Latest somethingdark news
Developing a website such as SDk and the magazine it hosts takes time. That's why we think contributors and others interested in what we are doing deserve to be kept informed on our progress. This page has been designed to do exactly that: to keep you up-to-date as to where we are. We're pleased to have you with us.
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The new SomethingDark is on its waySDk Updates
Tues 05 Mar, 2018.
SomethingDark will be with everyone again soon with a totally new, responsive design. There’s a great deal to consider when developing an extensive new site – and it will be extensive, as all previous issues of SDk will be incorporated – so we’re putting an enormous amount of thought and care into it.
Here’s why we’re redesigning SomethingDark webmagazine from the ground up:
Web technology has developed enormously since we first released SDk in 2010, and indeed some might say the Web itself has changed. This isn’t quite true, as the Web invented by Tim Berners-Lee is still essentially the same platform, but the way the Web is used has changed, driven by mobile technology and the big tech corporations. While it’s possible to do more on the Web than ever before, the “rules” imposed by the likes of Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft – and the parameters of the various technologies they’re pushing – mean that what’s done on the Web has to be done in specific ways to take full advantage of what’s possible, or even to work at all. Not playing by these rules can result in significant penalties from the likes of Google (for example), whose robots can eliminate a site from search relevance.
We deactivated the SDk mobile site some time ago, as dedicated mobile versions of sites have become increasingly redundant with responsive website tools that allow sites to adapt efficiently to any screen size and orientation – an important development now with so many different mobile devices, and with the big technology corporates actively promoting the uptake of mobile usage (which encourages frequent device upgrading, increasing use of their cloud-based subscription services, and, indeed, of using what they have to offer us and exposing us to what they have to sell us, virtually on a 24-hour basis).
Following on from all of the above, which has been building momentum for around five years, user expectations of how a website should appear and behave have changed. Sites now have a few seconds to prove to a visitor that it has what they’re looking for before they move on. It’s a hard world out there in cyberspace.
So these are the reasons why our uniquely designed webmagazine, which is coded by hand from scratch for every issue, has to change. The unique format of SDk, created to combine the experience of a traditional print magazine with the advantages of the Web, does not adapt well to mobile-device screens, in some cases to the point where it simply doesn’t function as it should. We also found that visitors were having difficulty navigating the webmagazine, even some people who were experienced with computer use and website navigation.
With the new SDk we’ll also be reassessing our stance on a number of issues and will be implementing adjustments to our orientation. We regard this as necessary in a world where we see culture as more important than ever in representing and defending the achievements of humanity in the face of increasing state authoritarianism and a predatory economic system, an economic system the veteran political economist Jeffrey Harrod is suggesting has evolved from capitalism to what he’s provisionally termed “corporatism”.
In the meantime, while development of the new SomethingDark continues, please avail yourself of the current incarnation of SDk webmagazine; it’s been crafted so its relevance stands the test of time, and we’re sure there’s still much for you to discover and explore.