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Enhancing the enjoyment of taking pictures with news that matters, features that entertain and images that delight. Published frequently.

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3 September 2014

To our site design, we mean. Which has just been updated with a slightly more refined general approach and a new twist to our parade of thumbnails.

The refinement is simply to knock out the color in our lists of links. We like the more standard approach in our stories because it makes the links easy to spot. But on the headlines pages, that left column of blue and purple was distracting us from the images. Not a good thing on a site devoted to photography.

Now that they are dark gray (and will stay that way, even if you click on them), they are less distracting. Easy to read but less needy. We liked it so much we used the approach on our fixed menus on the right, too.

We found a lot of old stories to highlight and the new scheme makes it a breeze to fly through them.

Our parade of thumbnails was intended to highlight some of our older but still useful (or just amusing) stories. They get forgotten in the Archive and lost on the headlines pages.

But the auto-scrolling parade of sliding thumbnails, simple as it is, had a few issues. It's processor intensive and you can't control it. And it means we have to update the style sheet when we change the number of thumbnails.

So we experimented and experimented and finally decided to use a scrolling row of thumbnails. No arrows at the end, no animation. No JavaScript, just a little CSS to present a window of three at a time that you can simply scroll backwards and forwards instantly. If you're using a tablet, you can swipe back and forth quickly.

Either way, you're in control.

We like that a lot better. So much so, we stayed up late to make a bunch of new thumbnails for it. Which seem to load very quickly, but we'll keep an eye on it.

We found a lot of old stories to highlight and the new scheme makes it a breeze to fly through them. The temptation to use it like a big old bucket is strong, but editors are paid to be selective. We may rotate them, categorize them, celebrate certain themes, who knows.

Time for a little nap to dream a bit more about it.

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