Sunday, 31 January 2016

Keeping It Simple

The design team here at Otagosh - well, that's just me actually - inadvertently put the blog through the washing machine, and out popped this bleached 'no frills' version. The content is unchanged, but the visuals have been toned down a bit. Some (who shall remain nameless) might say it's too bad the prose is still overblown, but then nobody's perfect - except of course for Rod "never committed a serious sin" Meredith. I always thought Pride was one of the Deadly Seven, but I guess Rod never found that one listed in Exodus 20.

But back to overblown prose. Example: In the previous post I was determined to use the word 'empretzeled' after tripping over it in an op-ed piece in Time. You know the principle, 'use it or lose it'. The Time reference was, I believe, to Hillary Clinton ("she empretzeled herself"). Apparently it's been around since at least 2009, but was a revelation to me - not to mention the spell checker. English is like that, a new word hiding around each corner, lying in wait and ready to pounce. I love it.

So does the idea of being empretzeled by proof texts work? Well, I thought it was a colorful analogy at the time...

To return to blog layout. Is simple better? I'm open to persuasion to the contrary, but in any case this iteration will probably remain in place for a while. If you don't favour vanilla, there are certainly no end of Rocky Road alternatives in the COG webiverse.

Now if I could only think of a sentence combining webiverse with empretzeled. To be honest, it shouldn't be too difficult...


  1. We've taken a similar approach with

    One important factor is how mobile friendly a site is, because it significantly affects Google rankings, if you care about that sort of thing.

    In 2016, web designs are trending toward:

    - Material Design
    - Typography
    - Mobile UX
    - Mobile Layouts
    - More Imagery, Less Text
    - Tiles Replaced with Cards
    - Dynamic Storytelling
    - Greater Focus on Social Comments
    - Greater Focus on Contents, Less Focus on ads
    - Greater Focus on Article Layouts

    Simple, clean layouts should replace the clutter and Material Design helps move a way from Flat Design. It is also true that serif is easier to read than non serif typography.

    I think that the one thing you could change and make a big difference in appeal is to use serif fonts.

    Just a thought.

    1. Thanks Douglas, interesting thoughts, much appreciated. I did some reading up on this and what I found indicates that while serif is definitely preferred for printed texts, sans serif is preferable on screens. That's my personal impression too. I prefer serif on a page, but something without serifs like Verdana on the laptop, iPad or mobile... even on the Kindle app.

  2. From
    empretzel: to tie one’s self in a knot by talking and talking and talking; see also “dig your own hole.”

  3. Where'd the link to Steve Wiggins disappear to?