Upon My Return

Wow, that was a nice vacation. Nothing like spending a week in Disney World. With a two year old. A two year old who thought that napping was overrated and couldn't possibly close one's eyes for a moment while there. Despite the lack of sleep, it was actually a fun trip and one I'd gladly do again. Well, maybe I'll wait a few years until the kid(s) are older.

In any case, I'm back and ready to...um...well, I'm not entirely sure. Before the trip I was starting to get a little bummed out with this site. At one point, I was even half-tempted to pull an Oxton and just take the site down. Alas, being freelance, this site is my marketing and I realized taking it down would have been counterproductive. Maybe working all by myself is driving me a little bonkers. You know, "No beer and no TV make Homer something something."

Upon my return from the trip, the angst also returned. So, to help get over it (or over myself), I decided to just push the new design live. It's completely unfinished, especially on the home page, but it's close enough that I don't have to look at the darkness anymore. Or that crazy guy who looked like Jesus on the homepage. What was up with that?

This isn't an early reboot but it kind of is. I'll be working to get the rest of the layout together for November 1st. I've dubbed this design "Content", as in both senses of the word. (I'll be pissed if there's more than two meanings of the word.) It's a return to making the content the focus and not as dark and gloomy as the last design. In naming this design, I decided to give the last two layouts official names as well: Dark Side and Long Way Down.

Anyways, I'll touch more on the design when things get a little further along. Until then, hopefully I'll have more interesting stuff to talk about.

Published October 11, 2006
Categorized as Personal
Short URL: https://snook.ca/s/678

Conversation

19 Comments · RSS feed
Dr J said on October 12, 2006

Looks great. I like the new "brighter" layout

Robert said on October 12, 2006

It looks reall great! I like it a lot better then the dark layout. This reads much nicer.

David said on October 12, 2006

Glad your trip went well. *laughs*. The new design is looking great. Needs some more work, but you already knew that.

BIG TIP: Socialize. Hit the Ottawa Weblogger Meetup when it comes round again. It is a fun time, and really re-energized me.

Fredrik Wärnsberg said on October 12, 2006

I noticed earlier today that you had changed the site's layout. I guessed it wasn't complete becuase loads of stuff was missing. It looks better now, nice to see a bright version of snook once again.

I just have one comment for now; add a little padding/margin between the header and the headline.

NIce work!

Nate K said on October 12, 2006

I think it looks great - much easier on the eyes for me (personally). I like how it has some more breathing room too.

Are you still using CakePHP for the backend?

I have a design I need to push live for my site, but I am just the opposite in that my full time job takes up my time - and my blog is just my personal rants. I haven't been able to justify the time to change it (as it is still default wordpress theme...ha) - versus working on work related projects. One makes money, the other doesn't. he.

Anyway, It's looking great - and working well (FF on Mac).

Oh, and welcome back!

Mislav said on October 12, 2006

Nate: take a look at his response headers. Looks like still using Cake :) Anyway, why shouldn't he?

Jonathan, love it. It needs more detail in some places but the general direction is great.

Jonathan Snook said on October 12, 2006

David: I keep meaning to make it out to the meetups but invariably I get swamped with work and never make it out. But I have the next one on the calendar (again).

Fredrik: There's definitely a ways to go yet. The home page is completely unstructured and needs the most work. The inside pages need some tweaks but probably won't look much different than what you see now. I will be adding a footer but it'll be hidden by default with a link to open it up. Last time, I filled the page with links to everything. This time, I stripped it down to just the article and comments. That's partially why it's called "Content". :)

Nate: Yup, still using CakePHP for the backend. It really has made setting up new layouts really easy. I created a really simple theming system that chooses the correct layout and allows me to break up my assets into separate folders. So, I can create assets that all themes will use or apply different things to each layout. On the admin side, I still have a bunch of work to do but that's the least of my worries.

I'm glad you all are liking the new direction I've taken.

Nate K said on October 12, 2006

RE: Mislav
Good point, I didn't check that before I asked. And, nope, no reason he shouldn't - I think Cake PHP is great.

RE: Jonathan
I just installed CakePHP on my laptop to play with. I really like all that it has to offer. That separation of assets is what many of the others miss with templating. In my personal work (sans CakePHP), I have always used a template folder that allows you to drop entire changes into a folder and switch in a config file. You can change JS, CSS, Images for the template, etc. Then, there is also a global library to use if necessary. It makes things much easier (especially with multiple domains).

Anyway, definitely liking the new direction.

Keith said on October 12, 2006

Looks great. I much prefer the brighter layout. Easier on the eyes and easier to read. Welcome home!

Johan said on October 12, 2006

You mixed old an new, is this snook branding. Just goofing around.

Ryan Brooks said on October 12, 2006

Welcome back!

Personally I like the dark one. Easy to read nothing, I just think it's pretty smooth... ;)

Curious though - I know you're using CakePHP, but have you tried the Zend Framework yet?

khaled said on October 12, 2006

I like the simplicity dude, much much better. It's what I expected from you when you launched your business in the first place.It breaks out the mold in all the right places. Can't wait to see what more you've got coming.

Kenny Saunders said on October 12, 2006

Welcome back. I'm liking the new design. Mine isn't going so well.....

Alexander Berglund said on October 12, 2006

Welcome back! It's a pleasure to have you hack even if there isn't going to much written until november. I hope you had a great stay!

When it comes to the layout I must say that even if the previous layout was nice and dark and all, I think I prefer this over the other... it's spacey, light and yummy... A bit empty so far but I think it will be filled as time goes by... Now maybe I can get some work done as well?

Just a question (Because it's something I have gone and wondered about for a very long time); Some agencies having a "client login"-area, what exactly do you have these for?

David said on October 12, 2006

Snook: I won't be able to attend anymore as I live in London, Ontario now. But you should go. It's a shame you were not at the last one. A reporter from the Ottawa Citizen was there... Some people got some nice coverage.

Derick said on October 12, 2006

In fact I think simple is good. Like the spacey now but strangely, I read better on that dark background last time. :p Nice work anyways, I ought to learn CakePHP soon.

Julian Schrader said on October 14, 2006

Very nice — I like your new design. It's bright and has a good contrast as well.

Dustin Diaz said on October 14, 2006

Whoa, didn't you like.. just have a redesign? Regardless of that matter, it still screams snook all over it. Maintaining your brand is hard to do with redesigns sometimes, and you've done it very well.

khaki said on October 15, 2006

nice!! really nice... and i also like your comment form... i wonder how did you do it. :D

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