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Hint Online

4 January 2007 - 4:55pm -- Joseph

The bulk of my work on the Hint website is now complete. I'll still be working on a few things, but basically it's a complete and live site, take a look:

I've tested the site on browser/platform combinations that are available to me, which is fairly varied, but any observations are gratefully received. In particular, if anyone wants to do some user testing on the 'donate via Paypal' button, that'd be great...

Also, I problem which I'd appreciate anyone's input on. The old hint website is still live, and is currently higher ranked than the new site on Google when you search for 'hint'. Also, the site is presumably linked to from quite a few places and sstored in people's bookmarks. I have control over the old site , so I can either:

trash it
put up an auto-redirect on the home page
put up a 'we have moved' page in place of the home page
do nothing.
I don't favour trashing it, or doing nothing, but an auto-redirect or a human-readable notice: that is the question.

In some ways the auto-redirect is a neater solution, but I'm also concerned that it might confuse some people ('why did I type/click on URL A and end up at URL B?') Also, if going to the old url continues to 'work' (thanks to the redirect) then people will be less inclined to change their links and bookmarks.

So I'm leaning towards a 'we have moved' message, but I've never had cause to do this sort of thing before, so I'd like to know what you think...


Auto-redirect with a 10 second delay to allow people to read a message telling them you have moved site and asking them to bookmark the new site.

Hi Joe,

This is a great achievement for you and for us. The site is great.

A big thank you on behalf of HINT.

I buy Mike's idea...

I'd favour a we have moved message for a while (so ppl think "oh yes I must rebookmark") then an autoredirect. Looks fantastic!

If you make the background of the 'we have moved' page flash between cyan and magenta, they're not likely to forget to re-bookmark.

HTTP redirect with status code 301: Moved Permanently.

Websites bounce people's requests around all the time, so they'll come to terms with the shock of ending up somewhere other than where they requested, especially as the final destination will still be relevant. Robots such as search engines should observe the permanent status code and update links accordingly. It's the right thing to do in HTTP land.

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