Open Space Face Lift!

December 12, 2011  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd

Hey, what do you think of our new look? I have to say, I’m awful pleased with what we’re looking at — however, I’m not the only one who needs to be happy here, and we’re in a beta frame of mind about this, so I hope some of you will give us feedback on the new look and the new functionality. Our main goals were to make it easier to access the FABULOUS CONTENT our writers have been producing over the last four years, and to better highlight those writers and contributors. We also wanted a cleaner, lighter, more, uh, “open” look. Spend some time clicking around to see what’s different. Details on some of the new features:

Recent Contributors: We’ll still have our rotating cohort of columnists each season. Rather than a static display of just those columnists, however, our Contributors widget will now float the most recent contributor to the top of the list, so when alumni post in, you’ll know this at a glance.

Excerpts rather than full posts on landing pages and in search results: The biggest complaint we received about the old site were the long posts on landing pages, which made it difficult to see what was new or to weed through search results. We worked to design the excerpts as formatting-friendly and flexible for our columnists, and regularized just enough to give readers an easier time scrolling for what they want to read.

A more prominent Search Box! (up there, top right)

We cleaned up our sidebar. What was a big mess of categories and links has been consolidated into seven click-throughs in a table of contents, and two tidy drop-down lists for our extensive local and extra-local link lists.

Archive Widget: Currently on every page but the landing page. This box randomly features a post from the archive whenever you refresh the page.

Contributors Page: We finally built one. An easy to read and search list of everyone who’s ever written or produced something for Open Space, with links to their content. Ever-growing.

Thanks so much to everyone who has worked so hard getting this together! Bosco Hernandez, Daniel Amara, and Jennifer Sonderby for design; Matt Glaser/Squonk Studios for the tech; and all of my SFMOMA colleagues for their genius (and patience) in thinking through the details with me. Special thanks to Chad Coerver, Dana Mitroff-Silvers, Andrew Delaney, Stella Lochman, Megan Brian, and Georgie Devereaux; and especially Dana Cohen, whose attention, inventiveness, and hard labor in the digital trenches have been invaluable. Let us know what you think! Form, function, plus content — is there anything you’d like to be seeing more, or less, of during the coming year?



  1. Dorothy Santos Says:

    I love the new look of Open Space and the Contributors page is fantastic. Congrats on the wonderful new virtual space.

  2. Suzanne Says:

    Thank you, Dorothy!

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