As you can see, the new design is up. Its been nearly 2 years of seeing that blue header, and quite frankly, the monotony forced my hand.

In addition to looking a bit slicker, there are a couple of functional improvements: 

A) Each of the six pictograms above track the largest categories by relevancy and number of posts:

1) Capital Markets 2) Economy  3) Geopolitics 4) Tech 5) Film/TV & 6) Music

Click on any one of them, and they take you to the full run of all the posts in that category. (You can always go to the right hand margin to click any of the other categories).

B) click "The Big Picture," and it brings you back home.

I don’t know about you, but I love it!  Mad props to Joelle, who is the Creative Director of Moxie Design Studios (Slogan: "Be Fancy. Get Moxie.") for all her terrific work and patience.

As always, feel free to comment on these changes.

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What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. quietpc3400 commented on Apr 11

    Lavender/Mauve? How metrosexual of you….

  2. tesla1 commented on Apr 11

    The purple/mauve/ whatever just aint right. This color would be great for a artsy-fartsy type of website, but for a critical thinking/financial discussion site, no way.

  3. rob hone commented on Apr 11

    agree with quiet, the easter egg colors seem more appropriate to a teen retail site.

  4. esther T commented on Apr 11

    Its funky fresh !
    Change is good

    Rock on!

  5. Peter commented on Apr 11

    Looks really good to me . I even like the colors. However, could you please make the type a bit larger (which hopefully also makes the black a bit more black) – for us older folks that is. It is very hard and a bit tiring to read compared to other sites or to your previous layout.


  6. Jane N-B commented on Apr 11

    Snazzy! Fun, fresh, interesting. I like your site, and the redesign makes it even more appealing. Since real estate and economics are tightly interwoven, I like your site for the information and analysis you provide. Keep up the good work.

    Jane N-B

  7. fatbear commented on Apr 11

    So what the design’s metrosexual (whatever that means) – looks great, and I’m a communications pro.

    OTOH, my eyes aren’t what they were, and as for font/size/color I agree with Peter – bigger, blacker, and maybe even a serif style for ease of reading. Remind Joelle that Albers and Tufte both recognize that serif is better for the eyes in text blocks.

  8. fatbear commented on Apr 11

    And, zowie, on the Preview load the text of the other comments is virtually the same color as the background. Can’t read the other comments, unless one does the highlight trick.

    (I browse Safari on Mac OS 10.3, so it may work better in Wintel.)

  9. Chris commented on Apr 11

    The iPod logo is “tech” but the CD is “music”? What century are we in?

  10. anne commented on Apr 11

    There is a significant problem with the lightness of the print. Though I like the design of the Blog, the lightness and small size of the print will make it most difficult for me to read. Clarity of type is essential. Most difficult.


  11. anne commented on Apr 11

    Please do increase the size and improve the clarity of the type.

  12. Peatey commented on Apr 11

    this new design is missing the requisite bubble-gum pop music…

    want-a fanta, donch-a want-a, want-a fanta…

  13. Bonnie commented on Apr 11

    Hello Barry! I love the new design, especially the colors…but what I love most is the CONTENT. You have created a very interesting and useful website with great links to other sites. I visit every day to get your market and economic analysis. Glad you kept the dog-in-the-grass photo – keeps us feeling lighthearted on challenging days! – Best of Everything to you, Bonnie

  14. Bob commented on Apr 11

    If nothing else could lighten up to purple borders (light lavender perhaps). The border color is so strong it makes reading the central text challenging. Thanks.

  15. b commented on Apr 11

    to light color for the print and the too small type makes this nearly unreadable. The color for links is hurting my eyes too.

    How do you expect us to concentrate on good content when one already has to concentrate to get the letters?

    And yes, preview is all screwed up.

    And how do you expect anyone colorblind (12% of male population to some degree) to read blue on violet?

    Please make the designer reread Jakob Nielsen

  16. anne commented on Apr 11

    Sorry Barry,

    Tried again, with an excellent screen but the print is simply too hard to read. Too light, too small.

  17. Joelle commented on Apr 11

    At this point, I feel I must jump in and defend my professional integrity here. I’m quite aware about Jakob Neilsen and serif fonts and everything else you’ve chosen to critique about this design. I am by no means the very best coder or designer in the world, but I’ve been doing this for 10 years and I have a fairly large client base that has confidence in my abilities.

    I apologize if I sound defensive, but you also must remember that I design based on client request. Whatever the client asks for I will gladly do and make suggestions where I’m able. I’m happy to adjust and make provisions on preferences, such as color and font, but there’s really no need to insult my intelligence or abilities.

  18. anne commented on Apr 11


    I liked the design at once. But reading the type was too difficult for me till you changed the darkness. Thank you, for this was important. Obviously, you do fine work.

  19. Joelle commented on Apr 11

    You made a great argument, anne. :) I agreed with your perspective and I appreciate your fair and constructive feedback. Thanks!

  20. Barry Ritholtz commented on Apr 11

    I appreciate all the feedback — but before we insult Joelle any further, the color scheme was my choice — the Purple, the headers, etc.

    Also, I wanted something with a little snap — this had it in spades. And the designer made numerous tweaks and adjustments on the fly, with great patience, on time and under budget.

    I highly recommend Joelle/Moxie Studios for anyone who wants to upgrade the look of their blogs . . .

  21. fatbear commented on Apr 12

    joelle –

    I don’t recall seeing anything here that’s an attack on you or your talents. A note about a classic designer or design reference is not a putdown; it’s a mention to Barry that his readers are sophisticated and erudite, and able to respond to his request with an intelligent, witty and enlightened critique. I would most certainly call it “fair and constructive.” If I had known that you were reading these, I for one would have made the comment directly to you. Perhaps you should have had a separate “private” mailbox for the readers to comment to. (Compared to the flames that other sites get for their redesigns, the reaction here reads like a milquetoast’s sotto voce asides.)

    Anyhow – thanks for making the type blacker and the font larger. I still think a serif face is easier on tired old eyes, but that’s up to you guys. As it is, you have a most refreshing and spritely look – I most certainly know I’m at The Big Picture, and the home page is as clear as they get.

    btw, for a guy who talks about usability, Jakob Nielsen’s website needs lots of work itself – Tufte he isn’t.

    And, Barry, are you a Vikings fan?

  22. anne commented on Apr 12


    Well done :) I will surely mention you. The Blog has a pleasing and distinct modernist look. What I thought about after your note, in addition to thinking I had not been properly grateful, was how little art there is in Blog design and how much there might be. Function and form can really be blended, but generally are not. More from you, now, and possibly you will show off your designs. Thank you so much.

  23. anne commented on Apr 12

    By the way, there is an inherent coldness to Internet cross talk that I always try to be aware of and compensate for. Art really does help and needs to help more.

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