September 23, 2016
I’ve spent the last few weeks tinkering with the style sheets again, making some changes to the thumbnails and images across the whole site. Thumbnails for many images are much larger than before, and the index pages of the major sub-sections now feature larger buttons to make it easier to navigate. And the home page now has a list of the most popular or interesting sub-sections, to make it easier for new visitors to discover different parts of the site.
July 29, 2016
I've been a little busy lately... not with creating stuff for the website, exactly, but something far more exciting. About a year ago, Harry Doddema and I were contacted by Simon Pegg. Yes, that Simon Pegg! Here's the story of how we created vokaya for Star Trek Beyond.
July 18, 2016
It’s been a while again, hasn't it?
Star Trek Beyond comes out in just a couple days, and I’ve got a pretty exciting story to tell! But not just yet. Before Beyond comes out, I thought it would be appropriate to record my thoughts about the Kelvin Timeline movies thus far.
(And as I said on Twitter, dedication is updating your blog manually, one page at a time, when the blogging software decides to stop working. The pages themselves should be fine... I’ll get it fixed next week when the excitement dies down.)
December 26, 2015
How’s this for a surprise Christmas present? It’s another episode of Star Trek: Series ? — a familiar-ish face is running for Federation President in Episode 145: “Revenge of the Singh”!
October 23, 2015
I can't stop tweaking the site styles! I've learned more about how to assign custom fonts using CSS, so I've chosen a new body font instead of boring old Helvetica or Arial. And it should be compatible with (some) older browsers, too.
October 14, 2015
Next up for my methodical update of many individual page layouts: the ever-popular starship size comparison charts. Bigger thumbnails, all the charts on one page, and a much nicer layout on small screens.
October 9, 2015
October 3, 2015
With all the big stuff out of the way, now I can focus on sprucing up some of the individual pages. First, a visual overhaul for Kris’ gallery of Star Trek logos: rather than a boring and hard to browse text list of the emblems, there’s 6 collections with useful thumbnails to find just the right logo! Also, the fonts gallery has been updated to make it easier to download the files. (Some browsers weren’t downloading the font packages, so I just put each one in a .zip file.)
September 29, 2015
I’ll bet you thought I was done with redesigning the site, didn’t you? I just decided not to do all the changes at once—less chance of messing up everything that way! This time, is a big reorganization of several major sections of Star Trek Minutiae. Read on for the details.
When I launched STM in 2000, the site was organized by types of content. My plans at the time were unrealistically broad: I wanted to have sections for canon reference, speculation, fan fiction, opinion, and humor, each neatly grouped together. Over the years, several of these sections grew or declined in prominence, or even spun off into separate websites entirely. The canon reference section became the Memory Alpha wiki, and some of my ideas for fan fiction were incorporated into Star Trek: Renaissance. Eventually, the content still at STM narrowed down to three: speculative articles, the blog, and humor. Then there was the miscellaneous section. Originally, this was intended to be for non-Trek material. Stuff like my all-series ship comparison chart, and other "unclassifiable" material. But a few Trek-related pages were placed there for various reasons (or no reason).
Recently, I’ve realized that while my original ideas made sense from a purely organizational perspective, they made STM harder to browse. The Starfleet Academy section was a neat idea in theory, but the gimmick of writing the articles not just from an in universe perspective, but as college-level essays and syllabi, was ambitious to say the least. (And also a product of my environment; I started STM when I was a freshman in college.) This conceit also made it hard to identify just what the page was about; the archive of Star Trek scripts was particularly egregious, with the obscure title "Literature 329: The One-Hour Television Drama."
The solution to these problems was simple in theory: rename the articles and reorganize them in a more discoverable way. In practice, it took quite a lot of planning to rename the various folders, make sure that all the internal links were updated, and create redirect scripts to preserve external links. But I got it done!
The Starfleet Academy and Miscellaneous sections have been dumped into a blender, then divided out into three new sections: Articles and Essays, Resources and References, and Collected Stories. The individual pages have been renamed with much more sensible titles, making it easier to figure out what you’re going to get when you click the link.
So, it’s not exactly new content, but I think this might make it easier for me to add more stuff in the future. You never know what the future will bring!
September 15, 2015
After a very, very long time, I was recently bitten by the web designing bug again. I realized it was high time to make a site layout that would look good on both a desktop screen and a phone screen. (The last redesign was way back in 2007!)
So, I uploaded all the new pages, style sheets, and images. I fully expect to find a few glitches in my rules. My apologies in advance if there's one that I miss!
...And you never know, this redesign might actually inspire me to create some actual new content sometime soon, too!