A sneak peak at the blog’s makeover. What do you think?

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The Bart-MS blog is getting a brand new makeover. And we want to hear your thoughts about it.


Why the change?

We listened to some common problems from our readers and talked about what was and wasn’t working for authors and guest bloggers too. Here are the main things we came up with:
  • It’s too difficult to find past posts. You have to rely on the search function.
  • The search function itself is not that great.
  • Some of the posts are inaccessible to those without a scientific background, but those who have an interest in research are keen that the blog does not oversimplify its posts.
  • Bloggers find the back end of the blog clunky.

What are the changes?

The main functions of the new design are:

  • Categories. You’ll find every blog post (will eventually be) put into a category, making it easier to find posts related to treatments, for example, or causes.
  • A search that works!
  • Clean, responsive design to make it easier to read on mobile and desktop.
  • Information on how long it takes to read a post and how complex/scientific the language and concepts are.
  • Better editing tools when writing posts

It’s really important to know that no content is being deleted in the transfer. To confirm, ALL old posts and comments will be transferred over. 


What happens now?

This is where you, dear readers, come in. We’d love you to look at the new design and tell us what you think. Explore, click around, and tell us your comments below. We hope you like it!

Not all the posts have been transferred and categorised yet. Don’t worry, this will happen! 


The blog won’t be launched for a few weeks yet, giving us the chance to hear your feedback and incorporate it where we can.

Please let us know what you think of the redesign and leave your comments for us.

About the author

Rebecca Aldam

16 comments

  • Will there be a 'recent comments' section? I like to look at those to see what people are talking about. Sometimes the comments are very informative but without this function we won't know where people are commenting.

  • Much clearer and easier to navigate.
    Sorting the blogs into categories is a big step forward and improving the search facility is a good idea
    A separate category of guest posts

  • Thanks Patrick! Guest posts are much easier to find now with the search engine and there is a page where all the guests bloggers are listed.

  • I think that the Blog should claim it's broader audience: not only those that 'are affected by MS,' but research scientists and clinicians, and any others as well! I've mentioned the Blog for example, to a newly qualified neurologist, an occupational therapist and a neurophysiotherapist and they were very interested to know of the Blogs existence and engage with it.

    I think the new format will make accessing the site less daunting for those PwMS new to it, and make for easier searches.

    I'd like to still be able to access 'posts this month' so that I can take a look at all posts on any given month. This facility allows me to access material as and when suits me, but also means I take a look at posts that I wouldn't initially grasp are pertinent or of interest to me.

    Like Julie, I've certainly benefitted from the comments following any post and would like that format to continue so I can scroll back and check a comment against the post contents when I feel the need.

    As I've said before: I'm so grateful to MD for providing such a regular volume of posts. But this makes the Blog very dependent on him and like others, I'd like to have more contributions from ProfG, if possible.

  • I love this blog, thank you for to everyone involved in sustaining it. I read it daily, am both a clinician and someone with MS. My one suggestion for change would be the use of terminology. Like everyone with MS, I am many things before my diagnosis. 'MSer' portrays the opposite of this. I appreciate it was coined by a person with MS, and was found in research linked on the blog to be the most favoured option by people with MS. However, I can see why the term also has most respondents with very divided opinions on the term. I would suggest PwMS (even as a small p!) for use in the blog. Thank you overall though for your enthusiasm and helpful critique.

    • Another pole was done and pwMS came out top and i have stopped using MSer and am not sure why anyone on the blog is still using MSer the results were very clear from the poll from MS register our pole and the pole from NARCOMS. MSer was a shift MS invention. This should be pt to bed.

  • I also love this blog and read it daily; I have MS and very little knowledge of science but skip to the conclusion if I find it too difficult to understand the detail. The new layout looks much more user friendly and I think it would be less off-putting to others like me. I really like the idea of stating the difficulty and time to read on articles too. A better search facility would be very helpful.

  • I like the new look and feel, it is very nice. It renders nicely on both my phone and desktop. Have you thought about adding a newly diagnosed section? I think that would be useful to provide an on ramp for people.

    • As a sort of "short cut to things you really need to know now in brief and we can get to the details later" guide?

      Yes, I think that would be really helpful too.

  • Visiting the new blog is sort of like dating a smart girl but one who doesn't bother to fix her hair or wear makeup. Functional but not too pretty. Really have to wonder if the new appearance is as interesting to click on as the old site. I think not.

    That said, the blog is simply the best and has added tremendous benefit to my life so appearance is not going to detour me in the least. However, for new readers it may. If appearance is important then pretty yourself up a bit, honey, 'cause the new look is bit homely, as is.

    You have great content but I fear and predict future readership will be limited if it isn't in a pretty package. Smart AND gorgeous? Oh yeah, that is what will generate new interest and it is no mystery, either. Visual appeal impacts even the scientifically minded.

  • Looks good and I really like having posts in categories. But where is the search function? Is it hidden? Am I just being really stupid? Posting this on the basis that there are no stupid questions (otherwise I'm sure this would be one).

By Rebecca Aldam

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