- Author: Bryon J. Noel
I thought I'd spend a little bit of time each day talking about the different upgrades to the ANR Blogs. Today I wanted to give attention to the ANR Blog Showcase or the Blog Roll. Originally this was a simple list of all the Blogs in alphabetical order. However, this is not very interesting unless you know what Blog you are looking for, nor is it relevant to what is new and what is interesting to people. So we took this opportunity to completely re-do the Blog Roll and turn it into a Blog Showcase.
We wanted something that was visually appealing and showed people the latest posts. So we made the main section to show a thumbnail image of the most recent posts with an image from all the ANR Blogs. The most recent posts are on the top left.
As we were considering the right navigation, we wanted some short lists that showed information from the Blogs in different ways. Some examples of what could be done are most recent posts, posts with the most hits, oldest posts, Blogs with the most posts, Blogs with the least posts, and so on. The difficult part is finding a good balance between all the different Blogs and presenting the showcase with posts from several different of these areas at the same time. The particular balance we were looking for was new posts, popular posts (new or old), and relevant or timely posts. Using these basic ideas this is how the Blog Showcase was born.
Besides these there are quite a few other features that need to be mentioned. Firstly, we needed to have the old fashioned Blog Roll somewhere. So the link to that found it's way in next to "Top Blogs".
Next was the search. It needed to search ALL the ANR Blogs if it was going to sit on the ANR Blog Showcase! Last was the RSS feed. Once again we needed to make sure it included the most recent posts from ALL the Blogs, yet it couldn't be too long as there are over 4000 Blog Posts in the ANR Blogs from the last 4 years.
All in all I am pleased with the way the ANR Blog Showcase came out and hope it presents how well rounded ANR really is!