By T.J. Buffenbarger
If you are a regular reader of TJSlideways.com you may have noticed some changes we implemented. Welcome to what I refer to as “TJSlideways 3.0”. Over the past 14 seasons TJSlideways.com has adjusted to changes in the internet. At one point T.J. wrote all of the software that ran the website, but once college life was traded in for “real” life the lack of free time moved us to pre-packaged software. Now with growing social networking and new media (audio, video, etc) we felt the need to adjust the site to keep up with it. After six months of research, testing, and lack of sleep this is what we came up with.
Open wheel racing news and information is still our primary focus. To help make things more cohesive columns and features are now “blogs” and will be closely integrated into the news items for better visibility. The top four news items of the day are featured in a rotation on the top of the front page; while just below the top three blogs and features are located above the 10 to 15 latest news stories. Below that you will find a dropdown to all the series, track, event, and other news we cover. If your favorite topic does not appear, don’t worry, we likely haven’t posted a story in that section yet. Once the season is in full gear all the topics will be populated.
Our new radio show, the TJSlideways.com open wheel spectacular, is nearly 1,000 subscribers to our RSS feed and is growing every week. The archives are now available on demand and access to the live show on Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. EST should become easier. In addition the new site will feature many of T.J.’s pre and post race interviews with drivers on demand with more podcasting planned for the future.
More images, audio, and video will be implemented in the site. Our YouTube.com videos (that largely went unnoticed before the new site) are now front and center. This will allow us to take you behind the scenes with as we travel to some of the most exciting open wheel events around the country. The new design also features the great photography on TJSlideways.com inside of our awesome race reports.
Social media is growing like wildfire, and you can find TJSlideways exclusive content on Facebook and Twitter. Get T.J.’s thoughts from an event via Twitter and Twitpic as the events occur. Our video is YouTube powered, and we hope you’ll become a fan on Facebook. For our feed readers we have a couple of RSS links available at the moment, but that will expand as the 2010 season progresses.
One of the most exciting features of the website is true mobile support. TJSlideways.com is now one of the most mobile friendly open wheel racing news sites on the web. While every section is not yet optimized for mobile use, our news and information is more accessible than ever via your cell phone.
Popular features like the classified ads, message board, and user polls are still part of TJSlideways.com. We hope you enjoy our foray into “Web 2.0” and “TJSlideways 3.0”. We know change is not popular, but we think you’ll grow to enjoy our new look. Any comments, questions, and concerns can be directed to our staff via the contact page.