Picture of a judge's wigThis Is Not A BLOG!Picture of a judge's wig

Date: 02/01/13

A New Beginning

Well, that went suspiciously easily.

Yes, after just over seven months, JudgeCo™ is delighted to announce that the website is now in Full Revamp Effect.

I did give some explanation back here as to what the hell I was playing at, and I don't really have much to add on that point. The main reason for the change in the site's structure was not so much that readers were telling me that they had trouble finding things (I've never had much feedback one way or the other on any aspect of the site, truth be told), but that I was having trouble finding things.

Instead, some explanation of the new functionality of the site is called for. So, in no particular order:

Now, perhaps, you can understand why it took seven and a half frigging months to sort out, in amongst other projects, technical problems, illness and the minor inconvenience of The Day Job.

One or two general observations might not go amiss, seeing as we're on the subject:

In going back and proof-reading each item, I have changed very little - only correct some glaring errors of spelling and grammar, make some of the formatting consistent, tidy up some punctuation, update or remove links, that sort of thing (you'll be able to spot removed links by the fact that they look like this). I have not made any amendments which would make me look prescient or less up the wrong tree; what I wrote must remain as I wrote it, the minor corrections I've just referred to excepted.

I've also gone back and validated the code on each page (although, as I said the other day, I ballsed something up with a line of code which I copied to hundreds of other pages; a bulk 'find and replace' in the wonderful Notepad++ - this being my web editing program of choice - got the correction time down to about half an hour). So the pages should display fine on at least Firefox and IE7 onwards. I know a correspondent of mine (Hi, Bill!) was having problems viewing the site on his Android phone, and I doubt if these changes will clear that problem, but that's for another day perhaps.

One thing which was scary about that process was how long it has been since those pieces first went on here. Some of them seem to come via a time-warp, but I can remember writing them! Time and again since last May, I've found myself exclaiming, "Jesus H.! Was that really x years ago!?" The site reaches its tenth birthday in a few months time, but I can still remember the thrill of being 'out there' (or, rather, out here) for the first time.

Apart from rationalising things a bit (and this isn't one of those cases where the word 'rationalise' means 'cut to the bone and sell off what's left to your rich friends', if only because I don't have any rich friends), another reason for doing all this was to - as I thought - reduce the amount of work I need to do every time I put something new on here. In this regard, it has been a wretched failure; previously, each time I added an item, I had to update two pages at most. Now, I have to update at least five: the page itself, the current page for that section, the Archive page for that section and year, at least one Topic Index, and the front page scroller. I just know it's going to take time to get that hang of that, and so things may go missing from time to time.

At least one objective has been met, though; the site is certainly no larger than it was before which - when you have a limited amount of webspace available to you - is a welcome development. I wasn't sure about this when I started, and am pleased that there has been no negative impact on my room for manoeuvre in the future. At this rate, I could carry on for another ten years before hitting my limit.

And I think that's about it. I hope that You, The Reader™ will find that the whole thing has - as Janet Webb used to say - been worthwhile. Now read on...