Well, you’ve probably taken notice of some of the changes here at JerseySmarts.com. From new header images (they rotate) to a slightly streamlined front page to less advertisements on the site, your favorite New Jersey blog is getting freshened up! Aside from the few items that I’ve listed in the previous post, here are some additional changes to this blog.
More changes made to the website:
- Header Image: The header image now rotates between 14 different pictures which have either been taken by me or by my family members (my Mother and cousin, to be specific). They range from the beach to the woods – and there’s even an “Easter Egg” in there (it’s a non-New Jersey picture). Extra points if you can figure out what the picture is of, specifically.
- Streamlining: I’ve streamlined some of the key portions of each entry. For example, the comments and categories links are now located underneath the title of the post on both the front page and the individual post pages. Plus, I’ve reduced the amount of advertisements on both the front page and individual pages. Finally, some of the additional links and clickable images on the sidebars have been removed.
- Widen: The basic structure of the blog has been widened by 24 pixels. Yes, you can admit that you wouldn’t have figured that out if I didn’t say it!
- Reorganization: Some of the items posted on the sidebars have been reorganized. I’ve dissolved the “My Friends” link category on the left sidebar and moved around the “Random Quotes” widget to the top of the right sidebar. I’m probably still going to move some things around and delete some excess on the sidebars in the coming days.
- Other Changes: With all of these changes, I obviously have had to make a bunch of back round changes to the “bones” of the blog. I did some other minor changes like reorganizing how the “Contribute to JerseySmarts.com” blurb looks at the end of each post (see below) and changed the text that used to say “Read the rest of this entry” to now read “Finish reading this entry.” That may change yet again, though. Also, I lightened the background color on the left sidebar and darkened the background color of the right sidebar. I’m sure you picked up on that, though (*sarcasm*).
There will likely be even more changes coming, so stay tuned!
I think you should consider going back to the old default WordPress theme.
The blog looks nice now, but it’s so busy! Sometimes, less is more.
Wish you the best.
I would NEVER use the default WordPress theme! That thing is God-awful – with the blue header and the boring white-on-gray background.
You think the blog looks busy now? How so? I’ve heard the opposite from other people so your feedback is helpful.
Jacob Spades says
I agree with Marty on this one. There’s just so much green everywhere and between the in-article links, comments, categories, sidebar links, and “continue reading” links, it’s hard to focus on one thing. It’s kind of overwhelming.
Hmmm… Well, I’ve got some gold/brown links that I’m hoping to scatter in throughout the site tonight, so that might help. Also, I’m planning to change the color of the first character of every entry (the one that currently appears larger than the rest of the characters and in a green shade) – so I might have subconsciously been on the same wavelength as you two!
But let’s not forget – green is my favorite color so it wins over every time!
Hey – what browser and version are you guys using to view the site? I always wonder that about my respondents…
Marty Hawrysko says
I use the latest versions of Firefox.
There’s just too many links and graphics on both sides of your entries… clutter.
I’ve personally never been a big fan of the “click here to continue reading” link on a blog.
Good – the site is designed for Firefox and I think there are some small discrepancies between the IE and Firefox versions of the site. In other words – for everyone out there reading this – switch to Firefox if you haven’t already!
I like clutter! I’ve not added any new graphics or text to the design other than the background image where the subscription and latest entries box is in the middle column. The random quotes, the recent comments, and the latest entries in the middle column (even the subscription box) have all been on the site for months. In fact, the only major changes in terms of text, links, and graphics has been the removal of a lot of advertisements.
The recent comments DO need to be reformatted, though, as there are better ways to present this information. I’m not sure how I want to do it yet. And I really appreciate the feedback, Martin. Though it conflicts with what I’m hearing from others, it’s helpful!
Marty Hawrysko says
The most important thing, honestly, is whether you like it or not. This is your blog, and I recall a simple, yet effective, memo that use to display on your original one… something about if you can’t handle the batter or content here, then take a hike!
Now, that is something you should bring back!
Eddie T. says
I feel like you decided to bring the old TBL yellow/green/baby poo color (circa late 90s) to your blog,
I’m using the latest version of Firefox and when the main page loads for me, I get dizzy. There’s WAY too much going on here. The weird part is that you actually got rid of more things than you added, so it has to be something subconscious.
OK, after looking at it a few different times, I think I got it — the colors are off. The yellow/green doesn’t mash too well and the light-green vs. dark-green (visited links vs. non-visited links) along with the bronze “continue reading” link gives it a very weird mix (bright colors from different spectrum, in general, cancel each other out). On top of that the left side is now lighter than the right side, and that’s additionally throwing people off at first look.
I would remove that box from the main column for two reasons:
1) What’s the point (other than the obvious additional hit) of shortening your posts on the main page and using a “Continue Reading” cut (I hate this change by the way because like Marty I can’t stand the “cut” link unless it’s a really long post), if you’re going to have “Latest Posts” on top of the site? Either keep the box and go back to full posts on the main page, or get rid of the box and use the “cut” feature, where we can see a lot of your latest posts on the main page.
2) That thing looks horrible and out of place. I’d move it to the side, or just come up with something different to highlight your latest posts (I do like having them there, maybe the registration can go on the sidebar?)
I like all other changes. The quote is at a perfect place. I like the date and category right under the headline of the post, keep this!