4 Hugues Ross - Blog: Site Update: Updated software page and more
Hugues Ross


Site Update: Updated software page and more

Last week, I mentioned that I would start posting content on non-tutorial weeks. Now, it's time to make good on that.

I was stuck home sick this week, so I took the opportunity to make some improvements to my site. Some of the changes are obvious, but others are much more subtle so let's take a closer look. Generally, the changes can be broken up into three categories:

Accessibility Improvements

When building my site, I didn't really put too much thought into it beyond how it looked. On a whim, I decided to toss my site's HTML into the W3C Markup Validator, and found its structure lacking.

The two main issues were the misuse of headings and missing alt text on images. In a few places, such as the notes in my tutorials, I was using <h1> tags. <h#> tags have a number that indicates their "level" in the document, like so:




...and so on. The numbers in these tags are used by screen readers and other applications, so it's good practice to ensure that the headings reflect the structure of the page. In my case the stray <h1> tags were breaking the structure, so I changed/removed the offending tags.

Alt text on images is the text that is displayed if the image doesn't load or you're viewing a page in a program that doesn't handle images, the alt text is displayed. Since the images on my site had no alt text, they would effectively be missing if my site were put through a screen reader. Fixing this was pretty simple, since it was just a matter of going through and adding some simple descriptions where applicable.

For the average visitor, these changes are essentially invisible. However, if I ever get any visits from someone who's visually impaired then these changes will hopefully make their life a little bit easier.

Updated Software Page

This change was a long time coming. Ever since I gave the Games Page a fresh coat of paint back in September, I've been meaning to do the same for the Software Page. I've replaced the old design with the one currently used for the Games Page and I've also added some more entries, for a new count of 5.

Right now, there isn't too much content in each entry. I'm still trying to decide what I want to put there, and I also need to get some screenshots/logos for my software. In the meantime, it's still a step up from how things looked before:
The software page (before)
The software page (after)

Mobile-Friendly Styling

Another thing that I'd been meaning to do for a while was making the site responsive. For the uninitiated, responsive websites are sites that can adapt their design to different screen sizes and orientations. Obviously, this is quite important for any site that receives mobile traffic.

A before and after comparison of the site's responsive CSS.
Now, almost all of the content on the site is responsive (there are still one or two exceptions).

Along with the above changes, I've also tried to make the site's text a little more readable by increasing the font size and line spacing. It's a small change, but from my experience it makes reading the content easier on the eyes.

If you have any feedback regarding the changes, feel free to email me or leave a comment below.

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