Front page redesign

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Rachael
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Front page redesign

Post by Rachael » Thu Dec 01, 2016 18:35

Yes - the very same page absolutely no one ever visits, uses, or even thinks is relevant in the community.

I've been thinking of redesigning it if for no other reason than to make it mobile-friendly, but I was thinking of soliciting ideas from others about what they'd want to see on it. Mostly I am looking for opinions on style, but if anyone has any strong opinions on features I will welcome those, too.

The main reason why I haven't changed the front page is because I rather like the style that it already has - it's very reflective of DRD Team and in my opinion, gives it its identity. (And I think Grubber is a good page designer. :P)

But it's been at least a decade and - well, times change. Much as we all love clinging to the past, there are issues with the page that make it less compatible with modern (especially mobile) browsers.

My goal isn't to dump 2000 lines of Javascript code in from some unknown source and say "hey look cool we got menus that animate!". I just want it to be something that someone can, say, look at on their phone, and immediately go to any relevant page without too much issue. (If you were to try it now you'd get a zoomed out version of the page, which doesn't look terribly bad but it is unreadable)
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Tiger » Fri Dec 09, 2016 4:57

Hallo!
I don't have any useful suggestions on top of my head, but nonetheless - good luck on this task!
Nicholas "Tiger" Gautier

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Enjay
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Enjay » Fri Dec 09, 2016 15:12

As a matter of interest, how many hits does the front page get versus the forums?

I know that I tend to go straight to the forum but I agree that there should be a front page for the casual/first time visitor rather than the, perhaps, less approachable index page of a forum.

As for how the front page should look/behave; I too have very little to add. Functionally, it seems pretty good ATM. It could do with a few more pictures to make it attractive but that's a function of the stories/posts that get made for the front page rather than the structure of the page itself. I'm not proposing a graphics-heavy page though, merely something that creates a little visual interest for the story.

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Rachael
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Rachael » Sat Dec 10, 2016 22:04

On average, currently, the front page gets about 9% of the hits that the forum does on a given day.

I was thinking of taking ideas from my existing designs from the devbuilds site and QZDoom, but probably using different backgrounds rather than just computer textures. If I do a background though, I am not really sure what I should do. Dark-gray/black scan-lines of some sort may work.
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Gez » Sun Dec 11, 2016 17:26

I thought about using the chevrons as a pattern. I'm not sure it'd work well though because it might make text on it harder to read? Dunno. I tried to make them low contrast though still distinctly chevrony shapes. Then I put a scanline effect on top just because why not. And this is built upon the devbuild site's main gradient, as you probably noticed, because that was faster than choosing a color. It's just a mockup to see how it could look, not a serious suggestion.

Image

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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Rachael » Sun Dec 11, 2016 21:24

Hmm... I actually kind of like that.
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Gez » Sun Dec 11, 2016 23:05

I can upload the .xcf if you want. (Or would you rather it in .psd format?)

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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Rachael » Sun Dec 11, 2016 23:39

Either works. I have image conversion programs out the wazoo, so I doubt there's really any format I can't open.
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Gez » Sun Dec 11, 2016 23:56

Okay, here it is.

It has four layers: one with the scanline, one with the chevron pattern, a single chevron that was used to create the pattern for flood-filling, and the background. XCF is Gimp's native format.
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Rachael
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Rachael » Mon Dec 12, 2016 0:50

Got it - thank you. :)

Surprisingly Photoshop can't read XCF documents (missed opportunity there, for Adobe...) but I was able to convert it with no issues.

It might be a week or two before I am able to do much with this, though, since I have taken on a couple other projects... (and some people wonder why I never complain about boredom :P) - again, thanks. :)
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Rex Claussen
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Rex Claussen » Mon Dec 12, 2016 3:15

One idea is to scan the various forums and use the main items of discussion as "news points" on the front page. This would provide a summary for the visitor. Of course, this would require someone's time. But perhaps you can get volunteers from the DRDTeam community to participate.It would also mean some type of editorial discretion would need to be exercised.

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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Rachael » Mon Dec 12, 2016 5:29

That is an idea worth considering, but that may require enforcing some type of activity on the staff in order to make it consistent and that is not something I feel I really should do.

However, I could possibly also include an RSS reader that combs through recent public posts and puts them up on the front page and creates a topic listing that way.
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Re: Front page redesign

Post by Rex Claussen » Mon Dec 12, 2016 14:29

Eruanna wrote:However, I could possibly also include an RSS reader that combs through recent public posts and puts them up on the front page and creates a topic listing that way.
There would need to be some editorial review before publication. But perhaps the RSS reader can be trained or programmed to identify important posts for selection.

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