We just released a new version of qz.com that further improves the website’s speed and makes navigating around the site more intuitive.
It’s an upgrade, touch-up, refresh, progression… Just don’t call it a redesign. Over the past year, we have moved away from that notion in favor of what you might call continuous design. We make changes to the site several times a week. Often we test design tweaks with a small portion of users before deciding whether to roll them out to everyone. And we offer different experiences to people based on their device, location, referral source, loyalty, etc. At this point, qz.com is an ever-evolving organism, adapting to your preferences and habits.
Still, sometimes we make enough changes all at once that it’s worth pointing them out and, as we’ve done in the past, explaining our intent. Here are the major aspects of this release, officially version 4.0:
- Much of the code powering qz.com has been rewritten to speed up the site and give us greater flexibility in future development. Improving performance is an ongoing project for us and probably the site feature on which we spend the most time.
- The queue of stories that long-ago appeared on the left side of qz.com, then was collapsed by default, is gone for good. Our top, latest, and most popular stories can now be accessed more easily from the newly designed navigation bar.
- On phones and tablets, that navigation bar now appears along the bottom of the screen to save your thumbs from performing calisthenics to get around the site. This seemed particularly important as readers’ phones get bigger and bigger.
- We also changed some of our approach to displaying stories to readers who visit on their phones using browsers within social media apps. The idea is to give you a few more options and save you from scrolling too much to access them.
- With today’s launch of Quartz Africa, we now offer that edition, Quartz India, and the global Quartz, so we added new messaging to indicate what experience you’re receiving and let you opt in or out. You can always change editions from the menu.
- The Quartz Daily Brief has a new promotional and sign-up page.
- We are ending our previously limited support for Internet Explorer 9 after dropping IE8 last year and in anticipation of Microsoft’s imminent move toward the same. Last chance to upgrade!
There are several other small changes today, in addition to all the ones we’ve made since the last major update to qz.com nine months ago. Things are moving very fast here, which is how we like it and the only way to keep web design fresh and usable these days.
Everyone at Quartz had a hand in this release, but particular thanks are due to Joe Chagan, Micah Ernst, and Daniel Lee. Many thanks, as well, to Dan Eberle, Apostolis Haitalis, Yitz Jordan, Elan Kiderman, Leslie Nguyen, Michael O’Brien, Amalia Viti, John West, and Sam Williams.
Please let us know what you think, and report any issues you encounter to firstname.lastname@example.org with as many details as you can muster. Thanks!