Elliot Jay Stocks logo by Emma Luczyn

(Re)Thinking Aloud

After all these months, I finally feel that a new version of ElliotJayStocks.com is needed. It’s lasted a long time and served its purpose very well – lasting a lot longer in one version than many of my past personal sites – but the times have changed, and what I need from a portfolio site has changed. Things need to be tidied up more than a few revisions will allow.

In a bid to get plans for version 3 in order and also to welcome comments from peers, I’m blogging my thoughts.

2. To start off with, I need the most basic of blog functions: to receive comments on posts. I could easily achieve this by plugging in (or linking to) an existing blog system, but I’d much rather build the blog on top of a proper CMS…

4. … which, in turn, should power the rest of the site. If I’m being honest, a site that requires updates to be made by editing the raw HTML is horribly outdated. As I said, things have changed. A decent CMS (like textPattern, which powers Francis’ site) should be behind the whole operation, and it needs to incorporate many changes beyond text…

6. … so the whole thing needs to be dynamic. And that includes the Flash content as well.

8. Speaking of Flash, I’m still keen to keep it for the nav (and to incoporate an audio player), but the site shouldn’t be split up into iframes so that one can deep-link to certain sections. Or rather, it could, but it should use PHP to dynamically generate the iframe source, like I did on the Richard Ashcroft site.

10. However, the biggest change I want to make to the site is the entire mood and tone. It needs to be less of a personal site and more of a design portfolio; the emphasis should be on the web design projects and the services I offer as a freelancer. That said, I feel that the blog (which I will now be focusing on more web-related issues) should be the ‘home’ page, as it’s more frequently updated than the news, and technically much more relevant as a ‘latest updates’ page. Mind you, perhaps the home page should contain snippetsof the blog, as there will be several other ‘latest’ things I want on there (latest site / latest illustration, etc.).

12. Lastly, although I don’t want to give too much away about my planned navigation structure, the main nav will be far simpler, and let several sub-menus do the work. The main nav menu will most likely be: ABOUT / SERVICES / PORTFOLIO / PERSONAL PROJECTS / EXTRAS. And the blog and moblog will be combined.

This is terribly old-fashioned, but until I have the aforementionedCMS with commenting functionality, I’ll have to ask you for your comments by e-mail… but please let me know your thoughts. :o)

Next post

Waking up to trees

Previous post

On the deck