I have changed the appearance of this blog by importing a stylesheet called Tiny Green from Movable Styles. I also got around to upgrading to the latest version of Movable Type.
The Tiny Green style has the basic display elements that I need. It will resize to fill the screen. Many of the MT styles are based on Typepad styles. They have a general coloured background. The columns seem to have a fixed maximum width and on large monitors, the text simple got stuck between two wide colour bars. It has a nice lay out for heading titles. The side column code recognizes Category titles and subtitles. The fonts are good. The default font size for post contents is x-small and that doesn’t work that well on monitors set to fine resolutions, so I have increased the font size.
I changed the border colours on the banner and columns to a shade of orange. It seems to set off the green. I am changing some of the default link colours. I will leave green as the default colour for links but change the hover and active link colours. The banner is pretty spartan, and I am playing with it a little but that may be a waste of time. I will have to used some digital photos and a logo in an image file. In the mean time I’m bright green.
I spent some time with my FTP client to upload all the files in the MT 3.121 upgrade to my web host. I see a few changes at the administrative end that simplify writing and formatting a post. There are buttons on both the Entry Body and Extended Entry fields to insert html tags for text emphasis and links. That’s good, especially putting the buttons on the extended entry field, which I use for longer posts.
3 responses to “Tinkering”
I like this look. It does suit your content. The green is rather bright. Based on your comments, I must have been using the newer version of MovableType when I installed it. It’s a very good program. Amazing that you can get it for free. I did find tinkering with the CSS to be a challenge.
Your post confirmed my reservations about the shade of green. I have dialed it back a bit. I found a source of hex codes at the site http://www.december.com/html/spec/color.html and found a less striking shade. I looked for something other than black for the main title. I like orange but is isn’t a good colour for text unless the background is grey or black. I will play with shades of gold/tan brown until the blog title stands out.
I think you were using MT 3.121 – that was the current release when you loaded it.
The green is quite striking now, and the orange border and dividing line between the columns is a nice contrast. It all seems to work and doesn’t distract from the content. One of the things I don’t like about the Web is worrying about the way things look. You can spend hours, days, fiddling with colours and tables and alignment, and people will visit your site and think: lazy bastard hasn’t posted anything in a week! I think the trick is to find a design or layout or style you can live with, then commit to living with it for awhile. I tend to get so caught up in the means (the looks) that I forget the end (the content). The idea of a plain-text Web site (like your current top-level) has always appealed to me. HTML was designed as a text ORGANIZING tool, not as a layout tool. The headers represent the different levels in an outline. It’s supposed to allow you to concentrate on the content rather than its appearance, but that simplicity has become lost in the whole razzle dazzle of the Web. Anyway, enough ranting.