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New functionality as site marks third birthday

1 March 2012

The technology behind this website has progressed significantly since the first version was launched back in 2009. Today, I'm making further changes to many aspects of the site; here's an overview of what's new on Enjoy the View.

Photos

The photos section, at the heart of the site, was totally revamped last year, when all data was moved on to a database and pages became dynamically-generated. Now I'm changing the workflow for preparing and formatting pictures before they are uploaded.

This won't be immediately obvious to visitors on the site, but it will speed up the process of publication, which includes resizing and watermarking images for display online. I'll write more about the new Photoshop routines later this month.

Articles

The articles section is new today and takes the site in a new direction, allowing blog posts and articles to be more neatly integrated within the site structure, alongside photo albums. Initially, I have set up three categories to blog in. These are Cycling, Photography and Travel.

I'm going to see how things pan out and may add further categories as needed. Meanwhile, all previous blog posts, which have until now only been filed under features such as the London to Paris cycle trip, are already listed within the articles section.

Events

Another brand new section of the site is the Events Calendar, currently focussed on London events. I have listed major events, including the Olympics and Notting Hill Carnival, alongside my annual London favourites, such as the Thames Festival and Open House London.

I'll also add interesting exhibitions and other cultural events to the guide in due course. I will be using this section to plan many weekends of entertainment and I hope it will serve you as well. The next three events are listed on the homepage, with further details and a full calendar on the dedicated pages.

Homepage

The homepage is now a more lively and informative place. Previously, only the three latest albums were displayed here, with links to each of the main sections of the site as well.

Now, the homepage looks more like a blog, with all content incorporated in the new layout. The left hand column lists all photos albums, articles and videos, with the most recent additions first. At the very top, two extra boxes now provide direct access to suggested items of interest, updated frequently.

The right-hand column incorporates the upcoming events list, updated daily, as well as direct links to the last twenty photo albums and the last ten articles.

Help

The help section has also been overhauled, with a new news section in which major site updates such as this will be posted. The FAQ page has also been replaced with several subpages referring to different elements of the site.

And, finally, the much-delayed search page has finally gone live, albeit in a beta release while I work on improvements. Currently, the search feature allows you to search albums and articles for your keywords.

I aim to expand this to allow searches through the entire database of photos, based on keywords, location information and EXIF data, which would also be available within albums.

First homepage

The very first homepage, in March 2009

Old homepage

Version 1.2 of the homepage

Old homepage

Version 1.3 of the homepage

New homepage

Version 1.4 of the homepage

Top of new homepage

The brand new homepage, version 1.5

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