I’m terrible when it comes to design and fashion, or anything even remotely related to them. So when it comes to making changes around those areas, I am a little…uneasy.
I recently made slight changes to the appearance of the blog. This is something I imagine I will do fairly regularly as it evolves, until I’m happy with a particular design 1. The main change I wanted to try out was a darker background. I’m a big fan of dark themes in software applications. They are easier on the eye, and in my opinion they just look better. For that reason, I wanted to try out a dark background. It may not be to everyones taste but I wanted to see if it holds up after a couple of weeks of use.
I recently came across an article by Matt Gemmell from a few years back entitled “Designing blogs for readers”. In it, he details how the design of his own blog has evolved through the previous decade(!), starting out with a cluttered design full of every possible widget known to man, and eventually working it’s way to a simple design with the reader in mind. He then goes on to document his own set of guidlelines for blog readibility. Of those, I violate:
- Date-based index pages
- A feed button
- Background textures or colours
These are relatively minor things, and I’m not too bothered about them. I like date indices. I’m in the (presumable) minority in the fact that I regularly use date indexes when visiting blogs that have them. The RSS button on my header is hardly neccesary, but again is pretty useful to have available on each page 2. As discussed above, I like darker themes, so having a background colour to me is often seen as a good thing.
Matt definitely has some great points in his post, but it’s ok to put your own stamp on what is essentially your website.
There is still plenty of things that I would like to try out on the site, such as footers, linked lists, recent posts, a logo, more experimentation with blogging engines and publishing with Apple News. That’s more than enough to keep me busy. I may end up linking this post sometime in the future to show how right or wrong I was, or how lazy I am for not following up.