Results tagged “redesign” from kwc blog

MovableType 4, my attempted redesign

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I'll have some more thoughts on the MovableType 4 beta, but for now I wanted to focus on one of the major changes for MT4: the new UI. MT4 looks similar to some of the early Vox UIs, which clusters the menu items at the top of the screen in pulldown menus. MT3 and MT2 used a combination of left-hand sidebar and top navigation. This reorganization has its pluses and minuses: it dedicates more page width to the focal content (e.g. your new entry screen), but it also takes a lot longer to access menu items -- with MT3 every menu item was visible and immediately click-able. The MT4 designers clearly recognized this sacrifice and added a dedicated "Write Entry" button so that it would remain quickly accessible.

You spend more time writing an entry than navigating, so it seems a good trade-off to reclaim pixels from navigation buttons. But I feel like the potential isn't fully realized with MT4. If navigation speed is going to be sacrificed to optimize content space, there is a lot more that could be done. The new entry-editing box is only ~25% wider (686 pixels vs. 554) and only about 14% taller (131 pixels versus 115). With some 5-minutes of quick redesigning in Photoshop, I came up with a layout that is 75% taller than the MT4 design: 14 lines of editable content instead of just 8. That's a lot less scrolling to see what you've written. My 'redesign' is just a quick hack job, but I think it demonstrates the potential.

Here's my reorganized layout (~174 pixels above the entry editing box):

editingscreen.mt4kwc.jpg

Update: m has already implemented this design with a modified structure.css

I've put more side-by-side comparisons in the extended entry.

redesign.5.jpg

The infinite spiral of redesign. I'm not happy with the tag pages or the front page sidebar yet, but all in good time (or never).

Blog redesign in progress

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redesign.jpg

If all goes well, the oft-delayed redesign should be ready to go tomorrow. I'm testing it here (the top navigation header is just a placeholder right now). I surveyed a bunch of different blogs out there and drew up all sorts of elaborate designs, but a quick-and-clean design I did in a couple of minutes in Photoshop won me over. This is my first design that is specifically geared towards Flickr photos: the main content matches the 500-pixel-wide Flickr medium images and the side column matches the small images. The new design also does away with all the AJAX-y stuff, aligns the site with the kwc.org frontpage, adds a footer, and makes use of the MovableType 3.x sidebar for more contextual content. There will be some more tweaks as I go along (such as what to put in the right column on the front page), but the basics are in place.

I'm a little amused by the fact that the design is close to the default MovableType 2.x templates, given that the point of this is to update things to MovableType 3.x. The plethora of MovableType 2.x blogs back in the day made the Georgia font uncool, but now that everything has moved towards sans-serif fonts I feel that I can go back and reclaim that territory.

New homepage

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New version up at http://kwc.org/, old version if you're curious.

More redesign fever strikes

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kwc.org.frontpage.mockup.1.thumb.jpg

I had to see how the logo design would work on my actual site, which somehow led to me doing a complete mockup redesign of my front page. This is all just photoshop and I'll need to redo the text and reshoot the top photo if I actually use this. I couldn't make up my mind on the logo to use, so the extended entry has the dot-less/drop-less version for comparison.

Mythbusters guides redesign

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AnnotatedMythbustersRedesign-thumb.jpgI did a very, very quick redesign of my MythBusters episode guides site and even gave it a new name: Annotated MythBusters. 'Annotated' seemed slightly less hackneyed than 'Unofficial', which was chosen because I was getting sick of dealing with absurd cease and desists. Annotated is a little bit closer to what I'm trying to do, which is both document what occurred as well as provide supplementary links to details not covered during the episode.

The only reason I was able to do a quick redesign was because I used Liz Lubowitz's "Calm, Cool, Collected" entry into the SixApart Style Contest. I made some minor tweaks, such as tweaking widths and removing background graphics, but I didn't want to spend too much time on it, and Liz's design was already so clean. Her other designs are quite good as well and are there to remind me that 1) I don't know jack about CSS anymore and 2) I really, really need to get the redesign of this blog done sometime. Maybe I'll make that a resolution as well.

Redesign poll

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Redesign is in the works. I've tagged ~400 past entries, slowly working my way up to all 2100+. Soon I'll redirect my efforts to actual visual designs, thus a poll.

  1. Renaming 'kwc blog'. I want something shorter. I'm currently favoring "kwc'r", but other suggestions are votes for status quo are welcome.

  2. Visual design. I need to update to more modern templates for administrative reasons: should I keep the same look, or should I venture into new territory? I absolutely don't like the default MovableType templates, so a new design would be anything but.

  3. Architecture blog? I'm thinking of breaking out architecture-related content in order to better feature and categorize content. I have some Japan photos awaiting this decision.

Your input is much appreciated.

kwc.org now on MovableType 3.3

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I've upgraded kwc.org to use MovableType 3.3 (this is a prelude to upgrade movabletypo). MT 3.3 adds two new major features in my opinion: built-in tagging and widgets. The latter should make it a lot easier for MovableTypers to maintain their blogs, as widgets allow you to update sidepanel content without having to edit your templates, which is a major pain of old MT. I haven't given that a try yet, though -- I've been busy trying to tag my old entries. So far I've tagged 100 entries. Only 2200 left to go...

This is all a prelude to a major kwc.org site redesign. I'm jealous that meta finally found the time. Mine will be more oriented towards finally bringing kwc.org into the MovableType 3.x world, as my templates were designed with the entirely different MT 2.x-isms that require many hacks to get them to do all the customized behaviors like books covers and selective ads that I like.

slight redesign

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I forgot to note that the kwc.org frontpage got a slight redesign. I'm still looking for greater inspiration, but I wanted to make greater use of the 1600+ photos in my Flickr account.

A slightly new look

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I'm jumping on the Ajax bandwagon and redesigning my site a touch. A couple weeks ago I pared down the right-column a bit, and now, with the assistance of Ajax, I've modified the "Old: Monthly | Category" menu into its now current incarnation. I plan to add in an option to load my Flickr photos and del.icio.us bookmarks into this page, but that is on hold until I do some server upgrades.

My overall goal is to add more content to the front page while at the same time reducing clutter.

Site redesign for movabletypo.net

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movabletypo.net is getting a slow face-lift. You can now see the most recent posts from movabletypo.net members on the front page of the site. I am still figuring out the best way to also inline 1010/pqbon/meta/kwc/bp on the front page as well (it's a tad bit harder).

As you can see, the new face-lift includes user icons. honeyfields - you're gonna have to send me one of your own creation, given your mad Illustrator skillz :).

BTW - the icon for movabletypo.net is picture I took of monks making a mandala. Somehow, I figure this was appropriate, even if our entries only disappear into the archives instead of forever.

Site redesign launched

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It seems appropriate that for entry 900, I should launch a new design. I know that it's only been an hour or so since I posted about this as a work-in-progress, but I got impatient and decided to give it a go. Pages other than the front page are still using the old design until I have enough time to go through and tweak their layouts.

Partial site redesign in progress

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Despite many attempts, I was never able to erradicate the MovableType-ness of the current site design. There was also a whole lotta cruftiness and duplicate/dead CSS.

I've done a "partial" site redesign that I think, once and for all, will fix this, though it sacrifices the calendar at the top for now (I may stick it back in later). Also, the redesign is "partial" because I don't have Photoshop with me. Once I do, I think I will change the banner at the top. The redesign is sitting on my laptop, waiting for some final tweaks and feedback before it is deployed, but I've posted a screenshot below.

Comments are appreciated. Apologies for the low-quality screenshot.
screenshot of partial redesign

At last, a logo

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I've owned this domain for several years now, and I've finally gotten around to doing the logo for it. Funny how, after so many years, the logo was finished in about ten seconds as I was doodling with my new brush pen. I probably won't use the logo on this blog until I have enough time to redo everything. Click on the logo to see the "redesigned" front page. Perhaps a better term would be "undesigned."
kwc.org

Only a couple things left

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The site redesign is almost finished (after stealing some know-how from Amanda). Just need to tweak the colors and also add in some plugins to the link bar (mtamazon, mtlink, rss feeds).

Site redesign in progress

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Now that Bryan and Amanda both have Movable Type weblogs, I feel compelled to redesign this site to look different. If you notice any display problems in your browser, please send me a comment. Thanks!

BTW: this is the "template" for the current redesign:
tiles
It's a photoshopped image of a photo I took at the Bellagio in Vegas.

BTW2: the calendar bar is partly inspired by Tufte's Visual Display of Quantitative Information. Although you lose information such as day-of-week from the redesign, I like the fact that it gives you a good idea of frequency.