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CodeProject Gets a UI Refresh, Goes "Modern UI"--Here's Some of the Story Behind It

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CodeProject Gets a UI Refresh, Goes "Modern UI"--Here's Some of the Story Behind It

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"The design of CodeProject has changed over the years, as one would hope and expect. The design, however, was often a result of expedience over planning and as such it often became, well, a little haphazard and often more thought was put into cramming as much as possible on a page instead of thinking about what should actually be on a page.

A common complaint of the site - in fact, the complaint regarding the site, was that the look was old, tired, and cramped. You hit the site and you're bombarded and confused. We loved the old look, though, in the same way a dog loves it's old, scuffed up shoe that it drags around everyone. It was comfy. We knew how it worked. It had everything we needed.

And yet...

And yet we were looking for a change, and the motivation came from an issue that many developers share: we were running out of hours in the day and we needed to cut down on the things we were doing and things we maintained. This lead us to remove some parts of the site that were not being used by many members (I'm guessing you probably haven't even noticed their departure) as well as trimming down the feature sets of other parts to make them simpler to use.  Doing this started us down the track of thinking about what each page was meant to do, and more importantly, what each page should not do.

We also started focusing on the articles themselves since they are what keeps us at CodeProject passionate. Safari's "Reader" mode made a big impression on us since it allows you to focus on the content, not the chrome, and that theme was one we kept coming back to. Make the content the most important thing on the page, and give the content room to breath. Fairly simple ideas, and, conveniently enough, ideas encapsulated in the Metro Design language that Windows 8 was built on."




I love these kind of retrospectives and inside baseball kinds of stories. I did have to laugh though. I hit CodeProject all the time (as you likely know given how often I highlight something I find there) and when I hit it earlier this week and saw this new UI, my initial thought was that some was busted. You know how sometimes on a wonky connection a site can render funky? Took me a second and actually looking at the page to realize that it was a new design...

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Published at DZone with permission of Greg Duncan, DZone MVB. See the original article here.

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