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Boing Boing gets a semi-extreme makeover

The wildly popular blog run by a handful of professional journalists and novelists has redesigned, added a new

When I saw Boing Boing co-editor Cory Doctorow speak at a publishing conference in January, he made an offhand remark about how the "directory of wonderful things," one of the most popular blogs on the Web, occasionally came under fire for not being a "true blog" because it didn't allow readers to comment on entries. Comments on Boing Boing, which started as a zine and then went online in 1995, had been turned off several years ago in the wake of trolling problems.

Well, Boing Boing critics can consider themselves moot on that point--the blog has reinstated comments along with a redesign that went into effect on Tuesday morning. Additionally, there's a new Boing Boing Gadgets vertical helmed by former Gizmodo editor Joel Johnson.

In a post on Tuesday, Boing Boing co-editor Mark Frauenfelder hinted that more new developments are coming in the near future, too. Could more verticals be on the way, eventually leading to a full-out blog network? Boing Boing has made a name for itself by chronicling all things bizarre--common topics include steampunk culture, cryptozoology, Disney (a favorite topic of Doctorow's), Creative Commons, and news of the odd--and there's plenty of room out there for even more weirdness.

"We'd like to thank the happy mutants who helped make this major relaunch possible," Frauenfelder wrote. "These folks went under the hood and untangled the mess that Boing Boing's code had snarled into, and created an elegant, powerful system that positively shines."