Final To Do List for Site Redesign

Here’s where we are so far in our progress on the earlier established to-do list:

  • Install copy of WordPress on development box
  • Import backup of live site content to provide some content for the development site
  • Create a bare-bones set of template files
  • Review the default CSS before beginning development of custom CSS for new template
  • Setup CSS for basic layout
    • 2-Column wide left, narrow right, approximately 75% – 25% split
    • Site width: 1024px (current width ~800px)
    • This gives almost the same relative widths as the current template, but with an increased overall width, resulting in a wider left column (and right) to give more room for graphics & code as desired.
    • Header will be short, ~ 5% +/- of screen height
    • Footer will be one or two text lines
  • Select color scheme
  • Select photo / graphic / logo for header and develop site-wide navigation in header

I’ve accomplished all the items on the initial plan! Until I was writing this, I hadn’t realized that all the original goals had been accomplished. That’s nice to realize! Goes to show that putting your plans and goals in writing and monitoring them can sometimes lead you to see progress in areas you didn’t realize you were making. That’s a subject for a whole other post. Too much philosophy for this one!

While I have accomplished the original goals, it does not mean that I haven’t changed and/or expanded on them while in progress. Or there may be some minor implementation issues left to finalize.

Here’s what I see still needs to be complete before launch of this redesign:

  • Review plugin use and confirm all are setup
  • Make notes of configuration changes that need to be done inside WordPress admin tool after installation of the template
  • Setup tabs with rounded borders using graphics
  • Check pages for IE support code & GIF graphics for rounded corners
  • Add Latest Posts to sidebar
  • Widen sidebar
  • Finalize color choice in post metadata
  • Consider post date ‘calendar’ format graphic or color change
  •  Expand About page content
  • Posts by Category page needs format still
  • Posts by Date page needs format
  •  Custom Category Templates for each of standard categories (Tools & Techniques) with header lead-in to content
  • Update blogroll and breakdown by category, perhaps using built-in link management system?
  • Add RSS Feed icon & links near top & remove from footer
  • Confirm RSS auto-discovery code is in header
  • About section in sidebar, with photo?
  • Ranking links (Alexa & Technorati)
  • Blogflux links (uptime, directory, mapstats)
  • Feedburner chiclet
  • Stats link codes
  • SEO code
  • Review online version for customizations to back-port to new design
  • Affiliate links (Sedo) others? HitsLink?
  • Last 50 entries on Archive page
  • Mullet Home page?
  • Review for standards compliance

As you can see, even though I have accomplished a lot, there is still much to do. But, most of it is little stuff in general, the details you don’t see or think of, until you get farther along in any project. This is one of the reasons project planning is not an exact science. While an architect can design a house, the carpenter that builds it still have to make a lot of decisions on how to implement the design. Here, I’m the designer and the carpenter.