Translink Buzzer Blog

Redesigned Buzzer blog launches Monday: watch out for some downtime!

A mockup of the new Buzzer blog design!

A mockup of the new Buzzer blog design!

Get ready to see a bright new Buzzer blog look on Monday!

We’re launching the redesigned Buzzer blog, which I must say is very pretty and much more functional.

The changeover will mean blog downtime on Monday starting at 9 a.m., and that might take a few hours depending on how things go.

As you all suggested, the new blog design is wider, incorporates the illustration and colours of the Buzzer print issue, and has more useful navigation tools, like related posts, next/previous post links, and a promo box in the right side.

And omg, we finally have a captcha to help fight spam!!!! Feel free to post links to your heart’s content now: I won’t have to approve them!!

Sadly, the ability to edit comments was too big for the scope of this redesign—it would require registration, which I’m loath to make you do—but the demand is duly noted, and should there be any more improvements scheduled in the future, I’ll certainly see what we can make happen!

Update, Mon June 21, 2:33 p.m..

For those interested, here’s a list of all the changes made to the Buzzer blog, besides the obvious overall redesign.

– Share/print/font size widget added (as suggested by Sean T)
– Captcha (to help stop spam)
– Next and previous items added to each post
– Related posts added to each post
– Free-form content box in the right rail (lets me suggest articles!)
– Weekly poll in the right rail (a suggestion from Rubai)
– Like/dislike function added to comments (more ways to interact!)
– When you click my name below a post, it goes to the About section


36 Comments

  • By Cliff, June 18, 2010 @ 8:34 pm

    Why not simply make registration optional with one of the benefits the ability to edit?

    Anon comments could simply continue not having the ability to edit (though I don’t see why it can’t be done via IP address).

  • By Daniel, June 18, 2010 @ 9:39 pm

    Is the new look gonna be on the buzzer app too?

  • By ;-), June 18, 2010 @ 10:08 pm

    I’m looking forward to testing it…. Vista, Win 7, Bolt, Opera Mini and Blackberry. I hate to lose functionality.

    Perhaps you have opened up a little play area a few weeks early to work out the bugs for you.

  • By Paul C, June 19, 2010 @ 5:28 am

    @Jhenifer

    I assume the RSS feeds addresses won’t be changed by this?

  • By ;-), June 19, 2010 @ 6:50 am

    I just realized, if we go wider. I will have to get a new phone for the blog. Thankfully the Torch is around the corner.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5NCgaEsg1c
    http://crackberry.com/blackberry-torch-9800-slider

  • By Ric, June 20, 2010 @ 11:12 am

    Why would the ability to edit comments require registration?

  • By ???, June 20, 2010 @ 12:18 pm

    Registration would mean we could only edit our own comments and not another posters. Although there have been many times I wish I could edit or delete the spam we had.

    Registration generally means comments will be a higher quality, but may discourage participation by new people.

    Not sure how captcha is going to make that much of a difference as not all spam appears to be automated. Being able to flag spam would be helpful.

  • By SkyTrainBoy348, June 20, 2010 @ 1:53 pm

    Oh wow!!!
    That’s exactly how I wanted to see it. Now it really looks like it also part of TransLink (even though the logo is there on the old look of the blog) but I eman really, it really looks good.

  • By ;-), June 21, 2010 @ 5:38 am

    With 3 hrs to go…. goodbye old friend.

  • By J Lowe, June 21, 2010 @ 11:54 am

    This is soooo cool!!!

  • By Johnny Walker, June 21, 2010 @ 12:03 pm

    I really like this!

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 21, 2010 @ 12:46 pm

    Cliff: Good suggestion about optional registration! I’ll raise that one with the web team. From our end, I do know that registration raises a lingering concern about data collection/privacy — ie: through registration we’re collecting and holding onto e-mail addresses/IP info, which we don’t really need. I’ll mention this to our legal dept though and see what they have to say.

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 21, 2010 @ 12:48 pm

    Daniel: the app is a third party service, so it doesn’t have the same design. I could let the developer know that we’ve updated the look though.

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 21, 2010 @ 12:49 pm

    Paul C: RSS and URLs should remain untouched by the redesign.

  • By RoundTop, June 21, 2010 @ 1:19 pm

    any news about a mobile version? the old site worked for the most part on blackberries, but this new one has a lot more images.

  • By ;-), June 21, 2010 @ 2:05 pm

    It’s alive!

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 21, 2010 @ 2:07 pm

    RoundTop: Argh, no plans for a mobile version as of now. I do know that an item on the big to-do list is how to make the whole TransLink website mobile friendly, so perhaps the Buzzer will get upgraded as a result.

  • By Caleb, June 21, 2010 @ 2:12 pm

    Thankfully this blog no longer looks like a donkey’s behind… :)

  • By Eddie, June 21, 2010 @ 2:39 pm

    Nice to see the letters in the Captcha are easily recognizable. On many sites the Captcha simply looks like a scribble.

  • By Jhen @ TransLink testing, June 21, 2010 @ 2:45 pm

    Let’s try posting URLs! Will the new comment settings let them through?

    http://www.google.com
    http://www.translink.ca

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 21, 2010 @ 2:46 pm

    ;-):

    So neat: since your comment has been upvoted like 8 times, it’s highlighted in yellow!

    Let’s try downvoting this comment and see what it does.

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 21, 2010 @ 2:47 pm

    Oh wait, I don’t think it’ll work, since I’ve already got a different colour behind my messages.

    I’ll downvote the URL testing comment I did above.

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 21, 2010 @ 2:49 pm

    Oh, if you downvote something 3x or more, it will hide your comment!

    Edit: I stand corrected. If the (number of likes) – (number of dislikes) = -3, comments will be hidden. I’ll have to put a note up explaining this!

  • By Tessa, June 21, 2010 @ 2:53 pm

    Shiny shiny! Love the new look, Jhenifer!

  • By ;-), June 21, 2010 @ 3:00 pm

    Hey wait, this down vote -3 might be the perfect thing for SPAM control. If it is hidden, can Jhen unhide it?

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 21, 2010 @ 3:09 pm

    ;-):

    This really could be used to tackle spam. I can certainly delete the spam after it’s downvoted off the page for sure. The captcha will also help guard against the spam presence.

    However, I can’t seem to unhide comments that have been possibly “unworthily demoted” — you just have to upvote them again.

    If you’re curious, the comment rating plugin documentation is found here: http://wealthynetizen.com/wordpress-plugin-comment-rating/

  • By James Santibañez, June 21, 2010 @ 5:29 pm

    I love the new look of the Buzzer Blog. It’s nice :)

  • By Cliff, June 21, 2010 @ 7:35 pm

    The good:

    CAPTCHA. That will take care of 90% of spammers.
    Better integration with the main TransLink site. Being able to access bus schedules and the like.

    The bad: Black on white is hard on the eyes. A little grey would be nice.

  • By Jacob, June 21, 2010 @ 8:50 pm

    Wow, Great new look! Is it you that did all this, Jhenifer?
    It looks wonderful!!!

  • By Joey Connick, June 22, 2010 @ 12:36 am

    Why aren’t you using reCAPTCHA? We should be helping to digitize books!

  • By zack, June 22, 2010 @ 10:57 am

    Wow!! This new buzzer blog website looks super!! Congrats to Jhen and the Buzzer Blog team!! :)

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 22, 2010 @ 1:57 pm

    Jacob: I didn’t do all this: I made optimization suggestions and our web team did the rest.

    Joey: I don’t know why we’re not using reCAPTCHA: the web team just chose a captcha for the blog! I’ll send along your suggestion though.

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, June 23, 2010 @ 3:21 pm

    Cliff: the colours follow the TransLink website design, so sadly there’s not a lot to be done about it. Duly noted though!

  • By Cliff, June 24, 2010 @ 12:28 am

    Ah, too bad. There’s a way of changing it just for me, though. There’s a walk through out there somewhere, let me see if I can find it…

  • By James Aldama, June 24, 2010 @ 12:56 pm

    Jhennifer,
    I really like this new look of the buzzer blog. It really does match the looks of the main TransLink site. You should give yourself a pat on the back Jhennifer. It really looks nice. I really love it. :)

Other Links to this Post

  1. The Buzzer blog » Recaptcha! — November 30, 2010 @ 5:05 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

Please read our Participation Guidelines before you comment.