Your blog is like your house on the web. Every now and then you feel like giving it a lick of fresh paint, and rearranging the furniture. If you’re reading this in your browser, rather than in a newsreader, you’ll probably notice that things have changed a bit. (You can still see the previous version for comparison.) I haven’t changed the archive templates yet, but I’ll drag them into the new format as soon as I have time.
Any comments on the new design are very welcome.
While I was designing the new look, the following sites, articles, and pages were invaluable references:
- Practical CSS Layout: Tips, Tricks and Techniques by Mark Newhouse, over at A List Apart. Every time I put together a page of any complexity, I remember that I ought to be using CSS rather than tables to do my layout, and I end up re-reading this article.
- CSS Layout Techniques: for Fun and Profitby Eric Costello (glish.com)
- Introduction to CSS Layout at Apple’s Developer Connection, also by Eric Costello. Yet more information on CSS positioning and layouts.
- CSS Float Html Tutorial at BigBaer.com. Useful information and examples on the css “float” property.
- The CSS Pointers Group. Yet more CSS.
- Index DOT Html and Index DOT Css by Brian Wilson. In att the time I’ve been coding HTML, I haven’t come across a better basic HTML reference. It’s both simple and in-depth. Fantastic stuff.
- CSS Menus and rollovers at ProjectSeven.com
- Consistent List Indentation at Netscape Devedge. Information on the ins and outs of HTML’s “list” elements (<ul> and <ol>)
- CSS Design: Taming Lists by Mark Newhouse, at A List Apart. More on the HTML list elements.
- Dive into Accessibility by Mark Pilgrim.
In the whole design, the single thing that caused (and is still causing, dammit) the most problems is the <select> list showing my archives in the sidebar. Honest, getting this to size correctly in IE, Mozilla, and Opera is a pain in the neck. You’d think that one of the fundamental HTML Form elements would be pretty well nailed down after a decade of specifications, but no… As soon as you throw CSS positioning with floated elements into the mix, you can just forget everything they teach you in web school. I may well abandon it at some point in the (near) future.
Update (26 June):
Consider it abandoned. The <select> list of archives, that is. It’s just not worth the pain. Also, the Quick Reviews section of the sidebar is now formatted with <div> blocks instead of tables (big “yay!” for css vertical-align:text-top), and all quick reviews in the sidebar should now have an image associated with them (big “yay!” for MT Macros). Upon Frank’s suggestion, I’ve shrunk the date headers in the main body. And finally, I’ve also made the text in the main body more black. It was HTML #222, but I looked at it on my LCD panel at work today, and it looked washed-out and faded. See this article at WOW Web Designs for a bit more information on this issue.