dooce® 6.1

It’s live, people. Shift-refresh.

Change can be hard sometimes. Give it a chance.

Report bugs in the comments.

UPDATE: I’ve replaced the nav and “I’m Heather B. …” graphics with sharper images. You should notice a difference if you shift-refresh. We’ve heard the masses and are working on solution for you “Daily …” junkies! Just be patient and we’ll have a solution as soon as we can. Also, just a quick note to thank you all for your kind words, your time and your readership. You are changing our lives and I mean that very seriously. THANK YOU!

  • catherine

    It looks great – what’s the section title typeface?

    I did like the fact that Daily Style and Daily Photo had their own areas in the previous layout – not sure I like seeing them squooshed on the main page but I’m sure I’ll get over it.

    One wee thing – if you’re on any of the About/Contact/Archive pages, the navigation points to Older/Newer, might be better to relabel to each of the page titles if that’s possible.

    • blurb

      Myriad Pro (for those who have it installed).

      Thanks for the bug report on the pages. I’m going to fix that now.

      UPDATE: That fix is going to have to wait, but it’s on the list.

      • catherine

        Ah, Myriad is awesome. Thanks for the update… keep up the great work!

      • Kristan

        I’m on a Myriad kick myself, so that’s awesome! Can I recommend a backup font for people who might not have it, though? Corbel (which comes with the new Microsoft Office suite) looks rather similar. Just something to consider for the CSS specifications. :)

  • Kristan

    I too love the typeface!

    Is the line with brackets on each end missing from the top of the posts? (The thing that caps off the shading?) I still see it on the sidebar… Although even in the sidebar it’s cut off on the left side.

    Using Firefox 3 on a Mac Mini with OS 10.5 if that matters.

    • blurb

      You’ll probably want to empty your cache & hold the down the shift key and click the refresh button a few times. Firefox can be fesity (as can Safari).

  • sarie26

    Hi! Longtime fan and reader of both of your sites – and I know I shouldn’t judge after just one day, but I’m really sorry, I don’t dig this new site. I have dug all the other site changes but not this one. I feel like it’s too minimal, and honestly, I’ve felt like it’s become a little too corporate. I’m not going to stop reading Dooce – but I’m just giving some honest feedback. I thought the last design was the best so far, and it was the easiest to read and navigate. This one is almost TOO simple in its format. Also – some of the font (dates, categories below blog entries) is really tough to read – and I have a great monitor.

    Perhaps in a week I’ll love it and then I’ll come back and eat my words. But no worries – I’m there for the writing, not the layout, so I’ll still be a visitor.


    I for one really like the new look of the website. It is a lot cleaner and more straight forward without having making the users have to leave the website (such as looking the daily photos, etc etc). It also looks like it will be a lot easier for you guys to maintain… especially for when the new baby comes. It’s again cleaner, simpler, and more straight forward which I heartily approve of.

    Overall I give it two thumbs way up. :)

  • rose

    Hi, love the pink, it’s really cheery and bright. I did like the way the daily photo and daily style had their own section too, it was like clicking on little treats. (You can tell I am so well-versed in geekspeak, can’t you? ‘cheery’ and ‘treats’). I do like how the page looks, but as a recent discoverer of the site, I have to say that the former ‘search’ and ‘categories’ were really incredibly useful in me getting to know the whole history and character of dooce. I don’t know if I’d have waded through all the content otherwise. Maybe those options are there somewhere and I’m just missing them. Anyway, love the pink and the masthead design.

    • blurb

      We’re getting there. Give us a bit more time. Heather is revamping her archives page(s).

      • rose

        Ah, cool. One more thing, I forgot to say also that it’s good to know (from the bottom) that the site is powered by Drupal. Had wondered about that.

  • Kevin T Driver

    I like it! I prefer it over the most recent design.

    • ColleenS6

      Looks good! Great job guys.

      Though I too will admit I miss the daily photos at the top of the page.

  • JennJ

    I love the way it looks!
    I’ll miss the search function in the archives…I’ve been reading my way through from the beginning and the archives are a little cunbersome without the option to search for something specific to get back to where I left off.

    • blurb

      We are tackling the archives next. Heather has a whole new deal working.

      In the meantime, I recommend using a browser with tabs and opening pages you want to read that way. We’re working on a “remember where I was” solution and hopefully we’ll have something in the coming weeks.

      • JennJ


  • bengar

    Very clean. How much do you think it reduced the average page weight and load time? Probably helps with bandwidth costs!

  • Sarah

    I was looking forward to seeing February’s masthead and have to say that I prefer the ones with more of an artistic flair. And I always enjoyed trying to figure out what cool quote Heather would put up. I love the color though:).

    I personally prefered the photo’s being in their own space too .. or maybe they could be down the right side? Ads to me would be better under that.

    Anyway, change is always good I guess, gets us talking!

  • ChrisClark

    Looks great to me. There are a few things that I’ll miss, most of which have been pointed out above (the daily style and daily photo having their own little places in the design; the headers), but I like so much of what’s going on in this new design that I don’t think I’ll miss anything from the old one for that long.

  • Patrick

    Hi Jon, looks great, except the navigation menu on top. The letters are rather blurry…

  • jamie

    I like the look, but I will miss the “Daily Chuck”, “Daily Photo” and “Daily Style” sections, like a lot of the other commenters. Also, will there not be a monthly masthead? Just wondering. I realize it was probably a burden to keep up with, but it was nice to see a bit of artistic flair on the site.

    • blurb

      Those sections still exist!

      I believe Heather still will do a monthly masthead.

      • jamie

        Thanks for responding. I see how it works now.

    • leesavee

      I was wondering the same thing as Jamie. The monthly mastheads were so much fun…and I miss the Daily Chuck/Daily Photo/Daily Style being so easily accessible. I just liked being able to quickly pop onto the site to see if a new photo had been posted…

      But I *suppose* I can deal with the changes, difficult though it will be! :)

  • irishembi

    I like it! I think it’s easier to navigate and looks modern and clean. I do miss the monthly quote on the masthead, but I’m sure I can adjust. :-)

  • hal8991

    Love the site! It’s so bright and fun! But does this mean I can’t look through all of the Daily Chucks at once? My toddler loves sitting on my lap as we click back through all the “doggie” pictures. Other than that I love it! Keep up the good work, Blurb and Dooce!

    • blurb

      If you click the thumbnail of whatever one you want to see, it takes you to the larger image. From there you can click “Older Photo” or “Newer Photo” to navigate through that section. That works for any of the “Daily” content types.

      Hope this helps. Let me know if it’s still not clear.

      • hal8991

        Woo-hoo! That’s it! Thanks, Jon!
        (Like I mentioned, my 2 year old loves looking at the Chuck and Coco pictures. My mom was babysitting him a couple of weeks ago and when I went to pick him up I noticed on the computer that my mom had googled “dog pictures”. Evidently he was asking her for them too.)

  • hockeybrad

    Looks good. Only “bug” is that the navigation font/text at the top is fuzzy.

  • natalija

    I actually really like getting to see photos on the front page, as they’re posted. Something that might be nice as well (for an idea) is a photo gallery of sorts that’s not necessarily off-site (but perhaps instead incorporates the off-site images into itself–I use a Facebook photo plugin called Fotobook on my Worpress website that functions in that way). Being an extremely visual person, I know I’d definitely enjoy seeing all the photos in one place on the site, since there’s no longer a “daily” section.

    Another thing for me is that while the ads and the content are still clearly very separate from one another, the layout makes them feel a bit too… together? Blended? I don’t really know. I think what I mean is I’d have preferred a bar of some sort perhaps dividing the content from the ads in the sidebar–though I also know that that bar would look ugly and out of place with the current layout.

    I dunno… maybe scooching the ads bar down slightly so that it starts a bit lower on the page than the content would fix this feeling? Just a feeling I had, anyway.

  • cereals

    The new site looks great, but mark me down as another who prefers the daily pic and the style pic to have its own section at the top. That way I can easily check (which I do about 50,000 times per day while at work) to see if these have been updated without having to scroll down.

  • pizzocalabro

    Love it. Very clean and functional.

    I have no problem with the Daily Style, Daily Photo and Daily Chuck categories being mixed in with the regular content, but it would be nice to have a category list to choose from in the archives.

    Also, the image in the current first post (“22 weeks”) looks kinda funky from being resized from 830×1235 to 450×675.

  • lacylouwho

    * First off — Been reading it (and this site) for years. But I rarely actually visit the website. I keep up via my rss reader … so most of this isn’t really important to me personally.

    * That said … I actually like the daily photos being within the main site …. because a lot of people probably missed that content just being in its own section; but – maybe there could be a link to those specific sections up in the nav so that those who like to quickly get to the daily sections can get there … (also like the longer “preview” images for the dailies – as opposed to the squares)

    * if comments are closed on an entry … have a little if/then action going and just don’t show “comments closed”. would look better since 99% of entries have comments closed. That way when comments aren’t closed – it will stand out more.

    * I’ve always wished the mastheads section had thumbnails :) The mastheads are hilarious!!! And classic dooce!

    * It’s mainly just that top ad that is annoying… the side ones don’t seem as obtrusive. but you have to to ads. so there you go.

    * second the commenter above that said the nav text in the header and footer is blurry

    * the third ad section on the right — google ads – it looks like there is supposed to be another column there? Half the space is blank – and the other half has a tower google-text ads.

    * be cool of the archives were a little tighter … with more entries listed per page.

  • Kristan

    What’s the font of the “I’m Heather B. Armstrong and this…” (and other) text?

    • masande

      ‘tarzana wide’ by emigre.

  • lucastalbot

    As soon as I saw the changes on I zoomed over here to get the behind-the-scenes scoop.

    Really like the smaller banner space, and am glad to read that Heather will continue to redesign the masthead on a monthly basis. Although I usually keep track of posts in NetNewsWire, I still make a point of checking in via Safari to see how things are looking.

    As someone who’s getting my sea legs in Drupal and preparing to transition a few sites I manage from Movable Type to Drupal, I’d love to hear any details you care to share about whether and how your/Heather’s use of Drupal has evolved.

    Cheers and congrats on all the great news coming out of Armstrong Media!

  • megant8

    Where is the navigation when you are looking at daily/chuck photos? It makes it really difficult to get to other parts of the site without links to each on the top. Maybe I am just missing them.

  • Paul Lukinich

    I like the shorter masthead – it’s nice for those with smaller monitors (like mine on my laptop).

    That said:
    1. This is possibly the worst masthead I’ve seen to date. It’s probably the pink, which I’m sick to death of, but it’s probably also the shade of pink. Way to bright.
    2. I miss the quote. It adds a lot to the “feel” site imo.

    Love having the pics in the post stream. The new size also gives more of a sneaky peak. You guys must have been going crazy getting the right content in that little square to convey intent while not giving too much away.

    I’m a big fan of minimalism, but you might’ve gone overboard this time. Maybe it’s the combination of the eye-splitting pink (Did I mention I’m sick of the color pink? What can I say – I’m a guy :)) with all the white, or maybe you need a little duller shade of white, I don’t know. But there really is a ton of white space.

    Please don’t take these comments as not liking the redesign. I generally do. It’s just that you asked for feedback so you’re going to get a lot of suggestions. “Nice job” is assumed :)

    • blurb

      Paul, I hope that your eyeballs recover soon. :-)

      I didn’t actually ask for feedback. I asked for bug reports. But I figured we’d get a lot of both sides; people digging on it, people not digging on it.

      Give it time. Every time Heather has done a redesign we get similar comments at first.

      Thanks for taking the time to comment and for the kind words.

      • Paul Lukinich

        I don’t mind it at all. I hope it didn’t come across that way.

        I guess it’s unsolicited feedback then :)

        One interesting thing is that the whole negative space thing isn’t an issue on my laptop with it’s smaller screen. It looks way better. And even the pink it bearable! I guess it’s time to check the old brightness level on my desktop monitor :)

  • Joanne

    I found Dooce late in the blog game. I’ve been reading her (and then you) only for about 7 or 8 months and I’m not liking the new design. I’m in no way computer design savvy but it just feels so nondescript; doesn’t reflect the creative, original dooce i’ve come to adore. I agree with “cereal”. I liked that daily style/chuck/photo had their own section, btw.

    I’ll be a reader for life. And I’m secretly hoping some network picks up Dooce for a sitcom. To be aired right after 30 Rock. Or The New Adv. of Old Christine.

    Until then, this design just isn’t doing much for me in the way of access to a daily giggle. (Did that make sense?)

    Hope this feedback is OK to give. Dooce still rocks.

    • blurb

      Thanks for taking the time. And thanks for the kind words.

  • vwbusnut

    I just did the clear cache and refresh thing Jon and like I said to you on Twitter today, sometimes you open your mouth and words come out that I do not understand. How in God’s name do you know all this stuff? And is there any room left in your brain?! I can hardly remember to floss, change the oil and put the garbage out!

    • blurb

      Yeah. Not so good over here with the flossing.

      This is our business and it’s my job to know all this stuff. And no, there isn’t much room left.

  • Catey

    So amazing & fantastic!! Really, really love the changes. The previous version used so much real estate with banners & ads, and necessitated scrolling to get to the good stuff. Love the clean, open, bright design. Great job!!

    • blurb

      Thanks! I love it as well. Heather wanted to lighten things up.

  • blossom

    Sorry, but I liked the old design better. Maybe I’m old school, but being able to click on navigation to daily chuck, style, etc. under the masthead was a lot more convenient than doing it from the content area. I am a web developer and pay attention to this kind of stuff every day. I don’t see the advantage of putting the “daily” stuff under the actual content for the site. It doesn’t make sense to me and it doesn’t work for me either. Sites need to realize why people go there and what they want and it needs to satisfy immediate gratification in this media. Kind of unforgiving, but that’s what it is.

    Don’t mean to rain on your parade. I’ve been a big fan for a long time. Liked the old design better though.

    • blurb

      We never pay attention to ANY of that stuff you mention. Not important to us! ;-)

      I kid.

      Thanks for the feedback. We’re looking at some solutions which may or may not be part of the phase II work.

      This is probably the best time to make this comment: When a new piece of content is posted, regardless of how it is categorized, it appears at the top of the homepage. Just saying that the newest content gets put front and center. I think users appreciate that. Don’t mean to rain on your parade. ;-)

      Thanks again for the feedback.

  • irritableblogsyndrome

    LOVE the new masthead, not lovin’ the Daily Photo/Chuck/Style stuff intermingled with the entries. What would be interesting is if you could make them small little “snapshots” at the top of the page like the other pics you have up. BUT then again I fear change. Was the pink intentional or done with a hint of “all things pink must die” sarcasm? Still love you reading you guys though.

    • blurb

      I you think I understand Heather or her intentions…


      Thanks for taking the time to comment.

    • memoryworkshop

      Funny, and I thought the pink was homage to this month’s top advertiser.

      Ditto everyone on the missing ‘Dailies’.

      Not enough definition between the content and the ads.

      Everything’s too white. Hurts my eyes.

      None of that will keep me from visiting, but I probably won’t stay as long.

  • julieisthebest

    I have no idea why but the ads seem a lot bigger and obtrusive to me now than they did before. :( I’m sure it is just my perception that is wonky. Apart from that I like it a lot. Having the Dailies as part of the update seems like a very natural progression.

    • blurb

      Actually, the space between the content and the ads has grown quite a bit! I think the design lets everything breathe and that change makes you notice, even subconsciously the page elements, including the ads.

      We’re working on a solution! We are listening, so thanks so much for your feedback.


    dude! and your OpenID even works. Yes, I am a nerd. But serously, great, great job on everyone’s part at the Blurbodoocery.

    • blurb

      Thanks! And I’m trying over here with the Open and the ID.

  • Lesley

    I do miss having the three daily photos at the very top. Daily photo, Daily Chuck and Daily Style are my favourite features and I enjoyed clicking on the mysterious thumbnails that were like a tease for the eye candy to come.

    Overall, I thought the previous layout was perfect. Won’t know about this one until I try it for awhile.

  • Andrea

    I like it! Although, unlike many others here, I’m not even close to being well versed in anything computer related, so I just go by the aesthetics of it all, and I quite like it. I know you didn’t ask for feedback, but you’re getting it from me, anyway.

    Oh, and I don’t think it’s so bad having the “Daily” sections under the posts. It’s not like Dooce posts 100 items a day and you have to dig for them…they’re still right there. :)

  • brebolivar

    wow. you make beautiful websites that must take so much time AND you write nice comments back to people who don’t like it! seriously, you two are good people. i’m happy to be a part of the readership!

  • Kristan

    Aw, thanks for the thanks! You guys are so sweet, even when you’re badass. That’s why we all love you. :)

  • V.

    It’s lovely, of course, all sleek and modern, and I know I’ll get used to it, but the previous site with the daily pix on top and a new banner every month and so many nooks and crannies for your eye to land, I sure will miss it.


  • HallSL

    Hi John, I like the new look okay, now that you made the text at the top easier to read. I’m a Drupal developer and I’m curious why you got rid of the Daily feature items. I’m in the process of developing my first major Drupal 6 and I’ve been pleased with the imagecache, nodequeue, panels/context options that make it possible for me to have folks much less competent than you guys building something similar to the Daily features you used to have.

  • tracy

    I am totally the person who the “change is hard, give it a chance” comment was directed towards, and I will say that while I am getting used to the new design, I still prefer the former. Am I the only one who tried to guess what the photos were of based on their thumbnails? And I also miss the quote at in the masthead.

    At any rate, love you, love Heather, love Leta & the dogs, and I appreciate so, so much what you guys do. You both bring much enjoyment, laughter, and hope into my world. I’m working on a plan to fly to Seattle in March to meet your lovely wife. Fingers crossed!