Wednesday 12th March, 2008 - 09:41am
So, there we go. On Sunday I finally pushed a major update to the site. No doubt many of you will already have noticed some of the changes, but you've probably not seen them all. Here's a quick run-down of some of the things that have changed:
- The latest and greatest reviews on any given page are now highlighted in cute little speech bubbles.
- The user's page has had a big revamp. You now get to easily see how many reviews a user has written and rated, what level they're at and some of their most recent and best reviews. I hope you think this page is as big an improvement as I do.
- Review pages are similarly improved, with the addition of a wikipedia module to many pages (and more as I add them). These help give you a little bit of extra information about the thing that's being reviewed.
- Category pages are also a lot cleaner, and have reviews grouped by initial. It turns out that there's been a movie reviewed on the site for each letter of the alphabet!
- When new users sign up they now receive an email welcoming them to the site, and their default icon is based on the first character of their username, rather than just getting a question mark like they used to.
- The front-end has had a revamp to improve performance. The backend will be getting one shortly.
- The ten users who have gained the most points in the previous week will not see any adverts on the site. The only exception to this are the Amazon adverts which let you buy the specific thing that's being reviewed on that page. Those get exemption because they're actually likely to be useful.
- The "user area" in the top right of every page now shows the number of points you've gained in the last week, rather than your total number of points.
- Likewise, the main users page now shows the top ten users fort the last week, rather than of all time. This had been starting to look like no-one could catch up with the old guys there! Of course, the all time list is still available.
- The weighting of reviews has changed too. I know this is going to be an unpopular decision, but things have been changed so that "mediocre" is now the median rating, rather than good. What this means is that good is something to aim for, rather than assuming that it'll always be achieved. However, this change does not negatively affect anyone, because...
- Previously terrible and mediocre reviews lost the user some points. Now, they don't. Instead everything other than terrible will gain you points. The way it's worked out, pretty much everyone on the site will now have more points than they had before. More people also now have amazing reviews than they did before.
- Each category page has a "What's Hot" section which highlights the things that have been being reviewed lots recently. Why not use these as a way of choosing something to review yourself?
- The archive pages now show a lot more stats about the time period they show. I love this sort of thing.
So, there you have it. Lots of improvements. Lots of changes.
I don't get to say this often enough, but I love the community that's build up here. You guys really are the people who make the site. Like I say in the footer, I just help look after it. But there's more you could do! I'm sure you all have a bunch of friends who would enjoy the site as well, and it would be wonderful if you could bring them in. The more people who join the community, the better the site will become.
So, before I ramble on too long I'm going to bring this post to a close. Thankyou to all of you, and here's to many more years of amazing reviews.