Some Website Changes

25 Jul 2010Steve Schwarz

I’ve made some changes to the AgilityNerd web site in which you might be interested.

Look and Feel

If you aren’t reading this on the web site you’ll be missing its “bluer” look; I was getting tired of the grays. I also removed some of the black lines surrounding things to “open up” the look of the page. A more subtle change is a slight increase in spacing between lines of text, I think it helps with the readability of the posts.

Paid Advertisment

I was recently contacted by the publisher of Emelie Johnson Vegh and Eva Bertilsson’s book Agility Right From the Start (ARFTS) about placing an advertisement on this blog. I had blogged about how much I enjoyed their seminar and assume that was what attracted them to me.

I have blogged in the past about how I wrestled with supporting the operating costs of this blog and Googility. Thus far I have resisted putting advertising on my blog; I don’t want anyone to question my impartiality if I review seminars and products. I get requests about every month to write paid blog posts or recommend some product/web site. So apart from my affiliate ad/link to CleanRun I haven’t accepted any ads.

So I had to think about placing the ARFTS ad. I decided that since I wrote my positive post about their seminar before being contacted about the advertisement it didn’t influence my blog post and shouldn’t appear to anyone that I wasn’t being objective when I wrote that article. I also believe that the book is a valuable asset for agility trainers, if I didn’t I wouldn’t have accepted the ad either.

So to make a long story short, for the next few months you’ll see the cover of their book on the top right of every page on my blog. It is a link to their website through which you can see more about the book and it now has videos illustrating some concepts described in the book.

Facebook Comments

A week or so ago I also added the ability for readers to leave comments either by my existing comment system or via Facebook hosted comments. My current comments are stored on my web server and update the counts of comments and recent comments displayed in the sidebars next to my articles. The FB comments are stored on their servers and right now don’t impact my sidebar listings.

I have so many FB readers that I thought adding the FB comments would make it easier for them to comment on a blog post. You don’t need a FB account to use my comment system or the FB system. FB comments can be posted to the commentor’s wall and allows for “liking” a post.

The only problem I’ve seen with the FB comments is that recent comments appear and sometimes disappear on the page. It seems that the FB servers won’t always send the comment to the browser. I’m speculating it has to do with which FB server each browser happens to contact. FB distributes their data across thousands of servers worldwide. So a given comment may not have propagated to all the servers from which it might be supplied. So that is kind of irritating if you are commenting on a comment and it isn’t always visible!

I hope you like these changes.

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