New Site Design

by Michael James Williams on January 26, 2010 · 6 comments

in Uncategorized

You may or may not have noticed, but I took this site down over the last couple of days to spruce up the design.

It’s not finished — I don’t think I’ll ever consider it finished — but I’ve made some changes behind the scenes that’ll let me tweak it over time without having to keep locking it down. (RSS and email readers, come check it out!)

Anyway, who cares about that? Let me tell you what’s in it for you.

First, there’s the new newsletter sign-up box over in the top-left corner. I was using FeedBurner to auto-generate emails for subscribers before, but to be honest, they were never brilliant; I had very little customisation ability over them.

So now I’ve switched to aWeber, which is about a million times better. So now, rather than just auto-sending you an email copy of my RSS feed every time I post, I’ll actually write an email newsletter about once a week. This will still contain a link to whatever I’ve written recently, but I’ll also be able to point you to other interesting stuff that can’t quite make it into a post — like cool links I saw on Twitter, or interesting Flash-related news.

If you’re already subscribed to my existing emails, you’ll receive a request to confirm that you actually want to switch over to the new system within the next few days. Sorry about that; I know it’s lame, but it proves to aWeber that I’m not a spammer.

The second thing to point out is the new Suggestions widget on the side bar. If you’ve got a topic you’d like to see me write a tutorial about, you can type it into that box and I’ll see it. (You can also vote on other people’s suggestions.) I’m not going to stick exclusively to that list, but I’m definitely going to pay attention to it if you use it.

Finally, I’ve tried to make it easier than it was before to find what you’re looking for here. The avoider game tutorials are prominently linked to from the front page, as are the avoider game extras (which I don’t think most readers actually even knew about before!)

In the same spirit I’ve re-organised my Links page so it’s not just one huge list any more, and I’ve put a Contact tab up on the navigation bar so that it’s easier to reach me.

I’ve got some more ideas for improvements I want to make over the next few weeks, but in the mean time, what do you think?

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Colm January 26, 2010 at 10:41 am

Nice clean design, I like it. I’d say this will do you for a long time :)

.-= Colm´s last blog: You Should Be Making A Premium Flash Game =-.

Dario Gutierrez January 26, 2010 at 4:29 pm

Nice dude, I like the suggestions panel on sidebar, excellent shortcuts for the post. I will retweet this post.

Javier Roman January 26, 2010 at 5:19 pm

The redesign is very nice, clean. I like the green too. But, we all know why we
come here – you offer some of the best, succinct Flash game dev insights on the web.
I really have learned alot and appreciate your efforts greatly. Cheers for the new year.

Rasmus Wriedt Larsen January 26, 2010 at 5:42 pm

Looks nice Michael :) Very nice idea with the suggestion widget.

But the sign up form for your new newsletter is missing :/

.-= Rasmus Wriedt Larsen´s last blog: QuickTip: Scrolling Only in SWF, not on Page. =-.

Mushyrulez January 27, 2010 at 12:29 am

:O Awesome redesign, green = win.

Are you going to add another suggestion widget, for suggestions on other stuff (e.g. site design?)

Michael Williams January 28, 2010 at 5:25 am

@Colm: Thanks! Yeah, I hope so :)

@Dario: Cheers, glad you like it.

@Javier: Wow, thank you very much! (The green was Bram Van Damme’s idea, by the way… I was originally going to use a grey version of my avatar up in the top left, and he convinced me to add a splash of colour. So I went a little over the top :P )

@Rasmus: Ta :) (for anyone reading, we figured out the problem with the newsletter widget)

@Mushyrulez: Much appreciated. I don’t plan to add another suggestion widget, no. I want to focus on blogging now rather than on design. But if you have any design ideas, feel free to post them here; for other ideas of course you can email me (or even post them in the suggestions box — I might remove them, but I’ll see them!)

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