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Observations

Observations

Opinion, arguments & analyses from the editors of Scientific American

A fresh look for the Scientific American Web site

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If you're reading this from a feed via a viewer, click on over to the Scientific American Web site and take a look at our redesign. Last night, we took the old site offline at around 10 P.M. ET and relaunched with a brand-spanking-new look.

 

Web sites change all the time, of course. Our last major overhaul was in 2008, with a minor, blink-and-you-missed-it change in 2009. With this redesign, however, we hope we've made things easier to read, especially the linked text. We reorganized the content to be more user-friendly and simplified the navigation. We've also added a sharing tool to the "Latest Headlines" module; you can see the most commented stories or the most popular. (It may take a few minutes for your browser to respond properly.) You can also play videos directly on the home page now.

 

Our main entry point on the home page is something called "Today's Science Agenda." More than just an area to feature content, it acts as a crib sheet of sorts, letting you know why a story should matter to you and giving you the main source or location.

 

If you read Scientific American in print, you'll also notice that the October 2010 issue comes out with a great new redesign as well. No coincidence of course--we planned to have both the site and magazine share a common look and feel, with a unified editorial mission. Today's Web site relaunch and the October issue represent the culmination of more than a year's worth of planning and work.

 

And we're not stopping here, either. In the near future, expect to see other new content and functions. Some of you already know we are planning to flesh out our blogs and launch a major science blogging network.

 

No overhaul of a site goes completely smoothly, and the online crew has been busy debugging and troubleshooting all day. I hope the glitches do not detract too much from the user experience. Please let us know if you find such problems by commenting.

 

Finally, I cannot thank enough staff members who were deeply involved in the redesign amid their regular duties here. They may not have bylines, but we couldn't produce a Web site without them: Angela Cesaro, Mike Kelly, Ryan Reid, Carey Tse and, especially, our nuts-and-bolts guys Tony Moy and Nick Sollecito. Thanks, all.

 

Philip Yam

Managing Editor, Online

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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