It’s been a while since I’ve needed to dive in and do some serious work on AROnline – call it a case of the old site theme working very well, and my time being at a bit of a premium at late. But rather like the Morris Marina‘s desperate need for an update by the late-1970s, the site was beginning to get creaky round the edges of late – hence my need to develop the AROnline Mk5 facelift. Our version of the Morris Ital, if you like.
So, it’s with pleasure that I’ll pull the covers off this iteration of the site – and here are a few of the improvements.
- Fully responsive design – the old site did work with mobile or tablet, but certain bugs meant pictures didn’t display properly. That’s sorted now.
- Landing and index pages – these help lay out all related content. So if you go to the menu and select Cars -> Austin-Morris -> Metro you will get a potted history of the car, followed by all of the stories about it. At the top of the list will always be a detailed development story about the model concerned.
- A better homepage – our showcase, and therefore, very important indeed. There are more places to serialise the longer stories, and I’ll be using that to great effect in the coming weeks. We’ve finally got rid of that awful old showcase, which meant two clicks to open all new stories!
- Easier to read – the site now displays beautifully on all devices, and the fonts have been specially chosen to make all of the stories less taxing to read.
- Better image handling – we’ve been around since 2001 and, in that time, we’ve used many ways of displaying images. This version of AROnline should make all of them look the same.
- Better surfacing of old stories – there are many treasures on AROnline. So many, in fact, that I sometimes forget what’s on here. There is better ‘related posts’ functionality, and story spotlights that will showcase the best classic content from the 8000 or so stories.
- Better SEO – believe me, this is important. If people stop coming here, then the word ceases to spread, and the misinformation starts to take over, once again.
As always, please get in touch or leave feedback below if you find anything that’s not working. I hope this latest update will help enhance your enjoyment of the website – it’s certainly re-energised me in coming up with new feature ideas, as well as digging out more stories to keep you informed and amused.
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