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Welcome to the New RopeofSilicon.com: New Features and Your Thoughts

Now I want to hear from you

New RopeofSilicon 2012

By now I'm sure you have all noticed... things look a little different around here. I've been talking about an upcoming redesign for the last couple of months and finally pulled the trigger and hopefully you like what you've seen so far. However, I know change is a tough thing when you're used to something being one place and then it's not there. I hope I can help make that transition a little easier as well as receive some feedback that will help me further improve the site and tailor it to exactly how you would like to use it.

To begin, my goal wasn't to do a drastic overhaul as much as a bit of streamlining, but before I go too far, let me first give you a quick rundown of some of the new things you can find on the site.

  1. User profiles
  2. New homepage story rotator, no more sticky posts
  3. New movie pages featuring all the information on one page
  4. You can now comment on movie, celebrity and DVD/Blu-ray pages all award pages
  5. Simplified navigation for faster access to what you're looking for
  6. New quick-access awards hub
  7. New Movie and DVD/Blu-ray homepages featuring the newest releases that week
  8. New box-office articles, which will now also feature budget numbers, theater counts and per theater averages
  9. Studio specific pages now exist
  10. Twitter handles for over 365 celebrities
  11. Bookmark movies to your profile for later reference
  12. Site skins giving you the ability to customize your time on the site
  13. New 720p trailers for many recent trailers and the majority of trailers going forward
  14. Speed should be increased for all pages

Now let's look at a few of these a little more closely...

New RopeofSilicon 2012

Upon release of the last redesign I got rid of the homepage Flash rotator featuring five most recent stories. I did this because it was Flash and because it didn't work on the iPad or iPhone and it was, quite frankly, a pain to update and keep up-to-date. A lot of you grumbled because you liked it and at the time I didn't have an instant solution to the problem. Well, it was one of the first things I made sure came back with this redesign.

So, as you can see above and on the homepage a new featured story rotation is back and it work on all mobile devices and tablets and, best of all, it is easy for me to maintain.

The Navigation

Probably the most dramatic change is to the top of the site where you'll see the new RopeofSilicon logo and instead of a multitude of links and drop-down menu options, which hardly anyone was using, I now have eight very specific topics to choose from. The inspiration here was Apple products. We've all become so used to simple and easy, point and click. My goal was to make everything as simple as possible and you'll notice that theme throughout this post and the new design.

Of those eight links available in the navigation, "Movies" will change to "Blu-ray" on Tuesdays and instead of linking to the new movies in theaters that particular weekend it will link to the new DVD and Blu-ray titles coming out that week. Other than that, it will remain just how you see it each and every day and I urge you to browse through them all to get acquainted with what is available beyond each link.

The hardest link to leave out was the Box-Office link, which is why when you go to the homepage, directly under the Featured Story rotation, you'll see where it says "GET MORE" and next to that are five additional links to content around the site, the first being for Box-Office, a page that has also been given a major overhaul, now offering links to all the top ten weekend box-office results since I started collecting them in November of 2003.

New Movie Pages

The AvengersThe Internet has changed in a lot of ways since I first started the site and access to more information at once has become a priority. The way people use RopeofSilicon has also changed a lot since I first started the site, which is to say the articles now get the bulk of the attention whereas my movie pages don't necessarily get as much. So I changed them.

The movie pages used to have multiple tabs for each movie giving you traditional information such as cast, director, synopsis, etc. on the first page, stills, trailers, awards, news, review, DVD and Blu-ray and more on other tabs. Well, that's all on one page now and there is no better example than on the page for The Avengers, which features all the new features including the featured trailer right next to the poster.

There are also dedicated related stories pages for each movie in the database with stories linked to them. To access the movie pages you can always just click on any link to a movie title you see on the site, search for the specific movie or you'll see at the bottom of many posts a link to movies and celebrities referenced in each article, just give 'em a click and off you go.

In addition to the collection of information on all of the site's movie pages you'll also be able to comment directly on each movie page. In fact, you'll be able to comment directly on almost every page on the site from movies to celebrities, Oscar shows, Oscar predictions and more.

Registered users will also be able to Bookmark their most anticipated and favorite movies, which will then add those films to your RopeofSilicon profile for easy future access to look for new pictures, trailers, casting information, news, etc. on the titles you care about most. This feature, in fact, is in its most dramatic infancy and I can see it becoming much bigger in the future giving you the ability to create lists and sharing them with others.

Awards Hub

Awards HubThe new Awards Hub is one I absolutely love. From there you will have access to the winning histories from the Oscars, Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild Awards. You'll also have access to my Oscar predictions once they go live and just released with the launch of the redesign is the newly updated Awards Calendar.

The three most recent awards stories will also be listed along with links to The Contenders, Oscar Predictions home, Awards Schedule and Oscar Overture.

The awards section of the site will become incredibly active after I return from the Toronto Film Festival and my first round of Oscar predictions will be released. That section will also become more active year-round as I now have much more administrative control over how it looks and operates thanks to an all new, more powerful behind the scenes system.

User Profiles

Speaking of registered users, this is one of the new features of the site I really hope to take advantage of greatly in the future, but there are a few other things you can do right now.

For starters, by registering and logging in you can simply set the login to remember you and whenever you return you'll be logged in and ready to comment. No more having to add your name, email, etc. before commenting. In addition to this, inside your user profile you can set up a specific website you may want your profile name to link to, if you don't it will link to your RopeofSilicon profile where people can check out your personal bio, where you're from and what movies you've bookmarked. It's one of the first steps in bringing us together as a larger community.

You'll also notice when you're logged in a short little movie quote at the top of the right column. This is a random quote generated for each page for logged in users and is one many of you helped put together with contributions on this Facebook post.

Next, there are the custom skins, which is something a lot of the people who responded to my survey didn't really think would be all that exciting, but after the launch yesterday it seems a lot of people are enjoying being able to personalize the site a little more.

As of right now there are two default skins, the white background, which anyone who isn't logged in sees, and a darker version. Beyond that, there are six custom, movie-specific skins I have created with many more to come. Here's a tease of all six, which you have access to right now if you go to Edit Profile from your RopeofSilicon profile.

Site Skins

Drive RopeofSilicon SkinThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo RopeofSilicon Skin
Kill Bill RopeofSilicon SkinRaging Bull RopeofSilicon Skin
The Dark Knight RopeofSilicon SkinHarold Lloyd RopeofSilicon Skin

These six for Drive, David Fincher's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Kill Bill, Raging Bull, The Dark Knight and silent movie star Harold Lloyd were just the best ones I was able to create. The goal was largely subtlety and if you ask me the Dragon Tattoo and Kill Bill ones are my personal favorites.

Stay tuned, there are more to come, and this was the main reason I asked you all to list your favorite movies in that survey I did a couple months back.

ONE NOTE: One thing I noticed in testing is that browser caching can cause for a skin not to show up on pages you may have visited before applying the skin. If this happens to you, you'll need to either refresh the page or clear your browser cache manually. I apologize for this, but it's one problem currently out of my control.

Miscellaneous

There are several other small tweaks around the site, such as new and faster in-article gallery pages, there are now studio specific pages, which you can access from any of the movie pages by clicking on the studio title. For example, click here to visit the The Avengers page and click on "Walt Disney Pictures" and you'll see what I'm talking about.

Finally, I have added over 365 celebrity Twitter profiles to their bio pages such as this one for Tim Roth, which I added just last night, or this one for Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Just a couple more things to bring you a little more information than you otherwise thought you might get and I plan on doing the same for the movies in the database very shortly.

Beyond all that, the site should be faster for all visitors and will be getting even faster in the coming months as we streamline it even further and add a few more tweaks behind the scenes.

Oh, and there is more to come, one specific new feature I'm really excited to roll-out, but it isn't quite ready yet. Soon though... soon.


So that is the long of it, but now I want to hear from you. What do you like? What don't you like? Is there anything you're having a problem with? Anything you believe is "missing" from the past version? I want to hear it all, the good with the bad, because otherwise I won't know what's working and what isn't because I do plan on perfecting it even more as we go along and your input is vital.

Oh, and thanks for visiting! I hope you like what you see so far.

THANK YOUS

I would first off like to thank all the readers that added their input and comments when asked. Your help was extraordinarily appreciated and valuable.

I would also like to thank the folks at my hosting service, Nexcess.net who are so attentive to changes and issues and in assisting with my merge to the redesign I'm not sure I could have done it without them. If you are looking to host your own website, look in their direction.

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  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/AS/ AS

    Drive and Dragon Tattoo are my favorites. It would be cool if you designed a few more Dragon Tattoo ones, since there are so many cool images in that opening credit sequence. Might I suggest a few more? Assassination of Jesse James, Apocalypse Now, Tree of Life, The Third Man - There's some great imagery in all of those films.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/AS/ AS

      Also:

      It would be cool if you could comment on peoples profiles.

      You might want to think about giving us the ability to create lists on our profile like (favorite actors, directors, movies) using the same system as the "bookmarked movies."

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

        Yeah, that is the intention with that feature, but it will take some time. For the next few months I might tweak a few things and then after the Oscars look into adding even more features. But I will definitely be keeping a list of any and all suggestions.

  • Bazellis

    How come you chose the option of users creating their own profiles, rather than integrate with existing Facebook/Twitter accounts. Was this purely a technical decision?

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Because some people don't use Twitter and/or Facebook and I didn't want to force people to join something they didn't want to join just so they could take advantage of having a profile here. I also just don't like depending on things outside of my control, it's why this site is largely all my own creation and coding whenever at all possible.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/maja/ maja

    Firstly, excellent redesign. I have yet to try out the skins but the site looks slicker than ever. Thanks for this post too as there were a few new things which I didn't notice such as clicking on other users profiles and bookmarking films.

    The good things about the upgrade -
    - navigation - for me this is the biggest improvement. The options at the top add alot more to the website and will ensure that I use ROS for more than i had in the past.
    - movie pages - these look very slick and an excellent idea. Admittedly I rarely used these before but can see myself using these much more going forward.
    - user profiles (which i think have a ton of future potential such as editing posts, forums etc).

    There are however many things in the upgrade which I am probably unlikely to take advantage of as they don't really appeal to me:
    - commenting on every page - i'm not sure how this will work as people tend to comment on new posts rather than on random movies so being able to comment on a random film may not generate much of a conversation with noone reading it. Currently all of the conversation about a film will be on the review; being able to comment on the main film page too will seperate the conversation.
    - twitter profiles for celebs - this one may just not appeal to me.

  • http://theshondalandsource.com Adam

    Fantastic job on the redesign, Brad. I absolutely love it. I can't even begin to imagine how much time (and energy/patience!) it must have taken to do all of this, but thank you so much for doing it, because this is utterly fantastic. I do agree that it is kind of odd not to have the Box Office in the navigation, but I think that is going to be the only thing I really have to get used to. The dark skin is fantastic (the white one is as well, it's just a bit on the bright side). Overall, just a really amazing job, and once again shows why I have continued to visit RopeofSilicon over every other movie news site for so many years, because you are continually improving and even better yet: you actually seem to care about your readers and visitors, and that is one of the greatest assets of all. I was looking at the "About Us" page with all of the past designs for the site and realized that I have been visiting ROS since the June 2004 design was live. It's amazing to see how far you've come! In a way, I almost feel proud to be visiting this site, and proud of you for continuing to improve so much.

    If I have one nitpick, it is only this: the new favicon, while a major improvement over the last one, doesn't seem to really mesh well with displaying in bookmark bars/open windows for the site. I think it's just too much for too little a space. Perhaps it would work better as just "ROS?" And I did also notice on the User Profile page, that the link to change your password reads "Click Here to Change You Password." I had to laugh a little to myself a reading that phrased that way, but I figured you might want to know so you could add the letter "R" to "you." ;)

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Thanks for the kind words!

      And thanks for pointing out the spelling error, I probably never would have caught that. And I hear you on the favicon, may go with a darker version.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/TheDeadBurger/ The Dead Burger

    I only have one suggestion, and I know you seem excited about the user profile thing, but to be honest, I don't feel like the comments are really worth participating in right now, because I just don't love the interface, it isn't very conducive to serious discussion. Right now the comments are talkback; ideally, they'd be a forum. So I would really really love if you implemented Disqus. I don't know if you have something against it, I'm sort of surprised you haven't switched to it yet, but I think it's the best way to help ROS grow as a community.

    But other than that, I love the redesign!

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Disqus is something I have considered and a lot of people have adopted it and I may still. It, however, would add more javascript to the site and make for an additional dependence on something out of my personal control. I like having control over as much as I can, that way if something goes wrong I have greater access to fix it. That said, Disqus is something I may still take advantage of in the near future.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Randommovies/ Jake Hubbard

    Awesome job Brad. The re-design looks great! Really appreciate all the time and effort you put into this. Everything from the new logo to the custom skins and the new page navigation is great. I also love how you added back the flash rotator to the home page. I really like this feature. The user profile idea was brilliant and I really like how I can just come in now and comment without having to put in the info every time.
    Again awesome job on the re-design, the amount of care and effort that you put into this site is why it's the best out there. Thanks!

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Kessler/ Kessler

    I really like the new design. It feels faster and easier to use. My favorite changes are the user profiles, movie bookmarks, and the site skins. I think those changes make the site much more user-friendly which is probably my favorite thing about the site. I actually miss the drop-down menu, but I should be able to get over it. Most of the information I want is already at the top bar. I don't have any major complaints so far, but if I find one I'll let you know. I'm excited to see more site skins. Drive and The Dark Knight are my favorites. I would also love to see a James Bond one!

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Yeah, Bond, Potter, Lord of the Rings, Hobbit, there are a lot of majors I still have to get to and I want to also do classics like Seven Samurai and Breathless.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/jmbenesh/ Jordan

    I was one of those who wasn't so sure I'd use the skins when you first talked about them, but I gotta say, I love the Dragon Tattoo skin. I thought the skins would be something more akin to, say, just a change in the borders and background, but I like how you've integrated the skin designs into the logo as well. Kudos on that!

    I also love the idea of user profiles; I'm not sure if they'll "take off" right away in terms of user interaction, but I think that as things move forward and people begin adding information, RoS will become a much closer internet community. The "bookmark this movie" feature was one that I was really hoping to see, and I'm glad that it's been added to the individual movie pages. Is there any way that this can be added to, say, review pages and things of that nature?

    I didn't even notice the implementation of the short movie quotes until I read about it, but I like it. Mine right now is, "You're killing me smalls." I'm not sure how many you have Brad, but we, as a community, should keep adding to this quote inventory going forward.

    I am still exploring the site and figuring out the navigation, but it does seem to be much more streamlined and easier to surf through. Looking forward to your first batch of Oscar predictions so we can see just how the new awards page works. I presume that films and people who are nominated will have links to their respective pages?

    Keep up the good work, Bradley!

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Vera/ Vera

    Love the redesign, skins are really cool (Drive is the coolest).

    As an idea for Contenders section, it would be really cool to see versions of predictions (to see how they changed during the award season) and also I love your live blogs (this is how I found your site three or four years ago) and it would be great to have all award-related articles (like final predictions, live blog and post-award impressions) linked to the Award page.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Thanks Vera, the "different versions" of the predictions thing is tough. There will still be the noted change from one version to the next, but to do a different chart for each one won't be easy. I do, however, place my top picks in each article I write so maybe I'll link to the first one in each update.

  • http://cineenuruguay.blogspot.com/ Driver

    Im loving the redesign is slick, fast and its got a lot of new features.

    The profiles are great and the skins even greater (Never thought they would look so cool), I already have the Drive skin up there. And talking about the profiles, my only complain was in there, but you were able to fix it really fast. I´ll be sure to write a bio one of this days.

    Im not going to give you more ideas for the site, Im pretty sure there are even cooler things to come in the future but right now what we got its awesome and Im just going to enjoy it as it is. Great work Brad.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Akd/ Akd

    The site looks great but somewhere in the comments I read about further customizing our profiles and I think that would be great. I'm guessing this all took a lot of time and you (BB) just wanted to get things up and running so that's probably why the profile customization isn't all there. The only question I have is about the paid membership and how it will it affect the advertisements on the site. Will those still appear? They aren't disruptive but I am curious about that specific membership.

    P.S. I love the "Drive" skin. How about adding one for "There Will Be Blood"?

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Paid membership is something in the future. Right now I wanted to start small and get bigger to make sure everything worked smoothly every step of the way. Once Oscar season is complete I am going to be taking all suggestions, concerns, etc. into account and moving on to stage 2. So definitely be sure to share all your thoughts. Everything will be considered.

  • http://fortheloveofmovies.wordpress.com Abe M

    I'm not one who usually likes much change with websites as they tend to throw me off. Even the differences in the load times of the pages (faster or slower) bothers me. but so far so good Brad! The one thing that doesn't really work for me is the review rating revealed on the homepage post. I always enjoyed opening the reviews, reading the first paragraph or two and then scrolling down to be surprised at the bottom with a letter grade and the closing thoughts. Granted this experience was previously at threat with the "our grade" section near the top of the post, but now I'll know the grade before even getting to the post. Just my thoughts.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Rick/ Rick

    First, Thankyou for caring about your website and clearly applying your passion into something others get to share in.

    Also thanks for allowing feedback and I hope people don't choose to abuse this.
    I hope I'm not as well with these two questions.

    Is it possible to have all the navigation somewhere at the bottom of the page? The box-office is defiantly missed for me.

    Movies page is cool. Is there a way to add a list of trending movies or anticipated movies on that page as well. If feel like the only way to navigate to a movie page is by search engine or related to a post. Is that right?

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      For your first question, I would definitely consider that, but I do want to ask if having the Box-Office link on the homepage is not enough?

      As for your second question, certainly. I have to rebuild the popular movies, articles, celebrities, etc. data with the redesign and I am working on a best way to do that, but that will definitely be a part of the site sooner rather than later.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Flo/ Flo

    Loving the redesign. Looks slick, especially with the new story rotator and custom skins. But it's still ROS. I'm happy to see that you didn't go over board with too many unnecessary changes!

    A few pros and cons:

    PRO:

    - Overall navigation: Much easier, faster and not as overloaded as the old one which I barely used.
    - Story rotator: Reasonable addition, working smoothly.
    - Skins: Especially the Kill Bill one looks really really nice. Although I have to say the classic one also looks awesome.
    - Movie pages: All the information you need in one place. Perfect!
    - Trailer and stills: More accessible than before.
    - Movie quotes: Details matter! Makes the site even more unique.
    - Reviews: I like that one can see the grade before opening the article.

    CONS:

    - Releases: Somehow I think the old segment was better organized. I miss the distinction between Blu-Ray's and DVD's. Also the design looks a bit like a beta-version to me. Nothing compared to other elements of the site for example the movie pages.
    - Award Contenders: Don't get me wrong I think the new Award Hub looks amazing and will be a welcome addition to the awards talk later this year. But apart from this new addition the award section hasn't changed as much as I wanted it too. I don't get why the "Contenders" segment isn't a part of the new main award site. Instead of only showing the latest 3 articles you could show them all just there. Also I don't like the design once you leave the new hub and go further to "The Condenders" or "The Predictions". Looks a bit outdated for me, especially with the old navigation design above.

    But I'm just nitpicking here. Overall the redesign is just awesome. I'm looking forward to whatever you're going to do with the site in the future.

    Keep up the good work!

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Thanks for the comments Flo. As for your cons, the release date distinction you mention for DVDs and Blu-rays will likely be fixed. As for the Awards sections, the hub is intended as a jumping off point for all things awards related while The Contenders is the dedicated drilling down of the season in general. The thought was to include it all on one page would be a little overwhelming for casual readers... what do you think?

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Flo/ Flo

        I definitely get the idea behind the hub. I think it's also well executed.
        But when I click on "The Contenders" it just feels disconnected to the hub. All it accomplishes is to show the latest award related articles which are already included on the hub. --- Btw.: Just saw the "Get More Awards Headlines"-button. Nice addition. Didn't notice it before. --- "The Contenders" was the old main award site wasn't it? It even has a complete different design compared to the hub, for example different for size and color. One also has to use the site's main navigation to get back to the new hub.

        In my humble opinion it would just make sense to connect the predictions and schedules and so on directly to the hub's design and get rid of this second "main" site. That said the main site would be the hub just as it is right now. No changes. It would still be accessible for casual readers. And from there on you could go to predictions, schedules, award headlines (as an replacement for "The Contender"'s home site), overture. But when clicking on these one stays in the hub's design and can switch right back to the hub or to the other awards segments without having this second interface. It just feels off to me.

        I hope you understood everything I wrote. If not, don't hesitate to ask.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Ian/ Ian

    I love the new design, it's very sleek-looking. I haven't played around with the skins at all, but I'll probably just stick with the neutral light or dark look. I'm definitely excited about the user profiles and I'd like to see those expand a bit more...options to add linkable lists of favorite movies/filmmakers would be really neat, and that may have already been mentioned above; the same goes for commenting on other people's profiles, forums, etc. I also like the new movie pages and having everything there together, and I'm definitely excited about the Awards Hub. I will say I'm noticing the ad clutter a bit more, but maybe that's because of the light background rather than the dark. But as a podcast listener, I know what your long-term goals are as far as advertising and revenue, and I'm looking forward to (hopefully) having an ad-free ROS experience sometime soonish.

    One suggestion on the movie pages...maybe go with collapsable menus (like the one you have for the cast) for the other categories, especially the trailers/spots and images? Because it does get a bit cluttered down there with a long list of trailers followed by huge picture gallery, and being able to hide those would make the movie pages sleeker.

    And I actually prefer the previous version of the box office writeup, where you or Laremy would comment on each film. I realize that gets old when a film is up there for several weeks (or is making no money and there's nothing to say about it), but I thought it broke things down rather nicely and gave your and Laremy's analysis a bit of a different feel than that of BOMs analysis articles.

    Those are just a few ideas I have from what I've noticed so far, but overall I love the design. This site has been my main source of movie news for over seven years and I'm always excited to see it grow and develop.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      "Maybe go with collapsible menus" -> I tend to agree and will definitely experiment with this.

      As for the box-office articles, there were a lot of things that were taken into consideration with those and for the overall benefit to the site and to the content this was the way it really had to go. I know the way we had it before was liked by many, but for reasons that get a little too "inside baseball" that I won't go into, this is the direction it had to go. Hopefully it will grow on you.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mason%20Williamson/ Mason Williamson

    Love the redesign for essentially the same reasons that have been listed in the comments above: sleeker, simpler, and all-around more unique and detailed. The user profiles are an excellent addition and really do help to give the site an even stronger community feel, which is one of my personal favorite things about RoS.

    If I had to nitpick - and believe me, I realize this is incredibly minor - I would say that as much as I love the skins, perhaps a few of them could use a little bit of design along the sides as well as at the top. For instance, the 'Kill Bill' theme is great, but once I've scrolled down past the first half of the page, the yellow bars along the side look a bit empty and bland. Perhaps, going with that example, a few more speckles of blood or whatever else could be present along the sides of the page? I don't know, just a thought, nothing all that important.

    But again, there's very little to complain about - the dedication you show towards your readers continues to astound me and will always be the defining characteristic that puts RopeofSilicon far ahead of any other film website out there.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Neutral3/ Neutral3

    Excellent redesign Brad. But I have one major problem with it. Every time I enter the renovated homepage, I get these ads popping up and it gets really rritating when you visit the site. Can you please do something about that? I actually miss the index of the movie reviews you do since I would love to read them again. Maybe I'm missing something here, and it will take a lot of time for me to get used to it

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Yes, I agree on the ads and I am working on that right now with my advertising company. Are you on a Mac or a PC? I have noticed it even worse on my Mac. Oh, and the Movie Review Indexing isn't gone. The homepage is here and in the right hand column you'll see a button for the MOVIE REVIEW ARCHIVES, which takes you here. Hope that helps.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/BillK/ BillK

    There seems to be so much more information. It will take me a while to check out everything, but I'm very impressed with the work that went into this redesign.

    My question: I used to click on Movies and there also would be an alphabet across the page, and I could look up old and new films by clicking on the letter representing title. For example, I would click on P for Platoon, or C for Chinatown. But I cannot find that alphabet now. It was such a great guide. Is it still available?

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/HelloKitty/ Hello Kitty

    Love, love, love the new look.

    How do we change our user name?

    Requests:

    How about enlarging our avatars so we can actually see them.

    It's a minor quibble, but could you not show the letter grade until the end of the review. I like to be surprised. I believe you used to do it that way.

    More TV show reviews.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Usernames have to stay the same, but you can enter your first and last name in the Edit Profile section and change your display name at the same time. As for the larger avatar, you'll find that on your personal profile page, yours is right here.

      As for your comment on the review grade, that's an interesting one. I have now heard some liking it and some not. Maybe I'll have to put that one to a poll and see what the majority think.

      Thanks for your comment!

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/AntonioA/ Antonio A

    The site looks great!

    I find the Awards section very useful, particularly to have all the past winners organized by year.

    It would be nice if the users could "add" movies to different lists in their profiles like "Favorites", "Must Watch", etc. Also, at the end of each of the movies' pages users could have a dedicated space for writing their own reviews, maybe with some sort of scale. I realize we could probably post our thoughts in your reviews, but it would be nice to have that dedicated space, and maybe the scores could add up to an independent user grade.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Criterion10/ Criterion10

    Absolutely love the redesign! Normally, I do not like it when websites change drastically. The reason this redesign works so well is that it is not a drastic overhaul of the entire website, but rather a wonderful set of updates to make things flow more smoothly.

    I really like the movie skins and already set mine to Drive. I definitely would love to see more.

    Also, for me, the best part of the redesign is the user profile pages. In the future, I think it would be awesome to develop these even further, maybe allowing something like users to make different lists to show on their pages, or even private message others. Just a thought for the future, not sure if any of those would work out well.

    But, like I said before, really good job, Brad. Your hard work shows.

  • http://timeforafilm.com Alex Thomas

    I don't have anything constructive to add except I really like the look of it! I actually quite like the grade under the review but I can see why some wouldn't. Also, when typing in the comment section the font is rather large compared to the actual text size once it's posted, it looks a little big for me. Was one size smaller a bit ineligible?

    Great work Brad!

  • Chris Johnson

    Hey Brad, the new site looks great. I like what you've done here. I guess the only weird thing I've noticed is that the website doesn't work with Chrome for me anymore. I was wondering if anyone else had noticed this? Maybe it's just on my end.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Doesn't work? I've been using Chrome the whole time. Can you help me out and explain a little more or maybe email me at webmaster@ropeofsilicon.com?

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/G-Man/ G-Man

    Great overview of the changes. Here are my preliminary comments/thoughts after reading this and browsing around the site for a little bit:

    - I notice a significant increase in speed at which the pages load
    - I like how the podcast is linked multiple places on each page (top right and sidebar logo)
    - Before I read this article, the first thing I saw about my username was "Hello,gorgeous", which while accurate, left me slightly perplexed.

    Comments/Suggestions:

    - I see on The Avengers page you linked, it displays your grade and links to the review. However, when I looked at some older movies I know that were reviewed (i.e. There Will Be Blood), I noticed there was no grade posted or link to the review. In fact, I was unable to find the review through traditional searching on the top-right bar.

    - This may already be in place and I missed it, but given that registered users have provided their email address - it would be great if there was email notification when someone responded to a registered user's comment.

    Hope this helps. Thanks for keeping ROS a fantastic resource for us cinema fans.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      I had not noticed the review problem you mention, but I'm glad you brought it up. All fixed now.

  • Bazellis

    Having a few issues in Firefox:-

    1. When not logged in, current articles are not displaying on home page. For instance I only get articles from 19th August and earlier when I visit the homepage and I'm not logged in. Once I log in then all current articles appear.
    2. When I am logged in and am on the home page, if I scroll down to the bottom and select 'page 2' or 'Next', I am presented with the 'Coming Soon' landing page that was there on Sunday. I've not figured a way round this yet - in fact the only way I could get back to this page was to follow the link from the email.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Ugh, the page caching is driving me crazy! Thanks for letting me know, I'll look into it.

  • autinytim

    One small suggestion. On movie pages add character names next to the actors names.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      That would be so much work I'm not sure I would ever have time to take a break.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Bradley/ Bradley

    I absolutely fooking love it. It's way better than the previous site. Slicker and smarter. I love the additional features. The profile addition being the greatest. Can't wait for Awards season to begin. Great, great work, Brad! Thank you!

  • William Kerns

    I used to click on Movies and there also would be an alphabet across the page, starting with numbers and then from A to Z.

    I could look up old and new films by clicking on the letter representing title. For example, I would click on P for Platoon, or C for Chinatown.Same for newer films.

    But I cannot find that alphabet now. Did you decide to do away with it?

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      I did. Are you not able to find those movies just searching for them?

  • Liathach

    What I don't like about the re-design is that the text type is now in grey instead of black, and the typeface for the comments is now sans-serif - both these things make the text harder to read, which I think is just an unnecessary distraction from enjoying the site. Also, if I use Firefox, I get a single page saying 'Coming soon' and I can't get onto the site at all.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Clear your browser cache and the Coming Soon page will disappear.

  • John W

    Looks cool.

  • Bazellis

    Sorry to be pain but I'm now on my iPad and the display is very small and centered by default.
    Any ideas?

  • Liathach

    I made this comment a couple of days ago, but it seems to have disappeared.

    When I use Firefox, all I get is a single page that says 'Rope of Silicon, coming soon'.

    • Liathach

      Now my previous comment has reappeared, but when I looked a couple of minutes ago, it wasn't there...

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Helen/ Helen

    A bit thrown by the changes at first – rather like coming home and finding that someone has re-painted your front door and moved the mailbox. I’ve been exploring the new site over the last couple of days and it’s great. I really like the design and as many others have said navigation is so much easier and faster (no more problems with pages hanging/freezing) and I really like presentation of the trailers and the new website skins. I’d like to see more opportunity to share information via profiles and I’m really pleased that you’ve chosen not to link this directly into FB. On the wish list of the future – as I’m not in the States anymore I’d love information on UK release dates or at least a link to UK release date info.

    Well done and a big thank you from a long time RoS fan

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Thanks for sharing Helen, I definitely plan on expanding the profiles as I want that to become one of the biggest portions of the site in the coming years. As for the UK thing, I would love to expand to become even more global, but the logistics of it may be tough. I'll definitely add it to the "to do" list. Thanks again!

  • William Kerns

    Brad, you asked if I couldn't find the films another way.
    I must admit, when the alphabet ran across the page, every time I looked up a new film, it had the stars, director, rating and synopsis all in one place. Takes a couple of searches to find everything.
    But one also could find that same information on older films, and I often called one up to learn about it where I would not have thought to initially.
    All I am saying is it was a terrific service and I will miss it. I may be the only one.
    Of course, i am amazed all all that you have accomplished . You should be proud.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      I'll keep that in mind for future updates, but I really think if you use the search above you should be able to find any title I have in the database pretty easily. Thanks so much for your comments though, any and all suggestions are taken very seriously. I appreciate your help!