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Holy cow

I’ve spent much of the last four days receiving and half-reading confused, panicky e-mails from the IT people at the National Post. The upshot of most of the missives was that the NationalPost.com website was in the midst of a major transition, and that if I or anyone else were so unwise as to upload a weblog entry at the wrong moment, there would be nothing left but a smoldering crater where once stood the thriving suburb of Don Mills. I, of course, don’t have to be told twice not to do any work. Most of the time I don’t even need to be told once.

All the tinkering behind these e-mails has now paid off in an outstanding new look for the National Post website. Check out how classy my Friday column about the Iraq War looks with the new design: you’d almost think that guy knew was he was talking about!


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Comments (8)


Can't agree with you on that one.

The surge was intended to accomplish two goals in sequence - improve the security situation so that political progress could be made. It kinda sorta improved the former around the capital region (sectarian violence cooled off, though attacks on Coalition forces remained fairly constant). The idea was that this would be followed by a series of political breakthroughs that would help solidify the nation and prevent insurgents from regaining a foothold. There were a few successes (progress on oil revenue sharing, and increased Iraqi opposition to foreign terrorist groups), but the results were nowhere near what was hoped.

Stories about the resumption of Christian worship and some returning refugees are encouraging (side note - Christians are way overrepresented in the Iraqi refugee population, these must be linked) but anecdotes are ultimately useless for determining progress. The lack of political acceleration and the unsolved security problem are boat anchors that make the future very gloomy for the birthplace of civilization.

What will really be interesting (in a fucking morbid kind of way) is the actions of insurgents and sectarians now that the surge is drawing down. Standard irregular tactics when the enemy builds up is to go home to the wife and kids. With the surge ending, will there be a rebound the other way?


Thank GOD they updated that website. Now will the other canada.com papers follow? Ugh. Every time I look at edmontonjournal.com I can't help but feel like I'm living in 2001. I'm not sure how much of that to blame on their web editor(s), and how much to blame on the crappy CMS.

I like the new design -- only glitch now: users with Internet Explorer cannot post comments (but it works just fine with Firefox).

If any of you have experienced this problem, I have been told by the NP lead guy on this project that they're working on ironing out those glitches, but it could take a few days. So be patient.

You really think imitating the New York Times deserved a "Holy Cow"? I thought I was going to need 3-D glasses and a secret decoder ring.

Wow. OK, Captain Pasteup: what are the common elements that make the new NP design an "imitation" of the New York Times site? I can't wait to hear this.


Great column. But Powell himself is almost too weak a figure to represent his own handsome Doctrine. He'll be remembered as a profoundly bureaucratic figure who caution left him spinning in the eddies of big events at a time when a hearty man of sensible principle might have done more good.

Well, I agree with Capt. Pasteup: my very first impression was "hm. They've copied the NY Times. That's an improvement."

Point by point, both have:
-a bit of above-the-masthead navigation
-two rows of section navigation, with the lower row showing subsections of the currently selected section (eg if you're on "News", the NP shows you "Canada | World | Toronto | Posted" as the second row.)
-stories are presented in a two-column layout: left is story, right is sidebar junk. Bottom of page in both cases has teasers to current stories.
-story font is an identical serif font (probably Verdana, just because it's the default Windows web serif). Not an especially notable similarity on the web, but there you go.

Now, lots of newspapers look similar to each other, but the state of design on the web is immature enough that innovation is likely to be worthy. Notably, I'd claim that the web design of the NYT and the NP is closer than their on-paper designs.

And yes, it does amuse me to use "on-paper" to describe the tangible object rather than the intangible specification.


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