Thoughts on a redesign #1
The following is a draft of my thoughts that I will be updating over the next few days as more ideas come to me. If you have any thoughts on what would make this site easier and better to use, now is the time to comment.
I’ve been regularly updating this site for a few years now and the design has remained fairly constant throughout. Granted, I’ve made a few tweaks to the CSS here and there but nothing that major. The most radical change occurred when I installed Movable Type for the first time and had to then develop templates for the various bits and bobs on the site. Since then I’ve largely left the thing alone save for a few changes to the include files (inside, squatters, essentials, elsewhere and credits).
Over the last few days I’ve been carefully considering way in which I could improve the structure so that it becomes really usable. My initial thoughts have been to make the front page carry only the most recent article and then have links to the previous five or so articles directly below. Below those five links I would then link to the main archive where you can view articles as the full list, by date or by category. My aim is to no longer double up on content. For example, at the moment you can get the same article in context of the monthly archives and as individual entries. The difference being that the individual entries have comments attached. I’m considering dumping the monthly archives as they are and instead, having just the headline, date published, amount of comments and maybe the first ten words or so from the article. By doing this I’m sure searching for articles wont bring up endless duplications of results. Google should love it.
I also like the idea of having a separate ‘mini-blog’ that does all the linking to interesting reads outside the site that I’m not going to do a big write up about. I could easily do this and position these links beneath the article on the home page. The complete list could again searchable by date and category but NOT individual archive.
Visually the blue look will stay but will be subtly enhanced. The two column homepage will stay but most everything else will use the one col type design that the individual entries use. There are a few exceptions to this (message board etc).
More to follow…
Tags: Web design