Getting simple

I’ve had a lot of design thoughts floating around my head lately.

At [work]( I’ve either been designing the UI or commenting on the UI for several projects and my goal has been simplify, simplify, simplify.

Then today, I stumbled across [Simpley Done](, a blog written by the author of [Whitespace](

Wow, talk about simplicity. I like the idea of showing one post on the homepage. In this age of RSS and search, how much do you really have to push “out front.”

News sites are especially burdened with this “out front” mentality, newspaper sites moreso, since they’ve got the cultural baggage of “above the fold” from their analog edition.

Newspaper sites should seriously consider cutting back on the number stories they load up out front, in addition to the number of ads, promos, etc. Less really is more, especially on the oft-crowded computer monitor.

From the content side, if you offer up sane RSS feeds and a [good search](, folks will find what their looking for.

From the revenue side, if you have one — hell, one large — ad spot on the homepage, you can charge more for it and you’ll probably see better click rates on it. (Assuming it doesn’t annoy the hell out of the user, which seems to be de rigeur in the Web adversiting biz today.)

**Thought of the day:** Why don’t newspapers index the ads they’re serving online, along with their print ads (which should be online, anyway), so they can be included in search results along with articles?

On a personal note, I’ve been meaning to redesign my (blog)[/] for some time now. I’ve been iterating through mental sketches for a few weeks now — yeah I should actually sketch the thing on paper, but rapid mental sketches have been with me since my newspaper design days — and I think it’s time I actually start working on the damn thing.

About Chris

Python developer, Agile practitioner trying desperately not to be a pointy haired boss.
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