Ben is a lifelong Nintendo fan who likes to build websites, and make video games. He buys way too much Lego.
JazJaz.net was the winner of my links competition and his main prize was a permanent review on my site, so I thought it was about time I pulled my finger out and wrote the thing.
First some background. JazJaz.net is a blog consisting of a multitude of short, pop culture inspired, articles. Many are geeky, many are daft, but all are interesting (to me at least). The reason I picked JazJaz as the winner of the competition was simply that his site had the content I found most enjoyable.
Things I like
- The content. I know I said it above but the content is great. It’s actually almost a tumbleblog style affair but without the mindless nonsense and just the geeky goodness I love
- The design. I realise the site is built on WordPress, and I realise it uses a theme which itself is the offspring of two other themes, but the design works well.
Things I would change
- The design. As I said above I like the design, but I think it could be improved. To improve things I would make two changes. I would switch to a single column format, placing the navigation at the bottom of the page, and I would change the colour of the header. What these changes would do is firstly distance the site from the theme, giving it more of a personality, and it would place more of the focus on the content – and that’s the key to a site of this type. Also I would move the (very recently added) Google ads from within the content as I feel they distract from the stuff I am trying to read.
- More user/ community features. Whilst writing this review I have noticed a myBlogLog widget appear, which is a nice little addition, and other features to encourage commenting would be great eg recent comments or top commentors. Before anyone says anything, I realise that too many of these types of things can be detrimental, but used in a careful way (in moderation) I think they can be a nice addition.
- Tags – A site like this is the perfect chance to make use of tags for categorising the content. Tags work best when there is a wide variety of different content so would slot in nicely here. If you’re going to use tags I think it’s better to start sooner rather than later since you really don’t want to have to go back and add tags retrospectively – and with WordPress 2.3 around the corner, there is no better time to start!