Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Sidebar Redesign & Other Administrative Minutiae

Yesterday, I uploaded a redesign of the blog sidebar. Please take a look. Besides reducing the amount of material, information is now more tightly focused on Arizona politics.

The Arizona candidates section is greatly expanded and enhanced with all statewide, Congressional and state legislative districts listed. If you know of Democratic candidates who were inadvertantly left out, please let me know. If there is sufficient demand, I may add more races to the tables, such as races in major counties and cities.

Only Democrats will be listed. This is an unabashedly Democratic site. No GOP or third-party candidates will be listed. Ever.

Instead of textual links I have opted for graphical icons to conserve space and ease visual interpretation. The icons are fairly self-explanitory, I hope. In order to see what an icon links to, just place your cusor over the icon, pause for a second, and a tool tip box will appear. Those candidates running Clean Elections campaigns are marked with a "Clean!" icon, of course.

The smaller graphics and coding of the tables allows for a quick, progressively rendered, load. This should result in a more responsive site with less wait time and more consistent display of elements. Please leave any comments on the new design on this post.

The Blogroll is now reserved for Arizona-based political sites. Please allow the tool tips for listings to appear before clicking through, unless you are already familiar with a listed blog. I have chosen to include several of the better written Conservative Arizona blogs for completeness of coverage. Such blogs are noted in the tool tips. Failing to allow the tool tip to display could result in inadvertent, and unwanted, contact with many faulty premises - and we all know how ugly that can get, especially if the blogger has commenting available :)

I have eliminated Amazon book sales from the sidebar. Loading the links was taking too long and too few readers were availing themselves of the recommendations. Henceforth book purchase links will only occur in the context of book review or publication announcement post.

This site does incur regular hosting fees. If you find Blog For Arizona useful and informative, please consider a teeny-tiny little donation via the Amazon honor system tip jar on the sidebar.

You can also help promote this site. Just download, print and hang Blog For Arizona promotional posters, also on the sidebar, where the public can see them. Libraries, bookstores, coffee shops, public bulletin boards, and performance spaces are ideal.

Please always ask permission before hanging a poster. These posters are great attention getters, and anyone who dislikes the Bush Administration will gladly agree to hang one in their place of business. The posters with white backgrounds work fine in B&W to reduce duplication costs, while those with solid color background are best in color.

There is also now a script to send a story link via email. Just click on the perma-link (the date and time of posting) at the bottom of any posting. The first link in the sidebar will then read "Email This Entry to a Friend". Clicking on it will open a precomposed email in your default email application, ready for you to address. Doing this also helps to promote Blog For Arizona.

A hearty thanks to all of you regular readers of Blog For Arizona who have driven this site's traffic well past where it was at the height of the Dean primary campaign. I'm grateful for the opportunity to share views and information with so many of my fellow citizens.

If you have news and information you would like to share (especially good inside baseball of Arizona politics) or would like to become a contributing writer of Blog For Arizona, my email is on the sidebar; drop me a line anytime.


At 1:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mike, as per these posting rules, please remove Sylvia Laughter from your list of "Democrats" running for AZ State Legislature in District 2. Laughter is not a Democrat; she is an Independent who caucuses with Republicans. In fact, she used to be a democrat but was bought off with committee assignments by the Republicans in the legislature. She's a turncoat and we're working as hard as we can to defeat her.

Jeremy Young

At 1:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Also, Ben Jankowski failed to qualify for the ballot for U.S. Senate. Stu Starky is the only Democratic candidate in that race.

Otherwise, this is an amazing resource. Thanks a lot.



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