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New 5 column theme named Gazette (21 posts)

  1. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hi!

    Just wanted to let everyone know that I have created a new 5 column theme.

    Anyone that can help test it, or just want to view it and offer opinions, it can be seen at http://www.pcbblog.com

    I would also like to know the process of making it available as a gift back to WordPress and the community for all they have done.

    I still have some work to do especially on the comment page. I don't allow comments at the site above so it was not a priority for me, but you can respond here or pcbblog at gmail dot com.

    I can make it available as it is with all the coding for the plugins in the pages, and I plan to have a separate blog set up in a day or two where the sanitized version will go. I plan to release it under the GPL or CC license.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    The PCB

  2. nmallory
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    I'm not really sure because it seems "busy" to me, but I kind of feel that way about 3 column themes.

    I will say this that the graphic at the top that is continuously changing and the graphic in the middle behind everything are *very* distracting. I found it difficult to focus on anything else.

  3. Samuel Wood (Otto)
    Tech Ninja
    Posted 8 years ago #

    If you're going to have that background image like that, the text in the center column needs to be thicker, bolder, easier to read. Or the background needs to be more uniform, less colorful. Maybe lower the saturation a bit.

  4. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Thanks nmallory and Otto42 for your input.

    I will see if I can adjust the fonts in the center to be a little thicker to make it easier to read.

    I have tried the other way of making the saturation on the background image less, but then it hardly shows through at all, so I'll try the bolder font way.

    The PCB

  5. moshu
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    For something named "Gazette" I don't think there should be any bg image... but that might be a matter of personal taste :)
    And to be honest it looks anything but a "newspaper" page, though the name would imply that. It seems to "busy" for me, too.

  6. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Thanks Moshu,

    I have adjusted the fonts in the center and set them at 500. I think Otto42 was correct that they needed to be a little thicker.

  7. LiverpoolLad
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Good job in keeping it all together, I think its the first 5 column I've seen.

    I'm a fan of the three column, and never use adverts so don't see the need for more columns. I suppose people who use adverts might take this up, or it might be useful for some trading project.

  8. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Thanks LiverpoolLad!

    I don't use google ads either but I do advertize some select books on the left outer column.

    It has lots of possibilities like the news feeds on the outer right column.

  9. museum
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Is it possible to test it on local, please?

  10. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    If you can contact me using the information in my original post, I can send you the beta that I am currently using on my site. It has code in it referencing several plug-ins that I use, and they will have to be commented out and the original code uncommented for it to work unless you install the plug-ins.

    For those who commented earlier, I am working on lightening up the background image, changing fonts, to make it look more newspaperish, and I am working on a sanitized (free of plug-in code) version, and hope to have the dedicated Gazette blog up soon where I will make available for download by everyone.

  11. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    For nmallory, Otto42, moshu, I have adjusted and lightened the background image, changed the fonts, and changed the background colors of the headers.

    The stock theme will not have the flashfader header. It will have a header image with The Blog Name in Huge letters News paper style.

    Please let me know if what you see now is more in line with the Gazette idea, and if it appears a little less busy.

    I hope to have the stock site up tomorrow or Friday.

  12. RadoVleugel
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    From a designers view it doesn’t look nice. As mentioned before, it’s to crowdy. I also lacks composition.

    In the past I designed two sites in the same category as your site (all using WordPress):
    http://www.watchtowerinformationservice.org/ (religion)
    http://www.filosofie.info/ (in Dutch)

    Rado Vleugel
    designer

  13. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hi RadoVleugel,

    Thanks for your input.

    A lot of critique comes from personal taste. I looked at your two sites mentioned above, and I didn't think they looked "nice" either, but that is my personal taste.

    That is the purpose of a theme and having it open-source is that the person getting the theme has the choice to leave it as is, or change it to their personal taste.

    Most themes are chosen because they have 1, 2, 3 or more columns and colors.

    This is simply another choice to be added to the list.

    The layout of the 3 basic columns was designed by some of the best designers on the web. I merely followed their instructions.

    Will it suit everyone? No. Will it be used. I am ceratain of it.

    I am looking for help with finding design flaws of which I am certain there are plenty.

  14. VeronicaRose
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Since you already have five columns I'd try to reduce the clutter in other ways - like nixing the background image.

    I found it disturbing.

  15. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Thanks VeronicaRose,

    I might take out the background image in the one offered for the public, but leave the option there for someone to turn it on if they choose.

    I won't take it out of my live blog. It is part of the concept for my blog.

  16. VeronicaRose
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hm, the option to have it or not would be good.
    Options are always good.

  17. RadoVleugel
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Of course, taste is a personal matter. But people share the same cognitive proportion preferences. So try to make your site aesthetical more appealing.

    Although the two sites I mentioned aren’t my greatest design achievements, I think most people find them slick enough to concentrate on the content in stead of be distracted by design flaws. The same goes for the WordPress.org site; it isn’t my taste, but I see it is designed by someone with experience and an eye for proportion.

  18. LiverpoolLad
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    I like the BBC website layout. There will be a few errors in the xhtml, but they come and go as so much material is up there.

    I'm try to look at this from the point of view of some sort of local news website, the 5 columns can work, but you need to be careful. WordPress is a bit of a mix amd match of coding skills and making the presentation look neat and tidy.

    Take the criticism here for what its worth, and for my own tuppenceworth, I doubt theres a theme out there that was not a bit of mess in its planning stages.

    What I'd do with the theme is fill the five columns, with the sort of common stuff people might use. You can use two sidebars for the usual menu, the main is content and the other two could be used for images, maybe adverts or suchlike.

    Offhand, 1,000,000 stamp collectors might be heading for WordPress once they work out how to use a scanner. A 5 column website with stamps in the sidebars springs to mind.

    Either way, as long as you get this xhtml and css complient, and working on the usual platforms, a 5 column theme would be something to have.

  19. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Thanks to all of you who have commented so far.

    I am working feverishly to get the public theme ready for review. It will be stark in contrast to what you see on my live site.

    I will make some more changes to my live site once that is done. As to what I need to know now, is does it functionally work for you in IE 6.0 and above, FireFox, and other more modern browsers, and at resolutions from 800x600 1024x728, and 1280x1024?

    It would be a monumental challenge to make it work in every browser used on the internet.

  20. davidmsc
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Wow -- I'm a sucker for 3-column themes, and I've even tried using a 4-column theme (once - but it was too slow to load) -- and I must say that I'm impressed with your 5-column theme! It looks OK in my opinion -- busy, sure, but it does indeed get a lot of text on the front page. Busy doesn't necessarily mean "bad!"

  21. pcbblog
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Thanks davidmsc,

    I have followed a lot of the advice given above, and have set up Gazette on it's own site which is now available for viewing, and beta download.

    Would those of you who looked at it previsously, please take another look and let me know if I am making any progress. There are links available there for downloading and beta testing at http://www.gazette.computersandthings.com

    Thanks for all your input. Hopefully it has helped make a better theme.

    PCB

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