Absorbing Ursa Gamma Websites

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Astral Meta Network's number of websites have increased to a total of five after absorbing Ursa Gamma Designs Solutions into the network. Ursa Gamma Designs Solutions was one of my old failed network, which was formerly aided by some colleagues. When we parted ways, the network due to lack of manpower and time, collapsed. Although the Ursa Gamma Designs group disbanded, its websites remain online, still functional under Google's Blogger host. So far, I have annexed one Ursa Gamma website into the network — Nursing Gazette, a Nursing blog. It is the predecessor of Nursing-Resource.com.

You can find Ursa Gamma Designs Solutions blog here.

AL2Meta Blog Redesigned

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

I redesigned the site AL2Meta, my personal blog site, to take on the form of a new Wordpress Template called Regini — a WP theme created by New WordPress Themes or NewWPThemes. The last template I use on my personal blog was Holistic Teahouse by Rebecca Rings. While Rebecca Rings' design was simply gorgeous, I took notice of some few flaws in the design that not only limited the functionality of my site, but had also gave me problems posting. The most prominent bug I saw perhaps was with the "break" and text alignment, in which several times, I had to force a break to move the text down so it would display correctly on the front end. Another one is that it does not support wordpress menus. Since my personal blog is going to be composed of so many different topics and projects, I feel the need of a menu. Not just a simple menu but a drop-down menu that can extend up to the next two submenus, a kind of menu not found on the holistic teahouse theme.

With the Regini theme, all my problems were solved, but I had to modify some of the default functionality to match my taste. I started with the header. The header, by default, looks big so I had to readjust it to turn it smaller. I did it by reducing the height of the container that contains the logo and the ad next to it. The next move was to remove the ads and replace it with my own. I also remove some of the widgets. And I, of course, added my own logo to replace the Regini logo.

The Regini theme is no doubt, one of the best themes I've seen, but unfortunately, there are some few undesired parts of the design also. This includes the black texts on the comment form and on the archives page. These black texts are hard to read because of the chocolate colored background, so I had to tweak the CSS (Cascading stylesheet) to have those black texts replaced with white. I also did some hacking on the archives php page to solve the problem.

The final steps involve the plugins, the SEO tools, and the site map. I also had to replace the NGG (NextGen Gallery), a photo gallery plugin, with FIAGallery. The reason is because NGG seems to be not SEO-friendly unlike FIAGallery.

Well, there's still too much to be done. While I had solved the template issues, there's still a lot to build up in terms of content, and that is an even more important issue to focus on.

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