Better design; better accessibly; less suck. BenjaminSterling.com has been redesigned!!!
Ok, enough of the says pitch lets get to what has changed and what is better and what still needs to be worked on.
What has changed?
Well, the design and more or less the layout. I am not a designer by trade, I am a coder. I can take a design and make a website out of it, but it is very hard for me to have the vision to create, so when you saw the multiple revisions to the sites layout over that past couple months, that was me trying to get my legs under me. After stumbling around for the past couple of months and seeing some of the nicest sites that are out there, I felt it was time to really get this site its own brand. So to really answer the “what has changed” question, everything!
What is better?
The home page has been restructured to give you more while giving you less. I am going away from the one full post and one excerpt home page to 10 excerpts that “should” be informative enough to allow you to make a decision to read more or not.
The post pages are laid out a little better, giving everything you need to read and bookmark the articles with out being crushed with junk. I separated out the trackbacks from the comments for better reading, while also giving more “white space.” Added “addThis” dropdown for easier bookmarking. Post similar post of the to right so that they are easier to find.
Created a dedicated archive page so you can find what you needed quicker.
Set up a contact page to help you get in touch with me.
Each page will have my connection badges so you can connect with me through other resources. Each page will have a list of my jQuery plugins and my WordPress plugins. And at the bottom of the page will be a list of daily and all time top posts so you can see what everyone else likes.
I am trying a low tech way of fighting spam and will post about it if it works.
I have worked hard to balance accessibility, files size, download speed and design time will tell how successful I was.
what still needs to be worked on?
I mentioned that I worked on accessibility and I feel that I did a decent job, but I am only halfway there. I need to add more anchors to help out the screen readers. I will be working on that in the coming weeks.
I know there has to be some design and layout issues that I have over looked. I tested the site on a PC in Firefox 2, IE6, IE7, Safari 3b, and Opera 9 and all looks ok. Which leads me to what I need from you.
What I need from you
One of the main purpose for me adding the contact form was to get feedback on anything and everything site related. So what I need from you is if you notice any issues with the site, have any ideas on how to make it better, please let me know. I want this site to be successful and I want you to have a good experience while here.
With that said Let me know if there is anything I need to know.
I wanted to send a thanks out to some people who helped me clear up the look of my site with their great feedback.
Dan Drinkard over at http://displayawesome.com/
Keith Muth over at http://www.keithmuth.net/
Chris Clarke over at http://www.deerreeder.com/
Dec 4, 2007: not realizing that changing the permalinks would kill every single post, I went ahead messed with them and as you can see, every link that was coming in from the outside was not working. I went ahead and fixed that with a nice little plugin called Permalink Redirect. If you ever make that same stupid mistake, that is the plugin to fix it.