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From André Malo ...@perlig.de>
Subject Re: Change of web site layout
Date Sun, 15 Jun 2014 23:44:48 GMT
Hi,

* Daniel Gruno wrote:

> Hi there, dev@ people (and docs@ cc'ed),
>
> For some time now, a lot of us from the documentation team have been
> pondering on making our site, well, not so 1990s looking and unappealing.

+1 at the point.

>
> We've had some input from various people over time, and together with my
> own thoughts, I've come up with a new core template that I plan to
> submit to our CMS system if there aren't too many objections.
>
> A mockup front-page featuring this new design can be seen at
> http://httpd.apache.pw/ (please don't start browsing the entire site, IT
> DOES NOT WORK, it needs to be behind our CMS system to be pretty and
> useable).
>
> And yes, this new layout will feature some changes:
>
> - News are placed in a carousel to eliminate the 'wall of text' we
> currently have. RMs will have to get acquainted with how to change the
> news on the site (which shouldn't be difficult if you look at the source
> code, you will still be able to use the CMS to edit it)
> - The menu is now a top bar instead of a side bar
> - Some menu items have been grouped together differently than before
> - The 8 bit feather has been replaced with the 32 bit one.
> - It's not quite as...blue
>
> Now, before half the team starts complaining that this uses HTML5,
> JavaScript or CSS3, please bear in mind that *we are not the intended
> audience*. This is not - and should not be - about what we want, it's
> about what modern (non-lynx) users will find attractive or off-putting
> about a site.

That's a killer phrase. User typically find a site attractive, if they find 
their use cases served (properly). If it looks nice, the better, of course. 
If it wastes her time looking attractive, but not being helpful, it's just 
making her angry.

As a user, I'd like to see relevant information. It must be possible to get 
the relevant information without javascript (yes!) and without random 
clicking (what should I expect from a non-descriptive arrow-link which 
feels like an adverstisement?).
Which means, all maintained releases should be visible at once. That has 
nothing to do with Apache, that's a simple observation, how people look on 
software pages.

And yes, as an admin I may have only a text browser available if I want to 
check the current security state of a software *on my server*. Shit 
happens.

Anyway, here are some more comments based on a *quick* review. I find the 
72h timebox way too short for such a change, by the way, especially over a 
weekend.

(also a screenshot: <http://people.apache.org/~nd/shot.png>)

- Don't fix the fonts to px size.
- The maint font (Libertine) is badly readable.
- the tagline is weirdly placed (see screenshot, made with a current 
  firefox)
- The carousel padding seems strange, too
- also, it's italic, that looks, like, 80s, sorry (as in: Text processing 
  software on my good old Atari ST :-)
- (Maybe the points above are due to freetype, but that's how it is.

- As said, all the technologies are fine, just make sure, it's usable 
  without it. An implementation could be to add real links to the dropdown 
  headings pointing to pages listing the submenus).

  Also, the legal stuff should be reachable without Javascript anyway.

- Once I activated JS, I immediatetly found the carousel autoscrolling 
  annoying (the animation too, because it steals my time, but YMMV).

- A final version should remove external dependencies and all inline style 
  attributes. Also, unscoped style blocks within the body are invalid HTML.
- Btw: There are many !important styles. Why is that?

- The align attribute for the img element is deprecated in HTML5
- Empty elements have bad semantics: <b class="caret"></b>. I know, it's a 
  neat CSS trick, but that doesn't make it better. A background image would 
  be a better choice here.
- <span class="glyphicon glyphicon-chevron-right"></span> is similar. Just 
  put the font character inside the link and set the font properly. However, 
  not everybody executes remote font files (I usually don't by default). 
  These people see strange letters instead of carousel arrows.

  There are a few tricks involving putting real arrow characters inside 
  another container and adding font defining classes / display: none for the 
  arrow after a modernizr-like detection for font-face support.
  Or just use SVG images as link content.

I did not dig deeper so far, as said, that was a quick view.

-1 at the implementation, sorry.

nd
-- 
Das einzige, das einen Gebäudekollaps (oder auch einen
thermonuklearen Krieg) unbeschadet übersteht, sind Kakerlaken
und AOL-CDs.
                                      -- Bastian Lipp in dcsm

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