“You’ve had this place redecorated, haven’t you?… Don’t like it.”

For those who are wondering why this site’s changed, I’m getting more and more sick of websites that pull little bits of JavaScript from twenty other sites, and images from thirty other domains, and have lots of little buttons to track you all over the internet. I’m particularly fuming over the Google Reader changes, which as well as the ones I’ve mentioned also increase the whitespace on the page while decreasing the space for actual content, and require the loading of additional ‘google +1’ and ‘share on Google Plus’ buttons which slow it down enormously.
The trend towards websites becoming unusable for their readers while tracking them wherever they go is one I’ve finally had enough of, and while I don’t think this site was ever particularly bad in that respect, I’ve removed even the bits that had some use (the ‘share on Twitter’ etc buttons) because they cause the page load times to increase and anyone who really wants to share things will either have a bookmarklet or will be capable of pasting the URL into another window.
I can’t completely control the user experience here because I don’t host the site myself – it’s hosted by wordpress.com , and they can add tracking cookies and text ads if they wish – but it should now be slightly more usable, slightly quicker to load, and slightly less invasive of your online privacy.
Proper post up in an hour or so, on Doctor Who: Who Killed Kennedy.

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6 Responses to “You’ve had this place redecorated, haven’t you?… Don’t like it.”

  1. Holly says:

    Hooray! Was loads quicker to load on my phone too, and didn’t have all the sidebar stuff to scroll past first as it used to. (I know you hate mobiles but your blog surely gets read on some so it’s still another advantage to this new look!)

    • Andrew Hickey says:

      See, if anybody ever had actually bothered to tell me that you had to scroll past the sidebar, say someone who lives in my house, then I’d have fixed it months or years ago…

      • Holly says:

        It’s the case on a lot of websites! Some more than others. But, as a random example that springs to mind, the Guardian site makes me scroll past all the subjects (Sport, Education, Media, etc.) before you get to the article I want to read.

        It’s possible that on phones with bigger screens this is not an issue as they have more room for this stuff at the top.

  2. Pete Ashton says:

    I’ve been using http://www.ghostery.com/ to block tracking bugs (Google, Facebook, Comscore, Quantcast, etc) and the like when I’m browsing and it has the added benefit of reducing the page load. Recommended.

  3. My blog has looked like this for 5 years. Fashion is finally catching up with me! :)

    • Andrew Hickey says:

      Yeah, your blog was one of the things that made me change the style. I’m not so sure it’s fashion catching up with you, as me giving up any attempt at being ‘relevant’ in a Web 2.0 (or is it 2.5 or 3.0 now?) world. The closer a site comes to just being long text pieces on a plain background, the more I like it.

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