A Change is Good for You

Actually, it’s more a finalisation than a change… I am of course talking about the modifications I’ve just made to the site.

When I started Pixel Meadow, I had a vague design in my head. It was pretty light and “fresh” coloured, to tie in with the meadow in the site name. The (bad) screenshot below was taken from the original design I drew up in Fireworks:

pixelmeadow v1 screenshot


I never really had a huge amount of time to design or implement the site as I’d have liked at that first attempt. So I was never really happy with version 1.

Version 1 lasted about a month or so. Then, I decided to port Kubrick to TXP for this site. Kubrick was a far “nicer” design than my original. It had style and panache.

Unfortunately, it also had a few problems. Actually, they were more my problems. Again, I didn’t have a lot of time to do the switch. As such, I never settled on a navigation system. This ended up as no navigation at all! Not something to be proud of!

Another problem that sat at the back of my mind was that, well, Kubrick wasn’t mine. I didn’t create it – I did nothing more than copy. That didn’t sit easily.

But I stuck with Kubrick as it was better than my own designs.

Until today. Today I had a moment of inspiration. Nothing ground-breaking or spectacular, but enough for me to create my own “finished” site that I was happy with. Using mostly just CSS tweaks and new images, I was able to do the redesign in about half a day.

“Version 3” uses ideas from my first design, from Kubrick, and a couple of new touches. It’s not the most original design by a longshot, but it’s something I’m finally happy with.

Of course, I’d love your feedback. Good/bad, I don’t mind. As long as it’s constructive.

Another thing that I’ve taken time to sort out today, is the sidebar menus. I’ve changed these a few times, trying to settle on the best combination and arrangement.

In the end, I coded a plugin to give me what I wanted – an “Activity” menu like that seen at Binary Bonsai. I’ll be tidying up the code and releasing it to the community soon.

The menu lists the most recent entries that have comments, newest first. It also lists some of the people who have commented on the entry. The released version will let you set how many entries/commenters are listed.

Anyway, that’s one days work… now I need to get back to XRT!

Update Freaky… No sooner do I post this, do I find out that Jon Hicks has redesigned his own (far more popular and better looking) site. Nice work Jon!