A few changes to the look of this blog

If you are reading this entry on the blog itself you may notice some changes in the look.

When I started this blog last May I basically took the templates and css right out of the zip file, added some basic stuff to personalize the site, and *poof* Secular Left was born.

Over the year on the air I have been teaching myself how to customize the blog to get it to the way I want it to look, provide the functions a reader would need, and yet not have to do it all from scratch every time or for every page.

I knew some CSS and XML coding but I have to do the coding and see it before I know what it looks like. The Movable Type help site called Learning Movable Type has been a big help. Basically if I want something new or have seen it elsewhere I check at LMT first or I might use the software publishers forums, and Google – to find someone who explains how to code it.

Then I do it and through trial and error – usually late at night – I add something or change the look of the site.

This morning I added or changed the following:

New banner graphic – It is bigger and has more color. It has the US Capitol dome on the left and a shot of the National Cathedral on the right with some red brick pattern in the middle. The Secular Left title is superimposed on top. The graphic represents the “wall” of separation of church and state (clever, huh?)

Navigation bar – added a navbar below the graphic with some quick links and room for more. The bar would be above the “fold” of the reader’s screen and has items like a link to my about page and a link to the RSS feed. The version debuting this morning is a draft version. I plan to tweak it some more before I’m done but it works now

Editor’s comments style – added some CSS so if you see my comments in the comments of a post (in response to someone) you will know it is me. Also thinking of adding some CSS do-dads for those who are verified or regular commenters.

New “Subscribe” page – signed up with a service called FeedBlitz that allows me to manage subscriptions to this blog. You enter your e-mail addy and you get e-mail notices of posts. This is an option for those who don’t know what a Feed is or what a Feed reader does. I previously used MT-Notifer – which is a plug-in – which I will leave active until I see if FeedBlitz does what I want it to do. The “Subscribe” page also has links to the RSS feeds that appear on the right side bar of every page. It also shows a count of subscribers who have used FeedBlitz to subscribe to the blog.

Updated the Archives main page – Tweaked the code to match the look of the rest of the site. I forgot I had that page until I was reading the navbar tutorial on LMT.

Because of the new “Subscribe” page I have removed the About and Subscribe links from the right side bar.

Next on the list is to tackle the “Search” function of the site – code and templates.

But that is next time and I need to go to sleep now.

This blog transitioned to a podcast in April 2020. Even after the transition there maybe an occassional blog post that isn’t a podcast like this post.

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Secular Left Podcast is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify

Doug Written by:

Founder, editor and host of Secular Left - please be gentle