Friday, December 03, 2004

Christian Origins new look again

I mentioned recently the new look for Peter Kirby's Christian Origins pages. Don't forget to have a look at them here:

Text Information Page with Javascript Menus

I must say that I do like the new look, though I wonder whether the candles at the top might look a bit more cheesey with regular viewing than they do now on first viewing. In the past I did rather admire the clean, lean, basic look, a kind of no-nonsense approach that drew attention to the subject matter. But these days one has to signal to one's users, I suppose, that one is bang up to date, and design is a way of alerting users to the importance of the content. I like the javascript menus. They loaded straight away for me (with a broadband connection and using Firefox).

In those menus, I am pleased to see Q now listed among "hypothesized sources". I am less sure about the Gospel of Thomas appearing among "Dialogues with Jesus"; and some would prefer not to see it listed with "Gnostics", but then I see that it is also listed among Apocryphal Gospels.

I am not generally particularly keen on textured backgrounds, but the one chosen here makes it straightforward to see the traditional-style bright blue hyperlinks. The standard text also shows up without too much trouble against this background, but I wonder if it works as well as a straight colour background would.

One other thought. I have been impressed with those who are now using blogging software as their CMS, e.g. The Stoa and the Synoptic Problem Website. This is something I'd like to do for the New Testament Gateway proper when I have time to rework it. On Peter's case, he has something similar in areas like the Gospel of Thomas Commentary, which enables user commentary. Perhaps this would be worth thinking about for the Christian origins websites as a whole.

Anyway, my own thoughts remain enthusiastic -- I'd encourage Peter to go with it.

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