Welcome to dotTech 4.0

Hello friends,

Welcome to dotTech 4.0.

This is the fourth major revision of dotTech and, if I do say so myself, it is our best one yet. Not only does this new theme give dotTech a fresh, modern look but it simply kick-ass. [Insert philosophical bullsh!t here.]

Please report any bugs or issues you see in the comments here or via e-mail. And keep a lookout for dotTech’s mobile version getting a similar overhaul in the coming days.

Over and out.

-Mr. Boss

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  • Ashraf

    @Calgarian2012: You are welcome!
    @Raeldin: Done and done. :-)

  • Raeldin

    Ashraf, I like the new look. I have a feature request and a ‘Did ya Know’
    Feature Request: I normally start with the latest article and use the previous post/next post to move around. Could you put those links at the bottom of the articles also. Seems like they were there before, but I can’t trust my seems. :-)
    In the ‘Did ya know’ column: there isn’t anyway to log in to the site in the Moble view. I switch to normal and back to mobile. Unless I can’t trust my eyes either.

  • Calgarian2012

    Great new facelift. Easier to view and read. Thanks so much for all of your great work you do for all of us.

  • Ashraf

    @Eric: Glad you approve :-)

    @Daniel: Thanks for letting me know; I’m glad it’s better.

    @Bruce Fraser: I’ve replied to the forums.

  • Bruce Fraser

    “Erm? What is wrong with the screenshots in the featured section, I don’t understand. They look fine to me.”

    I need to use a screenshot to show what I mean. So please see my post in the forum: http://dottech.org/forums/improve-dottech/re-my-comment-in-the-feedback-to-the-new-website-design-about-the-terrorist-barber/#p16727.

  • Daniel


    It’s better now, it the ” About
    Contact Us” links that I was having trouble with. When I first saw it, it was directly on white background, making it poor contrast. But now that you got a background, it no so bad.

  • Eric

    Great! That font is much, much better. Now the headlines don’t resemble CAPTCHAs. I like the way you run this site. You listen to feedback and make changes if necessary.

  • Ashraf

    @Tom: I tried that but didn’t like it because the gray/white partly blends into the background if shown in the back and ruins the text. Thanks for the suggestion, though.

    @Eric: I originally was planning on not changing the font but you make a really good point. I’ve now changed it to something more readable.

    @Jeanjean: Oh I thought it was an issue caused by dotTech. Glad it isn’t.

    @AFPhys: Yeah, I was afraid that might happen to some people. Glad it didn’t happen to you.

    @kelltic: I think you are referring to responsive designs. I looked at those but couldn’t find a good fit for dotTech. Plus responsive designs are too restrictive when trying to vary content, such as ads, on mobile and desktop versions.

    @naveed: It is just as wide as the old theme and the width is the current ad-hoc standard on the Internet due to varying screen resolutions. I think you get that feeling with this because the old one had a full white background while this new template is surrounded by blue.

    Screenshots expand as they always have. There was a bug with some new articles but that has been fixed. Are you still facing the issue?

    @Jyo: I may tweak around with the header at sometime in the future but for now this will have to do.

    @jayesstee: The avatars are gravatar enabled. Add your avatar from http://gravatar.com and it will automatically appear here. Be sure to use the same e-mail you post with because gravatar tracks avatars by e-mail.

    @Daniel: It is supposed to be hard to read. The links aren’t the main content of dotTech and if I bolded them they would be distracting. Can you not read them at all?

    @Everyone else: Thanks!

  • Very modern looking…. needs some getting used to though :)

  • Daniel


    I like the look of the new layout but I find the text at the top of the page hard to read. Could you make it bolder or something like that?

  • jayesstee

    I take a couple of days off, and look what you go and do!

    Great new professional look, I like the fact that the comments now have avatars. Can I personalize the avatar so it doesn’t look like a ‘space invader’? (Sorry Eric!)

    Version 5.0 will really have to be something even more amazing.

  • Jyo

    The header’s a bit big for my personal taste, but who cares! I’m digging the blue-gray metallic theme you have going there.

  • Looks more refined definitely. 2 thoughts:
    – it’s feels very narrow and a little claustrophobic
    – the screenshots don’t expand as they used to

  • Josh

    Despite a more modern look, the site did not take visibly longer to load. Having spent much of my youth staring at too many crude DOS images, I don’t find them very appealing, but it’s just a personal thing. I am happy to see the development, because it suggests that the site is here to stay and that is what pleases me most. This is the site I enjoy visiting most, due to it’s down to earth, user friendly, yet clean-living policy. Thank you for all the effort that goes into making it so conveniently functionable and for all the insights and info made available.

  • Martin Brown

    Great job on the new site design. Clear, clean and as always useful.

  • mukhi

    kewl, long live dottech!

  • Zapped Sparky

    Nice tweaks to the site, everything seems to be clearer (more visually defined/separated) and I love the space invaders :)

  • kelltic

    Well . . . Everything is certainly, uh, BIG. :) and BRIGHT. :) I liked the old version, but I like this, too. Changes always take some getting used to.

    I use a desktop with two monitors. Websites are being redesigned to display on those tiny devices y’all love. On my screens they look carnival gaudy. And, you don’t seem to mind that you can only see little bits of a page, something that irritates me no end. But, I’m not complaining about your site, just making a general statement.

    I like your site. Keep up the good work.

  • kevbo


  • AFPhys

    Nice job. However, count me as one who was not unhappy with the previous version.

    I almost killed the tab right away when I did not recognize the site, though… lol

  • Jeffinprov

    The new look is great. What I like most, however, is that dotTech is still here, thriving and growing while other blogs I once cared about have faded away. Cheers to you, Ashraf, and your excellent associates!

  • Jeanjean

    @ Ashraf
    I’ve said that before about Firefox.
    All of a sudden, i opened it and on some sites, including yours, the layout and the colors disappeared (I didn’t take snapshots).
    I’ve discovered that it happens only when you clean Firefox with CCleaner and at the same time, Firefox is used.
    To resolve the problem :
    – don’t use the two programs at the same time… of course ;
    – if you are distracted (like me) and it still happens, just delete C:\Documents and Settings\xxxxx\Local Settings\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\7w1lzdgy.default. A new folder will be created at the reopening of Firefox without loss.

  • JT

    Very very nice makeover! Glad to see you back at this site again. Additional writers help, and do an awesome job, but for some reason when the boss is around things run smoother. =)

  • Eric

    Wow, you managed to replace small ugly font with big ugly font. Actually it is an improvement but the brackets and parentheses are nearly identical and crowd the letters too much.

    Are all of your wives camera shy? Surly one of them will agree to a photo.Ha Ha!

    I do like the avatars though. They remind me of Space Invaders.Just don’t add the Space Invaders music to the background.

  • Terry Nachtmerrie

    Looking good :insertthumbsupemoticonhere:

  • Tom

    The new design is very nice, I really like it. Only the text ‘dotTech’ in the right part of the logo looks a bit odd to me. I think it would be better if you switched the colors gray and blue in this text. So the front in blue and the sides in gray.

  • Jaap

    I like dotTech 4.0.!

  • Ashraf

    @Jeff: Looking at your example, you have a point. I’ll see what I can do.

  • Ashraf

    @Eric: I agree. I’ve made the font size of titles larger to mitigate this. Let me know if that makes it better.

    @tuiruru: My wife would take away my computer privileges if I floated her picture around the Internet.

    @Locutus: Ditto. I was testing some new features which were reflected on the old theme.

    @RobCr: You mean comment numbers? I’ll add those.

    @hatman: The new avatars are Gravatar enabled. Upload your avatar on Gravatar and it will be here. See http://gravatar.com.

    @Unicorn02: Thanks for the suggestion. I’ll look into it but I can’t promise you it will be added. Essentially have a toggle would require me to maintain two themes and I don’t have the budget that ArsTechnica does.

    @Jeanjean: Erm? I’m not sure what issues you are having. Can you send me a screenshot?

    @Everyone: Thanks!

  • Jeff

    I like the overall look, but part of the changes to the “Windows Software of the Day” pages makes them more difficult to read. On the August 15 edition, for instance, take a look at the headlines for the apps being reviewed: BrowserBackup Pro, Kiwi Monitor, etc. They are easier to read at the point size here in this message than they are in that headline font. The letters, and the stems of the letters are pressed too close together. Choosing a different font, or adding kerning (?) to your stylesheet for more spacing would be a big help.

  • Jeanjean

    No problem with the new look in XP or Win 7.
    I just regret the colors (blue-brown), which were particularly evident at the opening of the page and allowed me to know immediately if I had a problem with Firefox.
    BTW, these problem (layout and color disappearing) came from the simultaneous use of Firefox and CCleaner.

  • Unicorn02

    I love the Avatars in the comments section that look like Atari VCS graphics. Totally awesome!
    Personally I would like to see a way to toggle between dark text on light background and the other way round. I find it much easier to read almost (note almost!) white text on dark grey background. This is sooo pleasing to the eyes. Look at arstechnica.com and choose “Main Menu” in the upper left. On the right side you can then toggle the themes. Would be cool to have something like this over here.

  • hatman

    Looks OK. My Avatar is gone.

  • BarrysCool

    Just overall Refreshing, well done gentlemen. :)

  • RobCr

    Looks pretty good.
    I do miss the post numbers ?

  • Mary

    *phew* good! I’m not going bonkers! :D
    Nice job on the site change!

  • @Mary: They’re part of the rollout of dotTech 4.0 that started early :)

  • Mary

    Nice! Nice logo!
    Funky profile pics too! :D
    (I’m not sure if they’re new though. I just noticed them…um, yesterday?) >.<

  • Injeun

    Nice job Boss!

  • @Ashraf:
    Well, now that we’ve established you don’t have a hareem as such, when do we get to see a picture of THE woman? ;)

  • Donna

    Well Check this Out. NICE! You go Guy!

  • Eric

    Overall I love the new look and like the ech in the logo. My only complaint is the font in the article titles. [IOS Mac] is very hard to read for example.

  • mouser

    Congratulations Ashraf,

    It looks great!


  • paulnjean

    Any “artistic” change is always subject to personal preferences. As for opinion in this house, very nice indeed. Thanks for your good work, and pls enjoy health.

  • Ashraf

    @Bruce Fraser: Erm? What is wrong with the screenshots in the featured section, I don’t understand. They look fine to me.

  • Ashraf

    @Everyone: Thanks for the comments and appreciation! Glad most everyone likes it.

    @Anak: I’ll look into it but not making any promises.

    @Paul: I see what you mean. I will look into getting it changed but I’m not a graphic designer and I don’t have the original PSD of that so… yeah.

    @Kraal: Sorry you don’t like it :-(

    @Chris Christensen: Slang, my friend, slang. See http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=kick%20ass — it works both ways… not that slang has any rules.

    @Paul: Erm, crap. Don’t tell my wife. Fixed. Lmao.

  • Bruce Fraser

    Agree: get back the “reduce tweet bar.”

    The home page, with its headlines of recent articles is good… but the screenshots with those headlines look like they were made by the barber who terrorized the kids in our neighbourhood, with his wild and erratic haircuts.

  • Paul

    Random irrelevant thought:
    On your “About the author” description, when you say “Happily married to the most beautiful women ever,” do you mean “woman” with an a?

  • haakon

    As a “old” user- both my own age
    and long time member:
    Its NOT slower so I am happy! :-))))
    AND- THANKS a lot for all your work!!!!

  • Chris Christensen

    Well, it probably kickS ass. Grammar is part of our world. Please.

  • horseonovich

    Nice interface. Looking good. Not that I didn’t like the prior versions. Thanks for keeping this site going.

  • Kraal

    Sorry to say, but I liked the old design better. It seemed more friendly to me. This design feels less inviting.

    Despite my dislike, however, it is still a well done job.

  • Locutus

    I wouldn’t have said it out loud, but I am very glad v3 is gone. It was old, outdated, and rather odd looking. This new one looks great!

  • Geo

    Vice nice web rebuild.. Always enjoy your comments and recommendations…

  • chuck

    Very nice-great job!

  • Cat

    Very, nice and clean! Makes you want to keep reading!

  • Prema

    fantastic design ashraf :)

  • Paul

    The computer-person logo looks a bit… busy with the “ech” added to it.

  • Anak

    Very impressive! But,

    Is there a way you can make the tweeter, and Like box collapse like on the old site?

    I find it very distracting. :(

  • Madhamish

    I like it, looks professional and clean, well done.

  • Ed

    Loving the new look! Keep up the great site!