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Design changes are a-coming!


(Okay, design changes have a-come.)

If you're wondering what happened here, the short of it is that the site's design has been updated to use the Codidact design framework, which will make the eventual switch to the Codidact platform a little easier to cope with.

The long version is this. The software running this site hasn't changed - as mentioned back at the start, Writing is still running on temporary Q&A software while we wait for the full Codidact platform to be developed, at which point the site will switch over to using that instead.

When Codidact is finished, it'll use a design framework that we've developed for it called Co-Design. The changes here today have switch Writing over from using a custom design based on the original QPixel design (which, hey, it worked, but it wasn't wonderful) to also using Co-Design. One of the big things this means is that when the Big Switchover eventually comes, the look and feel of the site will be similar - not everything will be in the same place and there will be some conceptual differences, but having a single common theme will help to make the changes less onerous.

That's not to say that there are no problems with this new design: I'm sure there will be. We've ironed out a bunch of the big problems while we put this design in place, but if you notice anything wrong or that could be made better in some way, please drop an answer on this question and we'll try to smooth things out.

Why should this post be closed?


What is the difference between “coming” and “a-coming”? I've never before encountered that word. On the design: That was definitely a good change! celtschk 4 months ago

@celtschk It's a quirk from old English. Best definition I can find is here, definition 5 under Prefix. ArtOfCode 4 months ago

Thank you. So if I understand correctly, “are a-coming” is sort of a double-continuous form. celtschk 4 months ago

3 answers


Edit: fixed.

Thanks for the update and the announcement.

We seem to have lost our Writing-specific header graphic in the migration; it's been replaced by a QPixel logo. May we please have our graphic back? I see that Codidact Meta has its icon, so it's not a general problem.

(Also, the favicon is wrong.)

1 comment

Graphic is back! ArtOfCode 4 months ago


I just noticed a small problem: When editing a comment, you get a miniscule comment box. Fortunately it can be resized.


Test comment to confirm bug report. Confirmed! Monica Cellio 4 months ago

Should also be fixed ArtOfCode 4 months ago

@ArtOfCode: Thank you. celtschk 4 months ago


Edit: fixed.

The font face and size make posts too hard to read (and also, I'm now discovering, to compose).

The current font face is vertically "squashed"; this is not the Arial or similar that we used to have. This face is harder to read, especially when combined with:

The body text size is too small compared to other text on the page. If I zoom to get a readable body size, question titles both on the question and on the question page become huge, making the question list hard to use. If I make the question list legible (default 100%), individual questions are too small to read. One level of zoom is, for me, enough to fix the question page -- but also enough to break the question list.

Also, on a question page, the links in the right column -- which are by their nature secondary -- are bigger than (or maybe the same size as; can't tell) the body text. The body text is the most important thing on the page. It should be set right, and everything else should scale based on that.

While most of the new design is a great improvement, the single most important function -- reading (and posting) questions and answers -- is, to me, an accessibility and usability downgrade. Fortunately, it should be easy to fix -- restore the original face and bump the body text up by 2px -- or everything else down and I'll zoom, so long as the zoom doesn't break responsiveness like it did yesterday. It'll be easier to change the one value, I think.


That's odd - my first reaction was how spacious the new font looks. I don't know how I feel about its readability, but the size seems OK for me. Might there be browser-specific variations? (I'm on Firefox) xtal 4 months ago

@xtal it got fixed between my post and your comment. I'll edit. Monica Cellio 4 months ago

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