Admire this?

Regulars: If you’re seeing the blog’s main page with a blue bar across the top, directly below the title, then you’re probably seeing the “Admire” theme. It’s an improvement over TwentyEleven, and I’ve figured out how to disable comment nesting. Let me know what you think: is this an improvement over the old Live Steam theme?

UPDATE: Aha! I found an even more minimalist skin, a bit closer to the look of the old Live Steam. No more blue bar, and no more boxes around comments.

60 thoughts on “Admire this?

  1. I myself kind of liked the old theme. Sigh. Of course, technical problems are technical problems, but the aesthetic of the old one I found quite attractive.

  2. Definitely a nice theme, this. I like the blue bar across the top and your personal picture in the sidebar adds a nice touch of colour to the scheme of things.

  3. Yeah, I quite like it. However, the grey shadowed subtitle text (which is also used in the footer) looks dreadful.

  4. This is nice.

    Though your Post Comment button is a bit askew in Chrome. (not enough to worry about though).

  5. Definitely like it better than the other theme. Still a a lot of wasted space between comments. Is the “Post Comment” button supposed to hang outside the grey comment area? Under Safari on 10.7, the button is off center (text wise) and spills about 5 pixels outside the grey box on the right side.

  6. For some reason the magnifying glass icon in the search box really annoys me. Screams ‘Microsoft’ at me somehow.

    The grey text in the footer looks crappy too.

    Other than that I think you’re on to a winner here.

  7. Tolerable. Thanks for gutting the threading!

    I don’t take change well, so I’ll keep any further comments to myself ;^).

  8. How about trying a different theme every day?

    Could be interesting.

  9. Too much space between comments, and names are still too small, but definitely an improvement over the first attempt. On first glance my reworked killfile extension should function with this theme alright. I will test on the morrow.

  10. Definately needs work on the comment section, but otherwise it’s very nice :)

  11. Hmm, could we get header tags for the post titles? As it is now, I can’t read the titles at all (I use a screen reader, not sure if they’re in some odd tag it doesn’t recognise). The main page of the blog itself seems to not be titled either, I’ll take a look at source and see what may be the case.

  12. > definitely an improvement over the first attempt.

    Agree.

    > your personal picture in the sidebar adds a nice touch of colour to the
    > scheme of things.

    Agree. It is a nice personalizing touch to see a photo of our virtual host, even if it is a rather old photo. :-)

    > Is the “Post Comment” button supposed to hang outside the grey comment area?
    > Under Safari on 10.7, the button is off center (text wise) and spills about 5 pixels
    > outside the grey box on the right side.

    Same in Chrome, Comodo Dragon; Firefox; Opera; Internet Exploiter.

    > Too much space between comments

    Agree.

    > names are still too small

    > Agree.

    Again, no Lazurus Long quotes. Drat!

    When ESR posts a reply, it will show if he will be titled ESR (as in the old theme) or Admin (as in the 1st new theme).

  13. The new look is …. interesting ….

    For various reasons involving my workplace, I usually had been reading this with IE 8 under Win 7 (oh, the shame! the horror!). I hadn’t been here for nearly a week, and this morning I’m reading it with Firefox 3.6 (yeah, i know i need to update it) under CentOS 6. So it’s hard to tell which layout diffs are due to the theme, and which are at my end.

    Still and all, I like the new look better. Let’s see if I get a gravatar.

  14. It scales quite nicely: I like how on Chrome, the right sidebar flips down when the screen width becomes very narrow (around 650 px total browser window width) – this is a much more reader-friendly behaviour than I usually see.

    I don’t like how it doesn’t make use of wide browser windows (over about 1050 px) – the width of the content column seems to have a hardwired limit whose point is not obvious to me.

    Overll the style seems more modern without losing its content focus. The “syndication bullshit” (G+ buttons &c.) are nicely understated.

  15. I’m thinking the gravatars are killing the scrolling on my LG Optimus. Scrolling is smooth (or as smooth as it gets on this phone) until a gravatar shows up, then it drops to some horribly stuttered thing until after the last gravatar scrolls off screen, and then everything is fine again. Any chance of getting those turned off for certain browsers?

  16. >Any chance of getting those turned off for certain browsers?

    Sorry, I haven’t the faintest idea how to do that.

  17. >Again, no Lazurus Long quotes. Drat!

    The story on that: The Lazarus Long quote plugin is very old. It’s from the pre-theme era, when it was routine to modify your WordPress template directly, and expects you to splice a PHP function invocation into your template. There’s no obvious place to do that in a widgetized theme. I may try turning it into a widget.

  18. >> Is the “Post Comment” button supposed to hang outside the grey comment area?
    >> Under Safari on 10.7, the button is off center (text wise) and spills about 5 pixels
    >> outside the grey box on the right side.

    > Same in Chrome, Comodo Dragon; Firefox; Opera; Internet Exploiter.

    Also in rekonq.

  19. This is still bad.

    1) Still there is a lot of white space. For fast readers, the amount of information displayed per up/down scroll is the most important metric. This theme fails badly when it comes to that.
    2) The information-containing part of the page (ie the comments) is barely taking up half the screen width if you take out the left margin and all the links (archives etc) on the right margin. This is wasteful. All that stuff on the right should not take more than 10-15% of the screen width (on a laptop 14” screen).
    3) There is disproportionality between the height of the text (established by font size) and the spacing between consecutive lines. That spacing is far from the sweet spot for latin script and fonts. Aside from the wasteful space between lines, this actually impacts the readability of the text.

    All in all: Old theme is much better.

  20. Quotes: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/quotes-collection/ provides a sidebar widget.

    If you want the quotes in the header, edit wp-content/themes//header.php and insert the string into the appropriate place. It looks like you have to use the admin interface to edit quote lists which is somewhat annoying although not unexpected.

    Or possibly the Laz Long quote plugin’s PHP function invocation would also work in header.php. Probably will, actually.

  21. @uma

    The idea isn’t just to cram as much text on to the screen as possible. There is such a thing as readability. Smaller column widths are easier to read. Margins help. You also want a reasonable amount of space between lines. Check out the Readability project if you want more information about how to make text easier to read.

    I don’t consider the “amount of information displayed per up/down scroll” to be an important metric at all. Readability is what we should be aiming for. Scrolling is not a scarce resource.

  22. It’s better, but still full of cruft and clutter and too much whitespace. If I try to browse this on my Android phone, I’ll wear out my fingertip swiping to scroll through this. The fill-in form at the bottom looks like ass on Firefox: the type is small but the edit controls have big gaps surrounding it. Also, the cleverly appearing and disappearing labels are distracting and unnecessary.

    In short, why fix what ain’t broke?

    Meanwhile, our friends in Iran are being locked out of secure internet sites.

  23. >>> Is the “Post Comment” button supposed to hang outside the grey comment area?
    >>> Under Safari on 10.7, the button is off center (text wise) and spills about 5 pixels
    >>> outside the grey box on the right side.

    >> Same in Chrome, Comodo Dragon; Firefox; Opera; Internet Exploiter.

    >Also in rekonq.

    Post Comment button also overflows the edge of the comment-box in the default browser on my (Moto) Droid-X, in both landscape and portrait view. (And in the FF10 I’m posting from…)

    >I’m thinking the gravatars are killing the scrolling on my LG Optimus.
    >Scrolling is smooth (or as smooth as it gets on this phone) until a gravatar shows up,
    >then it drops to some horribly stuttered thing until after the last gravatar scrolls off screen,
    >and then everything is fine again.
    >Any chance of getting those turned off for certain browsers?

    The gravatars don’t appear to affect the Droid’s scrolling heavily, though there is a little bit of stutter.

  24. Post Comment button also overflows the edge of the comment-box in the default browser on my (Moto) Droid-X, in both landscape and portrait view. (And in the FF10 I’m posting from…)

    It’s supposed to be that way.

  25. What does it mean if you cant see the blue bar? I don’t.
    Also spell check? That’s pretty cool.

  26. >I like the new scheme, love, but I don’t like the picture; why not use the one you had?

    If you mean the one on my home page and Google+, because it’s even older.

  27. >What does it mean if you cant see the blue bar? I don’t.

    It means I changed to a different skin for the theme, as noted in my update.

  28. @ reader: Eric still looks pretty much like the photo at the top. His hair gets longer (or is trimmed short) but he still dresses the same way and looks pretty much like the picture shows.

  29. I’m neutral on the new comment format (still too much whitespace, probably an easy CSS tweak, but better formatting otherwise), but the theme as a whole is a definite improvement; even reading it on Firefox on a full-sized Android tablet with a desktop UA, it reorganizes nicely for the smaller screen.

    One bug report: Check the page titles for both the home page and posts!

  30. > Again, no Lazurus Long quotes. Drat!

    The story on that: The Lazarus Long quote plugin is very old. It’s from the pre-theme era, when it was routine to modify your WordPress template directly, and expects you to splice a PHP function invocation into your template. There’s no obvious place to do that in a widgetized theme. I may try turning it into a widget.

  31. > Again, no Lazurus Long quotes. Drat!

    The story on that: The Lazarus Long quote plugin is very old. It’s from the pre-theme era, when it was routine to modify your WordPress template directly, and expects you to splice a PHP function invocation into your template. There’s no obvious place to do that in a widgetized theme. I may try turning it into a widget.

    Works for me…between the tip jar and the archives.

  32. Not bad, but still too much whitespace. Also, a minor bug on iPhone–it loads in a mode where it can be panned left and right, despite being sized exactly to the width of the phone. Zooming in and back out again fixes that.

  33. The skin is fine but please bring back the old comment box. I don’t care what commenters look like, I just want to read what they have to say without a ton of whitespace!

  34. Too much whitespace in the comments. Also, very few people have pictures associated, so why spend room on them?

  35. FWIW, I’m rather fond of the current (as of 2012-02-10 18:31 UTC) one. Looks pretty similar to the old, but slightly better-organized (with the stuff that people are most likely to care about at the top, and things like the Life graphic “hacker emblem”, the ECSL logo, and the AIM down at the bottom).

    If there are themes out there with less whitespace that aren’t otherwise cluttered, folks might like those better, but this one is pretty decent. And despite actually having a gravatar account, I’m pretty indifferent to that feature.

  36. I see some people seem to have a photo and profile. Is there some way to log into this thing?

  37. @Michael Hipp

    The avatar and profile are pulled from gravatar, based on the e-mail address used to submit comments. You can set it up over at the gravatar site.

  38. @jsk @Michael Hipp

    The avatar and profile are pulled from gravatar, based on the e-mail address used to submit comments. You can set it up over at the gravatar site.

    Just a warning to those who might be thinking of signing up with Gravatar. This is one of those annoying sites that refuses to delete your account once it is set up. So, just bear that in mind.

  39. Looks like success with the widgetized Lazarus Long quotes. Plus the bonus of being able to flip through them. Nice touch.

    I’ve been viewing the site on a nook tablet with opera, the changes all look good- you can add one more to the “likes it” count.

  40. Meh. I come here for the writing, don’t much care what it looks like as long as it’s legible. I do see lots of font npx specifiers in the stylesheet — I guess that’s a big debate, but I always thought that px shouldn’t be used. JMHO, but the disappearing field names for the comment fields are too much blinky stuff for my taste.

  41. The new look is OK. It is certainly the best of the new ones. There does seem to be an awful lot of wasted space, but it is easy to read.

    To me, the reading is vastly more important than the look. Whether the “Post Comment” box is too far to the right is of no importance to me at all.

    If “polish” and eye-candy were high on my list, I would be using an Apple product rather than running Fedora 16 with XFCE.

  42. Am I the only one that sees ESR’s photo and thinks he might be saying “It’s all right, officer. There’s no problem here.”

  43. @Brian Marshall

    Actually I think he’s saying “Officer, I don’t *need* a license to conduct firearms training in and around my home.”

  44. +1 from me on the new look. I just plain like it, although I always enjoyed the LL snips too.

  45. @ ESR:

    Thank you for returning the Lazarus Long quotes.

    ########

    @ Catherine Raymond:

    > @ reader: Eric still looks pretty much like the photo at the top.
    > His hair gets longer (or is trimmed short) but he still dresses
    > the same way and looks pretty much like the picture shows.

    Ah, I see. To be very clear, my comment on the photo was never meant as criticism of it, of course. Thank you so much.

    ########

    @ Brian Marshall:
    @ Tom:

    >> Am I the only one that sees ESR’s photo and thinks he might be saying
    >> “It’s all right, officer. There’s no problem here.”

    > Actually I think he’s saying “Officer, I don’t *need* a license to conduct
    > firearms training in and around my home.”

    Neither. Look at his gesture. Obviously, he is telling the listener how big the fish was. Duh!

  46. >Neither. Look at his gesture. Obviously, he is telling the listener how big the fish was. Duh!

    I’m pretty sure that photo was taken at an OSCON, but I don’t remember what I was talking about.

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