After two weeks of design and redesign, finally I finished the sixth version TheAkiba. The new theme is written on the top of Reverie. You might not think it is a big change but if you still remember what the original fifth version looks like, you will probably agree with me. You might also notice that I’ve put the Series Database offline for maintenance. Will make it compatible with the new theme and put it online later. So far I am quite satisfied with the new theme. If you find any bugs or things messing up, please leave a comment below.
The next thing on my schedule is the community feature whose layout and style are basically done. However, there are still few things to do before the release. Hope to finish the final test in this month or next. At this point, you may want to check out the new look of the forum instead.
There are actually lots of changes that I made compared with the previous theme. Some most obvious points listed below.
Rewriting the Codes
I basically rewrote all the codes even though you don’t see a big change in the overall layout. The codes are much more clean and it’s now a HTML5 structure. So, to make the most out of the new theme, you may want to upgrade your browser to the latest version and of course, old browsers are also well supported except IE6. To test whether your browser support the latest HTML5, simply move your cursor to the text “THEAKIBA” on the left hand side of the top menu bar. If you see the text effect, you are totally fine.
Not Responsive, Yet
It is always a problem for me to make the site more compatible to different browsers, resolutions and even different devices. With the help of CSS3 Media Queries, I can easily add those features and make only one theme that will meet all the requirements and we call this technique Responsive Design. However, after all kinds of experiments and redesign, I found responsive design is probably not something I need and instead, I create a really wide layout without any ability to auto adjust to different resolution. And to make the site compatible to different devices, I probably will create mobile optimized theme instead.
Fixed Wide Layout
The previous theme had two kinds of layout which will auto adjust according to your screen resolution, either 980 px or 1190 px wide. As I found out more and more people are using wide screen and finally decided to drop the support of regular screen resolution like 1024 x 768 px (which takes up less than 5% of our visitors). With a fixed and wide sidebar, I can add all kinds of useful stuffs to enrich the blog and help readers find more valuable information.
New Navigation Toolbar
I finally made one navigation menu which I am quite satisfy with. It’s compact and has all kinds of useful links which will definitely help you to locate any specific pages on the blog. If you cannot find what you need, go to the toolbar or simply look it up using the search form. It is also my favorite part of the new theme.
hNews and Readability
I’ve taken the most needed part into consideration: the readability of the posts. Because that’s what a website like TheAkiba is all about. After doing some researches on all kinds of websites, newspapers and magazines, I finally come up with this single post view. If you use services like Readability, you will get the most out of this post view and the hNews behind.
Foundation and Reverie
Last but not least, of course, as I said before, the new theme is built on Reverie, a WordPress framework that I created for my WordPress project ThemeFortress. If you are a WordPress lover, you may want to check out my post for the project.