is a blog about design, technology and culture written by Khoi Vinh, and has been more or less continuously published since December 2000 in New York City. Khoi is currently Principal Designer at Adobe, Design Chair at Wildcard and co-founder of Kidpost. Previously, Khoi was co-founder and CEO of Mixel (acquired by Etsy, Inc.), Design Director of The New York Times Online, and co-founder of the design studio Behavior, LLC. He is the author of “Ordering Disorder: Grid Principles for Web Design,” and was named one of Fast Company’s “fifty most influential designers in America.” Khoi lives in Crown Heights, Brooklyn with his wife and three children. Refer to the advertising and sponsorship page for inquiries.+
Any Color You Want, So Long As It’s Black (and White)
Straight away, I know some people are just going to hate the color scheme. This is based on established evidence; I had a few people to whom I revealed the design in previews greet it with dimmed enthusiasm, to put it kindly. I really struggled with whether to impose such a stark departure in color on readers, and went back and forth on it several times.
In my early design comps, I tried to imbue the site with a bit of the lush, Aqua-influenced interface aesthetic that has become popular in Web design. This is a style of which I’m a huge fan, and for which I have a great respect, but in the end, I came to the conclusion that it’s not a style for which I’m particularly well suited. I’m much more comfortable with a reductive language, and I decided it was logical to try and embrace that sensibility as much as possible, and have as much fun with it as I can. The black and white palette is an attempt to emphasize that mindset — and satirize it too, a bit. As I mentioned in an earlier post, during the course of production, it’s really grown on me, and I hope it grows on at least a few of you, too.
A Few of My Favorite Things
I had intended to have a few more posts published before relaunching the site that would talk about the various details of the redesign, but time is a thief and I came up a bit short. What I did manage:
- Earlier today I wrote about Internet Explorer’s second-class status
- On New Year’s eve, I wrote about the layout grid that enslaved me while redesigning
- On the 30th, I wrote a little introductory piece on the redesign
There’s more to be said about the rest of the site, but in lieu of full-fledged entries at this point, the things I’m proudest of are the the new Archives page, the monthly archives calendar which looks best when I’ve written lots of posts, and the new Elsewhere ratings system.
Happy New Year!
All weekend, I’ve been rushing to tick items off my list of tweaks for this redesign. I want to go to bed at a reasonable hour tonight, but I also want the site to be in a state that won’t cause me complete embarrassment when someone cleverer than me discovers some glaring mistake I made in getting it launched. The pressure is so preoccupying, I forgot to wish everyone a happy new year. So, happy new year!+