• Equestria Daily Revamp - Now With Wings

    Gosh Blogger has bloody awful security. Look at me, just waltzing on in here, messing with the furniture and stuff… Anyway… so you’ve probably noticed that EQD is looking just a wee bit different now than it used to. I’ve wanted to do this job for 2 years now, and after pestering Seth enough and showing him mock ups, I’ve spent the last week wrestling with blogger’s templating system in order to churn out what you see right now. It actually wasn’t as bad as I thought it’d be when I first got into it, and I feel like a total Blogger pro now. Something to put on my CV with a great big stamp ya know? Hmm.

    The main point of this revamp was to improve the look of the site, but after I got going I found a bunch of things I could improve which I’ll run you folks through. It’s certainly been an exercise in hacking blogger to pieces with javascript...

    Navigation Bar
    This is the biggest improvement to site usability. You’ll notice the navigation bar at the top now has drop downs on most of them which show the sub tags for whatever you’re hovering over. This is a massive improvement compared to the huge categories list that used to sit in the side bar.
    The bar also now sticks to the top of the screen as you scroll, letting you navigate easily when you’re further down the page. Handy! If you want to turn this feature off, click the settings button on the right of the nav bar and uncheck “Fixed Navigation Bar”.
    Finally, on a purely visual level, these navigation buttons now highlight when you’re on a relevent search page.

    Posts are not enormously changed. I’ve spruced up the images a bit and selected some better colours but nothing out of the ordinary. One useful note is share buttons next to the comment button that let you easily share content to both Facebook and Twitter.

    Now I KNOW some of you guys are gonna love this. If you click the settings button to the right of the nav bar you can choose to hide any posts about Season 4. They’ll appear as clickable spoilers if you choose to view them. This system can be extended to absolutely any tag on the site, so expect to see good use out of this feature in the future.

    Those massive headlines at the top of every page that ate up a good 200 pixels have now been moved to the top of the sidebar. This pushes the content up a lot which is fab, as well as giving the headlines a more distinctive style!

    The sidebar has been bumped up to 325px wide which lets us fit in more things and put the 2 ads on the right side by side. The countdown and counter widgets have been given a nice makeover too, including css3 placed commas, which makes those crazy big numbers easier to mentally parse.

    You’ll probably have noticed that the banner is looking pretty swanky if you’re using a decent PC with Firefox. I added a nice parallax effect to the background that moves up and down as you scroll which gives a bit of life to the site. If this feature is too much for your browser to handle, you can turn it off in the settings menu (button on the right of the navigation bar). We hope to use this for lots of funky banner designs instead of just simple old school ones.

    Other than that, the rest of the work is purely visual. I have some ideas for some other fun features that I want to make, but right now I’m quite pleased with where we are.

    So feel free to leave your feedback below, and I’ve left pitchforks over in that barrel on the right for easy access. I’ll just go back to my other million unfinished projects.


    If you're a chrome user, you should get this extension for smooth scrolling because it's great: