As part of implementing the new unified themes across the network, we're gradually rolling out updated site themes for each site. As of today, we have enabled your updated site theme for testing.

If you can't see it right now, that's by design! This is a very early test implementation of your design and we need your help finding issues with it before we make it live for everyone permanently. So, keep in mind, there will be things that need fixing! We'll address those things as we can.

If you'd like to review it, here's how:

How do I enable it?

Click here and check the "Beta test new themes" option. This will turn on the new theme for all sites that have one in testing, including this one. Here's more info on how to opt in. You can uncheck the box to revert to the older theme until the site is live for everyone. Note, while turning it on is immediate, it will take a few minutes to revert to the old view - but it will go through!

What type of feedback do we need?

On this post: Bugs related to this site's design elements

Please help us look for issues/bugs related to the theme design and how we have mapped the old theme to the new. This needs to be done within the limits of the new unified theme.

This could include colors of sections of the design or text, problems with JavaScript add-ons (if applicable), the logo or top banner appearance or other artwork.

You can also feel free to ask questions about the new layout if you're unsure how to navigate it.

On Meta Stack Exchange: General concerns about left nav or theming

There are some things that are definitely changing everywhere and can't really be adjusted on a per-site basis. A few of them include:

  • Top banner is shorter in height, so some artwork has to be adjusted along with some logos.
  • Left Navigation is active everywhere (but can be collapsed into a menu by visiting your site preferences - instructions here).
  • Responsive layout is active, which lets the site adjust as browser widths change - no side scrolling (some pages haven't been updated, yet, though). For now, if you prefer the scrolling, you can disable this by clicking the "disable responsiveness" link in the footer.
  • Many site elements including tags and voting arrows are standardized across the network.
  • Link underlining is active. In an effort to make links more visible, they are now being underlined.

If you have concerns or issues regarding the left nav or the overall approach we are taking to theming, then this Meta Stack Exchange post is the right place for feedback.

As I mentioned earlier, there are some unique design elements like voting arrows and tags that are being standardized in this process. Keeping these custom elements makes our ability to maintain the sites too complex and, while we're very sad to see them go, we're in a difficult position of needing to make the site designs work together so that we can continue to address feature requests and bugs that will make your Q&A experience better. This is addressed in a Meta Stack Exchange post if you want more detail.

What new themes?

If you're like, "What the heck are you talking about?", then you should read the Meta Stack Exchange post entitled Rollout of new network site themes (and maybe the posts it links to for the full background). To follow along with the rollout of these new themes, go here.

Thanks so much for your constructive feedback!

Oh, Who am I?

If you don't know me, I'm one of the Community Managers here at Stack Exchange. I'm here to listen to your input and convey it to our Design team for responses and fixes to bugs. I'll do my best to respond to your concerns and explain whether changes we've made are bugs that can be changed or if they're by design and why.

  • $\begingroup$ I haven't tried the beta theme yet so I have no opinion about it (apart from not having had any issues on other SE sites that use it). I wonder if it's because of people's opinion on the theme or because they feel like this announcement post is of poor quality that they are downvoting. If it's for the former, that's bad! If it's for the latter, please -- people -- explain! $\endgroup$
    – Nicola Sap
    Oct 10, 2018 at 13:19
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ ok @NicolaSap because you asked. I was one of the heartless unspoken DVer's. My DV has nothing to do with Catija, her post, the quality, or how it was written. This is about the left nav, period. I'm not going to get into the whole theme thing here. I just left my DV and moved on. Will report any bugs when I come across them. (which is what this whole post was supposed to be about). $\endgroup$
    – David
    Oct 10, 2018 at 13:26
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks David for the clarification. I acknowledge that the new theme is not much appreciated around here (I repeat: I haven't gotten into this topic or argument before), and I realise that there's something bigger than an internal BSE thing at stake here. Voting is anonymous and isn't to be judged on SE (apart from serial voting), I just felt that a reason such as yours is not among the "good ones" for a DV, but thanks for coming out and claiming it $\endgroup$
    – Nicola Sap
    Oct 10, 2018 at 13:31
  • $\begingroup$ I agree, with you there. DVing because you do not like the under laying issue is not a great reason. (It would be plain wrong on the main site.) However meta is a little different, her we do vote to agree or disagree. So here it is borderline, ok probably not right. This is not about the theme (too late for that), but just letting you know to test it. $\endgroup$
    – David
    Oct 10, 2018 at 13:50
  • $\begingroup$ Oh, so the leftnav approaching closer here as well. Sad to hear. Also I'd love to hear more about customized 404 / not a bot etc pages much more than about leftnav and link-underlining (although questions about 404 etc were already asked without any answer). $\endgroup$
    – Mr Zak
    Oct 10, 2018 at 18:30
  • $\begingroup$ @David: I'm not sure if you know that you can hide the left nav. I personally can't decide which way is better, but some people prefer their nav in the top bar. $\endgroup$ Oct 11, 2018 at 0:48

4 Answers 4


The new logo looks like it has been saved to SVG in Adobe Illustrator without enough decimal places. The default number of decimal places is 1, but a minimum of 3 is probably needed to represent the logo in its full glory.

Because of this it lacks in details and the logo looks off compared to the old one. For example the "B" looks off, the 'l' is to thin etc. See the attached images for comparison: enter image description here

The old and new logo as rendered by Google Chrome in macOS:

enter image description here


This is probably status by design, but I'll bring it up for thought.

The "Ask Question" button is now missing on the users page, user pages, tags page, tag pages, all of the review pages (including all the tools), the tour page (At least here it forces users to read down to the "Ask a Question" button.), and the help center.

That is a lot of places where I can not ask a question. Why are we removing the "Ask Question" button, the one thing SE is meant to do, and making it harder to get to the ask page?

In short I have to be on the Home page, the questions page, or a question page, to be able to ask a new question.

Can we please put the "Ask Question" button back everywhere? I mean we have that whole new (empty) left nav, and is begging for buttons.

  • $\begingroup$ So, when we pulled the Ask button out of the top bar, this did become a problem and I agree that it should be addressed. In the question I mention that many pages haven't been redesigned for the responsive layout - pages like the review queues and profile pages - hopefully this will be a consideration when they are reworked. I can't actually remember if anyone's asked to move the Ask Question button into the left sidebar but my guess is that it'd be problematic since we allow users to collapse it, which means it'd be missing on every page. $\endgroup$
    – Catija
    Oct 10, 2018 at 14:35

Is it intended that you have to go through the help center to find the badges page?

I wanted to check on one of the badges, and could not remember how to get there (shows how often that page is used). It did not occur to me to check the help center. I loaded the old theme, and clicked the badges button, simple. (then from the url figured it would be in the help center)

Seeing how it is a very secondary page I understand removing it. However the left nav is still quite empty. Could we not add it back there?

What was the reasoning to drop the "badges" and "ask question" links when the nav moved to the left?

  • $\begingroup$ Badges (and privileges) can be reached by clicking on the achievements dropdown. It's in the top line of the pane. It's actually been there for a while. :) I forget about it all the time, though. That said, Badges are a pretty important part of the site mechanics. You're not the only one who'd like to see them in the left nav. i.stack.imgur.com/eI8dp.png $\endgroup$
    – Catija
    Oct 15, 2018 at 15:23
  • $\begingroup$ Ooh, that's useful (and I feel dumb). $\endgroup$
    – David
    Oct 15, 2018 at 17:27

On my user page when there is a blue number box showing the count since last click, the underline for that tab disappears. my user page (no that number is not edited.)

My browser and OS:
Same setup as always, still running FireFox 52.0.2 esr on vista.

I looked through the css and the issue arises from the border-bottom:2px solid transparent; and border-bottom:1px solid transparent; deceleration in the #tabs a,.tabs a style on lines 7045 and 17749 respectively (well at least in how FF unminifys it.)

  • $\begingroup$ :( Hmmm... I don't have any events here to reproduce this but I don't see it on sites that I do have events on that are also in testing. It may be browser/system specific. Could you add some details in that regard? $\endgroup$
    – Catija
    Oct 10, 2018 at 14:44
  • $\begingroup$ PS you should have an event on BSE now. (and it likely works in your browser) $\endgroup$
    – David
    Oct 15, 2018 at 14:23

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