Taking it to Eleven

Almost exactly one year ago I began experimenting with forms of responsive design on this site. I’m a gleeful generalist at heart—I wireframe, I design, I code, I write budget plans and plot product strategy—but my entry to the Web was from the visual design side. (Remember FutureSplash? Yeah, hi, sorry about those Skip Intro screens…)

So there was a certain appeal to the “switchy” style of adaptive design I was using on this site before: multiple fixed-width layouts stepped through via media queries as the viewport size changed. It was a salving balm for my OCD, a control-freak nature that in some part still falsely equated control with naively trying to dictate terms to the the user. It wasn’t the long-term approach for me, but I needed a stepping stone to transition myself into the Brave New (but actually quite old) World of a more responsive Web. Today it’s time for the training wheels to come off.

In addition to going fully fluid, I’ve made a raft of design tweaks here and there to open the space up a bit more and craft an environment more conducive to the style of writing I want to do. Some sections have been pulled down altogether while they get a rethink. My mindset for a more agile approach (little “A”, not big “A”) is to show fewer sections but with more polish and completion, rather than present more sections with only partial implementations (and I’m seldom ever down with “Coming Soon” placeholders).

Like many advocates of Responsive Web Design, I’m still thrashing through a satisfactory approach to handling images. But in the meantime I’m going ahead with what I’ve got since I’m not actually serving up anything larger (bandwidth-wise) than I was before. I hope to settle on an approach soon. In the meantime, the requisite post-launch cleanup and tinkering dance is well underway.