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Perishable Press Redesign 2008

New design in effect at Perishable Press. With this 17th incarnation of the site, I drew heavily upon psychedelic influences, spiked it with the essence of the previous dark minimalist theme, and mixed in a healthy dose of cutting-edge JavaScript and PHP functionality.

I will be writing more on the details of the new design very soon. In the meantime, I encourage you to check things out and let me know what you think. For this design, I went to great lengths to ensure pixel-perfect precision across platforms and on all browsers, so please let me know if something looks out of place on your particular configuration.

As you can see, the design employs a great deal of carefully positioned background images and other elements, so I wouldn’t be surprised to discover display issues on untested systems. Needless to say, for the next few weeks, I will be combing through the archives and checking old posts on different browsers to see if anything looks freaky, and will also be keeping an eye out for any inconsistencies, errors, etc. Please contact me (or leave a comment) with any reports of functional or aesthetic misconduct. ;)

Let me know what you think!

About the Author
Jeff Starr = Web Developer. Book Author. Secretly Important.
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32 responses to “Perishable Press Redesign 2008”

  1. Ryan Williams 2008/10/01 5:43 pm

    Yes, unfortunately the site does have a horizontal scrollbar on 1024×768 — shouldn’t need to reduce it by much to fix this, but of course I have no idea what’s going on beneath the hood. ;)

    Great job, though. I’m too tired to elaborate, but this just generally looks nice; I actually thought flowers rather than psychedelia when I first saw it. It’s much more readable than the previous design IMO, and you’ve made excellent use of the space — have to love the JavaScript horizontal thingy. :)

  2. Peter Wallhead 2008/10/01 5:30 pm

    Hi there,

    My only comment would be that it might be a good idea to shrink your header element by around 100pixels in height. This will make it easier and simpler for readers to reach your content with scrolling down the page so much.

    You could also possibly reduce the total page width by around 30pixels (or set the page width to 100% instead of a particular pixel dimension) to reduce the need for some users with smaller screens having to scroll across the page to reach the sidebar content.

  3. Beautiful redesign, Jeff.

    Just one thing- make the content and sidebar columns more opaque – right now, the background is showing through, a bit too much….

  4. Yes, great design!!!

    I agree with Sumesh, make content and sidebar columns more opaque. And you would change the width of the columns: 70% main column and 30% side column.

  5. Very nice man, only issues i could see were as mentioned, stretches width by ‘ ‘ that much.

    Looks get though and woud love to see the engine :p

  6. archondigital 2008/10/02 3:05 pm

    The new design is great and plays well on my screen which is pretty wide.

    My only concern is for viewing at 1024 screen width other than that the whole thing rocks!

    Also just did a redesign of my theme but not as elegant as what you just did here.

  7. Oh, Jeff! I love it!!! Maybe you’re more hippy than I thought. LOL.

  8. Hey Jeff,
    This is Kuntal. Hi, Congrats on implementing the new look n feel. :-)
    However, i loved the previous design, that was one of the unique ones (the day-night feature of that theme.

    Hmm yeah this new theme give you a lot of scope and space to use other widgets. thats the nice thing about this one.

  9. Hi Jeff, That’s good work here, but original one had it’s own feel ;
    No doubt on that one.
    No this one is good too, but looks too girly :)
    By d way Great Job Only u could do this.

  10. Gosh, what a shock! I came here to respond to a commenter, and BAM, the new design hits me in the face.

    I like it :)

    I like how it fits with the image I have of yourself. It’s both impressive and mysterious; it’s like fractals indeed: it’s melting contemplation and reflexion. The background is always visible because of the transparency, but the best moment is when you scroll to the top, and the logo is onto the background. Then, it’s fantastic. I do love that moment. Also, it’s evoking something mystic or religious to me – I always thought that PP was some kind of temple.

    Now, I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t criticise this new design, so here comes the technical comment.

    – the first thing that I noticed once the first shock was over, is that the transparency of everything makes the scrolling laggy. It’s a common issue I guess; I’ve noticed it many times on many websites: a fixed background + numerous transparencies = slow and laggy scroll down. I’m on a laptop at the moment, and that sure adds to the problem, but I think it will still be laggy on my real computer, alas. It’s very unpleasing, but the website remains readable though.

    – a little detail now that is bothering me a lot: the RSS readers count is not rounded! What exactly is “701.74 Subscribers”? That’s scandalous coming from you Jeff :p

    – a very good point now: the rapid access navigational blocks. I love these! Very nice idea and perfect implementation. You should’ve used Mootools though, but I forgive you :)
    Also, I would group the two “useful stuff” blocks together: they belong together.

    – without JS, the search page URL are not pretty as when JS is on. becomes Really a detail. Also, I miss a validation button; I don’t like typing a search phrase, then taking my mouse to validate, only to find that there’s no “OK” or “Send” button. Would be more accessible.

    – the comments area is correct, but where are my quicktags!? Grrrr!

    – I’m really, really proud of what you did about the images optimisation – I just read your Tumblr post about that. You make very few HTTP requests, that’s awesome. Though, I wonder why you are making an extra request just to load a comment-only CSS file (mobile.css), and another extra request using the awful @import for the main CSS file. I don’t get it.

    – on the “sidebar” again. Though I like the navigational blocks a lot, I have to say that I find the rest of the bar annoying. It creates a lot of noise while reading a post. I would remove everything below the Twitter statut block (I would meaning “I would if I got your FTP login informations” :D)

    – a final note, but not the least: I do not like the type used on the main content. I find this font very bold and ugly. In the contrary, your Tumblr blog has a neat typography — though I find the contrast between the background and the font colour too violent.

    – oh, and the footer is very classy =)

    I hope these remarks help you make PP even better. I sure love this new design. I will miss the dark one, but not as much as I thought; you surprised me with this little wonder.

    Congratz Jeff!

  11. Awesome Jeff!

    It’s like a dream I had once- no wait, that was real… nevermind: )

    Well done, and renders pretty nice even in IE6!


  12. Kim Woodbridge 2008/10/03 9:21 pm

    I think it’s gorgeous – I am so impressed. And maybe I can convince you to design one for me ;-)

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Perishable Press is operated by Jeff Starr, a professional web developer and book author with two decades of experience. Here you will find posts about web development, WordPress, security, and more »
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