During the past two years, this blog has undergone two major design updates. Today, I’m happy to introduce the third major iteration, which I have dubbed Fathom.
Feel free to share your thoughts and feedback in the comments section below.
Why a new design?
I think one of the things that was sorely lacking in the previous design was a poor emphasis on the content. Blog posts were too modular and uninviting to readers. Thus, one of the biggest changes you’ll find is that blog post previews will actually look like a preview. Allow me to explain.
Older posts appeared beneath the slider, with thumbnail previews and fixed character-limited excerpts.
In Fathom, I’ve returned to the traditional style of manually creating previews on the home page based on the writer’s preference. In WordPress, I can use the
<!--more--> tag in posts to designate a point to cut off blog posts from displaying in the front page. That way, previews will feel more natural, rather than cut off at some arbitrary point.
In other words, function over design was the primary influence in that decision.
What else is new?
Another significant change you will notice is that blog posts have been shortened from a width of 600px down to 525px. There seems to be a trend amongst websites these days expanding to larger screen widths, considering the fact that most users now have screen resolutions beyond 1000 pixels. One of the tradeoffs I feel this has brought about though, are poorer reading experiences for users. I personally prefer reading text in a narrow column. It’s psychologically motivating to scroll down the page at a faster pace and, most importantly, it’s easier to scan.
Speaking of readability, this blog uses two gorgeous sans serif typefaces: Open Sans for primary content and Cabin for headings. The previous design utilized Georgia and Oswald. I think this font selection is a marked improvement in terms of their cleaner, more modern feel. Plus, both fonts make greater use of white space, which makes text more inviting to read.
Tabbed menu FTW!
I’ve shamelessly used the code to generate a tabbed menu from the framework, Skeleton. I highly recommend using it in any of your future projects.
You will find a new addition to the sidebar in this new design: my recent tweets. You should probably follow us on Twitter.
I’m also excited to bring back the slider. This time around, though, the slider will be used to feature some of the best content being produced on this blog. It was a quick job on my part to get it done using a WordPress plugin, but I’m satisfied with the result for now. Future refinements is certainly in mind.
Thoughts? Comments? Please share!
Here’s a screenshot comparison, in case you’re interested:
I reached out to many people during the course of this redesign and I’m extremely thankful for their input. I hope you enjoy the new look as I am very pleased with how it turned out. Let me know your thoughts and whether you liked it (or not).