what this site is about or who it’s by.
    b) The layout would look better aligned center with fluid left and right. So if you’re no a larger monitor it’s centered, if you’re on 800×600 it’s filling the screen.

    No one is on 800×600. Seriously. Just server rooms that are running blind with no one at the machine.

    c) I used the golden ratio to proportion my columns. Surprised you didn’t pick up on that.

    d) I get the same as Thomas with the RSS icon in IE 7. It’s dropped way below the line.

    e) Support for CardSpace in IE7 so I don’t have to enter my details each time I’m posting. I’ll be adding this to my amazing blog in coming days.

    f) Use the latest icon for RSS. Not the old ugly thing.

    g) these colors remind me of the earliest page of Amazon.com.

    If all this feedback is too much for you checkout the Wayback machien to view earlier abominations of mine: Namely the CornflakeZone which was my first site.

    http://web.archive.org/web/*/cornflakezone.com

  4. Dan on October 30th, 2006 23:36

    Thanks, Francis. I may consider widening my offering, as it were, to 1,024 pixels.

    I’ve acted immediately on your RSS logo spot (thanks). However, I’d be interested on your thoughts, as an avid fan (?) of the site, on what should adorn the banner to convey both me and the site.

  5. Francis on October 31st, 2006 00:41

    In spite of myself I think I am a fand of this site. It’s got a strange hold over me.

    I recommend you take a photo, could be anything, and then crop it so it’s interesting. That’s the background and you lay your text on top of it.

    This works with almost any photo, a bug, child, landscape, close up face, grass, bricks, whatever. It always looks more interesting if you isolate a rectangle of it.

    It helps if your site’s color scheme is neutral.

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