I'm beginning to think I missed my calling. Perhaps I should have been a professional web designer. I get a huge kick out of it.
At the same time, a good web designer has to have an eye for layout, understand relationships between elements, have some degree of skill in manipulating images, and be able to put typography to good use. As my wife (and, for that matter, friends from high school) can attest, I love fonts. I sometimes pick them off of signs driving down the road. I am certainly weaker in this area than in the "coding" aspect of web design, but I enjoy it as much or more. Recently, I have found myself studying web sites, admiring the good ones and critiquing the less good ones.
Even more amusingly, I find myself looking at designs and pondering how I could improve them, what I would do to make them compelling and useable.
Over the last three days, I have done a good deal more tweaking to Pillar's back end, yielding a fairly significant change in the front end appearance (go take a look). Along the way, I've puzzled out how to accomplish a number of tasks with Blogger's backend that, in my search across the web in the past have generally been considered difficult or impossible. I have also helped my sister with the site for the bike she works at, Ascent Cycling—I made different header images appear in different pages.
(Never let anyone tell you that Wordpress is more powerful or more customizable than Blogger. It's just easier to customize under certain conditions. I have used both quite a bit, and they both have their pluses and minuses.)
Because I spent a fair amount of mental energy on these puzzles, and because the answers to them, near as I can tell, do not appear anywhere else on the internet, I will be posting a few of them in the next week so that I can help others (just as plenty of other bloggers have helped me along the way). These will be more like reference pages than my normal content, so apologies to my normal readers, but I know the pages will be helpful to others in the future. (Those of you who enjoy messing with blogger may find it interesting!)
[If you're wondering about that essay I mentioned last Saturday, it's about a third done. The content is substantial and it's requiring significantly more time than I expected. That combined with the aforementioned web design efforts has led to a short delay in its publication. Worry not: it is still coming.]