Speak UpA Former Division of UnderConsideration
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Refreshed, Revitalized, Ready to Rock

After three months of working on this, it is finally ready! Before I go into some of the new features I just want to say that I hope you all like the new, updated look, and that it measures up to whatever standards we’ve managed to set in our discussions. As always, feel free to say what you will — good or bad.

So, what’s new?

1. Probably the biggest surprise is the new logo. Ain’t it bitchin’? I worked with the talented calligrapher Michael Clark to develop something fresh, cool-looking and that somehow represented the energy of Speak Up. Kind of retroish and full of attitude.

2. Second biggest change is the A division of Under Consideration tagline… For a long time the question has been What the hell is Under Consideration? Ask no more, it is all revealed and explained.

3. New features are Essays, for which there are currently none and are accepting submissions now; and Book Reviews, where we already have three of them and Jason A. Tselentis is working on more. All feel free to submit suggestions for both features.

4. News, events and press releases will be posted in the News/Events section, they will not appear as entries for discussion so keep checking that page to see what’s new.

5. Open Space has moved in here too.

6. The Recommend section we used to have is gone. As well as the Book Club, too much hard work for little participation. The new Book Reviews will fill the literary void and allow people to comment at their own pace so we encourage participation on those reviews.

7. The Business Resources are still here. We will be adding more business articles constantly through the continued contribution of Steve Liska as well as the new contributions by David C. Baker.

8. Almost forgot… For better or worse there is now a, I don’t want to call it Mission Statement, but I guess that’s what it is. Click, on the About button up top and you’ll see. That’s what I think Speak Up is (or can be) all about and I felt it necessary to just put it down in writing once and for all.

I think that’s it. Let me know if you see any weird behaviour so I can fix it, also if there are any links leading to nowhere so I can point them in the right direction. Thanks for your patience and I hope you enjoy the new Speak Up.

Maintained through our ADV @ UnderConsideration Program
ARCHIVE ID 1810 FILED UNDER Speak Up Announcements
PUBLISHED ON Feb.02.2004 BY Armin
Kiran Max Weber’s comment is:


Amazing Armin, much respect...

On Feb.02.2004 at 11:52 AM
Su’s comment is:

It makes my eyes bleed.

*scampers off to View Source*

Besides that, though, yes, I like.

On Feb.02.2004 at 12:11 PM
Andrew Pollak’s comment is:

Looks great!!!!

When can I get a T-shirt?

On Feb.02.2004 at 12:11 PM
Lea’s comment is:

I love this. Seriously. ♥

On Feb.02.2004 at 12:26 PM
brook’s comment is:

evolution! sweet. the only thing i've ever even slightly disliked (and it is slight) is how wide the page is. otherwise, very very nice. thanks for the great place, armin.

On Feb.02.2004 at 12:26 PM
Christopher Johnston’s comment is:

Speak Up is the new orange Armin. Nicely Done.


On Feb.02.2004 at 12:38 PM
eric’s comment is:

congrats on the redesign! i will, however, miss the word balloon emoticon.

On Feb.02.2004 at 12:42 PM
Rick G’s comment is:


Incremental - love it. Damn you.

Well done. My hat is off to you.


On Feb.02.2004 at 12:56 PM
Armin’s comment is:

> It makes my eyes bleed.

That's what happens with cutting-edge design ; ) Seriously though… why does it make your eyes bleed?

> the only thing i've ever even slightly disliked (and it is slight) is how wide the page is.

Brook, it's actually almost a 100 pixels skinnier than the last one. But yeah, not the skinniest page out there on the web.

Thanks for all the props!!!

On Feb.02.2004 at 01:01 PM
marian’s comment is:

It's as beautiful as it ever was (which was mighty beautiful) and more. I like the restructure, it's more logical. Will comments on eg. book reviews or other things outside of the main appear on the recent comments list? That wouuld be good to avoid death to those parts.

Word It seems a little low on the page, but no biggie.

I really like the Speak Up logo, although it looks a little disparate with the pixel-ness of everything else--it's going to take a bit of getting used to.

I'm going to miss the old topic icons, though these new titles are very pretty and more clear.

But mostly--so many new things to read! I'd better get started.

Thank you Armin, for all of this.

On Feb.02.2004 at 01:04 PM
Jason’s comment is:


On Feb.02.2004 at 01:06 PM
Darrel’s comment is:


Kudos on the logo. That is nice. I've been struggling with a script logo myself for a project. It ain't easy. Nice job!

The only complaint is that you forgot to put a background color on the comments page. This is a MT bug that they still haven't seemed to fix.

Oh yea...my bio pic...I was supposed to get that to you...crap...TONIGHT! I PROMISE!

On Feb.02.2004 at 01:07 PM
Sarah B.’s comment is:


Cheers!!!!! :)

Will take a few moments to get used to.. but it is beautiful!

On Feb.02.2004 at 01:28 PM
brook’s comment is:

care to share some of your thoughts on the logo, armin? i'm curious about the new direction. did you draw it? inspirations? thanks!

On Feb.02.2004 at 01:30 PM
JonSel’s comment is:

Very nice evolution of the site. I have to go fully explore it.

I echo Marian's comments on the logo. I like it a lot as a piece of handdrawn type, but it seems a strong contrast and somewhat out of place with the bitmapped language of the rest of the site. It's probably going to be more successful, though, than the old emotican-type logo in term of your ability to use it in other contexts.

Then again, bitching about the logo is really biting the hand that feeds, isn't it? The site rocks and I'm thrilled to be an oh-so-small part of it.

On Feb.02.2004 at 01:39 PM
Bradley’s comment is:

Well this is fucking gorgeous...


On Feb.02.2004 at 01:47 PM
ps’s comment is:

good going. thanks for the effort armin. comes at a good time too.. i was in san diego at the y-conference and you can expect a group of fresh participants as i mentioned the forum to plenty of people. then of course one of the speakers, felix sockwell brought it up on stage as well. (in between mumbling, burping, scratching, ripping debbie millman(...) and presenting pretty much... or little...well... actually what the hell did he present?) anyway, point is i assume a bunch of new voices will check out speakUp and they'll get to experience the new and improved.

i like that you kept the good, and just built on it.


On Feb.02.2004 at 02:01 PM
KM’s comment is:

Very nice! I was anticipating a late afternoon unveiling - this has made my morning!!!

On Feb.02.2004 at 02:05 PM
jesse’s comment is:

First impressions are good.

Nice work, Armin.


On Feb.02.2004 at 02:08 PM
chris’s comment is:

and another one cheering:

just simply beautifull. love the look and feel! great work.

On Feb.02.2004 at 02:15 PM
Armin’s comment is:

> The only complaint is that you forgot to put a background color on the comments page.

That can be easily fixed!

> Will comments on eg. book reviews or other things outside of the main appear on the recent comments list?

Yup, all of those will show up in the recent comments but not on the main page as an entry. Everytime there is a new one it will be displayed on the sidebar.

> I really like the Speak Up logo, although it looks a little disparate with the pixel-ness of everything else--it's going to take a bit of getting used to.

Marian, I agree, but I chose freedom over pixelization. There is so much you can do with the pixel look and I didn't want to let that be such a huge constraint. It is a major inconvenince to not be able to enlarge a logo, or print it (which we'll be doing more of hopefully).

> care to share some of your thoughts on the logo, armin? i'm curious about the new direction. did you draw it? inspirations?

Sure thing. I called Michael and said I want something very cool. He obviously wanted more direction than that. So I just went on and on about how I wanted something energetic, kind of classy, a bit daring but not weird. I sent him this page with stuff I kind of liked the look of. So, that set the tone a bit for the scripty look.

More thanks to all!

On Feb.02.2004 at 02:23 PM
Ginny ’s comment is:

Great job Armin! You put so much hard work into this....so dedicated!! I'm looking forward to exploring the new site!

The new logo is nice but feels a little bit like the red-headed step-child compared to the look and feel of the site (as a whole). But change is good and I probably just need to get used to it!

All of your hard work is truly an inspiration!

On Feb.02.2004 at 02:26 PM
marian’s comment is:

bitching about the logo is really biting the hand that feeds, isn't it?

Not at all. I would assume that this design, like any other design that is out there, is open for discussion. We may love Armin, but we owe it to him, this site, ourselves and the whole ethos of what we're doing here to treat discussion of this site as we would any other.

I think anyway.

If I saw something here that I thought really sucked, or was counter-intuitive, or difficult to read, I'd let Armin know, right here, right now.

On Feb.02.2004 at 02:28 PM
Ginny ’s comment is:

I really love how you constructed the website! The category division on the left side of the page is wonderful!

On Feb.02.2004 at 02:33 PM
Armin’s comment is:

The logo will blend in as time goes on. I know it stands out a bit from the rest but that's why I didn't make it bigger and made it green so that it would fit more. It will grow on ya!

Jon, Marian is right… as much as I hate it, but yeah.

On Feb.02.2004 at 02:34 PM
JonSel’s comment is:

Jon, Marian is right… as much as I hate it, but yeah.

I don't feel bad about my comment. I just realized as I was yakking about the logo that there was a forest out there that shouldn't be disregarded because of one small piece.

On Feb.02.2004 at 03:05 PM
Tom’s comment is:

Uh! Tragedy!!!

I knew the day would come, but so soon? What about the years of brand equity? I bet Rand is turning over in his... oh, wait different thread.

Congrats! Can't wait to see the expansion of Under Consideration! Thank you for adding value to our profession!

On Feb.02.2004 at 03:33 PM
Tom Gleason’s comment is:

Nice work Armin. Congratulations.

I'm looking forward to seeing the essay section develop.

On Feb.02.2004 at 03:46 PM
rebecca’s comment is:

Things I like:

— The new logo.

— The bottom edge and "Finer Details." So pretty.

— Repositioning the Word It. Way more balanced IMO.

— The type in the sidebars. You have such a light touch. It really works.

Things I don't:

— I have never liked the effect produced by combining centered display matter with a ragged right text block.

— I think the date and author stand out more than they should and compromise the centered axis. FWIW, I think this might have to do more with the color than the bold face.

— I feel like the center column is slightly overwhelmed by the sidebars. I wonder if toning down those black rules would help.

On Feb.02.2004 at 04:05 PM
Su’s comment is:

Re: my eyes bleeding, they're always doing that *grin* Pay no attention to anything I say.

PK can tell you that I'm much more specific and brutal when I actually don't like something.

On Feb.02.2004 at 04:06 PM
bryony’s comment is:

Congrats! Can't wait to see the expansion of Under Consideration!

This, without a doubt my dear Tom, will be a fun ride that would be impossible without everybody's support and participation.

Thanks to all of you who have made this possible. For making underconsideration and Speak Up more than a dream, and thanks for all that shall come.

On Feb.02.2004 at 04:06 PM
Su’s comment is:

Armin: Upon further inspection(*duck*), there are a couple of teeny inconsistencies between Internet Explorer and Firebird(Mozilla, et al.).

The only one that might be of concern at the moment is that Firebird shows the sidebars with a white background, instead of grey, which is what I assume you want. Basically, it looks like you've told the table cell to have two backgrounds(the grey and the dotted lines), and the browsers are disagreeing which to apply, or how. Could probably fix by just putting the grey into the image itself. It goes all the way down the page, anyway.

On Feb.02.2004 at 04:35 PM
Armin’s comment is:

Thanks all, one more time, for the great comments. It makes the effort all the worthwhile.

Rebecca, thanks for the honest, non-sugar cotaed feedback. I have always been on the fence with the center/left justified combination but just to get out of my comfort zone I decided to go for it... if it becomes cumbersome I might change it. Date and author text -- I'm on it, I'll see what looks good. I might take a rest from the site for a couple of days, since I have been staring at it for almost 24 hours straight.

Su, yeah, you are right, I just need to include it in the background image. Thanks for the advice, I forgot I had to background things going on at the same time.

> I'm looking forward to seeing the essay section develop.

Yes! Me too. So start writing everybody.

On Feb.02.2004 at 04:59 PM
amanda’s comment is:

love love love the new logo.

great job.

On Feb.02.2004 at 05:05 PM
Priya’s comment is:

i don't mean to be the echo but it truly is beautiful. your attention to detail is so lovely. much love.

On Feb.02.2004 at 06:13 PM
Scott D’s comment is:

Is the new logo custom or a font? if it's a font what is it?

On Feb.02.2004 at 06:23 PM
marian’s comment is:

Firebird(Mozilla, et al.

Aside: I haven't been keeping up w. my browsers, but it would appear that I have more reason than ever before to call That Browser That Keeps Changing Names "Mozilla-whatever-the-f" ?

What is it called? Why does the icon look, appropriately, like a godzilla on my PC, and like "Netscape Navigator" on my Mac? Why was the download for Camino or Chameleon or w-t-f and the installer for Navigator? Now what is Firebird?

The browser formerly known as Mozilla (nee Netscape) is my preferred browser, but for Speak Up, I use Safari. It looks great in both.

On Feb.02.2004 at 06:59 PM
Shawn Wolfe’s comment is:

I'm feelin' the new logo.

Go ahead and make it bigger!

Oh, btw, not to be an ass but... it reminds me a lot of Illustration magazine.


On Feb.02.2004 at 07:17 PM
Michael B.’s comment is:

Armin, I admire the clever way you've finally managed to reconcile the Under Consideration url with the equity of the Speak Up name. Slick. I think you have a future as a highly paid brand architecture consultant.

On Feb.02.2004 at 07:19 PM
davek’s comment is:

It all looks really great Armin. Excellent content, and a beautifully refined look! I also appreciate the adjustments made to the visual hierarchy on the sides. Super. West side loves you too, boo.

On Feb.02.2004 at 07:32 PM
Tom Gleason’s comment is:

ok, time for another redesign...It all seems pretty much the same to me now. Sure it's nice, looks good, not necessarily better. but mostly superficial, and what changed structurally didn't have much to do with the new look, as far as I can tell. The changes could have been implemented while keeping the old design, couldn't they? New shapes can be refreshing though, i guess, for a minute or two. The centering does bother me a little for some reason (probably i'll get used to it.)

Armin, it might be interesting to relate your combination of templates and custom design elements to the thread on Instant Design.

On Feb.02.2004 at 07:38 PM
vibranium’s comment is:

Is it bad that I already had the new logo tatooed on my (very much lacking) bicep?

what's cooler then cool? SPEAK UP!!

On Feb.02.2004 at 07:41 PM
vibranium’s comment is:

>>brand architecture consultant

On Feb.02.2004 at 07:45 PM
Todd’s comment is:

Awesome! Truly awesome.

On Feb.02.2004 at 09:06 PM
Anthony Edwards’s comment is:

I love the repositioning of the recent comments and word it. I always had to scroll down a bit when I came to the site to find all the recent comments, but now they are right there staring at me top right. Has the internet really made me this lazy that I could complain about scrolling 100 pixels? It's not like I have to physically move the browser myself.

Great job, Armin. I am so pleased that you provide this space out here for us. Here's to many more redesigns!

On Feb.02.2004 at 09:07 PM
JonSel’s comment is:

Sure it's nice, looks good, not necessarily better. but mostly superficial

There's no reason to throw out the baby with the bathwater. When you have something good, there's no need to junk it and start over. An evolution of the site was a smart move, as it updated the look slightly and upgraded the functionality. The logo is changed to better serve the future needs of "Speak Up" (the site and otherwise). I especially like that the disparate parts of the site — book reviews, interviews, event listings —�are now better reflected on the home page.

On Feb.02.2004 at 09:08 PM
Su’s comment is:

Marian, you have an e-mail on the way.

On Feb.02.2004 at 09:19 PM
felix’s comment is:

sweet. i like it even better.

however, the tail in the S in Speak Up

needs to curl more. no?

also, it feels illustrative- like house

industries meets doritos.

On Feb.02.2004 at 09:45 PM
marian’s comment is:

If you scroll all the way to the bottom, you are treated to a calm and beautiful place, kindof like a spa at the end of the day.

On Feb.02.2004 at 10:28 PM
jill’s comment is:

The Recent Comments listings seem to change (that is, the order of the topics and the number of comments) depending on where you are browsing. The News and Events section and the Main Discussion page, for example, show different comment counts for the same topic. Is this intentional?

I really like the new logo: sassy calligraphy contrasts nicely with the rest of the site. Great job.

On Feb.02.2004 at 10:43 PM
DesignMaven ’s comment is:


Thought I would have the LAST WORD, guess not.

Since me Compodre's Tan, Freelix and Brady

have not commented. Due to other commitments.

I assume their PRAISE will follow mine.


Extraordinary, Exceptional, Remarkable, Wonderful, Outstanding, Superior, Eminent, Grand, Incredible, Astonishing.

Words befitting a Design PHENOMENOLOGIST.

PERSONAL OBSERVATIONS, New Design define the True Essence of SPEAK UP. I enjoyed the fact you and Bryony are both credited. Highly Important. The personal Bio's and work samples lend credence to you being a COGNOSCENTE of Visual Communication. It's a few notches above MAVENISM.

Bryony, Packaging Examples FIRST TIER. I'm extremely JEALOUS!!!!!

Alas, Good design is good citizenship. Milton Glaser

Practice what you PREACH. Be Fare, Be Ethical.

Put yourself in the Place of your Clients.

Walk the Walk and Talk the Talk. As Visual Problem Solvers. Designers need Clients not Customers.

Customers are for the MOMENT. Here today and gone tomorrow. You can keep a DECENT client for life.

There are no Dumb Clients. Just misinformed and

miseducated. Sometimes, misguided by BAD

EXPERIENCES or their lack of knowledge of Analysis, Strategy, Exploration, and Rollout.


On Feb.02.2004 at 10:50 PM
Tan’s comment is:

Armin, finally weighing in.

The new site is like a cup of frozen lemonade in the middle of a hot day at the state fair. It's refreshingly tart, classically delicious, and of course, completely satisfying to a dire thirst like nothing else can be.

The new logo will take time to grow on me, though. It's...it's...well, we'll have to see.

Sorry I've been a little absent lately. I've had some heavy lifting on my plate this week. It's a momentous month it seems.

On Feb.02.2004 at 11:18 PM
Jason’s comment is:

Tom Gleason’s comments:

Armin, it might be interesting to relate your combination of templates and custom design elements to the thread on Instant Design.

Okay, Tom. I believe I can support Armin in saying that mostly, you are at the mercy of the Moveable Type templates. They're a drag. Call them instant if you want, but Armin's brought new features to light and given the site a more emphatic logo. It's not an easy task to be writer, designer, editor, web master, programmer, and information architect. While it's okay to be critical, I applaud Armin's efforts in spite of Moveable Type's limitations, and in no way consider them an extension of "Affordable Logo Templates."

On Feb.03.2004 at 01:20 AM
Tom Gleason’s comment is:

I agree... I am excited about what Armin is doing, I also can't wait to see what happens with UnderConsideration. This is all long overdue. Good to see that someone has balls.

These templates just seem to me, maybe not you, pretty relevant to the Instant Design discussion; I don't mean anything else by it. Rock on.

On Feb.03.2004 at 01:50 AM
Jeff G’s comment is:


I'll echo the others: beautiful evolution.

I find the decorations above & below the topic names especially attractive.

One tiny complaint. I haven't posted it until now because I wanted to look at the page about 20 times first just in case my first impression was wrong.

The author, date & comments lines look more connected to the posts below than to the posts that they belong to. I think it is because they are evenly spaced between the posts. And then the tiny green chevrons seem to push them down to the post below rather than pull them up to the post above.

Except for that I love it. Thank you for all your hard work.

On Feb.03.2004 at 03:46 AM
Ragnar’s comment is:

This is great!


On Feb.03.2004 at 08:52 AM
Armin’s comment is:

Jeff: Yeah, I agree, I struggled with that a little bit. I'll try some tweaks and see what works better. Working with MT it's sometimes hard to design without implementing the design to the content so sometimes it's a crapshoot. It's great to have all this feedback now that the design is in working mode.

Maven: THANKS.

Michael B.: like, totally.

Jill: I just noticed that too. I will have to get rid of the recent comments from the individual entries. It acts really strangely and I haven't been able to figure it out.

Felix: yeah, the logo is a bit illustrative, a bit intentional.

Shawn: Not an ass, it does look like it. But that logo is cool too, so…

Tom G: Regarding the instant design issue, like Jason said, MovableType dictates a lot of the format, specially the two or three column layout. Other than that little, unavoidable detail I like to think that Speak Up's design is nothing but "instant." For examples ot template/instant design see this: 1, 2, 3, and if I had more time I could find you many more. Regarding the Another redesign and Superficial issues, to start off I wouldn't say it's a redesign, that would entail a total change of look ala UPS. The newer look stems off the past design with little enhancements for usability purposes. The site was long overdue for a restructuring, and being a designer that likes to do stuff I would have been crazy not to take the opportunity and make the design of the site look better.

On Feb.03.2004 at 08:55 AM
Rudy V’s comment is:

Speak Up has been setting the standard for blogs, and the new design has raised the level another notch, and script logos rule!

On Feb.03.2004 at 10:17 AM
Armin’s comment is:

Sorry for some of the hiccups, I'm trying some stuff with stylesheets and it might disrupt some of the layout, but I'll get it done soon.

On Feb.03.2004 at 10:28 AM
Jason’s comment is:

. . . and script logos rule!

I'm sensing a bias here, Rudy.

On Feb.03.2004 at 10:38 AM
Patrick’s comment is:

Overall, I like it, particularly the way the left column has evolved to include more features of what's going on in other sections. Also the clarification and extending the underconsideration is a great thing. I'm diggin' the logo too. And the inside pages like the author's page are looking swank.

Now a little constructive crit - the one thing really bothers me. My eye instantly goes to the "See All" boxes because they are the darkest things on the page (most contrast). Yet they are one of the least important things. I would recommend making the background match the bar they are in.

Other minor opinions: I am also not fond of the centering with flush left, but that's a minor detail. And I liked the word it at top 'cause now the initial impact of the page is all text - a bit overwhelming.

Anyway, kudos on the refresh, Armin. The strength of Speak Up is they way it constantly evolves and matures in content and features as the audience grows. Striking a balance of managing it and letting eveyone else have input must be tough, but so far it's working (blissfully ignoring the occasional spat). For that I thank you.

On Feb.03.2004 at 11:17 AM
Hrant’s comment is:

And here I was thinking this site couldn't look any better... Wow.


On Feb.03.2004 at 12:08 PM
Witold Riedel’s comment is:

beautiful! thank you!

On Feb.03.2004 at 12:15 PM
Darrel’s comment is:

FYI, MT templates can be rebuilt anyway you want. Some interesting MT powered layouts:


http://www.hicksdesign.co.uk/portfolio/archives/000247.php (MT powered portfolio)


Granted, MT isn't the easiest thing to stretch, poke and bend into your own layout. I've found that true of any CMS tool that comes with a 'template' builder or editor.

All that said, I think SU is very nicely laid out. Columns make sense. Afterall, it *is* a blog. ;o)

On Feb.03.2004 at 02:15 PM
Armin’s comment is:

When ya'll have a chance please empty your cache so that the new images for the sidebar titles refresh. They are much more simple now, and they look much better, thanks to those who complained about it.

The center/left justification combination will probably stay, I like it… and I can't be that democratic. I'm sure no highly paid brand architecture consultant would allow such a thing.

On Feb.03.2004 at 04:04 PM
Hrant’s comment is:

Democracy is crap anyway.


On Feb.03.2004 at 04:33 PM
Tom Gleason’s comment is:

I think democracy sounds like a good idea :)

On Feb.03.2004 at 05:12 PM
Steven’s comment is:

What can I say that wasn't already been said, at this point.


--I don't mind the centered headline, FL/RR body copy situation, especially when the body text is gets longer.

--I've always admired your pixel-pattern detailing. It's lovely and elegant, yet contains a sense of playfulness. Since some of that has been reduced, the overall layout looks a bit cleaner in that respect, which I guess helps to reduce visual clutter. But I didn't mind that about the old design.

I very much like the new logo. There's a funkiness to it that works with other eclectic detailing in the site.

Organizationally, I think everything is an improvement, except... I too liked the Word It in the upper right. But then, this IS a blog, so the current layout addresses that focus.

But as always, this site continues to exude the love and care that's put into it. Well done, Armin! I raise my glass to you!

On Feb.03.2004 at 09:55 PM
Dan’s comment is:

Armin, you've addressed the most important parts of the site (the posts, the recent comments, the authors, the search, the absurd page width) and made each more functional while improving (without hardly changing) the site's aesthetic appeal. This is very impressive.

One part I don't understand is why the comments pop up. I very much enjoy Typographica's comments treatment. I'm anxious to hear why you've stuck with the pop-ups.

In conclusion, I was so glad to see that these comments were opened up with the F-bomb. Super.

On Feb.03.2004 at 10:50 PM
jose’s comment is:

Hey nice design. the only thing i find quite off is how small the text are on the left panel. how about a css that helps you decide which fint sizes you want it with? (like the one they have over at wired.com)

the new logo looks great but somehow i miss the old one. =)

On Feb.03.2004 at 11:19 PM
Jeff G’s comment is:

Armin, great tweaking yasreday. It looks very, very nice.

On Feb.04.2004 at 05:17 AM
griff’s comment is:

Excellent. Great usability enhancements.

The best change is moving "Authors" off the home page, makes it a much more inviting community. Keepin' it real.

The logo? Well, yesterday I did't like it, but today it looks better. Tomorrow... I will love it.

On Feb.04.2004 at 09:25 AM
Jon Parker’s comment is:

Sensitive redesign that keeps attention where it should be: on the thick, juicy content. Great stuff, Armin!

The wordmark is sweet too. Script wordmarks are where it's at. ;-)

On Feb.04.2004 at 10:02 AM
kev leonard’s comment is:

sweet. thanks for understanding how humans read and thanks for not letting s.u. get stale. nicely done armin.

On Feb.04.2004 at 10:25 AM
Luke’s comment is:

Beautiful, marvelous... but am I really the only one that finds the text size too small? On OS X, 11px Georgia is really teeny. I respect that some people, especially designers, like their text small, but it'd be nice if there were a stylesheet switcher with cookies (� la What Do I Know, e.g.) so I didn't always have to Cmd-PLUS each time I visit.

On Feb.04.2004 at 11:28 AM
Dan’s comment is:

I find that for looks, the smaller type is better. But I think Luke has a good point. Often I bump up the text size for comfort, and you should too!

On Feb.04.2004 at 11:58 AM
Armin’s comment is:

> Script wordmarks are where it's at. ;-)

We should form an association of creative places with scripty logos, there are already three of us (Speak Up, Emigre and Veer).

Re: text size

I'll look into the style sheet switcharoo thing, but I can't promise anything.

> One part I don't understand is why the comments pop up. I very much enjoy Typographica's comments treatment. I'm anxious to hear why you've stuck with the pop-ups.

Because I don't enjoy Typographica's treatment. Sorry, no democracy on this one.

Thanks again for all the comments and feedback.

On Feb.04.2004 at 12:07 PM
.sara’s comment is:

This is all-around lovely. I may be in the minority, but my eyes go directly to the center column -- what with the left and right columns being gray.

I only vaguely miss the category icons for each entry, the little borders that surround the category link are quite nice. (:

And the logo. Brava to you and Mark. I love that you posted the logos you sent him for direction; the new SU definitely keeps with that spirit while remaining distinctive.

Like Luke, I'm constantly doing the cmd/ctrl + when I hit SU. I love Georgia, but at that size and with the amount of text that generally goes into each entry and the comments, I have to bump it up.

There's one thing that I don't... get. The logo at the top of the comments window? Why does it link back to SU's homepage? I clicked it, just for kicks, and ended up with the homepage filling up the comment window -- scrollbars everywhere! Just a-wonderin'. (:

On Feb.04.2004 at 01:51 PM
Rob Bennett’s comment is:


As a relative newcomer, and a late adder as I've spent the last two days in meetings in Chicago, I can only say that the changes are uplifting. Some more subtle than others but the key is that they work. And that, to me is the key to good design. Now at that, I will start exploring my brain for possible essay topics that I'd be more than happy to pen.

A great resource that deserves all the accolades it has gotten. Thank you Armin.


On Feb.04.2004 at 02:03 PM
mazzei’s comment is:

The logo will blend in as time goes on.

It will grow on ya!


On Feb.04.2004 at 08:28 PM
Armin’s comment is:

And I'm going to hire We Work For Them to do some senseless animations of the logo too! Then I'll be hip.

On Feb.04.2004 at 08:46 PM
surts’s comment is:

nice too see the left nav in play with content updates. overall: you know you've created something special when it's self sustaining.

On Feb.04.2004 at 09:00 PM
Armin’s comment is:

> The logo at the top of the comments window? Why does it link back to SU's homepage?

.sara, Google (or any other search engine) sometimes leads people directly to the comments pages, so I figured the linked logo could lead the searcher to the source of the material.

On Feb.04.2004 at 09:22 PM
Jason’s comment is:

Now I'm not feeling hip.

Who's We Work For Them?

On Feb.04.2004 at 11:35 PM
Armin’s comment is:


On Feb.05.2004 at 08:19 AM
Joe Clark’s comment is:

I would like to know why you didn't avail yourself of the opportunity to redesign the site with Web standards. If ATypI and JFP, plus a million other blogs and several commercial sites, can manage (mostly-)valid code and WCAG compliance, you can, too.

On Feb.05.2004 at 10:21 AM
Brady’s comment is:

I've been out of the game for a while now and I feel so lost.

Gotsta get back in the game, so it will be appropriate to start here.


First and foremost, good work. MT, while an excellent piece of web software, is still very confining and you have done well exploiting the features that are available.

My first reaction was to the new TM.

Which, come to think of it - have you TM'ed the Speak UP name? Call your lawyer and get it done!

Back to my thoughts on the TM - while the script is nice and lends a human quality to the pixel-ization of the site, it is out of place in consideration of the pixel-ization of all other illustrative elements on the site. The "emoticon" style of the previous mark was the best usage of that cultural enigma and it underscored the voice(s) of Speak Up. It said, "SPEAK UP!" Maybe a TM that rotates (a la typographi.ca) randomly selected marks - maybe by commissioned Speak Up participants - would underscore the individuality of the opinions, which is Speak Up's most valuable characteristic.

> I have never liked the effect produced by combining centered display matter with a ragged right text block.

I agree with Rebecca in her itchy-ness of the centered head, centered category, ragged right body, centered "continue reading" and centered author/date/links. (Damned W3C engineers not understanding justified type!) This is exacerbated by the all-flush left structure of the text in the comments. This situation causes a visual disconnect between the textural constructs.

Also, while the placement of the topic category is intended to act like a flourish under the title, it seems to break the rhythm between title and the succeeding text. This is probably due to the inclusion of the text in the flourish and that convention requires us to read it as a subhead.

Finally, you need to consider the new user in you abbreviation of the former "Link to this entry." By just saying link does nothing but to cloud the result. Maybe it is that, maybe it is the tight proximity to the Comments link. Nevertheless, it is not an issue of LCD (lowest common denominator); it is that shortening it does not improve the original situation and goes as far as to exclude its use.

Another thought would be to have the name of the author link to their bio.

I have a visual suggestion on these issues that I will email you today.

At first glance I was afraid the left side bar had become a victim of "featuritis" with the amount of information flooding the front page not unlike those god-awful web portals like MSN. But, what I realized is that you have solved a major problem with the previous design. People - including me - were losing sight of the other great features on the site. The interviews, book reviews and business articles were becoming the quiet child in the classroom - not bad, just overlooked. Now, you give us reason to pay attention to them and identifying new entries and limiting the list to three was smart. Hence, your redesign of the side bar is inspired.

Overall, I think the redesign has some strong merits, some others just need a noodge.

Again, Armin, job well done.

On Feb.05.2004 at 10:50 AM
Armin’s comment is:

Joe, I have no response. The thought of being WCAG compliant didn't cross my mind. I have no strong feelings neither pro nor con towards compliance. So, yeah.

Brady, thanks for all the feedback, I'm happy with the way Speak Up is looking, but you know how democratic I am… sometimes.

On Feb.05.2004 at 12:10 PM
.sara’s comment is:

re: logos in the comment windows - a-ha! Well that makes sense. (: Nifty.

On Feb.05.2004 at 01:03 PM