New Site: Request for Opinions

This forum is for suggestions and discussion about this site. What would you like to see?

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richard
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New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by richard »

As mentioned in the thread about making the forums more mobile, I've had a designer look at the static pages. I've got the first results:

http://whoision.com/share/Dmitrii_Mikit ... 1QtbDVaTTg

Use the arrows to switch between the images:

1. Preview on laptop
2. Laptop site full size
3. Laptop site full size with mouse roll overs
4. Navbar for laptop version
5. Navbar for laptop version with mouse roll overs
6. Smartphone preview
7. Smartphone full size
8. Smartphone preview main menu
9. Smartphone full size main menu
10. Smartphone preview extended menu
11. Smartphone full size extended menu

The idea is that the new look will be "responsive" and will change to match different device sizes. Hence the designer has come up with two breakpoints: "laptop" and "smartphone" (I have a dual screen desktop setup here, and the laptop spills over one screen on to the second, so he must have a large laptop lol).

Thoughts/comments?

We've spoken about moving the search off the main menu - we might still do this. There will be search of some kind, of course.

Also the images definitely need to be changed! Keep the Sparshatt A1 photo instead I think. And for the second image, we need something else - perhaps an A4. Anyone have any suggestions? It has to be pretty old or with explicit copyright permission. Pure LNER as well, and facing to the left (to mirror the Sparshatt A1). The other pages have an A4 but it is right-facing (and a mirror image would reflect the buffer beam no). I'm not sure about the postmarks either.

The designer has also concatenated "Shipping" and "Locomotives", and I think we can change the menu order.
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by 60800 »

Apart from the obvious non-LNER background images which you've already promised to address, I like the look of the new proposed site
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by 65447 »

My Nokia dumb phone won't handle any images but anyway it's for emergencies only - the boss insists. I still use a desktop PC because of the nature of my work/hobby and I'd be curious to know if any trials have been done on the Windows 10 pre-release, especially as it will be a free upgrade and is due soon?
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

Who is your website designer - he (or she) is terrific! I love the design Richard. Very clean, very modern, very readable. Keeps the look and brings it up to date. The readability is a big factor - it's very easy on the eye.
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by richard »

SAC Martin: Thanks! I'll pass on your compliments. If you're wanting work done, I can give you his details off-list.

65447: Not much different here, except I have a couple of tablets. I keep thinking I should get an Android phone in-case I write more apps, and to test this kind of thing :-)
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by strang steel »

I may be missing the point here, but I have tried the link on my iphone and I just get very large images which I have to scroll around to understand what they are.

Should the images in options 6 to 11 scale themselves to fit a smartphone screen?
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by richard »

These are just images of what he is working on, rather than an actual working template.

Three more images for the 'inner' pages. The side menu is clearly a place-holder mockup:

http://whoision.com/share/Dmitrii_Mikit ... S1XUExsYk0

12. Articles
13. Articles scroll down, second menu that stick to the top
14. Locomotives
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by richard »

There have been some more screenshots added.
#17 and #18 now have the locos replaced with LNER locos - the Sparshatt A1 photo and a P2.

http://whoision.com/share/Dmitrii_Mikit ... UhmVkJJejg

Also some advertising in #18 - I'm going to confirm, but I think a lot of the advertising will disappear on mobile devices - the content is more important than a small trickle of income!
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

richard wrote:SAC Martin: Thanks! I'll pass on your compliments. If you're wanting work done, I can give you his details off-list.
That would be great, thank you Richard. I have wanted to update my blog into a full website for some years and a proper website designer would help enormously.

I think the new site will really look the part - and it will continue to fulfil its excellent role as the "go to" LNER website of choice. I know it's always been bookmarked for me!
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by twa_dogs »

Looks nice and clean. Viewing on a mac retina screen btw. My only thought so far when viewing this shell, is that the choice of font needs a little care in application. In some functions it appears compressed along the line and in others not easy against the background. Gill Sans/LT underground is awkward to make work in body text (being very regular in height and width its easy for the eye to lose its place). Perhaps break it up a little to give the eye anchors - use of larger first letter at start of sentence is a simple trick but breaks up the typography's rhythm. similarly use of bold, light and if absolutely neccessary italic. Possibly use of tone rather than plain black might work with the colour pallette too. After all blue white and silver/grey were company branding colours, so with the background colour range a variety of greys for text should look quite good and be legible.

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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by richard »

I didn't think it was Gill Sans that he'd used?
I'll find out.
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by richard »

He used "Open Sans" which is supported by Google Fonts (an open license repository intended for websites like this).
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by twa_dogs »

Aaah my foot-in-mouth moment then. I'll be less exclusive and apply the points made to sans seriff fonts in general. Its a minor nit-picking but just trying to help at a stage when you can try things out.
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by richard »

The web has pretty much standardised on sans serif fonts - the felling being that serifs are better for printed text (eg. Times Roman, Century Schoolbook), but sans serif are easier to read on a computer screen (verdana, helvetica/arial, etc).

I could suggest the capital letter - it might give it some distinguishment (if that is a word!), but it isn't something we see online, is it?
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Re: New Site: Request for Opinions

Post by PGBerrie »

I must say I like the black menu in the mobile phone version - wouldn't that an alternative to the standard header in the DT/Laptop version? For the forum itself, it would be nice to have the next/previous entry navigation again - or have I failed to twig how it now works?

Peter
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