Review 323

Most blogs are one line comments, usually following a recent conversation, or simply exist to point the reader in the direction of another, similarly styled site. These are the “dip-in, dip-out” blogs, often more eye candy than true content, and after a while browsing these sites can leave you underwhelmed and craving something more substantial.

If that’s the case, then come to Burke and Wells. Instead of traditional blog posts, this site is made up of essays, the majority of which are entertaining, informative, and carry across a sense of character and style that is lacking from others in the genre.

Fortunately the site is structured so as to avoid information overload. A lot of sites have a section called “essays” with a long list of titles, but choosing which one will be interesting is a difficult task. Instead, Burke and Wells employ a “read more” approach to their work; the opening paragraph is listed as the blog, which serves to really draw in the reader.

The site lacks one or two design considerations; the overall impression of the essays is a little cluttered, owing in part to the amount of screen width devoted to the essays (an optimal width is about 60%, anything greater tires the eyes).

Also, it would have been nice to see an “about” section rather than simply email links to the writers, but otherwise the layout and navigation are sound.

This still appears to be a young site. It only goes back as far as July 2001, but considering the number of posts since, this is a site worthy of your attention. I only hope that the quality is maintained as the quantity slowly increases.Burke & Wells

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