Flip Flop Flying

Yesterday, today and tomorrow

with 7 comments

It’s been a while since I’ve re-designed the main Flip Flop Flyin’ site, but it’s something I’ll begin working on in the next few weeks. It’s something I’m looking forward to and dreading at the same time. It’s nice to do something fresh, but a daunting task. Plus, I’ve probably gotta learn some new technical stuff too, which is something I’m so very much not looking forward to.

The design history of the site is one of slowly finding my feet. The first 18 months of the site was, looking back, all about that. Changing things constantly. I never stuck with a layout for more than a few months. Plus it was easier to re-design the site when there wasn’t a huge amount of content to wibble with.

Once I got to Berlin, though, things started to calm down. I stuck with the above version (green and pink versions) for ten months. Sideways scrolling, though: not a good idea.

This next one was where I began to feel the site was looking how I wanted it to look. And it’s still the basis of what the site is now. Anyway, that lasted for nearly a year and a half.

Now we begin to get closer to the current site. Things looking good there for another year and a half.

A bit of a tweak brings us to the site as it is now. It’s been like this since August 2004, (another year and a half, perhaps that’s just how long it takes me to get bored of looking at the site as it is…), but the big change, and the reason I want to change things again, is this page you’re on now. I used to write a heck of a lot more on the front page of FFF, but since this FFFg thing came along, it’s sucked all the words up.

So I’m gonna try and incorporate this into that. Make everything whole again.
But first, I’d quite like some feedback. How do you feel about the way FFF works? Is it easy to find everything? Anything you really like? Anything you really hate? Any techy folks out there with tips on what I could learn that’d make my life easier in the long run? Feel free to be brutal. Thanks.

Written by Craig

February 14th, 2006 at 1:34 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

7 Responses to 'Yesterday, today and tomorrow'

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  1. Hi

    I have to comment on yesterdays stuff first: Thanks for the pic of your “bucher” (brave filename – although without the Umlaut I had to think for a moment) – I know a guy that is just the same (not breaking spines of books) – he was always cringing when we put our books down poolside opened upsidedown to go for a swim in our holidays with him and my bro. He’s a nice guy, but he is very neat in all things. I noticed you do buy bokks with already broken spines (the used Stephen king may serve as an example) – so it seems you just want to perform the violent act – but can cope with it in general. (Sidecomment – I’m a sucker for Douglas Coupland – cool website as well)

    So… comments on the FFF site:

    I did love all the historic designs for some of their features. It’s nice for us to see something new as well. The contents in the current one are well ordered – that is a pro (the archive is great – lots of work in that I assume) – but I did find it a little too “text pure” at first, but it’s well organised.
    I have to admit to goint to G much more often since it’s up – and only go to the FFF site when it’s linked. So putting the two formats back together (if possible) would be god – since it’d invite strolling (down memory lane…).

    Cheers

    Alex

    Anonymous

    14 Feb 06 at 3:03 pm

  2. Hi Craig,

    Personally, I have enjoyed watching the site evolve into a structure that can cope with the quantity of content you now have. Good structure makes the site so much more than it’s content.

    Combining the blog with the site will result in even more content. So I think it’d be best if you could content manage your site if possible. You can use WordPress, GreyMatter, Textpattern or similar to manage your content, but they take some configuration. I can offer limited help.

    Anyway, other than content management I think you should do away with all graphical text and use web type for everything. Or perhaps everything other than major headings.

    You might also want to look into CSS based layout. This means you use HTML only to mark up your content into headings, lists, quotes. All loosely grouped in divs if need be. CSS is then used to transform this raw HTML from looking somewhat like a Word document to a graphically rich website.

    Anyway, back to work.

    Matt Sephton

    14 Feb 06 at 3:51 pm

  3. Thanks Matt.
    CSS sounds good. I guess I’ll use something like WordPress for the bloggy aspect, but everything else can just be a regualr website. Just with this CSS stuff of which you talk.
    And, yes, the graphic text is going. That’s the very first thing on the list.

    Craig

    14 Feb 06 at 4:01 pm

  4. I can’t belive it’s been 1,5 years since you last changed the design. Feels like yesterday, crazy.

    Anonymous

    14 Feb 06 at 5:01 pm

  5. You know the menu button links at the left hand side of the FFF with the tiny micro type? Enlarge the type a bit so it’s more ledgible and it’s easier to click and hover upon with your mouse. I would also include less features in that particular section and instead substitute the remaining features you don’t wish to include on the index page with a link that says something like “Click here for more” or “Click here to see more past FFF specials!”

    I think your idea for seamless blog and and FFF news integration so it all appears on the main page simultaneously is a great idea! That way it will bring more visitors to the home page, no?

    I think the blog/texty area with news should all be even and equal to where the content on the left and right ends so it doesn’t continue to push further down to the bottom of the page.

    Besides that i think everything looks pretty nice. I suppose if you wanted to make things tad easier you could try one big old .CSS file that controlls all type sizes and colors through out the entire site. Maybe you could even give the background a little bit of texture. You’re such a talented pixel pusher, i’m sure you could whip something subtle and pleasing up.

    Really, whatever you decide to do i’m sure is going to look great! It just keeps getting better here right? :D

    Andrew Kopietz

    14 Feb 06 at 8:34 pm

  6. I miss FFF Boy.

    Simon John Parkin

    16 Feb 06 at 4:15 pm

  7. He’s still on holiday. Not heard from him for ages, actually.

    Craig

    26 Feb 06 at 2:44 pm

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