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Open Thread #20

You may have noticed a little change around these here parts.

Honestly, I’d never had the intention to change layouts every several months — this is my fourth layout since I started, and so far my favorite. Each previous theme, while sufficient for the moment, always had little bugs that I wasn’t entirely satisfied with, and I wasn’t good enough with hacking the code to get everything just the way I wanted. (Here’s what the previous layout looked like. I really liked most aspects of it; there were just a few things I wasn’t totally sold on.) I’ve kept my eye out over the past months for one that met all my picky requirements, and tweaked the hell out of the code. Maybe this one’ll stick.

Hope you enjoy! Let me know what you think — about the new look, or anything else goin’ on today. Sankyoo!

SONG OF THE DAY

Pinback – “Blue Harvest” [ zShare download ]

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I quite like this layout, it's fresh and clean to look at. Layout changes are good every few months. By the way, that feeds button is huge! Haha.

Pinback! Have you heard Penelope? I thought it was hilarious that Penelope was about a goldfish.

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love the new layout and your taste in music is great!

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excuse me while i rant a little ungratefully....

i want the old layout back >

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the layout is great and yes.... and u have excellent taste in music.

BUT... using white as a background...is not very easy on the eyes... or maybe it doesnt blend very well with the texts/pics.

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Hm, white is hard to read? I can't think of a color that's easier on the eyes than white... I find it's much more painful reading light text on dark backgrounds. What would be better?

Lol, and who's voting for "You need major CSS help. I volunteer my services" and then not volunteering their services?? Not fair people! :)

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i think i still like the old background....but then again, ppl are usually resistant to change!

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Hmm.. what a surprise this morning.

Cons:
Tthe new layout has a more boring look..? Perhaps it's the white background. And it does make the site look a little fatter. And I've noticed that the right side of the "Categories" list is cut off? Also, it makes the header of the site look more empty.

Pros:
This is definitely more organized. Plus you have so much goodies on your site now, a lot of which I hadn't realized you added, so sometimes, looking for things is a little hard.

Actually, I wanna change my vote. I voted for the old one, but I definitely think this one is better after surfing around.

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While I chose "I miss the old one", that doesn't mean I don't like this one, haha. It'll just take a little bit to get used to.

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Loved the old layout..but this one's easier to read I think..
Cos the words look bigger.. and your posts are spread out wider..

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I like the old layout better, although the font was slightly too small. But it looked more aesthetically pleasing, I guess....

The new one doesn't really do it for me,
Although yeah, the font is bigger and it's easier to read now... so I don't need to press Ctrl Plus on my Firefox to increase the set font anymore haha...

But it's exactly the new font size and the wider spacing (and the standard font type), that makes the whole feel rather template-y, and old-html. The huge Feeds button startled me for awhile haha, but I got used to it after some time .... =P

I thought the white background looks okay though.... , and the left- and right-columns are now more organized. *thumbs up*

I really like the idea of changing your blogskin every once in a while, coz it makes your blog stay "fresh".
But I'm sure you know that we love reading your blog because of what you write, and not because of how your blog looks.
So I say..... experiment away! Heheh.

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Thanks for the feedback! Keep 'em coming. :)

Yeah, there are one or two (minor) lingering issues that are bound to bug the heck out of me until I can figure out how to fix them. And yes, that categories issue is driving me nuts. Unfortunately it's not part of the CSS (customizable), it's a widget (non-customizable, as far as I know). But for now I opt for the drop-down menu even if it's cut off because otherwise that list would be ridiculously long.

Part of why I wanted to move away from the old template is because Misty got so popular it was everywhere, so the layout started looking really common to me. I coded the hell out of the template but it was still Misty.

Plus, at the end of the day I wanted stuff to be easier to read and navigate -- and I'm pleased that the recaps, for instance, are much pleasanter to read now (to my eyes).

And "Penelope"'s about a goldfish?? Haha.

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I do like the organization of the new one, but something about the effect on the eyes....I guess I just have to get used to it. Maybe, if the side menus were not on a white background. (maybe some other light color?) That would provide a contrast for the posts in the middle without taking away from the middle being easy to read. ;)

And the song - interesting...love it! :D

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I'll admit, I miss the old one. I do agree that this one is way more organized and easier to navigate but dare I say, it's plain. Not that plain is bad, I'm just a sucker for colors and unnecessary fancy borders, fonts, textures, etc. But the look has never played a role in my love for this site, it had always been the content.

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I'm glad you have a new layout. Honestly, it's your posts that all matter, but new look gives reader a refresh. I'm really tired of Misty look, they're everywhere. Sry.

I like your idea of new layout. White background is number one for me, it's the most basic and readable background. But too white = too many empty spaces kinda distract the main attraction. I'm all for "simple is the best", you just need a little touch somewhere like the side bar, menu.....add a little color.

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Like the new one; but the old one was not bad either. The colors gave it more personality .. not that the posts are not colorful enough by themselves (sometimes).

I see that you kept the old font. Have you considered others? Personally, i like colored background .. not too dark though. Color reduces the glare from the screen and preserve my already down-the-drain eyesight. White is clean but brutal on the health of most eyes. But i'm sure others will disagree.

I agree. That RSS feed button is huge. Love their colors though.

IMO, the posts and comments may pop out more if the two side columns are in a different color. It may give the eyes a point of focus.

Is there anyway you can categorize and log your "Song of the Day"? Or if you did already then my apologies. It might be easier to for lazy bums like me who find it daunting to search through all the posts for a song from some time past. Man, do you realize how many posts you have accumulate, woman?

Oh yeah, was recently introduced to 1 Night 2 Days by my niece who is like totally in lust with Lee Seung Gi. FUNNNAYYY. That show is a riot. I guess Seung Gi is adorable in a way. In a dorky way. But yeah, on the prowl for new show (American TV, K-drama, etc..), can anyone post a suggestion? Thanks in advance.

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Hey tealeaf, I have the songs listed in alpha order under the "song index" tab up at the very top. (link here) is that what you mean? the songs link to the original post (not the file directly) but i've found the list helpful myself -- can't believe how quickly they add up.

I'm experimenting with the sidebars and colors -- thanks for the suggestion everyone. So far, nothing I like, but maybe i'll hit upon the perfect combo. Personally I prefer everything white but i never thought it caused eyestrain. :(

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It's clean, though white seems popular right now. I prefer Bon Vivant's color scheme, but your design is much better. Don't know css but I do have access to Safari books online.

On a strange note, I met Noh Sa Yeun and Lee Moo Song yesterday. Guess I should watch Star King more often.

And just noticed that Ya Entertainment is releasing Country Princess, not my favorite drama but my favorite ending.

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I like this one a whole lot better. It's so clean and refreshing~ Or maybe I'm just a sucker for 'strawberries and cream' type of layout~ :D And I like the sidebars, it's more organized than before in my opinion... A little less cluttered in my eyes.

And yeah, I feel for you when it comes to tweaking CSS. Normal HTML codes are easy but CSS, urgh! I have a hard time editing my LJ because of it. XD

BTW, two days ago, I thought I saw Kim Dong Wan in your header... I wasn't sure. I kept on loading the page to see the header again but no such luck.

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It is Kim Dong Wan -- headers are here. The black one, right?

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It looks very clean and professional. It will take a little getting used to, but so far so good.

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I do like the layout, but then i think i liked the blue color scheme and the old fonts better, the red's a little harsher on my eyes, as well as the bright white background.

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Thanks javabeans for the pointer. Now i feel like an airhead for asking (not that it is too far-stretched from who i am). Blame it on the geriatric eyesight.... worsened from nights of staring at Kang Ji Hwan on the screen. But have no fear, i will press on and continue with the Hong Gil Dong watch. All for research purposes of course ... Korean folklore is really interesting!

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I like change of layouts. As dorky as it sounds, I get really excited when I see a new layout, hahaha.

It's very nice, very simple, but the only problem I have with it is I wish there was more color.

The red is a little bit harsh...but it goes well with the purple. :] Maybe you can throw in a little gold/yellow for the sidebars or even some grey to balance out the white. There's a lot of white...like, a lot. Hahahaha.

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nice new layout, but because i'm use to the old one having the thread links on the right side seemed easier, also i realized how lazy my fingers are now that i need to drag the mouse across the screen but the least i could do is get use to it. thanks for your blog.

also after HGD ends, what drama are you looking forward to blogging?

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Im with Jen.

The blue color was softer for my eyes. I do like the red color (a luxurious darkreddish color). And the new lay out works better than the old one having it on both sides making the overview better. And one way or another this white seems more bright than the old one..or is it just me?

I do like the fact that put on new layouts after a certain period, makes your site refreshing. So keep up the good work!!

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I like the font of the previous theme, this one is boring (or is it because my browser doesn't support it that it just came up like Arial to me?)

How come nowadays I can't subscribe feed to a particular post's comments? I remember I used to be able to do that. Now I can only subscribe for all the site's comments, and/or all the site's posts. Not a particular post. Am I wrong?

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Anybody using Firefox? The layout looks wonky on my screen.

When Jack Johnson listens to the sea shell in his head, he hears Pinback. Built to Spill with sandals.

Really digging Vampire Weekend right now, and I just learned this week that Kangta was going to be in Shinwa, Andy was going to be in H.O.T., and Kim Sun Ah was going to be part of G.O.D. as an original member.

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i kind of miss the old layout too but this one is more streamlined.. it still looks a thousand times better than mine ;) i read this blog for the impeccable & hilarious writing anyway so i'll cope.. keep up the excellent work javabeans!

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I liked the old font a lot better - arial is a little blah. and the tabs at the top were cuter before. but it's cool. i still love your blog.

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@belleza - I'm using FireFox... the layout looks just fine for me.

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One more thing - I liked having the links to other posts at the top of the current post,
and also, the new ones are too close together (e.g. < >)

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Oh, i know! Losing those previous/next links saddens me. I tried for the life of me to re-implement them, but my CSS skills = fail. You wouldn't believe (or maybe you would) the wonkiness that happens with one mistyped keystroke in CSS coding.

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I almost thought my computer was acting retarded again.. haha.
Im glad that you decided to try out a new layout...I think its a bit more organized and tidied up a bit. NEAT. But I must agree with some about the color "white." For me its a little tough on the eye...bright.
Your music is awesome as usual....I would cry if you decide not to post anymore music.
Hmm....ughh...the white background is killing me >__

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I'm loving the new layout. I also you Firefox (IE is EVIL) and the layout doesn't look wonky at all. But for some reason I"m able to edit someone else's comment. o.O Not that I'm going to, just thought I mention it. Also, I'm personally blaming you for hooking me on two more dramas: Coffee Prince and the Hana Yori Dango series. I already watched season one of the Japanese series and now I'm halfway through with season two. :P Like I don't already have enough things to suck up my free time! Still love your blog though!

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I like the new layout. It looks organized and cleaner. The navigation is much easier.
It took me a while to notice your tabs before but now I can find it under your banner/header .
I find myself squinting. Dunno why. Too bright/white.
Hope this will give you ideas. Not familiar with CSS yet. Though would like to learn.

http://www.degraeve.com/color-palette/ (color palette from photos/image)
http://redalt.com/Tools/I+Like+Your+Colors (type in url to see the color palette used)
http://wellstyled.com/tools/colorscheme2/index-en.html# (play with diff color)

Hope to give back something.
Grazie!!

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wow...at first i thought i was on the wrong site...i was so used to your other layout that this one startled me a bit LOL...

this one seems more clean and professional, but i miss the homely, relaxed feeling i got from the last one. Maybe it's because i was so used to it...i'm sure i will get used to this as well because what matters to me are your posts haha....

so experiment away! how about adding a bit more color? i agree that the bright white background hurts the eyes a bit...i thought it was just me who felt that way..

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Wah. Kim Dong Wan. XD Yes! hahaha. Kind of weird to see him in a header but I'm not complaining! hahaha.

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the main difference is this middle section. the most appealing part of your last blog is that the middle section (with the actual blog posts) was extended; it gave a better feel visually.

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the main difference is this middle section. the most appealing part of your last blog is that the middle section (with the actual blog posts) was extended; it gave a better feel visually.

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I like the old one better. I guess I'm not used to having navigation on both sides of the main post. Also, I agree that some colors would be more pleasant to the eyes since white is really bright. Ooh, and could you keep the "rant and/or rave" label from the old template since I thought that was a clever detail? Anyway, have fun with experimenting and hopefully, you'll find the combination of colors that you like.

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Hi Javabeans...
You are always working so hard for us, your readers, and I do appreciate all your efforts. However, I truly prefer the old layout. For me, what this new look lacks, which I've always loved about your blog, is warmth and intimacy. It's almost as though you just turned on the lights on an initimate evening and we're all looking at each other like a deer caught in the headlights. The white background is too bright; perhaps a softer white would not look as though you've just turned on the spotlight. The items on both the right and left of the column make the layout look too busy and all too common.
The old layout welcomed friends to your home(blog); the new layout just seems cold and just as though someone else lives here. (Sorry, I want to be honest...but I'll still read your blog every day because I love being here among your thoughts and readers.)
P.S. I would gladly volunteer technological help but I am tech challenged.

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I personally preferred the old layout... The change in font made a whole world of difference (the old font was much more aesthetically pleasing, i feel). I agree with cheremaman, the new layout just looks less... welcoming. The old layout had more of a warm, Javabeans feel.

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Hello Dear Javabeans
Congratulation for new layout, it's nice.
But the light of this layout is very high, I think with use of color borders it'll be OK.
and it seems that left side of the page is heavier than the right.
But I like it, as much as that old layout.
Thank you.

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Thanks for all the comments! I'm seeing what I can do to incorporate what I can.

The comments about white being too bright puzzle me, though -- the last layout used exactly the same shade as its background, so this is no brighter. (And this middle section is the same size/width too.) Strange!

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i agree with yeli and co. actually. this layout feels much more professional and streamlined while the other one was fun and homey. can you bring back the other font? just not a big fan of arial.

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the layout is alright, but i still miss the old one. But no worries, I'll get used to it and if you change it again I will probably react the same way!

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It's more organized but bland? I don't know... I did like the old format for its familiarly though...

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I say keep the white! The comments that it's hard on the eyes puzzles me too.

On the other hand, I see a BIG gap in between the header image and the rest of the content. Did you change some of the CSS recently? No one else seems to have commented on it.

If you do need any CSS help, send me an email! Although I'm no longer "active" in the webdesign world, I might be able to help you.

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Thanks Sue, done. I wanted lots of space, but it was probably a little too much of a gap. And I may just need your expertise should I decide to tackle some ambitious (well, for me) CSS. :)

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Must have been a lot of work for you. I wasn't used to the change yesterday but I am now. It's nice and I like it. I don't agree that it's too white; it looks all right to me. There's a pleasing mix of colors with your headers and other pics. Still my favorite k-blog.^^

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