Blog Redesign, Polls and even Facebook

Blog Redesign, Polls and even Facebook

Blog Redesign

Depending on how you typically view Time to Loot, you may or may not be aware of a rather significant change in appearance since yesterday. Not just appearance, but function too. The archives now show excerpts with thumbnails rather than entire posts. Posts have hero images. I even flirted with the idea of infinite scroll for the index, but have since turned that off again. For now.

I was running the Genesis Framework and Magazine child-theme, a pair I bought access to waaaaaay back in the day for my old blogging efforts. There is a great deal to love about the Genesis Framework, some parts I’m already missing even — but even the newly released themes seem so… outdated.

Both are screenshots the main index page. But before entire posts were displayed, now using an excerpt display.
There are some differences shown in the ‘old’ from what was actually present though. e.g., the Social icons didn’t wrap (there was one less! More on that soon), and I had a ‘Featured Posts’ carousel.

I’m possibly far from done, but I’ve setup my new theme (OceanWP if you’re wondering) enough that I’m happy with it for the time being. It has been something of a revelation how many more components and areas of configuration it adds to the WordPress ‘customiser’ compared to the old Genesis themes though. To change typographic elements before I had to find their reference in the CSS files and edit by hand. Now it’s all menu driven!

I’ve been researching Divi and Elementor rather extensively. I’m talking multiple 2-3 hour videos of tutorials to see how things are constructed and end results. Answer so far? Inconclusive. Elementor does have a free basic version which is pretty powerful for pages, but adjusting how blog archives and posts work is locked into the Pro edition.

Both of them are more aimed at complete site design rather than ‘just’ a blog, so they’re very likely overkill for what I want… But… I haven’t quite shaken the desire to grab them entirely yet. ;)

Polls! As a Blog Reader…

…Do you like ‘Infinite Scrolling‘? How about Excerpts vs. Full Posts? Or do you not care how a blog presents on the web, because you use WP Reader, Feedly or some other off-site solution?

Those are the questions I pose, and I would love your input! Click through below to add your voice to the poll.

I’ll give this a few days or so then share the results for everyone. :)

Suddenly a Wild Facebook Appears

…I don’t yet know if it will be super effective.

I’m not expecting too much though, as I don’t plan on expending a lot of effort on it. I created the page, and linked the blog to it to auto-crosspost, but that’s it.

I’m also still a little uneasy that the page belongs to my actual Facebook account, being honest. But we’ll see how it goes. Twitter will still absolutely be my preferred social communication channel, and I could stand to be more active there as it is. ;)

If you’re curious though, the Facebook page is here!1.

I’ve followed a few other blogs that I could spot with Facebook pages, but I know I’ve missed people.

Probably a great many people. So let me know! :)

Footnotes

  1. Annoyingly, TimetoLoot and Naithin as usernames were already taken so I’ve gone with TimetoLootBlog

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8 thoughts on “Blog Redesign, Polls and even Facebook”

  1. I think your Infinite Scrolling post needs another option – “I have no clue what “Infinite Scrolling is”. Even after I googled it and read several definitions I still couldn’t really see what it meant. I voted “No but it doesn’t bother me” in the poll but really I have no idea whether it would bother me or not.

    I run Firefox with both NoScript and an aggressive Ad Blocker so quite a lot of websites look a bit odd to me but blogs I read regularly, like this one, are whitelisted. I checked it on Chrome, where I don’t run any Add-Ons, and it looked exactly the same so I think I’m seeing what you want me to see.

    The only thing I don’t like – and I really don’t like it – is the way that montage header-picture kind of fades in under the main title of the post as you scroll down. That was why I checked Chrome, because I thought it couldn’t possibly be intentional. It’s really distracting and just makes me think something has glitched.

    Otherwise it all looks great.

    • Honestly, the header image scroll only really works with very particular images I’m learning. It’s OK I think with more screenshot style things. I.e., if you look at the last post, on current games of interest, does that bother you also?

      It’s OK if it does, I’m keen to understand if it is the effect itself or whether I can fix it with better image selection.

      Re: infinite scrolling, if you look at the main post index page, you can scroll down 12 entries then it’s a hard stop. To see more posts, you click on a page number.

      With infinite scrolling turned on, when you scrolled to the bottom of the 12 posts that load initially, it would auto load another 12 for you.

      Some places also use it to load another post when you hit the bottom of the one you were reading. I very much don’t like that style though.

  2. Hmm… that’s odd. I paragraphed that previous comment with breaks after “What you want me to see” and again after “Glitched”. As displayed it has the line indents but not the blank line. I don’t think it used to do that here, did it?

    • Haha, thanks. Although I have to ask, do you view that as a good thing?

      And if not (which is fine! I’m pretty far from thinking myself any kind of visual designer) are you able to put your finger on anything you’d like to vary it up a little or otherwise add a bit of spice?

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