Fresh for Spring

I started out wanting to redesign my nerdy Web site nerd.newburyportion.com, but instead I came up with a new design that best suited our shared site.

Almost a million years ago I toyed with the idea of having a banner photograph at the top of the page, however, I didn’t seem to be able to find any photos that worked. When I was perusing my iPhoto library this morning, I came up with 9 good photos and probably a half dozen acceptable ones. The key is to be ruthless about cropping.

The banner is 800x200 pixels or a 4:1 aspect ratio. My camera captures photos in a standard 35mm 3:2 ratio and Anna’s the common digital ratio of 4:3, so you’re looking for a great slice of the photo rather than the whole thing. Lots of photographs were wonderful but because the real focal points didn’t fall in a narrow band, I couldn’t use them.

Can you guess which one of the banners is my favourite?

Of course, there are also some new features: Ajax-powered searching and contact forms. For those of you not on top of the latest Web 2.0 trends, that’s pure gold, man. It’s all the rage. People are raising serious capital just to replace your tired old Web pages with Ajax-enhanced ones for your viewing pleasure.

I’ve got some additional ideas that are proving just a little difficult to execute. So I decided to postpone them and roll out the design as is. Please let us know what you think.