Well, at long last, the COW has a new interface. It's been a long time coming and it's way overdue. I had gotten to where I just couldn't bear to look at the site anymore. The new look is far more balanced and in keeping with the whole idea and spirit of the COW. I am happier than you can imagine to see it as it had worn on my nerves for quite a long time but we were just too busy to deal with it. It finally just got to the point where I told Tim that I was going to just have to do it because it was more than I could bear anymore. When we designed the original COW, Eric, Kathlyn and I did it all -- aesthetics and mechanics -- in under two weeks, total. A complete original database-driven mySQL system, written from scratch, with many unique features and abilities that to this day most members have yet to dig to find. (For starters, it isn't an interface, it's three interfaces -- the classic threaded style, the topical type that some prefer, and the show-me-the-newest type that others find useful.) Now, at long last, I can live with it for a while -- how long? Who knows?
My offended visual senses can finally settle down -- for a while.
The latest iteration of the Creative COW website is well under way and I have to say that it's the first time in many years that I have logged into the COW and haven't hated the way it looks. I always meant to come back to it and get it done but couldn't find the time. So, last April, I gave it a minor overhaul but that was just a band-aid on a car wreck victim.
Then after the death of my Dad, I went through a severe depression -- not because I had left things unsaid or anything of that sort but just because I would horribly miss my great friend and lifetime companion. It took a while to get over it and it meant I did little else but sit and think. So I put some of that to work finding us a new look for the COW. Heartache channeled can be a good thing and besides, my Dad would have liked this interface.
I ran into the look by visiting some of the websites of members here in the COW. When I got to looking at some of the sites designed by Bret Williams (who is a regular in our Web Design forum), I knew that I had found the sense of balance, flow and style that I wanted in the COW. So we hired Bret to get to work on a design and he nailed it. Thanks, Bret!
Then I brought in Abraham Chaffin to code it all into CSS, so that the site is not made up of graphics but of CSS coding parameters. What this means is that the COW can soon marry the interface to user prefs settings and we'll be able to give users a COW that is built around their needs and wants and not a one-size-fits-all COW that looks the same for everyone. It isn't there yet but the foundation is there and we'll be able to get there from here.
Little by little we are adding new features like working RSS feeds for our news, articles, podcasts and other pages. The RSS feeds are proving very popular and we are getting many members a day through feedburner.com, etc.
Two new features that I am happy to see are the new library/articles functions and the leaders section. These new sections give users greatly enhanced access to our library of nearly 850 articles and also to exploring our leadership team here at the cow. To see them for yourself if you haven't already visited, please see http://library.creativecow.net or http://leaders.creativecow.net for more.
There are many other areas of the site now under re-construction and enhancement, we will be introducing these new features and additions shortly. These new features will add a width and depth to the COW that we've never seen before.
Let us know what you think or what you'd like to see. Bessie is all ears...
Well, except for all them udder parts.