status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

classic Classic list List threaded Threaded
64 messages Options
1234
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Curtis Napier
This has been cross posted to gentoo-dev and www-redesign.

http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

After receiving a ton of very useful feedback from the developer
community I have updated the redesign. It should now be closer to 100%
accessible and it should (hopefully) render perfectly in all browsers
including text only browsers. It now passes XHTML and CSS validation tests.

I'm asking for everyone (developers and users alike) to please have a
look at the updated site and send any feedback you may have. I'm
especially interested in feedback from anyone who uses accessibilty
programs such as screen readers or if you are color blind or have any
other accessibilty issues.

Also, I only use GNU/Linux and I have only tested on the following browsers:

Mozilla-1.7
firefox-1.0
Opera-8.5
Internet Explorer-6 under CrossOver Office
Epiphany-1.8.2
Links-2.1 in text mode and graphics mode.

If you have access to a Macintosh, Windows, *BSD or any other OS or
Browser please test the site and include your OS and the browser version
in your feedback. I haven't received feedback from Konqueror or Safari
so feedback from those browsers would be much appreciated.

The only major outstanding issue is the contents of the menu in the grey
bar at the top and what should appear in the 5 purple boxes directly
under them. Currently I have that menu listed in order of what a new
Gentoo user would need to access first. If you have a better idea of
what should be included in this menu or think something important is
being left out please send that in your feedback as well.

Thanks in advance

Curtis
--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Energytwister
> If you have access to a Macintosh, Windows, *BSD or any other OS or  
> Browser please test the site and include your OS and the browser  
> version in your feedback. I haven't received feedback from  
> Konqueror or Safari so feedback from those browsers would be much  
> appreciated.

I am using a Powerbook G4 running with Mac OS X 10.4.3 (Tiger) and  
Safari Version 2.0.2 (416.12).

The site looks just fine with the exception of a lot of unnecessary  
whitespace between the header and
the cow logo where it reads "We produce Gentoo...".

A similar amount of "seems-out-of-place"-whitespace is visible  
between the "Older News"-link and the
three icons for "Documentation" "Resources' "Community".

I also checked the site with Firefox 1.0.7 on my Mac. It displays the  
same whitespace. Perhaps this is
intended after all? If it indeed is intended you might want to think  
about it, seems like a lot of wasted
space to me.

I could post a screenshot if anyone wants one.

Thanks for your time,
Patrick
--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Nicholas D. Wolfwood
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier
On Mon, 2005-11-21 at 08:51 +0100, Energytwister wrote:

> > If you have access to a Macintosh, Windows, *BSD or any other OS or  
> > Browser please test the site and include your OS and the browser  
> > version in your feedback. I haven't received feedback from  
> > Konqueror or Safari so feedback from those browsers would be much  
> > appreciated.
>
> I am using a Powerbook G4 running with Mac OS X 10.4.3 (Tiger) and  
> Safari Version 2.0.2 (416.12).
>
> The site looks just fine with the exception of a lot of unnecessary  
> whitespace between the header and
> the cow logo where it reads "We produce Gentoo...".
>
> A similar amount of "seems-out-of-place"-whitespace is visible  
> between the "Older News"-link and the
> three icons for "Documentation" "Resources' "Community".
I also see this whitespace in Linux with Galeon, and I agree it seems
out of place and could use to be tightened up.

Another issue is the line spacing on the last line of authors in docs is
greater than the rest.

I'm a little unsure that the links in the upper right should be all
caps...looks kinda odd.

If the "Make a Donation" graphic is going to be in the donate div then
having "Donation" bold is redundant and misleading as it isn't
clickable, and the Make a Donation graphic needs it's transparency
worked on.

Whitespace is needed between "> What's New" and the line before the news
items...color separation would look better than the horizontal lines
that currently separate news items.

On some pages, http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/list.xml for
one...the ads on the right become spaced out from the right hand side
instead of being consistently aligned.

On http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/list.xml the subsections could
use some whitespace between them, ie. between the "Installation Guides"
section of links and the "Other Installation Related Documentation" list
of links.

http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/main/en/about.xml scrolls horizontally
probably due to the fig's overflow.

Increasing the line spacing could be good, since lists of links
currently look very crowded due to their underlines being 1 pixel from
the top of the next line's text.

On docs, the "Printer-friendly" graphic needs to be vertically centered
on the text to it's left, or alternately could be right aligned so it is
in the top-right of the page.

On pages where the ads are longer than the content to their left, the
content is vertically aligned middle, it needs to be vertically aligned
top.

On docs, tables have a 2px border, which seems too heavy/thick...a 1px
white border could look good, just denoting separation of the cells.

It would be good if there was a way to restrict the width of notes/warns
since on
http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/handbook/handbook-x86.xml?part=1&chap=3 they cause the page to scroll horizontally, when they could instead just wrap their contents...only code listings should be kept from being wrapped.

The lines that flank the nav elements in the handbook seem too heavy as
well...maybe 1px solid or dotted would look better?  or maybe no lines?

And I'm not sure what's happening with dates in the GWN index, but they
have extra newlines in them causing them to look rather odd.

And I take it the glsa index stuff
(http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/security/en/index.xml) hasn't been
implemented for the wwwredesign site?

That's it for now, Curtis, I hope you don't see my comments as critical
or demanding, they are just suggestions/my personal opinions...I'm very
impressed with how much work you've done, and I'd like to thank you for
keeping the redesign alive, if it weren't for you it would've died and
been forgotten :)

--
Blackace
Gentoo Linux
Infrastructure Developer

signature.asc (196 bytes) Download Attachment
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

"C. Bergström"
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier
Curtis Napier wrote:

> This has been cross posted to gentoo-dev and www-redesign.
>
> http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org
>
> After receiving a ton of very useful feedback from the developer
> community I have updated the redesign. It should now be closer to 100%
> accessible and it should (hopefully) render perfectly in all browsers
> including text only browsers. It now passes XHTML and CSS validation
> tests.

The doctype is currently HTML 4.01 Transitional and manually overriding
to XHTML doesn't validate.. (Looking at the source shows that it's
simple fixes though.)

>
> If you have access to a Macintosh, Windows, *BSD or any other OS or
> Browser please test the site and include your OS and the browser
> version in your feedback. I haven't received feedback from Konqueror
> or Safari so feedback from those browsers would be much appreciated.
>
If you'd like to preview future sites for Mac.. (Try PearPC)

> The only major outstanding issue is the contents of the menu in the
> grey bar at the top and what should appear in the 5 purple boxes
> directly under them. Currently I have that menu listed in order of
> what a new Gentoo user would need to access first. If you have a
> better idea of what should be included in this menu or think something
> important is being left out please send that in your feedback as well.
>
Usability and navigation needs work.  Think in terms of end user..
Someone may not land on the home page.. At which point he will have to
navigate to where he/she needs to get as quickly as possible.  With
click-through patterns (If you can get the data) see where people are
going and make that most accessible..  Navigation should be fairly site
standard and potentially even show a hierarchy of where they are in the
site. (ie Home > Solutions > etc)
Do we have this data? Is now the time to do a structure change to allow
for faster digging?

(Not exactly related to the redesign, but is the site content index or
in a database at all.. How could we maybe allow for a site/doc search?)

I've looked at the preview images for the winning contest.. Is it too
late to consider moving the three navigation boxes to the left hand side
and or keeping some of the left hand navigation there..

Link color contrast for the top right isn't very clear.. (Doesn't match
the preview image.)

Why change from the preview image to adding in it's place the four
navigation boxes?

While we are an open source project there are still two very desirable
actions we want users to do..

1) Download and try the software (Rename mirrors and get gentoo to
Download and make it very clear where users can download from.)
2) Make a donation (this should also be something more than a standard
PayPal button, but still discrete and site blended.)

Dummy proof and use standard terms for the actions we want users to
do..  The perfect example, but more than slightly overkill/hard sell is..
http://uk.real.com/realmusic/
(I do think the preview image you submitted was very close on target,
but maybe with a bigger click here or arrow..)

Possible to get the CSS page under 8k?

btw.. Is there any particular reason the current site pages end in .xml,
but are actually just html docs? (Do we plan to use xhtml at least in
the future?)

Cheers,

C.
--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Nicholas D. Wolfwood
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier
On Mon, 2005-11-21 at 10:39 +0200, Christopher Bergström wrote:
> Usability and navigation needs work.  Think in terms of end user..
> Someone may not land on the home page.. At which point he will have to
> navigate to where he/she needs to get as quickly as possible.  With
> click-through patterns (If you can get the data) see where people are
> going and make that most accessible..  Navigation should be fairly site
> standard and potentially even show a hierarchy of where they are in the
> site. (ie Home > Solutions > etc)
> Do we have this data? Is now the time to do a structure change to allow
> for faster digging?

Now is probably not the time, no, structure changes will likely take
place after this first part of the redesign is implemented.

> (Not exactly related to the redesign, but is the site content index or
> in a database at all.. How could we maybe allow for a site/doc search?)

Also planned.

> I've looked at the preview images for the winning contest.. Is it too
> late to consider moving the three navigation boxes to the left hand side
> and or keeping some of the left hand navigation there..

In my opinion, adding nav to the left side would take too much
horizontal real estate.

> Possible to get the CSS page under 8k?

Why?  the css should be cached by the useragent and therefore will only
be transferred once.

> btw.. Is there any particular reason the current site pages end in .xml,
> but are actually just html docs? (Do we plan to use xhtml at least in
> the future?)

Yes, the underlying data is xml...the .xml files are being transformed
to html/xhtml server-side using xslt.

--
Blackace
Gentoo Linux
Infrastructure Developer

signature.asc (196 bytes) Download Attachment
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

RE: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Aaron Shi
In reply to this post by "C. Bergström"
First of all, kudos to Curtis and team.  This is definitely a step up from
last time I checked.  While I don't always agree with what's done, I do very
much appreciate and respect all the effort that's put in.

Here goes the comments... I'm just going to add to the discussion rather
than starting from the beginning.

> Usability and navigation needs work.  Think in terms of end user..
> Someone may not land on the home page.. At which point he
> will have to navigate to where he/she needs to get as quickly
> as possible.  With click-through patterns (If you can get the
> data) see where people are going and make that most
> accessible..  Navigation should be fairly site standard and
> potentially even show a hierarchy of where they are in the
> site. (ie Home > Solutions > etc) Do we have this data? Is
> now the time to do a structure change to allow for faster digging?

I've been stressing these points since day one, finally someone gets it!  If
we don't enhance the underlying design of the site (i.e. the "substance") in
order to remedy some of the problems with the old design, the redesign would
more appropriately be called a "face lift."  I don't know what actually goes
under the hood with all the xml etc., but to me, as it appears, it's simply
a face lift.  The functionality hasn't changed one bit.  Navigation is still
a nightmare.  On a site as complex as Gentoo's, users -- especially those
new to Gentoo (who also happens to be those who are critical to the growth
of Gentoo) -- will be easily lost.  They will have a hard time finding the
information which they seek to make their decision to use Gentoo or to make
their Gentoo experience successful.

In hindsight, I realized that the project didn't have (I couldn't find) a
clearly defined strategy (What is it trying to do? To achieve? And why?
What's the ultimate goal?) and corresponding sets of concrete and achievable
objectives that feeds into the strategy to make it work.

When I started the project, I aimed for 3 things 1) to make a solid
impression on visitors of the site in order to convey the values and
benefits of Gentoo, i.e. in order to gain new users, 2) to make the site a
pleasure to browse (for existing and new users), and 3) to make information
easy to access.  Graphics and eye-candy (if you will) along with
strategically placed (and clearly/easily identified) critical "Gentoo
elements" helps to achieve 1).  2) and 3) relates to usability (how
efficiently and effectively a user can do what they want to do), navigation
(how easily can a user move through the structure of the site, not simply
linearly as non-linear navigation is what makes moving quick), and "flow"
(how intuitive and logical is the structure of the site and the information
presented).

Now it seems that these goals were too ambitious given our limited
resources.  However, we seem to be taking baby steps toward them, which is a
good thing.

> I've looked at the preview images for the winning contest..
> Is it too late to consider moving the three navigation boxes
> to the left hand side and or keeping some of the left hand
> navigation there..

Christopher, we've gone a ways since the preview images. A newer proof of
concept / early prototype is here: http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/

> While we are an open source project there are still two very
> desirable actions we want users to do..
>
> 1) Download and try the software (Rename mirrors and get
> gentoo to Download and make it very clear where users can
> download from.)
> 2) Make a donation (this should also be something more than a
> standard PayPal button, but still discrete and site blended.)

Agree with both objectives in the general sense.  The donation objective
never occurred to me, but it's a very neat idea since Gentoo is an NPO and
suffice to say it doesn't sit on a mountain of cash so any extra funding is
probably a positive thing.

Quirks:
- The front page news area seems really out of character (the lines, the
styles, the indentation, etc. seems "off")
- General spacing is messed up, i.e. lots of white space where there
shouldn't be
- Table borders don't quite fit into the theme
- I thought the 3 jump pads are only supposed to appear on the front page?

I don't think the bolding or whiter shade is necessary for my credits at the
bottom.  Thanks for thought though, but such credits should be as
unobtrusive as possible so that users can better focus their attention
elsewhere on what's important.  It's probably better left as before --
unbold, dark shade of purple (see bottom of
http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepage.html).


Aaron




--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

"C. Bergström"
Aaron Shi wrote:

>First of all, kudos to Curtis and team.  This is definitely a step up from
>last time I checked.  While I don't always agree with what's done, I do very
>much appreciate and respect all the effort that's put in.
>  
>
I'd also like to say that this is VERY much appreciated and while I'm
void of tact I really don't want to come across as critical.
Thanks in advance for the nice work.

>Here goes the comments... I'm just going to add to the discussion rather
>than starting from the beginning.
>
>  
>
>>Usability and navigation needs work.  Think in terms of end user..
>>Someone may not land on the home page.. At which point he
>>will have to navigate to where he/she needs to get as quickly
>>as possible.  With click-through patterns (If you can get the
>>data) see where people are going and make that most
>>accessible..  Navigation should be fairly site standard and
>>potentially even show a hierarchy of where they are in the
>>site. (ie Home > Solutions > etc) Do we have this data? Is
>>now the time to do a structure change to allow for faster digging?
>>    
>>
>
>I've been stressing these points since day one, finally someone gets it!  If
>we don't enhance the underlying design of the site (i.e. the "substance") in
>order to remedy some of the problems with the old design, the redesign would
>more appropriately be called a "face lift."  I don't know what actually goes
>under the hood with all the xml etc., but to me, as it appears, it's simply
>a face lift.  The functionality hasn't changed one bit.  Navigation is still
>a nightmare.  On a site as complex as Gentoo's, users -- especially those
>new to Gentoo (who also happens to be those who are critical to the growth
>of Gentoo) -- will be easily lost.  They will have a hard time finding the
>information which they seek to make their decision to use Gentoo or to make
>their Gentoo experience successful.
>
>In hindsight, I realized that the project didn't have (I couldn't find) a
>clearly defined strategy (What is it trying to do? To achieve? And why?
>What's the ultimate goal?) and corresponding sets of concrete and achievable
>objectives that feeds into the strategy to make it work.
>
>When I started the project, I aimed for 3 things
>

>1) to make a solid
>impression on visitors of the site in order to convey the values and
>benefits of Gentoo, i.e. in order to gain new users,
>
This could be accomplished by a multitude of things which add up..
(Inside a trademark yet to be established, user experience quotes, and
mission statement page which has direct top level links.

>2) to make the site a
>pleasure to browse (for existing and new users), and
>
We'd have to get feedback about how it's not currently pleasant in order
to "fix" this.

>3) to make information
>easy to access.  
>
This is critical...

>Graphics and eye-candy (if you will) along with
>strategically placed (and clearly/easily identified) critical "Gentoo
>elements" helps to achieve 1).  2) and 3) relates to usability (how
>efficiently and effectively a user can do what they want to do), navigation
>(how easily can a user move through the structure of the site, not simply
>linearly as non-linear navigation is what makes moving quick), and "flow"
>(how intuitive and logical is the structure of the site and the information
>presented).
>
>Now it seems that these goals were too ambitious given our limited
>resources.  However, we seem to be taking baby steps toward them, which is a
>good thing.
>
>  
>
>>I've looked at the preview images for the winning contest..
>>Is it too late to consider moving the three navigation boxes
>>to the left hand side and or keeping some of the left hand
>>navigation there..
>>    
>>
>
>Christopher, we've gone a ways since the preview images. A newer proof of
>concept / early prototype is here: http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/
>
>  
>
I'll stand corrected on one thing..  Seems I should be asking for the
navigation on the right.. Not the entire menu, but some? Maybe above the
ads section? This also wouldn't take up more horizontal space.

http://usability.gov/guidelines/

>>While we are an open source project there are still two very
>>desirable actions we want users to do..
>>
>>1) Download and try the software (Rename mirrors and get
>>gentoo to Download and make it very clear where users can
>>download from.)
>>2) Make a donation (this should also be something more than a
>>standard PayPal button, but still discrete and site blended.)
>>    
>>
>
>Agree with both objectives in the general sense.  The donation objective
>never occurred to me, but it's a very neat idea since Gentoo is an NPO and
>suffice to say it doesn't sit on a mountain of cash so any extra funding is
>probably a positive thing.
>  
>
I should see if I can find my contact for the Mozilla project.. The guys
over there are doing a really nice job of having users do their desired
actions... (Think front page of NY times..)(Save some typing
http://www.mozilla.org/) While I'm not saying to oversell.. I'm saying
it is possible to do thing which will help drive click patterns and
actions to what we want.

>Quirks:
>- The front page news area seems really out of character (the lines, the
>styles, the indentation, etc. seems "off")
>  
>
I think the feel for the home page would entirely change if we could
trade those four boxes with one big stylish and clear/concise box saying
something along the lines of (Download Gentoo now)

>- General spacing is messed up, i.e. lots of white space where there
>shouldn't be
>- Table borders don't quite fit into the theme
>- I thought the 3 jump pads are only supposed to appear on the front page?
>
>I don't think the bolding or whiter shade is necessary for my credits at the
>bottom.  Thanks for thought though, but such credits should be as
>unobtrusive as possible so that users can better focus their attention
>elsewhere on what's important.  It's probably better left as before --
>unbold, dark shade of purple (see bottom of
>http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepage.html).
>  
>
<http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepageprint.html>
Please leave the background of the search box white and a try for higher
contrast of font colors.

You also may be surprised with how many people override default site
font sizes. It's safer to not use pixels when defining font sizes..  
http://usability.gov/guidelines/fonts.html#one (It specifically mentions
those over 65, but in general has been a thing I've heard more than once
from even younger people.)
<http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepageprint.html>
I've only been using one reference source for credibility, but if anyone
wants a lot of reading material I'd be happy to send over what I have.  
(Lastly and certainly outside the scope of one email.. Do we care about
SEO?  With such a busy project has their ever been any thought about
marketing? I'm not talking about selling Gentoo, but something similar
to Moz project.) Just send me a private email for anything off topic.

I hope this information is helpful/valuable in some way...

Thanks again

C.
--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Daniel Wahlgren
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier
Looks fine in Firefox 1.5 RC2 on Windows XP.
Looks fine in IE 6.0 on Windows XP.

One thing that feels odd is the Big Flashy Button Things ("Portage: an easy to use world-class package management solution.", " Over 8,000 packages + in-depth documentation = unlimited potential." etc) does not apear on every page. I understand they take space, but it looks odd.

Very good, and keep up the good work!
/Daniel Wahlgren
Aridhol

Curtis Napier wrote:
This has been cross posted to gentoo-dev and www-redesign.

http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

After receiving a ton of very useful feedback from the developer community I have updated the redesign. It should now be closer to 100% accessible and it should (hopefully) render perfectly in all browsers including text only browsers. It now passes XHTML and CSS validation tests.

I'm asking for everyone (developers and users alike) to please have a look at the updated site and send any feedback you may have. I'm especially interested in feedback from anyone who uses accessibilty programs such as screen readers or if you are color blind or have any other accessibilty issues.

Also, I only use GNU/Linux and I have only tested on the following browsers:

Mozilla-1.7
firefox-1.0
Opera-8.5
Internet Explorer-6 under CrossOver Office
Epiphany-1.8.2
Links-2.1 in text mode and graphics mode.

If you have access to a Macintosh, Windows, *BSD or any other OS or Browser please test the site and include your OS and the browser version in your feedback. I haven't received feedback from Konqueror or Safari so feedback from those browsers would be much appreciated.

The only major outstanding issue is the contents of the menu in the grey bar at the top and what should appear in the 5 purple boxes directly under them. Currently I have that menu listed in order of what a new Gentoo user would need to access first. If you have a better idea of what should be included in this menu or think something important is being left out please send that in your feedback as well.

Thanks in advance

Curtis

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

mushroom blue
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier
hi there. I've been lurking for ages, but decided to comment when this
was considered the near-final design. I'm not going to be very
organized, but here goes:

when comparing the wwwredesign site to Aaron Shi's design
( http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/mainindex.html ), it's apparent that
someone didn't get the subtle color shifts and alignment. the reason the
advertisements are put on a light grey background is to separate them
from the actual content of the site, thus ensuring that the reader's
eyes are directed accordingly. without the background, the pages just
don't seem to flow correctly. I'm more apt to read the "We produce
Gentoo Linux" (which is an amazingly useless block of text, IMO) and go
straight to the "Colo that box under your desk" ad, and then read the
rest of the ads before even going back to "What's New".

another small tweak that'd dramatically increase the flow of the site
would be to use Aaron's color scheme for the date and updater on the
front page. the person updating is less important than the date of the
update... unless you're going to include planet.gentoo.org on the main
page. this is why the date is given a prominent color and position, and
the name is given a more subtle font, and softer color. in fact, the use
of the small grey gradient for the first entry immediately blocks off
the large whitespace on the left side of the page, and forces the reader
to start at "what's new", and move down the page correctly.

Might want to use the "light purple background for news topics" instead
of the horizontal line between updates. both work, but the separation of
updates with a highlighted topic is an immediate visual cue, and looks
less tacky.

the fonts on the "cubes of content" (for lack of a better term) just
below the logo on the page are too large. the cube with the "donate"
content should be aligned with the space for advertising (again, what
Aaron Shi did). if at all possible, add a tint of purple to the "make a
donation" button, just so it doesn't stand out so much.

Hmm. why are those aforementioned "cubes" on some pages, and not on
others? "About", "Get Gentoo", and "Docs" have them, but the rest do
not. very jarring when simply clicking through the links. are they
really needed on pages that aren't the index? should the be on every
main section, if just because they're supposed to be conveying vital
information to the reader?

there might actually be too much content (or just too large a default
font) on the front page. unless you don't really like the Documentation,
Resources, and Community sections at the bottom of the page. nobody will
scroll down that far, unless it catches their eye. the three sections
are centered, which is better than on Aaron Shi's site, but the fonts
are far too large. The gap between the section title (Documentation) and
the items within the section (Install Docs, etc) have a big gap between
them. seriously, most of these things are small oversights, but make
HUGE differences in aesthetics.

Another thing, that big useless block of text above "what's new" needs
to be removed. it's not a description of the distribution, it's a
mission statement. mission statements are stupid. you want to make cool
stuff. we get it. explain what gentoo is. take a cue from debian.org,
and explain. if not, move it to the "About" page, where it belongs.

Speaking of the About page, why is there a huge 40K image there that
could easily be put into text? it's not a poster, unless you're using a
very small screen resolution. it's a crappy image, using the old gentoo
logo (in the caption balloon), takes up way too much space on the page,
and just isn't cute enough to include for any reason outside nostalgia.

most of these things are really small problems, but they make a MAJOR
difference on the look of the site. if someone fixes the fonts, and adds
the subtle parts of Aaron's design back to the site, it'll look like the
site Gentoo deserves.





--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Christopher-15
In reply to this post by Daniel Wahlgren
Looks fine in IE 6.0 and Firefox.

It pretty much looks fine in konqueror, however if the default background is set to any other color, the background under the ads, and the bottom of the page is that color, instead of white. (Say I put it to black... that would be rather disorienting)

Also, comparing Aaron's site to this one, I must say I agree with most of the comments. This one has waaaay too much whitespace, and I think the text is a bit to large. Aaron's site is more more 'tight' and feels a good deal more profesional, and cleaner. It also takes up less space, making it easy for me to find what I'm looking for at a glance, instead of scrolling. Just my $.02.

--Chris

On 11/21/05, Daniel Wahlgren <[hidden email]> wrote:
Looks fine in Firefox 1.5 RC2 on Windows XP.
Looks fine in IE 6.0 on Windows XP.

One thing that feels odd is the Big Flashy Button Things ("<a href="http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/handbook/handbook-x86.xml?part=2&amp;chap=1" title="Portage" target="_blank" onclick="return top.js.OpenExtLink(window,event,this)"> Portage: an easy to use world-class package management solution.", " Over 8,000 <a href="http://packages.gentoo.org" title="packages" target="_blank" onclick="return top.js.OpenExtLink(window,event,this)">packages + <a href="http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/list.xml" title="documentation" target="_blank" onclick="return top.js.OpenExtLink(window,event,this)"> in-depth documentation = unlimited potential." etc) does not apear on every page. I understand they take space, but it looks odd.

Very good, and keep up the good work!
/Daniel Wahlgren
Aridhol


Curtis Napier wrote:
This has been cross posted to gentoo-dev and www-redesign.

<a href="http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org" target="_blank" onclick="return top.js.OpenExtLink(window,event,this)">http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

After receiving a ton of very useful feedback from the developer community I have updated the redesign. It should now be closer to 100% accessible and it should (hopefully) render perfectly in all browsers including text only browsers. It now passes XHTML and CSS validation tests.

I'm asking for everyone (developers and users alike) to please have a look at the updated site and send any feedback you may have. I'm especially interested in feedback from anyone who uses accessibilty programs such as screen readers or if you are color blind or have any other accessibilty issues.

Also, I only use GNU/Linux and I have only tested on the following browsers:

Mozilla-1.7
firefox-1.0
Opera-8.5
Internet Explorer-6 under CrossOver Office
Epiphany-1.8.2
Links-2.1 in text mode and graphics mode.

If you have access to a Macintosh, Windows, *BSD or any other OS or Browser please test the site and include your OS and the browser version in your feedback. I haven't received feedback from Konqueror or Safari so feedback from those browsers would be much appreciated.

The only major outstanding issue is the contents of the menu in the grey bar at the top and what should appear in the 5 purple boxes directly under them. Currently I have that menu listed in order of what a new Gentoo user would need to access first. If you have a better idea of what should be included in this menu or think something important is being left out please send that in your feedback as well.

Thanks in advance

Curtis




--

Christopher S. Case
SUNY Fredonia
Computer Science / Computer Engineering
[hidden email]
(509) 432 - 4725 (Cellphone)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"To err is human. To forgive, divine.
To fix mistakes, now that's an Engineer."
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Tom Lieber
In reply to this post by mushroom blue
On 11/21/05, mushroomblue <[hidden email]> wrote:
> the reason the
> advertisements are put on a light grey background is to separate them
> from the actual content of the site, thus ensuring that the reader's
> eyes are directed accordingly. without the background, the pages just
> don't seem to flow correctly.

On my laptop monitor I can't even see the gray until I turn the
brightness waaaay down, so perhaps that is what happened.

> Another thing, that big useless block of text above "what's new" needs
> to be removed. it's not a description of the distribution, it's a
> mission statement. mission statements are stupid.

I agree. What's there now is too much marketing and too little "Gentoo
is Linux, and this is what makes it different."

> Speaking of the About page, why is there a huge 40K image there that
> could easily be put into text?

I agree.

Sincerely,

Tom Lieber
[hidden email]
http://AllTom.com/

--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Paul de Vrieze-2
In reply to this post by Aaron Shi
On Monday 21 November 2005 12:27, Aaron Shi wrote:

> I've been stressing these points since day one, finally someone gets
> it!  If we don't enhance the underlying design of the site (i.e. the
> "substance") in order to remedy some of the problems with the old
> design, the redesign would more appropriately be called a "face lift."
> I don't know what actually goes under the hood with all the xml etc.,
> but to me, as it appears, it's simply a face lift.  The functionality
> hasn't changed one bit.  Navigation is still a nightmare.  On a site as
> complex as Gentoo's, users -- especially those new to Gentoo (who also
> happens to be those who are critical to the growth of Gentoo) -- will
> be easily lost.  They will have a hard time finding the information
> which they seek to make their decision to use Gentoo or to make their
> Gentoo experience successful.
I agree with you too. Especially the homepage is too full. Please look at
what could be moved, done different etc. Of course the information should
still be reachable, but how it is reachable should be improved.
> Christopher, we've gone a ways since the preview images. A newer proof
> of concept / early prototype is here: http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/

Looks great. Unfortunately I don't have the time, but else I'd help to get
the current wwwredesign.g.o more into that direction. Including
redesigning the contents and xml structure.

> Quirks:
> - The front page news area seems really out of character (the lines,
> the styles, the indentation, etc. seems "off")
> - General spacing is messed up, i.e. lots of white space where there
> shouldn't be

100% agreed

> - Table borders don't quite fit into the theme

Yeah, http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/proj/en looks awfull

> - I thought the 3 jump pads are only supposed to appear on the front
> page?

Probably looks better, especially when the news area doesn't push it
offscreen.

> I don't think the bolding or whiter shade is necessary for my credits
> at the bottom.  Thanks for thought though, but such credits should be
> as unobtrusive as possible so that users can better focus their
> attention elsewhere on what's important.  It's probably better left as
> before -- unbold, dark shade of purple (see bottom of
> http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepage.html).

Indeed ;-)

Paul

ps. On your page, I find the XHTML and CSS links to the verifiers
confusing. Better just leave them out.

--
Paul de Vrieze
Gentoo Developer
Mail: [hidden email]
Homepage: http://www.devrieze.net

attachment0 (205 bytes) Download Attachment
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: status of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

"C. Bergström"
Please pardon me if I'm mistaken...  Has this been clearly delegated to one person or are patches/alternative links welcomed?  (Assuming they fall inside the winning design scheme.)  In all honesty I'd rather stay out of the discussion than step on someones shoes, but if it could be helpful let me know.

C.
-- [hidden email] mailing list
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Update of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Curtis Napier
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier
First of all, thank you everyone for all the feedback. Your input is
important and greatly appreciated.

I should have said that the last update was not complete as far as
design was concerned. I was mainly looking for accessibility and
rendering issues on as many browsers/OS's as possible. I got that
feedback and fixed the issues that came up. I also implemented the rest
of the design so it should now be more visually appealing and better
match Aarons reference design. I took into consideration all of the
suggestions that were submitted and now ask for additional feedback to
ensure that my changes didn't introduce any additional
rendering/accessibility bugs and that the design is acceptable to as
many people as possible.

If there are no more outstanding issues reported I will submit this
current layout for approval.


Questions to some of the answers and suggestions that were brought up:

The artwork is all part of the winning design. Any issues with the
infinity symbol should have been addressed a year ago.

I am not the designer of this site. I am merely implementing it in the
XSL backend.  I am the only person working on this and I am the
designated official developer, the project lead is Swift and his role is
to offer advice, enforce design policy and generally oversee my actions
and help me with internal gentoo policies and procedures. The project is
actually owned by Infra and they (they == infra leads which is klieber
and ramereth as far as I know), along with Swift, have the final say on
everything. I welcome any and all patches that you are willing to
submit. All submissions will be evaluated on a case by case basis.

Aarons reference design at www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/ is exactly that: A
reference. In it's current form it differs from his original submission
which was the winning entry and should not be considered as anything
else but a reference. I tried to stick to that design as much as
possible but some things were simply not possible.

Aarons design uses a smaller default font, that is not acceptable from
an accessibility POV. The main font is at 1em and all cursory fonts
multipliers of 1em. The main font will remain at 1em which is the
standard for the accessibility guidelines. If you don't like the
standard font size every single graphical browser offers a font zoom
capability, use it.

Aarons use of a smaller font allows more information to appear on the
page. This is an illusion of size. If you have your browser window set
to 800x600 or smaller the jumpads disappear and the page has to be
scrolled to see them no matter how big/small the font is. If you enlarge
the font on Aarons reference to the standard 1em the jumppads disappear
and the page must be scrolled anyway so this point is moot.

Purple background with yellow text is hideous. Not going to happen.

The "Locator" would require rewrites of not only the XSL but also the
actual xml files and is outside the scope of this project. Touching any
xml content file is strictly off limits, all existing xml should be
backwards compatible with the new design. This point is not debatable.
Use of a database would make this task easier while allowing backwards
compatibility but it will have to wait for a future update to the site
to be implemented.

I actually implemented a search that used google much like the example
that was posted here. The search was discussed at length with the
project lead and it was decided that using a third party search engine
such as google was unacceptable. As Lance said, this will have to be
coordinated with infra at a later date. Gentoo is a not-for-profit but,
unfortunetly, it is the wrong kind of non-profit so Google will not
sponsor us.

The contents of the uppermost menu are to sites that are outside the
www.gentoo.org website. They will stay in this location. They are green
to contrast with the purple background to ensure that colorblind and
other visually impaired people can see it. Green is the compliment to
purple so I am baffled that people think the combination is not
attractive. In Aarons preview the light purple color of these links is
not visible to color blind individuals thus it is unacceptable. This
color will not change.

The grey menu should contain links that would be used in order of a new
user and that highlight the main parts of the site. I did this quickly
to have something there to look at. I didn't notice any good suggestions
to replace what is there. If you have suggestions please send them. The
same goes for the wording in the purple boxes, if you don't like what
they say submit a suggestion for each. Suggestions of "I don't like it
you should change it" that don't include a clearly worded replacement
will be ignored. The donate box is here to stay until the search
function is implemented.

Graphics should be implemented in the CSS as much as possible to aid
future maintenance (the xsl templates are huge and not easy to maintain.
The least amount of editing of these files as possible is one of the
major goals). In text browsers that can handle graphics but don't
support CSS the upper left logo (which is a background image so it can
be put in the css) will not appear but will leave space for the missing
background image. I can't figure out a way around this. If you have a
suggestion I would appreciate it.

Horizontal scrolling of the entire page when a code listing is wider
than the page only happens in IE. All other browsers understand the CSS
scroll:auto tag and will only scroll the actual code listing. The same
applies to inline images within the page contents. IE is broken but I
did everything I could to make it behave the same as other browsers.
This is one issue that IE is simply broken on and there is nothing I can
do to fix that. Javascript fixes are available but the use of Javascript
is strictly forbidden. Javascript is not debatable.

Redundant links to important pages such as the Handbook and Documention
only serve to make them easier for a user to locate. They will remain
for the time being unless someone can come up with a good reason to
remove them other than "I don't like it".

The <hr /> tags in the Handbook navigation are contained within the
handbook xsl template. Touching that file is outside my scope.

The redesign test site is not a full mirror. I added the security index
page so we could see what it looks like.

The site is not XHTML it is HTML-4.01 Transitional and it passes the w3c
validator. Manually overriding HTML-4.01 Transitional in the w3c
validator is not required and any errors that it reports if you do this
will not be addressed. If you can come up with a good technical reason
why doing this would benefit anyone I will address it.

Navigation and useability studies are beyond my scope. These issues
should have been addressed a year ago.

The left hand navigation column is dead. No amount of beating this dead
horse will resurrect it. The jumppads will remain at the bottom and
appear on all non-documentation pages so that those links are accessible
as much as possible.

<base href> is not needed for this site to function properly. If you
want to save the page locally you are free to do so and add the tag
yourself for your local copy.

The CSS is only 12k. Why would shaving 4k off of it to make it 8k make a
difference to anyone?

The site is dynamically generated with XSL/XML all the pages end in
.xml. There are no plans to change it to .xhtml now or in the future.

The image on the about page is within the content xml file and not
within the XSL template. Touching about.xml or any other xml content
file is outside my scope.

GLEP 10 is outside my scope.

The jumppads have alt text. They always have. They pop up as tool tips
on every browser I have tested. If they aren't for you please submit
your browser version and OS and I will look into it.

The blue text that represents code was darkened for accessibility
issues. It will not change.

In Aarons preview the search box and the ads column are placed with a
Position:absolute and has it's size set. At resolutions below 800x600
this makes the ads overlap the content and the search box overlap the
box to the left on every browser. When content is scarce the ads overlap
the footer. This is not fixable given the current state of css support
in the various browsers. After many many many long hours of research and
experimentation I decided that we would have to resort to a table for
the ads column and include the search (now donate) box within the div
that contains the four purple boxes with a % width to fix this issue. I
lowered the % width of the donate box and increased the others to bring
it more inline with Aarons original design. It's not perfect but it's
close enough.

Accessibilty guidelines say that all text links should be underlined. I
made an exception for the grey menu bar for aesthetic purposes but will
not make an exception for any other links.

gentoo.org and all domains owned by the Gentoo Foundation should render
correctly in all browsers that are still in general use. IE5 on the mac
is still a valid browser and will be supported as much as possible.

Summary and authors are important and should be prominently displayed
before the actual content. On the current design they are on the right
in a tiny column that wraps every two words. This is unacceptable. These
items will stay at the top for now unless someone can come up with a
place to put them that makes sense, looks good, allows the summary to be
seen on top and not below the content (because a summary should be above
the content otherwise why have a summary if you have to scroll past the
content to see it?). The handbook is the only page that has a large list
of authors and authors only appear on the first page so this should not
be a problem.



Here is a list of items that have changed since my last post:

*menu code was changed from a floated block list to a simple inline div
with non-breaking spaces. This should fix the IE5 on Mac issue.

*Background color for content was made light grey with black text for
better visibility of the text. Bright monitors should no longer be a
problem.

*background color of the ads was made darker to contrast with the
content area. Decorative header was added.

*white space was collapsed as much as possible.

*all extraneous information and decorative news headers were removed
from the front page to help readability and to bring focus to the
information. This includes the cow image and text. Overwhelming amounts
of information on the front page should no longer be a problem. This
also brings the jumppads closer to the top so new users will be better
able to spot them.

*table headers were centered and data cells left justified.

*table borders are now collapsed and only 1px thick. They are no longer
ugly.

*removed the BOLD from the design credit in the footer. This wasn't
supposed to be BOLD in the first place, probably a mistake on my part.

*The purple boxes below the grey menu bar now only appear on the main index.

*news poster date and submitter color changed to match Aarons design

*added a filter that removes the author and date if they are missing or
script generated.

*removed redundant doc title

*removed the donation button image and replaced it with a simple button.
--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: Update of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

mushroom blue
other than making the cell that contains the "donate" button the same
width as the advertisement column, it looks MUCH better.

blue ribbon.


On Wed, 2005-11-23 at 01:40 -0500, Curtis Napier wrote:

> First of all, thank you everyone for all the feedback. Your input is
> important and greatly appreciated.
>
> I should have said that the last update was not complete as far as
> design was concerned. I was mainly looking for accessibility and
> rendering issues on as many browsers/OS's as possible. I got that
> feedback and fixed the issues that came up. I also implemented the rest
> of the design so it should now be more visually appealing and better
> match Aarons reference design. I took into consideration all of the
> suggestions that were submitted and now ask for additional feedback to
> ensure that my changes didn't introduce any additional
> rendering/accessibility bugs and that the design is acceptable to as
> many people as possible.
>
> If there are no more outstanding issues reported I will submit this
> current layout for approval.
>
>
> Questions to some of the answers and suggestions that were brought up:
>
> The artwork is all part of the winning design. Any issues with the
> infinity symbol should have been addressed a year ago.
>
> I am not the designer of this site. I am merely implementing it in the
> XSL backend.  I am the only person working on this and I am the
> designated official developer, the project lead is Swift and his role is
> to offer advice, enforce design policy and generally oversee my actions
> and help me with internal gentoo policies and procedures. The project is
> actually owned by Infra and they (they == infra leads which is klieber
> and ramereth as far as I know), along with Swift, have the final say on
> everything. I welcome any and all patches that you are willing to
> submit. All submissions will be evaluated on a case by case basis.
>
> Aarons reference design at www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/ is exactly that: A
> reference. In it's current form it differs from his original submission
> which was the winning entry and should not be considered as anything
> else but a reference. I tried to stick to that design as much as
> possible but some things were simply not possible.
>
> Aarons design uses a smaller default font, that is not acceptable from
> an accessibility POV. The main font is at 1em and all cursory fonts
> multipliers of 1em. The main font will remain at 1em which is the
> standard for the accessibility guidelines. If you don't like the
> standard font size every single graphical browser offers a font zoom
> capability, use it.
>
> Aarons use of a smaller font allows more information to appear on the
> page. This is an illusion of size. If you have your browser window set
> to 800x600 or smaller the jumpads disappear and the page has to be
> scrolled to see them no matter how big/small the font is. If you enlarge
> the font on Aarons reference to the standard 1em the jumppads disappear
> and the page must be scrolled anyway so this point is moot.
>
> Purple background with yellow text is hideous. Not going to happen.
>
> The "Locator" would require rewrites of not only the XSL but also the
> actual xml files and is outside the scope of this project. Touching any
> xml content file is strictly off limits, all existing xml should be
> backwards compatible with the new design. This point is not debatable.
> Use of a database would make this task easier while allowing backwards
> compatibility but it will have to wait for a future update to the site
> to be implemented.
>
> I actually implemented a search that used google much like the example
> that was posted here. The search was discussed at length with the
> project lead and it was decided that using a third party search engine
> such as google was unacceptable. As Lance said, this will have to be
> coordinated with infra at a later date. Gentoo is a not-for-profit but,
> unfortunetly, it is the wrong kind of non-profit so Google will not
> sponsor us.
>
> The contents of the uppermost menu are to sites that are outside the
> www.gentoo.org website. They will stay in this location. They are green
> to contrast with the purple background to ensure that colorblind and
> other visually impaired people can see it. Green is the compliment to
> purple so I am baffled that people think the combination is not
> attractive. In Aarons preview the light purple color of these links is
> not visible to color blind individuals thus it is unacceptable. This
> color will not change.
>
> The grey menu should contain links that would be used in order of a new
> user and that highlight the main parts of the site. I did this quickly
> to have something there to look at. I didn't notice any good suggestions
> to replace what is there. If you have suggestions please send them. The
> same goes for the wording in the purple boxes, if you don't like what
> they say submit a suggestion for each. Suggestions of "I don't like it
> you should change it" that don't include a clearly worded replacement
> will be ignored. The donate box is here to stay until the search
> function is implemented.
>
> Graphics should be implemented in the CSS as much as possible to aid
> future maintenance (the xsl templates are huge and not easy to maintain.
> The least amount of editing of these files as possible is one of the
> major goals). In text browsers that can handle graphics but don't
> support CSS the upper left logo (which is a background image so it can
> be put in the css) will not appear but will leave space for the missing
> background image. I can't figure out a way around this. If you have a
> suggestion I would appreciate it.
>
> Horizontal scrolling of the entire page when a code listing is wider
> than the page only happens in IE. All other browsers understand the CSS
> scroll:auto tag and will only scroll the actual code listing. The same
> applies to inline images within the page contents. IE is broken but I
> did everything I could to make it behave the same as other browsers.
> This is one issue that IE is simply broken on and there is nothing I can
> do to fix that. Javascript fixes are available but the use of Javascript
> is strictly forbidden. Javascript is not debatable.
>
> Redundant links to important pages such as the Handbook and Documention
> only serve to make them easier for a user to locate. They will remain
> for the time being unless someone can come up with a good reason to
> remove them other than "I don't like it".
>
> The <hr /> tags in the Handbook navigation are contained within the
> handbook xsl template. Touching that file is outside my scope.
>
> The redesign test site is not a full mirror. I added the security index
> page so we could see what it looks like.
>
> The site is not XHTML it is HTML-4.01 Transitional and it passes the w3c
> validator. Manually overriding HTML-4.01 Transitional in the w3c
> validator is not required and any errors that it reports if you do this
> will not be addressed. If you can come up with a good technical reason
> why doing this would benefit anyone I will address it.
>
> Navigation and useability studies are beyond my scope. These issues
> should have been addressed a year ago.
>
> The left hand navigation column is dead. No amount of beating this dead
> horse will resurrect it. The jumppads will remain at the bottom and
> appear on all non-documentation pages so that those links are accessible
> as much as possible.
>
> <base href> is not needed for this site to function properly. If you
> want to save the page locally you are free to do so and add the tag
> yourself for your local copy.
>
> The CSS is only 12k. Why would shaving 4k off of it to make it 8k make a
> difference to anyone?
>
> The site is dynamically generated with XSL/XML all the pages end in
> .xml. There are no plans to change it to .xhtml now or in the future.
>
> The image on the about page is within the content xml file and not
> within the XSL template. Touching about.xml or any other xml content
> file is outside my scope.
>
> GLEP 10 is outside my scope.
>
> The jumppads have alt text. They always have. They pop up as tool tips
> on every browser I have tested. If they aren't for you please submit
> your browser version and OS and I will look into it.
>
> The blue text that represents code was darkened for accessibility
> issues. It will not change.
>
> In Aarons preview the search box and the ads column are placed with a
> Position:absolute and has it's size set. At resolutions below 800x600
> this makes the ads overlap the content and the search box overlap the
> box to the left on every browser. When content is scarce the ads overlap
> the footer. This is not fixable given the current state of css support
> in the various browsers. After many many many long hours of research and
> experimentation I decided that we would have to resort to a table for
> the ads column and include the search (now donate) box within the div
> that contains the four purple boxes with a % width to fix this issue. I
> lowered the % width of the donate box and increased the others to bring
> it more inline with Aarons original design. It's not perfect but it's
> close enough.
>
> Accessibilty guidelines say that all text links should be underlined. I
> made an exception for the grey menu bar for aesthetic purposes but will
> not make an exception for any other links.
>
> gentoo.org and all domains owned by the Gentoo Foundation should render
> correctly in all browsers that are still in general use. IE5 on the mac
> is still a valid browser and will be supported as much as possible.
>
> Summary and authors are important and should be prominently displayed
> before the actual content. On the current design they are on the right
> in a tiny column that wraps every two words. This is unacceptable. These
> items will stay at the top for now unless someone can come up with a
> place to put them that makes sense, looks good, allows the summary to be
> seen on top and not below the content (because a summary should be above
> the content otherwise why have a summary if you have to scroll past the
> content to see it?). The handbook is the only page that has a large list
> of authors and authors only appear on the first page so this should not
> be a problem.
>
>
>
> Here is a list of items that have changed since my last post:
>
> *menu code was changed from a floated block list to a simple inline div
> with non-breaking spaces. This should fix the IE5 on Mac issue.
>
> *Background color for content was made light grey with black text for
> better visibility of the text. Bright monitors should no longer be a
> problem.
>
> *background color of the ads was made darker to contrast with the
> content area. Decorative header was added.
>
> *white space was collapsed as much as possible.
>
> *all extraneous information and decorative news headers were removed
> from the front page to help readability and to bring focus to the
> information. This includes the cow image and text. Overwhelming amounts
> of information on the front page should no longer be a problem. This
> also brings the jumppads closer to the top so new users will be better
> able to spot them.
>
> *table headers were centered and data cells left justified.
>
> *table borders are now collapsed and only 1px thick. They are no longer
> ugly.
>
> *removed the BOLD from the design credit in the footer. This wasn't
> supposed to be BOLD in the first place, probably a mistake on my part.
>
> *The purple boxes below the grey menu bar now only appear on the main index.
>
> *news poster date and submitter color changed to match Aarons design
>
> *added a filter that removes the author and date if they are missing or
> script generated.
>
> *removed redundant doc title
>
> *removed the donation button image and replaced it with a simple button.

--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: Update of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Nicholas D. Wolfwood
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier
On Wed, 2005-11-23 at 01:40 -0500, Curtis Napier wrote:
> If there are no more outstanding issues reported I will submit this
> current layout for approval.

This looks GOOD.  For whatever it's worth, I fully support the changes
you've made.

Outstanding issues:

1. The primary nav ("About", "Get Gentoo", "Handbook", "Docs",
"Security", "Projects", "GWN") is shifted up such that the hover green
underlines are not aligned with the background.

2. On http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/list.xml the ads are still
shifted left leaving air between the right-hand side of the browser
window and the gray adbar background.

3. Also on http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/list.xml is there no way
to add separation to the various sections of links?

4. On http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/main/en/where.xml the line spacing
is wonky such that the underlines of links are overlapping the top of
the text on the next line. (this issue is also present in the chapter
listing of guide docs.

5. I still think the "Printer-friendly" graphic on guide docs looks
wrong next to the title...it would look better in the top-right corner
of the gray doc-info div.

http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/handbook/handbook-x86.xml?part=1&chap=2#doc_chap4_sect2
^^ MAN! that looks good :)

Thanks Curtis.

--
Blackace
Gentoo Linux
Infrastructure Developer

signature.asc (196 bytes) Download Attachment
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

RE: Update of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Aaron Shi
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier

> I should have said that the last update was not complete as
> far as design was concerned. I was mainly looking for
> accessibility and rendering issues on as many browsers/OS's
> as possible. I got that feedback and fixed the issues that
> came up. I also implemented the rest of the design so it
> should now be more visually appealing and better match Aarons
> reference design. I took into consideration all of the
> suggestions that were submitted and now ask for additional
> feedback to ensure that my changes didn't introduce any
> additional rendering/accessibility bugs and that the design
> is acceptable to as many people as possible.
>
> If there are no more outstanding issues reported I will
> submit this current layout for approval.

Sorry, but this looks worse. The colors (other than what's in the original
graphics) are way off.  I'm going make a wild guess that an uncalibrated LCD
is being used to view the site.  Many panels are not capable of the full
16.7 million range and uses dithering techniques to emulate the other
colors.  So in reality, the colors when viewed on proper LCD and CRTs are
slightly off (but all the "off-ness" in colors adds up and the combined
effect is quite obvious).


> Any issues with the
> infinity symbol should have been addressed a year ago.

Amen.


> Aarons reference design at www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/ is
> exactly that: A
> reference. In it's current form it differs from his original
> submission
> which was the winning entry and should not be considered as anything
> else but a reference. I tried to stick to that design as much as
> possible but some things were simply not possible.

The reference I made, after listening to comments on the forums, etc., is
what I believe an improvement to the original submission.  However, the live
site right now, while the backend is perhaps implemented with improvements,
the frontend (the design) is a deterioration.  I understand there are
technical limitations to what's possible.  I've worked with CMS's and
combining backend with frontend etc., but it's about injecting data into the
design; not the other way around.  This is usually done after reference
templates are done and "locked," and the final output of the injection
effort is usually very close to the references templates.  The Gentoo
templating system seems to be such a way that everyone working on this
project, Curtis and myself included, have to work contrary to normal
processes in order to force things to work.


> Aarons design uses a smaller default font, that is not
> acceptable from
> an accessibility POV. The main font is at 1em and all cursory fonts
> multipliers of 1em. The main font will remain at 1em which is the
> standard for the accessibility guidelines. If you don't like the
> standard font size every single graphical browser offers a font zoom
> capability, use it.

If you look at all of the professionally designed sites on the Internet, I
bet they're using a font size similar to what's in the reference templates.
The reality is, most people are _not_ on 1600x1200 resolutions and the font
used in the live site is just plain huge.  I'm using 1280x1024 and it's
still gigantic! (All of my browsers' font zoom is default.)  Even
mozilla.org's fonts are about half the size of what we're using.  Looking at
other "modern" open source sites, freebsd (nice facelift), fedora, etc. none
of them are using fonts as large as ours, not even close.  The browser's
zoom capability is really a double-edged sword...

That said, all the "reading/content" fonts are controlled using 1 value in
global.css, change font-size in body and the whole site will change.  The
"reading" font I'm referring to is specified for the real substance on the
page that people want to read, i.e. the content.  The philosophy is that
content "reading" fonts can be larger or flexible (hence I put in the
font-size adjuster so people can increase/decrease the content font size and
have that remembered in a cookie).  However, fonts that are an inherent part
of design should be congruent with the design itself.  

E.g. Redhat, http://www.redhat.com/en_us/USA/home/services/

Their reading font is large, but the fonts associated with the design (nav
bar items, side bar, legal, etc.) are not being blown out of proportion.
People are not going to be reading these elements for hours on end, so it's
okay.  If you consider your _main_ audience, it's irrational to worsen the
experience for 99% of the people so that the other 1% can have an ok
experience.  Redhat's reading font is already on the large end of what is
acceptable in a professionally designed site.

The other problem with setting the default font so large, is that if you
increase the font size just by a little bit, everything will go nuts.

E.g. http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/aaronsplus2.png  VS.
http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/liveplus2.png

Both of the above were increased by 2 sizes in Firefox.  What I'm getting at
is that if people set their browser defaults just a bit larger, then
everything would explode.  In reality, it's more likely that people will set
their browser defaults larger rather than smaller.  The odds of it being
blown up due to us setting a large default font is even greater in that
respect.


> Purple background with yellow text is hideous. Not going to happen.

It's pea green.  If we consider color theory, this shade of green is much
more in line with our shade of purple (they are as best of a match between
purple and green as you can get).  The saturation is also much closer (69%
vs. 70%) where as with the live site green it's (69% vs. 100%).  This live
site green, when viewed on (proper) displays, actually causes eye strain
because the colors are _unnatural_ together.

Green vs. yellow: http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/greenvsyellow.png

Pea Green (top) vs. Live Site Green (bottom):
http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/greentest.png  The bottom one hurts
doesn't it?


> The "Locator" would require rewrites of not only the XSL but also the
> actual xml files and is outside the scope of this project.
> Touching any
> xml content file is strictly off limits, all existing xml should be
> backwards compatible with the new design. This point is not
> debatable.
> Use of a database would make this task easier while allowing
> backwards
> compatibility but it will have to wait for a future update to
> the site
> to be implemented.

Fair enough.


> The contents of the uppermost menu are to sites that are outside the
> www.gentoo.org website. They will stay in this location. They
> are green
> to contrast with the purple background to ensure that colorblind and
> other visually impaired people can see it. Green is the compliment to
> purple so I am baffled that people think the combination is not
> attractive. In Aarons preview the light purple color of these
> links is
> not visible to color blind individuals thus it is unacceptable. This
> color will not change.

The contrast between the purples should be enough, the lighter purple is
roughly 2x brighter than the darker purple.  The green makes it standout too
much, especially the live site green.  It's distracting.  Originally, this
element was intended as an indicator (to complement the locator) of the
Gentoo network site a user is on.  If we come back to asking the fundamental
questions, by looking at any given page do I know where I am?  After
browsing around, am I still on the same sub site?  Or have I gone from main
to planet to bugs to ...?  I understand this is a lost cause, but it's good
to know that a "locator" of some sort is being considered for the future.
Breadcrumbs have been a rather standard feature since the late 90s.


> The grey menu should contain links that would be used in
> order of a new
> user and that highlight the main parts of the site. I did
> this quickly
> to have something there to look at. I didn't notice any good
> suggestions
> to replace what is there. If you have suggestions please send
> them. The
> same goes for the wording in the purple boxes, if you don't like what
> they say submit a suggestion for each. Suggestions of "I
> don't like it
> you should change it" that don't include a clearly worded replacement
> will be ignored. The donate box is here to stay until the search
> function is implemented.

Agreed.  I think what we're both noticing here is that we're building the
house from top to bottom rather than from the ground up.  The information
architecture should be in place and/or optimized before the design is ever
started.  Oops, scratch that, if I recall I think swift made a site map
somewhere...  The issue of what goes in the nav bar has been raised before
and there was a semi-resolution to it.


> Graphics should be implemented in the CSS as much as possible to aid
> future maintenance (the xsl templates are huge and not easy
> to maintain.
> The least amount of editing of these files as possible is one of the
> major goals). In text browsers that can handle graphics but don't
> support CSS the upper left logo (which is a background image
> so it can
> be put in the css) will not appear but will leave space for
> the missing
> background image. I can't figure out a way around this. If you have a
> suggestion I would appreciate it.

I tried to do everything in CSS, which is why having a printable version of
the site (http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepageprint.html) is easy.
Nothing is changed.  No CSS files are changed.  The _only_ difference is
that the print CSS file is added to the end of the cascade, so that the
print CSS rules overrides certain elements we want to redefine for print.
Basically, with the logically structured HTML, we can change the design a
whole lot without touching the HTML simply by manipulating the CSS.  I.e. I
had in mind different themes and elements for xmas, halloween, etc. and only
an extra CSS file is required to add the changes (without touching the
existing CSS files).


> Horizontal scrolling of the entire page when a code listing is wider
> than the page only happens in IE. All other browsers
> understand the CSS
> scroll:auto tag and will only scroll the actual code listing.
> The same
> applies to inline images within the page contents. IE is broken but I
> did everything I could to make it behave the same as other browsers.
> This is one issue that IE is simply broken on and there is
> nothing I can
> do to fix that. Javascript fixes are available but the use of
> Javascript
> is strictly forbidden. Javascript is not debatable.

I think this problem was fixed in my reference page, some googling uncovered
the solution (http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepage.html).  If in IE,
scale down the window, the scroll bars will automatically appear on the code
listing when necessary.  It behaves identically as in Firefox etc.  I'm not
too sure what you mean by the inline image problem, can you explain (maybe a
demo is easier)?


> The <hr /> tags in the Handbook navigation are contained within the
> handbook xsl template. Touching that file is outside my scope.

They look ok anyway, but we can probably add a CSS rule to make it nicer if
necessary.


> The site is not XHTML it is HTML-4.01 Transitional and it
> passes the w3c
> validator. Manually overriding HTML-4.01 Transitional in the w3c
> validator is not required and any errors that it reports if
> you do this
> will not be addressed. If you can come up with a good
> technical reason
> why doing this would benefit anyone I will address it.

The differences between the two specs (at least HTML 4.01 vs. XHTML 1.0; --
1.1+ is another story) are not really that significant.  I don't see why we
can't switch to XHTML unless there are inherent coding in the system that we
can't mess with.


> Navigation and useability studies are beyond my scope. These issues
> should have been addressed a year ago.

I tried to address those issues (with pages of explainations etc.), but my
suggestions were completely ignored.  Hence, I won't say anymore about this.


> The left hand navigation column is dead. No amount of beating
> this dead
> horse will resurrect it. The jumppads will remain at the bottom and
> appear on all non-documentation pages so that those links are
> accessible
> as much as possible.

We can also make additional jump pads if necessary.  I only did 3 for the
sample.


> In Aarons preview the search box and the ads column are placed with a
> Position:absolute and has it's size set. At resolutions below 800x600
> this makes the ads overlap the content and the search box overlap the
> box to the left on every browser. When content is scarce the
> ads overlap
> the footer. This is not fixable given the current state of
> css support
> in the various browsers. After many many many long hours of
> research and
> experimentation I decided that we would have to resort to a table for
> the ads column and include the search (now donate) box within the div
> that contains the four purple boxes with a % width to fix
> this issue. I
> lowered the % width of the donate box and increased the
> others to bring
> it more inline with Aarons original design. It's not perfect but it's
> close enough.

It looks fine at 700x500.  Even smaller at 640x480, it's still ok.  This is
because there's a min-width rule specified for the content area.  Modern
browsers should respect this rule (IE doesn't, but Firefox, etc. and Opera
are fine).

http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/700x500ref.png

Speaking of lower resolutions, the author credits takes up the entire screen
(http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/700x500live.png).  I originally
thought about doing it this way, but after trying with that same author list
it didn't seem right.  Hence the design was reworked to use the side bar, as
old Gentoo site does, for author listings.  It seems to work better.

The side bar overlapping the footer when there is minimal content is a known
issue.  It's not as if we have the handbook in the footer. ;)  The
alternative is to have the footer block the bottom of the side bar, but the
implementation is much more convoluted that it's not worth it.  On the other
hand, the side bar in the live site stops abruptly if the content is long.
If content is the main focus, does it make sense to show a whole page's
worth of white space just so the sidebar can display entirely?


> Accessibilty guidelines say that all text links should be
> underlined. I
> made an exception for the grey menu bar for aesthetic
> purposes but will
> not make an exception for any other links.

My thoughts exactly, although the author list is missing the underlines.


> gentoo.org and all domains owned by the Gentoo Foundation
> should render
> correctly in all browsers that are still in general use. IE5
> on the mac
> is still a valid browser and will be supported as much as possible.

In my own site logs, Netscape 4 still out numbers IE5 for Mac (go figure).
It's a simple cost/benefit analysis and in the end is it worth it to support
such non-standard-compliant browsers?  What message are we sending? --- we
try to accommodate a few at the cost of the majority?  


> Summary and authors are important and should be prominently displayed
> before the actual content. On the current design they are on
> the right
> in a tiny column that wraps every two words. This is
> unacceptable. These
> items will stay at the top for now unless someone can come up with a
> place to put them that makes sense, looks good, allows the
> summary to be
> seen on top and not below the content (because a summary
> should be above
> the content otherwise why have a summary if you have to
> scroll past the
> content to see it?). The handbook is the only page that has a
> large list
> of authors and authors only appear on the first page so this
> should not
> be a problem.

I had placed the title, summary, date modified (highlightly prominently in
it's own box) at the top, and the authors on the side.  It's the best I
option I could come up with that doesn't kill usability (see my point a few
paragraphcs above re: author list filling entiring screen; see my previous
email re: what is usability).


> *Background color for content was made light grey with black text for
> better visibility of the text. Bright monitors should no longer be a
> problem.

Background should remain white, it's much easier to work with.  To make it
easier on the eyes, just lighten up the text a little (i.e. so it's not
black on white which is high contrast but high contrast also strains the
eyes after prolonged reading).  I used #515151, which is 81% gray.  The
other point for not having colored backgrounds is that it looks particularly
bad on laptops running on battery.  When the screen dims when it's not on
AC, it's all over.


> *background color of the ads was made darker to contrast with the
> content area. Decorative header was added.

Please check the original colors, I think that was sufficient in boxing that
area while leaving the text readable.


> *all extraneous information and decorative news headers were removed
> from the front page to help readability and to bring focus to the
> information. This includes the cow image and text.
> Overwhelming amounts
> of information on the front page should no longer be a problem. This
> also brings the jumppads closer to the top so new users will
> be better
> able to spot them.

If decoration is used sparingly, it's great.  If we want to be purely
information based, and ignore appearance and marketing, we could go text
only.  


> *table borders are now collapsed and only 1px thick. They are
> no longer
> ugly.

Getting better...


> *The purple boxes below the grey menu bar now only appear on
> the main index.

Perfect, that was the original intention.


Some other points:
- margins! Do books, magazines, newspapers not have margins? Keep it
familiar for the readesr.

- In IE, the top content starts ok, as you scroll down, everything shifts to
the left.  If it's a long page, by the time you get to the bottom, 20% of
the content is out of bounds (to the left).  E.g.
http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/doc/en/handbook/handbook-x86.xml?part=1&chap=8
The last sentence which says "You may now continue with Installing Necessary
System Tools." only reads "ith Installing Necessary System Tools."

- It's probably a good idea to add Arial to the fonts in CSS.  Right now
we're leaving out the 90% of the PC market.

Hope that helps.

Aaron

--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: Update of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Kurt Lieber-3
On Wed, Nov 23, 2005 at 06:39:08AM -0800 or thereabouts, Aaron Shi wrote:
> Sorry, but this looks worse. The colors (other than what's in the original
> graphics) are way off.  I'm going make a wild guess that an uncalibrated LCD
> is being used to view the site.  Many panels are not capable of the full
> 16.7 million range and uses dithering techniques to emulate the other
> colors.  So in reality, the colors when viewed on proper LCD and CRTs are
> slightly off (but all the "off-ness" in colors adds up and the combined
> effect is quite obvious).

Reviewing the two sites:

http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/mainindex.html (original)
http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org/ (current)

I agree with Aaron that the original one looks far better.  The colors are
much more complementary, the layout is cleaner and the site looks more
professional overall.

My $.02.

--kurt

attachment0 (196 bytes) Download Attachment
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: Update of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

"C. Bergström"
In reply to this post by Curtis Napier
Curtis Napier wrote:

> Aarons design uses a smaller default font, that is not acceptable from
> an accessibility POV. The main font is at 1em and all cursory fonts
> multipliers of 1em. The main font will remain at 1em which is the
> standard for the accessibility guidelines. If you don't like the
> standard font size every single graphical browser offers a font zoom
> capability, use it.

I just asked we don't set the font size in px..

>
> The site is not XHTML it is HTML-4.01 Transitional and it passes the
> w3c validator. Manually overriding HTML-4.01 Transitional in the w3c
> validator is not required and any errors that it reports if you do
> this will not be addressed. If you can come up with a good technical
> reason why doing this would benefit anyone I will address it.
>
> Navigation and useability studies are beyond my scope. These issues
> should have been addressed a year ago.

There always has to be a point in software were we lock on features..  
Hopefully we look at this sometime in the future.  It's my understanding
that xhtml is a finer grained standard and will become more so in the
future.. Allowing for a right once and preview the same across browsers
approach.. Thus not having to "worry" so much if the site previews the
same across any platform.  It will save time for everyone later.. (only
mentioning)

>
> The left hand navigation column is dead. No amount of beating this
> dead horse will resurrect it. The jumppads will remain at the bottom
> and appear on all non-documentation pages so that those links are
> accessible as much as possible.

I only recommended kicking a small portion of the bottom jump pads to
the right side above the ads.  Allowing for navigation bar and menu to
be closer together.. (imho not important)

>
> The CSS is only 12k. Why would shaving 4k off of it to make it 8k make
> a difference to anyone?

Loads, parses and renders faster...  After the need for editing is
done.. I think simply removing white space might accomplish this..

>
> The site is dynamically generated with XSL/XML all the pages end in
> .xml. There are no plans to change it to .xhtml now or in the future.

I have to look at this logically..
So we are intentionally rendering HTML 4?  HTML docs being such usually
end it .html file extension..  Unless there are some changes then should
be just .html files.. OR update the code to be xhtml compliant and leave
as .xml.. This doesn't really matter, but it's semantics..

It's like renaming a bzImage to Kernel.dll

In the end.. Looks better and thanks for the great work

Cheers,

C.
--
[hidden email] mailing list

Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: Update of http://wwwredesign.gentoo.org

Paul de Vrieze-2
In reply to this post by Aaron Shi
On Wednesday 23 November 2005 15:39, Aaron Shi wrote:

> > I should have said that the last update was not complete as
> > far as design was concerned. I was mainly looking for
> > accessibility and rendering issues on as many browsers/OS's
> > as possible. I got that feedback and fixed the issues that
> > came up. I also implemented the rest of the design so it
> > should now be more visually appealing and better match Aarons
> > reference design. I took into consideration all of the
> > suggestions that were submitted and now ask for additional
> > feedback to ensure that my changes didn't introduce any
> > additional rendering/accessibility bugs and that the design
> > is acceptable to as many people as possible.
> >
> > If there are no more outstanding issues reported I will
> > submit this current layout for approval.
>
> Sorry, but this looks worse. The colors (other than what's in the
> original graphics) are way off.  I'm going make a wild guess that an
> uncalibrated LCD is being used to view the site.  Many panels are not
> capable of the full 16.7 million range and uses dithering techniques to
> emulate the other colors.  So in reality, the colors when viewed on
> proper LCD and CRTs are slightly off (but all the "off-ness" in colors
> adds up and the combined effect is quite obvious).
I agree, the reference still looks better. And indeed an LCD is not really
a good judge of colors.

>
> > Any issues with the
> > infinity symbol should have been addressed a year ago.
>
> Amen.

Could you anyway make a version where the infinity symbol is made by
clipping two "oh"'s together. I would like to see how they visually
compare. I find the infinity symbol to be dissonant towards the "gent"
letters.

> The reference I made, after listening to comments on the forums, etc.,
> is what I believe an improvement to the original submission.  However,
> the live site right now, while the backend is perhaps implemented with
> improvements, the frontend (the design) is a deterioration.  I
> understand there are technical limitations to what's possible.  I've
> worked with CMS's and combining backend with frontend etc., but it's
> about injecting data into the design; not the other way around.  This
> is usually done after reference templates are done and "locked," and
> the final output of the injection effort is usually very close to the
> references templates.  The Gentoo templating system seems to be such a
> way that everyone working on this project, Curtis and myself included,
> have to work contrary to normal processes in order to force things to
> work.
At the time, the design was approved understanding that it would be a
guide towards the final looks. Not an absolute this and nothing else.
Further the designer (Aaron) was encouraged to participate in
implementing his design. Partly to make small improvements, and to fill
in the design where it was missing. As such I fully believe that the new
reference could be used as basis.

> If you look at all of the professionally designed sites on the
> Internet, I bet they're using a font size similar to what's in the
> reference templates. The reality is, most people are _not_ on 1600x1200
> resolutions and the font used in the live site is just plain huge.  I'm
> using 1280x1024 and it's still gigantic! (All of my browsers' font zoom
> is default.)  Even mozilla.org's fonts are about half the size of what
> we're using.  Looking at other "modern" open source sites, freebsd
> (nice facelift), fedora, etc. none of them are using fonts as large as
> ours, not even close.  The browser's zoom capability is really a
> double-edged sword...
>
> That said, all the "reading/content" fonts are controlled using 1 value
> in global.css, change font-size in body and the whole site will change.
>  The "reading" font I'm referring to is specified for the real
> substance on the page that people want to read, i.e. the content.  The
> philosophy is that content "reading" fonts can be larger or flexible
> (hence I put in the font-size adjuster so people can increase/decrease
> the content font size and have that remembered in a cookie).  However,
> fonts that are an inherent part of design should be congruent with the
> design itself.
I agree, I think that the main text size should be taken from the browser
settings. Those are normally reasonable (smaller than wwwredesign) AND
what the user prefers. The text zoom function is just a kludge around
sites that have been wrongly designed. The font size of menu items could
be set, but body size shouldn't.
>
> Green vs. yellow:
> http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/greenvsyellow.png
>
> Pea Green (top) vs. Live Site Green (bottom):
> http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/greentest.png  The bottom one
> hurts doesn't it?

Yes it does.

>
> > The "Locator" would require rewrites of not only the XSL but also the
> > actual xml files and is outside the scope of this project.
> > Touching any
> > xml content file is strictly off limits, all existing xml should be
> > backwards compatible with the new design. This point is not
> > debatable.
> > Use of a database would make this task easier while allowing
> > backwards
> > compatibility but it will have to wait for a future update to
> > the site
> > to be implemented.
>
> Fair enough.
I think the design should be made to include a locator when given in the
page. I would think something like adding an optional "<parent>" tag to
the DTD. The DTD would then query the parent for it's parent
(recursively) and display that parent, and then this one. (Creating the
path). It would be compatible with existing pages, while still allowing
forward progress. I see no reason why it would be impossible to change
the DTD as long as current pages are still supported.

>
> > The contents of the uppermost menu are to sites that are outside the
> > www.gentoo.org website. They will stay in this location. They
> > are green
> > to contrast with the purple background to ensure that colorblind and
> > other visually impaired people can see it. Green is the compliment to
> > purple so I am baffled that people think the combination is not
> > attractive. In Aarons preview the light purple color of these
> > links is
> > not visible to color blind individuals thus it is unacceptable. This
> > color will not change.
>
> The contrast between the purples should be enough, the lighter purple
> is roughly 2x brighter than the darker purple.  The green makes it
> standout too much, especially the live site green.  It's distracting.
> Originally, this element was intended as an indicator (to complement
> the locator) of the Gentoo network site a user is on.  If we come back
> to asking the fundamental questions, by looking at any given page do I
> know where I am?  After browsing around, am I still on the same sub
> site?  Or have I gone from main to planet to bugs to ...?  I understand
> this is a lost cause, but it's good to know that a "locator" of some
> sort is being considered for the future. Breadcrumbs have been a rather
> standard feature since the late 90s.
And I see no reason to not implement them (as above).

> > Graphics should be implemented in the CSS as much as possible to aid
> > future maintenance (the xsl templates are huge and not easy
> > to maintain.
> > The least amount of editing of these files as possible is one of the
> > major goals). In text browsers that can handle graphics but don't
> > support CSS the upper left logo (which is a background image
> > so it can
> > be put in the css) will not appear but will leave space for
> > the missing
> > background image. I can't figure out a way around this. If you have a
> > suggestion I would appreciate it.
>
> I tried to do everything in CSS, which is why having a printable
> version of the site
> (http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepageprint.html) is easy. Nothing
> is changed.  No CSS files are changed.  The _only_ difference is that
> the print CSS file is added to the end of the cascade, so that the
> print CSS rules overrides certain elements we want to redefine for
> print. Basically, with the logically structured HTML, we can change the
> design a whole lot without touching the HTML simply by manipulating the
> CSS.  I.e. I had in mind different themes and elements for xmas,
> halloween, etc. and only an extra CSS file is required to add the
> changes (without touching the existing CSS files).
Besides the fact that I agree with this, it is also the way that things
will go in the future as propagated by the W3C. And indeed, css should be
used predominantly for the design.

>
> > Horizontal scrolling of the entire page when a code listing is wider
> > than the page only happens in IE. All other browsers
> > understand the CSS
> > scroll:auto tag and will only scroll the actual code listing.
> > The same
> > applies to inline images within the page contents. IE is broken but I
> > did everything I could to make it behave the same as other browsers.
> > This is one issue that IE is simply broken on and there is
> > nothing I can
> > do to fix that. Javascript fixes are available but the use of
> > Javascript
> > is strictly forbidden. Javascript is not debatable.
>
> I think this problem was fixed in my reference page, some googling
> uncovered the solution (http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/guidepage.html).
>  If in IE, scale down the window, the scroll bars will automatically
> appear on the code listing when necessary.  It behaves identically as
> in Firefox etc.  I'm not too sure what you mean by the inline image
> problem, can you explain (maybe a demo is easier)?
>
I see no reason why javascript could not be used to circumvent the
behaviour of certain (enumerated) broken browsers. Normally working
browsers do not use the javascript and would look exactly the same with
or without javascript enabled. The broken browser looks properly (or as
proper as possible with the broken behaviour) though.

> > The site is not XHTML it is HTML-4.01 Transitional and it
> > passes the w3c
> > validator. Manually overriding HTML-4.01 Transitional in the w3c
> > validator is not required and any errors that it reports if
> > you do this
> > will not be addressed. If you can come up with a good
> > technical reason
> > why doing this would benefit anyone I will address it.

Why not implement either html-4.01 strict, xhtml-1.0 (transitional or
strict) or even xhtml-1.1. All are compatible with browsers that
understand 4.01 transitional. If possible xhtml-1.1 would encertain that
the layout and structure of the pages are properly separated.

>
> The differences between the two specs (at least HTML 4.01 vs. XHTML
> 1.0; -- 1.1+ is another story) are not really that significant.  I
> don't see why we can't switch to XHTML unless there are inherent coding
> in the system that we can't mess with.

I don't see it either. I also don't see why transitional is needed when we
have such a tightly controlled source language. None of the pages
actually contains actual html, so having the stylesheet support xhtml-1.1
(has no transitional version) should be straightforward.

>
> > Navigation and useability studies are beyond my scope. These issues
> > should have been addressed a year ago.
>
> I tried to address those issues (with pages of explainations etc.), but
> my suggestions were completely ignored.  Hence, I won't say anymore
> about this.

Please still give your suggestions. I think it is important they are
properly performed.

>
> > The left hand navigation column is dead. No amount of beating
> > this dead
> > horse will resurrect it. The jumppads will remain at the bottom and
> > appear on all non-documentation pages so that those links are
> > accessible
> > as much as possible.

Don't be so thickheaded.

>
> We can also make additional jump pads if necessary.  I only did 3 for
> the sample.
>
> > In Aarons preview the search box and the ads column are placed with a
> > Position:absolute and has it's size set. At resolutions below 800x600
> > this makes the ads overlap the content and the search box overlap the
> > box to the left on every browser. When content is scarce the
> > ads overlap
> > the footer. This is not fixable given the current state of
> > css support
> > in the various browsers. After many many many long hours of
> > research and
> > experimentation I decided that we would have to resort to a table for
> > the ads column and include the search (now donate) box within the div
> > that contains the four purple boxes with a % width to fix
> > this issue. I
> > lowered the % width of the donate box and increased the
> > others to bring
> > it more inline with Aarons original design. It's not perfect but it's
> > close enough.
>
> It looks fine at 700x500.  Even smaller at 640x480, it's still ok.
> This is because there's a min-width rule specified for the content
> area.  Modern browsers should respect this rule (IE doesn't, but
> Firefox, etc. and Opera are fine).
Actually it is easy to even make IE do such a thing by introducing a
"strut" and having a proper overflow behaviour. A strut is an invisible
element that has the minimum with required and as such forces that this
is the minimum.

> http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/700x500ref.png
>
> Speaking of lower resolutions, the author credits takes up the entire
> screen (http://www.aaronshi.com/gentoo/problems/700x500live.png).  I
> originally thought about doing it this way, but after trying with that
> same author list it didn't seem right.  Hence the design was reworked
> to use the side bar, as old Gentoo site does, for author listings.  It
> seems to work better.

Probably right. I think that some flexibility is good.

> The side bar overlapping the footer when there is minimal content is a
> known issue.  It's not as if we have the handbook in the footer. ;)
> The alternative is to have the footer block the bottom of the side bar,
> but the implementation is much more convoluted that it's not worth it.
> On the other hand, the side bar in the live site stops abruptly if the
> content is long. If content is the main focus, does it make sense to
> show a whole page's worth of white space just so the sidebar can
> display entirely?
>
> > Accessibilty guidelines say that all text links should be
> > underlined. I
> > made an exception for the grey menu bar for aesthetic
> > purposes but will
> > not make an exception for any other links.
>
> My thoughts exactly, although the author list is missing the
> underlines.
I think that the browser preference should be used. Most browsers
underline by default. But if users prefer links not to be underlined, why
not respect those users.

> In my own site logs, Netscape 4 still out numbers IE5 for Mac (go
> figure). It's a simple cost/benefit analysis and in the end is it worth
> it to support such non-standard-compliant browsers?  What message are
> we sending? --- we try to accommodate a few at the cost of the
> majority?

That's why one should use javascript to enable hacks to work around such
broken browsers. Most users get the full behaviour, and the broken
browser gets slightly degraded, but controlled behaviour.
>
> Background should remain white, it's much easier to work with.  To make
> it easier on the eyes, just lighten up the text a little (i.e. so it's
> not black on white which is high contrast but high contrast also
> strains the eyes after prolonged reading).  I used #515151, which is
> 81% gray.  The other point for not having colored backgrounds is that
> it looks particularly bad on laptops running on battery.  When the
> screen dims when it's not on AC, it's all over.

Also I find that the purple background on the live site makes the site too
purple.

> > *all extraneous information and decorative news headers were removed
> > from the front page to help readability and to bring focus to the
> > information. This includes the cow image and text.
> > Overwhelming amounts
> > of information on the front page should no longer be a problem. This
> > also brings the jumppads closer to the top so new users will
> > be better
> > able to spot them.
>
> If decoration is used sparingly, it's great.  If we want to be purely
> information based, and ignore appearance and marketing, we could go
> text only.
>
I agree, we should use the decoration where not superfluous and where
there is space. If the decoration causes space issues, it can be
reconsidered.

Paul

--
Paul de Vrieze
Gentoo Developer
Mail: [hidden email]
Homepage: http://www.devrieze.net

attachment0 (205 bytes) Download Attachment
1234