Welcome to Subtraction 8.0

Tonight, I’m unveiling a brand new design for this blog. The old design debuted during the second Bush administration, in an age when people actually used to read weblogs, and when liking something wasn’t the same thing as an acquiescence of your privacy. It’s been a long time, is what I’m saying; nine years in fact. It would have happened sooner — I’ve been wanting to redesign for years — but life intervened. Here’s what it looks like:


Some highlights of the new design:

  • It’s responsive, so it will scale up for large screens and scale down for mobile devices. Be sure to visit this site on your phone or your tablet; I’m really proud of the way it looks on those screens.
  • Images are much bigger and when the aspect ratio is not complementary to the column structure, they’re letterboxed, so that everything looks nice and tidy. This post from Sunday is a good example if you’re looking at this one a very wide screen.
  • The home page now features infinite scroll. This one might be a little tricky; we tried hard to work out all the kinks, so if you find it’s troublesome, please let me know.
  • Comments are gone, as explained last week. That is, the old comments are preserved for posterity, but going forward no new comments will be accepted. Instead, you can use the comment form to send your remarks directly to me, and they will not be published publicly.
  • Web fonts, because it’s the year 2014. I’ve finally jettisoned Microsoft’s ersatz Helvetica clone Arial in favor of Helvetica Neue, and I’m using a serif typeface for the first time, Libre Baskerville.
  • All the old archives have been ported over, but there may be some cleanup left to do, so beware those who dare tread too far into history’s bowels. Also, the archive page itself, while technically comprehensive, is not a great experience for those looking to separate my longer form essays from the many shorter posts that I’ve published over the years. I’ll be revamping that at some point, too.

This is all the result of months of after hours work with my friend Allan Cole, the designer and WordPress developer extraordinaire who collaborated with me on the Basic Maths premium theme several years back.

There are two things you can read into our work here. The first one is that, after starting life many years ago on Blogger.com, then moving to Movable Type, then to ExpressionEngine, this blog is now running on WordPress (hosted at WP Engine). The second implication is that Allan and I are going to follow up on our previous premium theme collaboration with one based on this new design; expect for it to go on sale within a few months. If you want to be notified, sign up for my email list, which you can find just after this post on the home page.

Have a look around, and let me know what you think, though keep in mind that things are still a bit raw. There’s more work to do yet on this new design, and more to write about the process that got me here, so stay tuned for that. And for those who have been reading all through the years, a very sincere thank you.


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