If you are like me, good design helps keep you around. For example, I routinely flip through Dwell and Surface magazines, but I can’t remember ever reading something in either of them; maybe Dwell. My point is, beyond the fact that I can’t read more than a nut graph about design and architecture, aesthetics will never trump content in my mind, but they can have mutual interests. My point is it’s been more than two years of TIAS. I figured it was about time I changed my clothes.
What it means for you after the jump.
First step was to get rid of that red background (readers complained it was making their eyes sore) and remove the picture of me (it was making my eyes hurt).
Besides trying to make the site easy on the eyes, the goal of the redesign is to introduce the latest internet technologies in order to not only make the experience at TIAS as progressive as possible, but to bring into the fold more content, hopefully some created by all of you.
What started as my search for the soul of American soccer has metamorphosed. Very quickly I realized the search had no answers. Spending a few weeks with Martin Luther King high school in 2005 awakened me to the idea that glimpses captured told more than anything believed to be found. The fact that I can’t be everywhere at once inspired the Diary Project - stories for us by you. Its popularity has me wanting to open the discussion further, but that depends on you. Hopefully the new integrations here at TIAS will help encourage some of you to contribute to this digital time capsule.
A few of the changes you’ll notice:
Goodbye Movable Type. Hello Wordpress! The webdesigner tells me that is big news.
Only one post will sit on the front page, with recent posts and most popular (editor’s choice) posts listed on the bottom of the page. TIAS from the get-go has clearly not adopted the typical posting schedules you find on most blogs; the new design makes that work in its favor.
We’ve added refined categories for easy surfing. Want to see all the Diary Project stories? Original Reporting (Frontlines)? My favorite posts (VIP)? Now they are tagged so you can sift the more than two years worth of content. As years pile up, you’ll be able to follow the time line back. A comprehensive search feature will allow you to control exactly what you want to search for.
We’ve added direct connections to Twitter, Flickr, and Youtube, which I’m aiming to use more often. As you may have noticed, I’m not much for posting random silliness, and TIAS has never been a breaking news source, but now we can play around and publish headline news without cluttering the main focus. Feel free to nominate photos and videos you would like added to the TIAS account at these destinations or join the groups at various sites and upload your own content. They will work in tandem with what you already expect from TIAS as we continue to capture these moments in time.
A new layout for commenting will make it easier to find readers’ reactions, hopefully encouraging more dialogue from the masses. It is very important to me that this site reflects the observations and opinions of more than just myself, so recent comments will get headline treatment at the bottom of the front page, and anyone can subscribe to comments by email for individual posts or to all blog comments through RSS feeds. There will be no requirement to register in order to comment. I hate the dictatorship you see on so many blogs when it comes to comments.
The cover photos for each post have grown in size. While I love this fact, photos uploaded on the old format will look a little strange because they aren’t sized for the new layout. There are probably more quirks that follow suit, but take a look around, and don’t hesitate to let me know what you hate, what you love, and what could make it better. I think this is a huge step forward, but I have no illusions. Just as this generation is but a chapter in the story of American soccer, this is but the middle of the mountain - to steal a line from Gil Scott-Heron – and we must climb on.