Very soon, this site is going to look a lot different. It's more than just the new logo that we showed you a little while back. All of the SBNation team/school/conference sites are going to go through their biggest changes since SBN itself has existed. It's going to be awesome.
This post is fairly image-heavy, so I'm packing it all after the jump so as not to slow down the home page. The images aren't of our site specifically; we were given sample images from various sites around the network to show off so you don't have to suffer through my subpar screenshotting technique. Just imagine these have our new logo and colors.
Follow along to see what the changes are going to look like.
The layout of the sites is changing, with featured stories at the top and a list of other stories below it. Here is a rather large and zoomed out screenshot of what the whole page will look like.
Part of the new functionality is that we will have the freedom to change the layout as the news warrants. In regular situations, we might have a three-paned header that looks like this:
On weekend game days when a lot is going on, we might have five featured stories at the top, like this:
If there's really big news out, like Danny Sheridan at last finding the bag man or Virginia Tech and NC State finally joining the SEC, there might be just one featured story at the top. We have some flexibility there that benefits both us and you. We can show off what we think is most important, and you won't have any trouble finding said important stuff. Management consultants would refer to this as a "win-win".
RESPONSIVE DESIGN FOR MOBILE
If you're not a web design geek, you probably don't know what "responsive design" means. It's easier to show you. Have a look at the Boston Globe website if you're on a browser your desktop or laptop. Now resize your browser horizontally from as thin as it goes to as wide as it goes. Pretty cool, huh?
In practical terms, it means that there will no longer be a mobile version of the sites. Ever been on your phone, tablet, or computer and gotten the mobile version when you wanted the full version or vice versa? No more. There is only one version, and it will adapt to what your screen needs. On a phone, it'll look something like this:
On a tablet, it will look something like this (note: this is scrolled below the featured stories; they'll still be there):
And on your computer, it'll look like the screenshots in the images from the previous section. It's all done with one URL so you don't have to worry about mobile vs. desktop sites.
If you've spent any time on SBNation.com, you've probably seen a storystream. Here's an example of one. They are what they sound like: a container that has a stream of content updated on a particular topic. They make it easy to follow the development of a single story through time. The SBN mothership has had them for a while, but now we get them too. StoryStreams with the new style will look a bit like this:
FANPOSTS AND FANSHOTS
These are your way to share things with the readers of this site (if those things follow the community guidelines, of course), and they are still going to be around. They're just going to get a visual spruce up like everything else. Here, for example, is what the FanShot section will look like:
WHAT'S NOT CHANGING
Each SBN site will still retain its unique kind of individuality after the change. Tomahawk Nation and EDSBS and Bruins Nation will all have these new layouts and visual stylings, but you certainly won't mistake one of them for another. The factors for why you love to come to our sites are still going to be there after the tech guys flip the big switch in the server farm.
We're very excited about the new
toys to play with tools to make this site better, and we hope you will be too. This is a big step forward for all the SBN sites, and it will only continue to make SBN the best place for sports on the web.