New and (slightly) improved
If you are a repeat visitor to my little armor-plated corner of the Internet, you might’ve thought you landed on the wrong website when Achtung Panzercow first popped up on your browser just now. Nope, Gentle Reader, let me assure you, this is still the home of the Panzercow, my little virtual Bunker of Love. I just thought it needed a bit of renovation.
So during a slow time at work on Friday, and carrying over into Friday night at home, I did some tweaking on it. There were really only two significant changes that I made:
New theme. For a very long time I had used themes from Andreas Viklund at WordPress…first Andreas04 back in the day, and then Andreas09. Both of them were nice three-column themes that let the main text of the blog flow out wider on widescreen monitors, which I thought was pretty useful. I’ve never much liked fixed-width blog themes that smoosh the post text into a narrow column and leave me staring at an immense expanse of wasted white space on a 22″ widescreen like I run at home.
But while eminently practical, after a while, good old workhorse Andreas09 just started to look a little, well, plain to me. I looked at other peoples’ blogs with a rising tinge of jealousy because they had fancy headers and graphics and more flexibility compared to my simple text blog. Of course, I could always self-host to get the ultimate level of flexibility. But even though I do average around 500 views a day here on Panzercow, and the blog recently passed an astonishing 200,000 total views since December 2008, it’s still very much a part-time hobby. I like being hosted on WordPress. It makes maintenance quick and easy at any time of the day because it’s not blocked at work, so if I need to duck in to fix a spam comment or something similar, I can do it and get back to my job. Plus, I really can’t afford any hosting option that’s costing me more than $0.00 a month right now.
So I was noodling through the available free themes yesterday looking for something that I could use to punch up the place a bit. I thought I’d found my answer with an attractive three-column theme called Coraline, and in fact for about a half-hour Friday afternoon, that’s what we were using–I don’t have a “sandbox” blog to make my changes in, I just slam them straight into the live site, because I’m a rebel, maaaan. But I was gchatting with Anna, as I often do, and she threw a couple more suggestions out there. While browsing those, I found my answer.
Say hello to Modularity Lite. It’s a fixed-width two-column theme, which normally I don’t like…but I just fell in love with the layout, the font, the dark granite-ish background, all of it. It was love at first sight. Add onto that the fact that it supported a custom header picture, and I was sold. I had the site swapped over and the widgets (the stuff in the sidebar and footer) rearranged in no time. The final tweak was the header picture, which is just part of a random screenshot of Linedan (the titular Panzercow) that I took in Dalaran a few months ago, back when he was still rocking full T9 instead of T10. The new layout doesn’t seem to have broken anything from older posts except for picture captioning, which is pretty minor and something I can live with.
Oddly enough, I think the new look of the blog has amped me up to post more. I hope it works. I really need to ramp it back up.
Blogroll changes. Blogrolls are almost like living things. Blogs disappear, go on hiatus, change names, new ones appear. I finally got around to pruning my blogroll, and sadly, had to drop over a third of them due to inactivity. But I compensated by adding several new ones, and am always on the prowl for more. Getting linked here will do absolutely nothing for your traffic, but, y’know. I taunt your target, you taunt mine, or something like that.
I hope you enjoy the new(ish) Achtung Panzercow. As always, please comment on anything you see here, because comments make me teh happeh.