Version 10 has been retired here.

Design break­down and inter­view about this ver­sion at Perishable Press, on the Minimalist Web Design Showcase.

Introducing the tenth ver­sion of equivocality.com.

Surgical Style

When approach­ing 10.0, I knew I want­ed a note­book feel, so I used a grid back­ground to give the hint of paper. The idea was min­i­mal­ism. Single col­umn, no more icons, and super stripped-down meta data.

It’s still based on the good old 480 pix­el-wide col­umn, although it’s bro­ken down into a grid with two main columns, which is used for the foot­er and oth­er vary­ing pages. The dates on the left side are bul­lets that break out of the grid to help visu­al­ly sep­a­rate entries, and for a bit of style. Otherwise, it can be a lit­tle bor­ing.

Moving on from 9.0

Version 9.0 was pre­sent­ed with­out fan­fare. It was more of an evo­lu­tion than a rev­o­lu­tion; I reor­ga­nized the grid to be sym­met­ri­cal, increased the over­all con­trast, and mod­i­fied the head­er, but that was it.

It last­ed about two weeks.

Even though I had ver­sion 8.0 going for a cou­ple of months, it did­n’t last as long as I hoped. The emp­ty space start­ed to annoy me, and it was­n’t clean enough. The hol­i­days gave me a lit­tle time to make 9.0 from scratch, both design and code, and doing this, even though I changed it soon after, gave me a good direc­tion of where I want­ed to go.

A Return To Form

One day, I was look­ing at my old sites and came across ver­sion 4.0, cre­at­ed back in 2005. I was blown away by the ele­ments I used, before I ever read any design books. It made me won­der why I changed it in the first place. Those were the days of Movable Type, with tiny grey type on a black back­ground, and it was my most pop­u­lar design.

This design close­ly resem­bles 4.0, except the colours are invert­ed. Of course, a few ama­teur­ish mis­takes have been fixed, typog­ra­phy has been tweaked, and there’s no more dou­ble-col­umn lay­out that cre­ates unbal­ance from one being short­er than the oth­er.

Hello Arial

The base font for text has changed from Verdana to Arial. While both are sans-serif fonts, the low­er cap height com­bined with more rigid curves of Arial cre­ate a mod­ern, indus­tri­al feel. I flirt­ed with the idea of going with com­plete­ly web-safe fonts for titles as well, but I could­n’t give up on Avenir which is a part of the equivocality.com iden­ti­ty now.

Goodbye Scriptaculous

No more Scriptaculous menu effects. As fun as they were, they could be extreme­ly slow on old­er sys­tems. They also added extra Javascript run­time libraries to the load time, and did­n’t work in Opera. The trade-off was­n’t worth it.


Sections have been re-orga­nized. The About page now hous­es the Colophon and Contact info.

My Twitter update bar has been dropped, and placed in the Asides sec­tion, along with my most recent flickr pho­tos. I still Twitter as furi­ous­ly as ever now.

Lighter, Brighter, Life

As things become clear­er in my life, I’m begin­ning to make bold­er state­ments. The grey-on-grey of 8.0 start­ed to feel too bland after a while, even though it was more than a 60% con­trast. (I can remem­ber my first designs, host­ed on friends servers before equivocality.com even exist­ed, and they were most­ly black.)

Lighter, Brighter, Life” has been the tagline for my designs since 7.0, but real­ly, it was all some­what rel­a­tive. This is the first time — ever — that I’ve gone with a pure #fff back­ground. I want­ed some­thing even lighter, and more airy with high­er con­trast. As a result, entry titles are one weight heav­ier than before, and text is pure black.


Hard to believe that equiv­o­cal­i­ty is in it’s tenth incar­na­tion. I real­ized that my re-designs come from a want for sim­plic­i­ty, and a want for com­plex, well-orga­nized intri­ca­cy, which are some­what con­tra­dic­to­ry. When I get tired of one, I make a new lay­out for the oth­er. I’d love to be able to just stick with one design, but it’s in my blood to tweak.

I’m extreme­ly hap­py with this ver­sion, but his­to­ry has taught me that this may change soon enough.


equivocality.com version 10 screenshot

Version History

10.3 — 2009-06-25: The lifestream. I’ve adapt­ed my pre­vi­ous lay­out to a lifestream, which not only lat­est blog entries, but my activ­i­ty on oth­er ser­vices as well, name­ly Flickr and twit­ter. Read more about ver­sion 10.3.

  • Added twit­ter and Flickr posts as sep­a­rate entries, under new cat­e­gories “tweets” and “snaps” respec­tive­ly.
  • Added a nav­i­ga­tion bar below the head­er

10.2.3 — 2008-10-19

  • Added a small bar at the top to dis­play the most recent tweet from Twitter.

10.2.2 — 2008-08-29

  • Added Gravatar sup­port for com­ments (opt­ed for this over styl­ized author com­ments)

10.2.1 — 2008-04-26

  • Stylized author (my) com­ments so they look dif­fer­ent from read­er com­ments
  • Cleaned up source for entries with closed com­ments

10.2 — 2008-04-16: With WordPress 2.5, tag sup­port is much bet­ter imple­ment­ed. I fig­ured it was time to add tag sup­port to this theme. Now I have to go through six years of entries and tag each one.

  • Moved the com­ment link and com­ment count out­side to a bub­ble in the main con­tent to the left
  • Thanks to the snazzy com­ment bub­ble, I can now add the year to the side meta with­out it look­ing strange. Huzzah!
  • Added tag links to each entry
  • Added the tag cloud to the archive sec­tion
  • Started pulling ran­dom flickr pho­tos for the asides sec­tion, instead of the lat­est from RSS

10.1.2 — 2008-02-09

  • Fixed block­quotes in Internet Explorer
  • Got rid of the year in the date meta. Still unsure about this one. I may change it lat­er
  • Made the title graph­ic pure black.

10.1.1 — 2008-02-05

  • Added Photography and Portfolio sec­tions
  • Replaced “Recently” link from menu with “Photography”, and rearranged items
  • A few under-the-hood changes, such as entry padding struc­ture


  1. Ok well since I love graph paper…I love this lay­out.

  2. I know the feel­ing. There’s some­thing clean and tech­ni­cal about graph paper that makes you want to cre­ate some­thing bril­liant.

  3. (I pre­ferred the pre­vi­ous one, but I’m a stick­ler for script.aculo.us. :’-(

  4. I adored Scriptaculous too, but it did­n’t fit in with the min­i­mal feel of this theme.

    • No, sor­ry, this is my per­son­al, pri­vate theme.

  5. this lay­out is fan­tas­tic!

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