March 18th, 2003

LiveJournal turns 4!

By my clock, it's now March 18th.... LiveJournal's birthday!

Four years ago today I made the first post into the system, thinking I'd just use it myself and let a few friends use it too. Now we have 932,081 accounts, 425,901 of which are active. Incredible! Thanks, everybody.... it's the users that make this place fun.

In celebration of LJ's birthday we'll be announcing some cool stuff throughout the day, so make sure you keep reading the news.

For now, I'm going to go update the Frank the Goat image on the main page with a cool birthday version that justgoto made. (hover your mouse over it to get the full effect!)

Anyway, stay tuned.... :-)

New URL formats

One of the aforementioned fun announcements for LiveJournal's birthday is new URL formats.

The format of the new URLs (addresses) have been designed for brevity, cleanliness, internationalization (as little English as possible), future directions, and correctness.

The old addresses still either work as is or redirect to the new ones. There are lots of places on the site linking to old-style URLs still, but those will be fixed over time.

I'm sure there will be some objections to the new format (as happens with all changes), but we did discuss the changes quite a bit and made a bunch of changes as a result of the discussion. The relevant posts/threads are: (old) (old) (latest)

We've been testing this quite a bit, but little problems are sure to pop up. We'll be around all day (as we almost always are) to fix any problems with the change.

The next two birthday announcements will come in 12 hours or so, so don't stay glued to your monitors. :-)

New site look!

Birthday surprise #2 of 3....

We've been talking about redesigning the look of the site for ages, but thanks to colin and jproulx, it's finally happened. The new scheme is called xcolibur, in tribute of XHTML and Colin. Colin did the original design, and Jesse did the browser compatibility and template creation.

To try it out, go turn on the beta test option:

Advantages of new style include:

  • XHTML compliant (many pages, working on the rest... talkread pages will probably never be, since people don't always write clean entries)
  • All CSS based:
    • Much less markup! (downloads quicker)
    • Works great in text browsers, modern browsers, cell-phones, PDAs, etc...
  • Less busy (the old design had too many links shown at once)
  • Makes it more obvious who you're logged in as

We've been testing this in lots of browsers, but we're not done yet. Please send bug reports to jproulx.

And we're sure many people will hate it (again, the change factor with 400k people) but we'll do our best to address everybody's complaints and get it working well so everybody's happy. That's why it's not the system default yet.


  • The IE6 centering bug is fixed.
  • JavaScript wasn't originally required, but IE isn't fully standards compliant, not supporting the pseudo-element :hover on arbitrary elements, so we had to add JS in. We'll work on making the pure CSS version still work, if you're using a good browser like Mozilla.

LiveJournal T-Shirts

And for birthday surprise #3 of 3....


They should start arriving tomorrow and should all be here by next week (we've pre-ordered over 4,000!), at which time we'll start doing sales.

We'll be selling them just hardly above cost, which was pretty cheap since we pre-ordered so many. It's not our intention to make profit on this. It's best to just get people happy & wearing them. :-)

BTW, we did end up getting larger sizes, but only in black/white/grey, if I recall correctly. Anyway, more details (sizes/exact measurements/costs) next week....

Happy Birthday!