Jessica’s site, WordRidden has been tweaked, redesigned, realigned, reiterated; call it what you like.
Like this site, WordRidden had been running on a crufty old CMS I wrote four years ago. It did the job fine but it was a bit of a pain to edit entries and comments. It’s now been switched over to the same home-rolled blogging framework that powers adactio, the DOM Scripting blog and Principia Gastronomica.
The hierarchal structure of the site has been flattened. Previously, there were separate areas for journal entries and articles, with the articles themselves being broken down into four categories. Over time it became clear that these distinctions were fairly arbitrary so they’ve been swept away. Now there’s simply writing.
The visual design is a bit of rush job but I’m quite pleased with how it has turned out. Graphically, it’s very, very minimalist. There’s a slight gradient on the page background courtesy of a 4K .gif. Then there’s an RSS icon, also 4K. That’s it. Everything else is text… in a liquid layout (what else?).
I aim to add to the design over time, perhaps introduce some wear and tear or the occasional graphical flourish. For now though, I’m enjoying the simplicity of a handful of fonts, ample proportions and some tried and tested typographical techniques. Needless to say, such a text heavy site looks its best with nice font smoothing — Windows users, please, please turn on ClearType.
Mostly I was trying to get out of the way and let the writing take centre stage. The writing has been refined over the past seven years. Seven years! It’s practically a proto-blog.
Have a dig through the archives to unearth the gems. Some of my favourites include “Dog Lady”, “The Making of History”, “Moon” and “Dirkie” (make sure to read the comments on that one… especially this one).