I hope you’ve been enjoying the recent redesign of The Solid Signal Blog. This is actually the third completely new design we’ve had since the blog launched in 2007. The first was a very simple Blogger design, but it was pretty impressive back then. The second launched back in 2012 on the vBulletin platform.
vBulletin was state-of-the-art for forum management, and to be honest I really thought we would have a big support forum presence since other peer support sites were so successful in the late 2000s and into 2010. However, it turns out that support forums were on the decline back in 2012, rapidly replaced by Facebook groups and other forms of communication. So, I decided to focus on the blogging capabilities of vBulletin, and that became the Solid Signal Blog design you knew and loved prior to January 24.
By 2018 it was looking a little ragged, I agree. vBulletin had fallen out of favor for support forums and the CMS component (which ran the blog) wasn’t designed for the thousands of articles I’d poured into it. I started fresh with the WordPress platform, which underpins practically every blog you visit today. It’s highly customizable, meaning that I won’t have to start from scratch the next time I want to make it look better.
Back in 2012, the blog looked a little different. vBulletin’s default settings were ok, I suppose, and the blog team had the idea of making the front page look a little like the Detroit Free Press. Also, it was 2012, and putting unnecessary shadows and special effects on everything was still very much in vogue.
A lot of the components I used back then got refined and finessed over time, and I got rid of that awful Old English headline thing, because let’s be honest, no one wants a blog that looks like a newspaper. Still, you can see where I was going with things back then.
If you’re interested in a clickable version of the old blog, check out archive.org’s saved version from March 27, 2012.