One of the main problems I have with blogspot weblogs is they have the tendency to all utilise similar designs – that in itself would not be a bad thing if the designs were anywhere near decent, except they aren’t. I am frequently reminded of this every time I land on a Blogspot site in order to review it, and sadly ‘Elderbear’s Den’ fails to break the trend on the design front. A brief bio of the site resides at the top of the page, just underneath the banner. It reads “Fighting to stop creeping facism! Responses to life, culture, inner daemons, my family, and work from a privileged, elitist, pragmatist, anarchist mystic with a sense of humor and outrage who finds most of the situations on “That’s Just Wrong” to be pretty OK, if not downright enlightening, inspiring, and morally uplifting” . With that in mind I head off in search of those first postings without much idea of what I really will find there.
It seems like Elderbear’s Den is actually quite a young blog, the archives don’t even extend beyond the current month (February), but that is not to say there isn’t plenty to read here. The archive formating (weekly) suits his posting consitency, and is relatively easy to navigate unlike most blogspot managed weblogs. I quickly discover that the ‘tagline’ mentioned earlier is actually a fairly accurate description of what you will find within these pages – the author touching on a wide number of subjects with the same satirical / analytical style. The quality varies, but the author never fails to be thought provoking – whether you agree with what he has to say or not. The writing style suits the shorter, sharp edged posts – clearly not someone who minces with their words when putting a point across, and I like that.
I touched on the design before, it appears to be a generic blogger template with some minor alterations, and sad to say it’s not one of the better ones. That said, it serves it’s purpose – the colour scheme isn’t offensive to the eyes, you can read the text and although there are minor read problems on Internet Explorer involving the side margin seems to work comparitively well – it just isn’t very visually appealing.
A few interesting sidelines reside in the side column – some interesting sites created by the weblog’s author, a blogroll and a few quotations.
Design aside, Elderbear’s Den looks as promising as any other weblog I have seen in their early stages. It’s mostly well written, covers a broad spectrum of subjects and is relatively interesting. A few design modifications would heighten its visual appeal, but all in all it’s a really promising start : 3.5