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From J Chris Anderson <jch...@gmail.com>
Subject Re: CouchDB brand identity and design of couchdb.apache.org
Date Tue, 20 Apr 2010 15:46:35 GMT

On Apr 20, 2010, at 2:15 AM, James Fisher wrote:

> On Mon, Apr 19, 2010 at 11:17 PM, J Chris Anderson <jchris@gmail.com> wrote:
> 
>> 
>> On Apr 19, 2010, at 11:41 AM, James Fisher wrote:
>> 
>>> Hey all,
>>> 
>>> I've had a long weekend away.  Nice to see this thread's still active.
>>> 
>>> I've procured a copy of Myriad, and swapped Candela out.  My opinions
>>> haven't really changed in that regard, but the majority seem to be in
>> favour
>>> of keeping Myriad.  (Though I almost cried at comparisons of Candela with
>>> Comic Sans.  I could show you what that would look like; you'd be
>>> horrified.  It's a shame that that abomination has destroyed any
>>> reputability of any other rounded fonts.)
>>> 
>> 
>> I'm fairly certain that we can't check Myriad into the ASF repo, no matter
>> what. (Well, unless we can convince the authors to put it under an open
>> license.)
>> 
>> 
> Hey Chris,
> 
> DW, that's not what I was suggesting.  The use of Myriad would be restricted
> to rasterized versions of the: (1) logo, (2) "time to relax" slogan, (3)
> "Goodbye, ..." intro text (that's now rasterized into the background PNG in
> the screenshot).  I was hoping that someone with a good copy of Myriad
> could:
> 
> * fork my git repo
> * open the background SVG in Inkscape
> * change the appropriate text to Myriad semibold
> * resize the text as appropriate
> * convert all Myriad text to paths (so I can work with it)
> * update the raster copy of the background (background.png)
> * push
> 
> That way Myriad would never be uploaded.
> 
> 
>> On a separate note I'm not sure how I feel about CSS fonts in general.
>> Maybe I'm an old timer, but Helvetica and Georgia are all we really need!
>> 
>> 
> As should now be clear, I wasn't using Myriad as a @font-face font.  The
> screenshot was misleading in that I now obviously have an installed copy of
> Myriad on my machine.
> 
> WRT Helvetica: I'm not one of those font purists that loves Helvetica over
> Arial -- in the interests of consistency, if Arial were a possible
> alternative, I'd just use that in CSS.
> 
> Also: dunno what you think, but Verdana seems more like cheap Myriad
> substitutes than Arial.  Note the much more open counters.  In fact, I've
> just been experimenting, and Verdana 12px ~= Myriad 14px nicely enough that
> I barely notice it.

The new screenshot looks great. I'm glad this project is keeping momentum!

I've been thinking about the old schematic (with Lucene and everything). I'm wondering what
it would be like to keep it in. Or maybe we can get Damien to draw a new one, so it maintains
the same style.

Chris

> 
> 
>> Too bad, the Myriad screenshot looks really nice, but I think we shouldn't
>> get too hooked on the impossible.
>> 
>>> WRT Chris' fork:
>>> 
>>> * I like the copy; I've pulled it
>> 
>> Thanks! (Although your screenshot still shows the old copy.)
>> 
>> I also changed the quote to one that doesn't mention Django at all:
>> 
>> “I’ve never seen software that so completely embraces the philosophies
>> behind HTTP... this is what the software of the future looks like.”
>> — Jacob Kaplan-Moss, Django creator
>> 
> 
> Screenshot updated.  It's such a flattering quote, I think everyone has
> their own favourite parts of it :)
> 
> 
>> 
>>> * The background color I was using was too gloomy, but I'm not sure
>> swapping
>>> back to plain is the best solution.  I've lightened the cyans I was
>> working
>>> with.
>>> * I understand the desire to keep the old logotype, but the "relax"
>> slogan
>>> looks even more cramped now that the rest of the site has more space.
>>> * The left-hand-side navigation could be OK if the right CSS was applied.
>>> The bullet points seriously break up the left align, which I would say is
>>> bad.  Also, it suffers from the problem that was the reason I moved from
>>> there: the huge amount of space it takes from the body text.  That's
>> alright
>>> with promo material, but if (e.g.) you wanted to style a wiki using the
>> same
>>> (or similar) design, it would be terribly cramped.
>> 
>> I have a feeling pages other than the front page would not dedicate the
>> upper 500px to a relaxing picture of guy on a Couch under a lamp, so we
>> could so something for nav in that space.
>> 
>> 
> Heh, yeah.  ATM my suggestion for more compact pages would be something
> like:
> 
> * Remove the intro text
> * Remove the quote and the lamp
> * Move the sofa guy up to roughly fill that space
> 
> 
> 
>> I agree, the bullet list isn't good. That's the point at which I stopped
>> working...
>> 
>>> 
>>> This is how things stand:
>>> http://github.com/eegg/couchdb_web/raw/master/screenshot.png
>>> 
>> 
> 
> Updated screenshot:
> http://github.com/eegg/couchdb_web/raw/master/screenshot.png
> Rasterized Myriad; Verdana webfont.
> 
> 
>> 
>> With Myriad, I like the nav at the top right a lot more. Maybe it'll look
>> ok in Helvetica also?
>> 
>>> Large caveat: the bold text for "CouchDB ... time to relax" should
>> actually
>>> be in *Semibold*.  Annoyingly, I can't set that with my warez copy of
>>> Myriad.  Perhaps someone could edit the SVG and re-rasterize, and I'll
>> pull
>>> it.
>>> 
>>> 
>>> James
>>> 
>>> On Mon, Apr 19, 2010 at 5:11 PM, Robert Dionne <
>> dionne@dionne-associates.com
>>>> wrote:
>>> 
>>>> This is looking quite nice. I'm not a grammar expert but I think you can
>>>> lose the two commas.
>>>> 
>>>> Cheers,
>>>> 
>>>> Bob
>>>> 
>>>> On Apr 19, 2010, at 11:58 AM, J Chris Anderson <jchris@gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> On Apr 17, 2010, at 9:30 AM, Noah Slater wrote:
>>>>> 
>>>>>> CouchDB is a database built for the Web.
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> Or, like I already mentioned, we could use this quote:
>>>>>> 
>>>>>>    "Let me tell you something: Django may be built for the Web, but
>>>> CouchDB is built of the Web."
>>>>>> 
>>>>>>    - http://jacobian.org/writing/of-the-web/
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> Thoughts?
>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> I've forked James' git project and some work on it. Here is a
>> screenshot:
>>>>> 
>>>>> http://jchrisa.net/media/couchdb-web/couchdb-web.png
>>>>> 
>>>>> The fork is at http://github.com/jchris/couchdb_web
>>>>> 
>>>>> The main changes are to the copy, the font (back to myriad) and back
>>>> toward something like his first layout (but without the pillows.)
>>>>> 
>>>>> Thanks James for the inspiration. I think this still requires some
>> work,
>>>> but it was fun to get my hands dirty.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Chris
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>>> On 17 Apr 2010, at 17:21, Phil Rand wrote:
>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> "CouchDB is a database at home with the web."
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Or "...comfortable with the web."
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Regarding fonts, I feel like a beer drinker at a wine tasting.
 They
>>>> both
>>>>>>> look fine to me.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 2010/4/13 Robert Newson <robert.newson@gmail.com>
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> Very nice design. s/geared for the web/designed for the web/
?
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> On Tue, Apr 13, 2010 at 9:41 PM, Paweł Stawicki <
>>>> pawelstawicki@gmail.com>
>>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>>> I like the new design. Font is not so important for me,
can be old
>>>> one,
>>>>>>>> can
>>>>>>>>> be new one.
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> --
>>>>>>>>> Paweł Stawicki
>>>>>>>>> http://pawelstawicki.blogspot.com
>>>>>>>>> http://szczecin.jug.pl
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> On Tue, Apr 13, 2010 at 22:35, J Chris Anderson <jchris@apache.org
>>> 
>>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> On Apr 13, 2010, at 1:22 PM, James Fisher wrote:
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> On Tue, Apr 13, 2010 at 8:40 PM, J Chris Anderson
<
>>>> jchris@gmail.com>
>>>>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> On Apr 13, 2010, at 12:21 PM, James Fisher
wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> Apalling internet connection atm.  Try:
>>>>>>>>>>>> http://i41.tinypic.com/156aeds.jpg
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> I really like the simplicity.
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> Thanks.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> I think you will have a hard time convincing
people to change
>> the
>>>>>>>> word
>>>>>>>>>> mark
>>>>>>>>>>>> associated with the current CouchDB / Relax
logo. If you can go
>>>> back
>>>>>>>> to
>>>>>>>>>> the
>>>>>>>>>>>> old (less relaxing) font and type-setting
for that,
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> Mmm, I do wonder how ingrained it is.  I suppose
the pros and
>> cons
>>>>>>>> are:
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> ---
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> Myriad (if that is what it is) pros:
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> * Expensive.  Possibly gives a subconscious feel
of luxury.
>>>>>>>>>>> * Already used.  If (if) CouchDB already has
a well-ingrained
>> brand
>>>>>>>>>>> identity, it's wise to keep it.
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> I think the "Already used" point is the most salient.
There are
>>>> already
>>>>>>>> a
>>>>>>>>>> ton of t-shirts, releases, etc all using the current
logo.
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> I think if we were gonna move from the current logo
/ word mark,
>>>> we'd
>>>>>>>> only
>>>>>>>>>> move to something even more expensive. But that's
my opinion...
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> CouchDB is relaxing, but overplaying that too much
can scare away
>>>> people
>>>>>>>>>> who want to use it for serious things.
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> * Presumably has a much better character set
if it's ever going
>> to
>>>> be
>>>>>>>>>> used
>>>>>>>>>>> extensively (I doubt it).
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> cons:
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> * Expensive.  Even my own warez collection of
fonts hasn't
>> managed
>>>> to
>>>>>>>>>> hoover
>>>>>>>>>>> it up.  I doubt many people except professional
graphic artists
>> own
>>>> a
>>>>>>>>>>> genuine copy.
>>>>>>>>>>> * Extensively used by Apple (http://www.apple.com/
I don't think
>>>>>>>> there's
>>>>>>>>>>> much they produce that *isn't* in Myriad).  I
suppose you could
>>>> call
>>>>>>>> that
>>>>>>>>>> a
>>>>>>>>>>> pro if you want to piggyback; but I don't think
the CouchDB
>>>> identity
>>>>>>>> fits
>>>>>>>>>>> very well with brushed aluminium.  I don't want
to kick back on
>> an
>>>>>>>>>> aluminium
>>>>>>>>>>> couch.
>>>>>>>>>>> * (my own feeling is that it is) a bit too formal.
 It has a
>>>> "friendly
>>>>>>>>>>> high-class business" feel (can't find the words
there).  E.g.
>>>>>>>>>>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myriad_%28typeface%29
mentions it's
>>>> used
>>>>>>>> by
>>>>>>>>>> All
>>>>>>>>>>> Nippon business class flights.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> ---
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> Candela pros:
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> * I think it looks like a couch, in a hard-to-define
way.
>>>>>>>>>>> * Free (and libre) (at least for the purposes
of @font-face and
>> any
>>>>>>>> other
>>>>>>>>>>> CouchDB literature, AFAICT from the license).
>>>>>>>>>>> * Untrammelled by other prominent commercial
use -- making it
>>>>>>>> potentially
>>>>>>>>>>> highly distinctive as "that CouchDB font".
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> cons:
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> * CouchDB community rebellion against it? (?!)
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> ---
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> and perhaps drop the saturation on the Cyan
(light-blue-grey
>> would
>>>> be
>>>>>>>>>> nice
>>>>>>>>>>>> I think) you'd be getting somewhere.
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> I agree with you there, I think.  Alternatively,
turn up the
>>>>>>>> brightness.
>>>>>>>>>>> Doing a bit of both helps.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> On Tue, Apr 13, 2010 at 8:12 PM, Julian
Moritz <
>>>>>>>>>> mailings@julianmoritz.de
>>>>>>>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Hi,
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> James Fisher schrieb:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> I've no idea if I can attach
PNGs here, but here goes.  Find
>>>>>>>> attached
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> one proposed design.  Only Inkscape
atm, but I should be able
>>>> to
>>>>>>>>>>>> convert
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> to HTML with little fuss.  A
few notes:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Let me know if
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> no png attached. Seems you've been
interupted while writing
>> this
>>>>>>>>>> email?
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Regards
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Julian
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> On Tue, Apr 13, 2010 at 2:05
PM, Noah Slater <nslater@me.com
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> <mailto:nslater@me.com>>
wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> On 13 Apr 2010, at 13:54, James
Fisher wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Certainly will do.  I'm doing
some rough sketches now; might
>>>> get
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> something
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> up in the next couple of
days.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Please take a look at these designs:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Homepage:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> http://twitpic.com/pme28/full
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Homepage/Downloads:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> http://twitpic.com/pmetj/full
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Homepage/Screenshots:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> http://twitpic.com/pmevr/full
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Wiki:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> http://twitpic.com/pmexo/full
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Wiki/Syntax reference:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> http://twitpic.com/pmf2r/full
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> I think we all agreed at the
time that this was a good way
>>>>>>>> forward
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> for the site.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Search the dev mailing list for
"Website redesign" and maybe
>>>> get
>>>>>>>> in
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> touch with:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>     maddiin <maddiin@googlemail.com
<mailto:
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> maddiin@googlemail.com>>
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> He was doing most of the work
on this last time!
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Thanks,
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> N
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> --
>>>>>>> Phil Rand
>>>>>>> philrand@gmail.com
>>>>>>> philrand@pobox.com
>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>> 
>> 
>> 


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