EdTittel.com Gets a Makeover

OK, so I’ve finally caught up with prevailing Web practice, by switching my personal Website (http://edtittel.com) over from the Open Source Joomla content management system (CMS) to a WordPress based site built around the Graphene theme. Here’s what the new banner at the top of each page looks like now:

EdTittel.com page banner

EdTittel.com page banner

The menus include a top line, left-to-right menu bar just below the page banner, that includes links to the Home page, downloads (called EdFiles), a Services menu and Rate Sheet entries for would-be customers, a Portfolio of books, and the obligatory Contact information. Here’s what the left-hand menu looks like, truncated after my most recent Twitter post (@EdTittel):

Left hand page menu for EdTittel.com

Left hand page menu for EdTittel.com

What this menu does is to logically divide up the site content by topic, starting with basic site stuff at the top (Home, Featured Books, and Letters from the Ed), then going into areas scavenged from my Win7View.com site (Hardware Reviews; Tips, Tricks, and Tweaks; and the ViztaView.com Archive: all collections of articles from another Website I rolled into this one to save time, effort, and money). After that there’s a collection of RSS feeds for my various blogs at TechTarget (Enterprise Windows Desktop and IT Career JumpStart) and PearsonITCertification (IT Certification Success aka “Ed Tittel’s IT Certification Success”). At the very bottom is a list of my 3 or 4 most recent tweets, which I use to report on hardware and troubleshooting activities, and to announce publication of articles and books, and blog postings.

The main body of the page is set to the lower right, and includes a “sticky” item (always present on the page) called “About Ed” that gives an abbreviated version of my professional bio, and concludes with a link to my complete professional bio. Underneath that on a rotating basis, the four most recent postings to the site blog (aka “Letters from the Ed” — namely, me!) appear as well. My idea in putting this together as you see it is to make it easy for site visitors to learn about me and to dig more deeply in to my current or recent online activities through blogging and Twitter. The Services and Rate Sheet links make it easy for people thinking about hiring me to see what I can do for them, and what I’ll want to charge them. The EdFiles link gives ready access to my current resume and a list of publications, the Portfolio lets them see cover shots and get links to my most popular books, and Contact helps them get in touch with me, if that is their wish.

There’s also a jQuery based rollover widget that we’ve used to setup a rotating list of my 5 most recently-published books, which I captured while the eponymous book entry for this very site was showing (by no coincidence whatsoever):

jQuery rollover widget
This jQuery rollover widget rotates listings with cover shots and text blurbs for my 5 most recent books

jQueryWisdom has a great tutorial on this entitled “Create Amazing Rollover Effect with jQuery and CSS,” where you too can learn how to put something like this together for your own site if you like.

All in all I’m very happy with the way the new look and feel has come together, and I feel like I’ve tied a lot of loose ends from previous iterations of this and other sites together under an attractive and highly functional WordPress interface. Do feel free to drop me a line and share your feedback and questions with me, and I’ll be happy to respond.

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