Change Has Come

Wed, 04/28/2010 - 12:25
Bye bye old layout which served from 29 July 2000 till 28 April 2010

Welcome to the genesis of the new 

From October 2009 till right this minute on 28 April 2010 creative designer Remi Blot and I have worked on delivering this brainchild with utmost care, concentration and dedication. 

For ten years, since its official inception on 29 July 2000, Eurodressage has maintained a status quo in its layout. Its highly praised simplicity, uniformity and structure were easily accessible and much enjoyed by our readers. To this date we never received one complaint about the website being puzzling to navigate or difficult to read. The absence of a search engine was probably the achilles heel of the old site, but I can tell you that the latter issue has now come to pass. Eurodressage rises in a Herculean effort to uphold its number one position as the biggest and best all-encompassing dressage news website on the Internet. 

More than ever I felt the time was right to climb to new heights and professionalize Eurodressage to a greater extent. To stay current with the latest trends integrated in all highly acclaimed online international news publication, Eurodressage has implemented video features as well as a photo database with historic photos dating back to the 1950s as well as recent work by Astrid Appels, Mary Phelps, Dirk Caremans, Barbara Schnell, Leanjo de Koster, Arnd Bronkhorst, Elisabeth Weiland and Jacques Toffi 

Social community websites such as Facebook, Twitter and the equestrian oriented Barnmice, have amalgamated the dressage world bringing riders, breeders and enthusiasts closer together. We deliberately opted not to incorporate a social network with its obligatory sign-up into Eurodressage, as we aim to keep the site pure in concept: that of an online news magazine. However, we have linked to these three network partners on every page as we actively post on them updates, Tweets and photos of the latest happenings relating to the website. 

Seven strenuous months of work have preceded this accouchement. It was an adventure resembling Aesop’s fable of the Tortoise and the Hare. While Remi designed the layout and computed the underlying database skeleton, I was trying to keep up with his pace manually transferring -- one-by-one -- each article and each photo ever published on the old Eurodressage. It has taken half a year to upload approximately 5,500 articles and more than 3,000 photos so far (of about 15,000 to 20,000 in total). 

Eurodressage predates its July 2000 launch. In a foetal phase the site was called “Belgian Junior Riders Online” covering news from the Belgian pony, junior and young riders’ scene since 1997. Most people did not even have internet acess at the time! Together with Mary Phelps of “Phelps Equine World” (now we were dressage website pioneers and to date still spearhead the online dressage community. This site has articles dating back to the late 1990s . We would like to invite our readers to search our archives and rediscover great old stories from the past. A restricted amount of photos is online so far but images will be added daily as we continue to build Eurodressage to completion. 

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I would love to hear your thoughts and comments about our new “outfit” and of course I welcome suggestions.

-- Astrid Appels

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