Tuesday, September 9th, 2003
OK, so it’s really Tuesday, but since Monday hasn’t officially ended for me…
The sidebar has now been updated to reflect most of the changes made by the winning entries of the Sidebar Redesign Contest. The new look has checked out in IE 6/Firebird on XP, and IE 5/Safari on OS 9/X, but let me know if you see any oddities.
In addition to these new items (some other positioning has been tweaked in this site’s primary css file, so you may have to reload/clear your cache if things look odd), I thought I’d point out (for those of you who haven’t noticed) the header graphic on every page of this site. It’s a PNG file, with no colors other than white and gray (view image). The color is visible through the transparent areas of the image, so the image has to load only once, even when a user switches styles. To allow users of IE5.5+/Windows to view this trick, a handy bit of code by YoungPup tells IE how to properly display the transparent portions of the image.
I’ve been handling the image this way since the current site design was launched, but I’ve never thought to say anything about it. It’s cool enough that I figured it was about time.
As always, let me know if anything doesn’t work as advertised, and I’ll get right on fixing it.
Thursday, September 4th, 2003
The results are in for my Sidebar Redesign Contest.
Although the response was a little under whelming, I like a lot about each of the three submissions (a bonus for each designer: there are three prizes, so everyone wins :-) and have decided to incorporate parts of each into the sidebar of this site (each winner will get a mention in the source of the sidebar, and the Grand Prize winner will get a link in the sidebar).
Without further ado, I proudly present:
- 1st Place (Grand Prize) | Brad Smith ( homepage / view entry )
Brad’s design is clean, and (to me) feels like it adds just what I felt the sidebar was missing. More visual separation for the section headings, as well as the indentation for each list item, adds structure to the sidebar. The Recent Comments section is also nicely done.
- 1st Runner Up | Kjell Olsen ( homepage / view entry )
Kjell’s entry is a mostly behind-the-scenes reworking of the sidebar content, allowing control of each section via MovableType. I really, really like the way this is put together — this is top-notch in my book.
- 2nd Runner Up | Hadley ( homepage / view entry )
Hadley’s submission does a terrific job of reorganizing the content, combining items like the contests into one section, along with more descriptive naming for each section. This design also features more separation between section headings.
Each winner has been notified via email of the results, along with their TypePad 20% Discount Codes. I plan to implement the changes throughout this week, and possibly into the weekend, and will post a short note when the new sidebar is live. My guess is that regular readers will appreciate the changes, especially the extra separation of the section headings (as seen in two of the entries).
A big thanks to Brad, Kjell and Hadley for entering, and not allowing the contest to slip by unnoticed. Your entries are terrific, and will make this site even better than before!