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Updates policy

It was never meant to be like this...

Initially, infinity plus was just going to be a collective showcase for me and a handful of fellow writers. Within three months of the launch, the number of authors with material in infinity plus had passed twenty; now we have over a hundred contributors. Between them, the site's contributors have won all the major awards in fantasy and science fiction publishing.

Generally, we add something substantial to the site every couple of weeks: a story or novel extract, an interview or other feature; often we add more than this. A batch of new book reviews is added with each update, too -- usually five or more at a time. Somehow infinity plus has become the equivalent of a regular magazine...

We've managed to keep this rate fairly steady since August 1997 and with the amount of material coming in, we should be able to continue at this rate for some time yet. In fact, for a long time we updated every week: now we're adding even more material, but spacing out the updates a bit more.

The flow of updates isn't always as smooth as this might imply: sometimes there will be three or four weeks between updates, for instance. Usually this reflects the fact that I need to set some time aside for my own writing.

If you'd like to be informed about developments at infinity plus, why not subscribe to the free updates mailing list? When a number of changes have accumulated at the site you'll receive a brief e-mail informing you of what's been going on.

As I said, it was never meant to be like this. But I'm very pleased that it is.

Keith Brooke
10 April 2000; updated June 2004

June 2004 note: I'm spacing things out at 3-4 week intervals at the moment, to allow me to catch up with other commitments, notably the next Nick Gifford novel; the mailing list has been quiet for a few months, too, as a result of pressure on my time, but I'll get it going again at some point.

The new look for infinity plus (April 2000)

Y es, after two and a half years, I decided it was time infinity plus had a new look...

Why change it?

Although the site was launched at the end of August 1997, its design dated back to March of that year. I worked in multimedia development at that time, but infinity plus was the first major website I had designed. Three years on, I had become a full-time web developer and I guess I decided I could do it a bit better by then.

In particular, there were a couple of things I wanted to fix.

The first was the frames. The old site used frames to keep a navigation bar permanently on the left of the browser window. This technique causes problems for people using screen-readers and it can confuse some search engines (although the no-frames version of the site worked, it was always second best). The frames just had to go.

And the second was readability.

There have been all kinds of studies that demonstrate what to most of us is pretty obvious: reading from a screen isn't easy. As the main purpose of a site like this is to deliver large chunks of text, we have to do our best to present them in as readable a format as possible.

This was the reasoning behind the old site's colour scheme (retained in the new site) which was chosen to be easy on the eye. But as large monitors have become more common, it's become increasingly important to limit the length of lines of text. With the old site viewed in a maximised window on a 19" monitor, when you finished a line of text it could be hard to find the start of the next one; that isn't a problem with the new site.

I made a lot of more subtle changes, too: new logo; editorial text in sans-serif font, with contributors' text defaulting to the user's preferences; etc. I could have done lots of clever things, just to show off, but I resisted that: as I say above, the main purpose of the site is to deliver lots of text in as readable a format as possible - I hope you'll find the site's design helps you enjoy the content, which is what it's all about.

Keith Brooke
15 April 2000; updated August 2001

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© Keith Brooke 15 April 2000; June 2004