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diablosteamway
08-31-2003, 12:06 PM
My Dad's website, www.diablosteamway.com, is my first attempt at web site design. I would like to know what your thoughts are about the color scheme, lay out, images, size, maneuverability, etc. All comments are welcomed, the site is not complete yet so your comments might affect the final outcome.

Thanks!

masna
08-31-2003, 04:56 PM
Hi diablo,

Hard to believe this is your first site since you've done such a great job. My only comment would be to try to downsize it to fit on an 800 x600 screen since surveys show that's the most used especially with so many using laptops now. I think you'd just need to rearrange your bottom graphics a bit.

Overall, great job!

Nancy

diablosteamway
09-28-2003, 02:45 PM
Thanks for the advice masna. I will adjust for 800 x 600 once the new logo is designed. Does anybody know, how can a website be designed to adjust to the resolution of each user?

I realize I haven't received any comments since people were busy with Hurricane Weshost 2.0. Now that the storm is over, I would appreciate further comments.

Thanks

torrin
09-28-2003, 06:58 PM
Personally, I think your site should adjust to your customers, not make your customers adjust to your site. This quote at the bottom of your website caught my eye.


This website is best viewed with minimum setting of Internet explorer 5.0 at 1024 x 768 resolution with 256 colors. To insure proper text and image appearance please select User Defined under View > Encoding menu in Internet Explorer. Please adjust accordingly to better navigate this and most other websites. If your system is incapable of these settings, we apologize for any inconveniences.

I'm using galeon (http://galeon.sourceforge.net) at 800x600 with 24 bit color under linux.

Failing that, the pages looks good, but they are mostly blank. Is that because you don't work on any browser than Internet Explorer? If so, forget about having any customers that are using something other than MS Windows. I realize the population is small, but I don't think cutting off some customers is a good practice. Just my 2 cents.

If you would like, I can take screen shots to show you. Good luck. :)

wildjokerdesign
09-28-2003, 07:05 PM
Sorry diablosteamway that we have been overlooking you.

I agree with masna that it looks pretty good. The size thing is something worth working on. As I see it many of your images could be almost half thier size which would not only help with screen size thing but your pages would load faster. The red bar that you use is around 994 pixels wide when I use that type of separator I keep them around 500 - 600 wide.

There are alot of java scripts out there that read resolution and then redirect the person to anouther page based on that which is one way you can adust but that means alot of diffrent html pages. There other more complex ways but don't think that is the answer for you. What I try to do when I design a page is keep checking it with my screen set to diffrent resolutions. My personal prefrence in screen resolution is 1024 X 768 if I try to design and fill the screen using that then when I view it using 800 X 600 about all I get is the logo at the top of a page. :) That is one reason I said I thought you could use smaller images. I have the advantage of haveing more then one computer with diffrent OS and browsers plus a laptop so it makes it easy for me to check. You could always get friends to check or hop on their computers when you are at there house. That's what I did before I got so involved... use to drive my friends batty.

The only other thing I have to say is that your text is just a bit hard to read against your background. If you want check out some of the sites I have worked on you can access them through my web page. THey are on the Webdesign page. My main site like yours has a dark background and instead of using light type I surrround my text useing tables with light background and dark text. One site that is in my examples is on black with bright color text. This was done because the client runs a blacklight theater. I designed in an alternative for the user where they could "Turn Off" the black light and see it in the "light".

Overall good job keep it up.

Shawn

wildjokerdesign
09-28-2003, 07:17 PM
Just noticed something... You might want to check the copyright on logos for Adobe reader looks like you may be using one you should not. http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readermain.html scroll down to the bottom of the page and you will see the apporved logos and a link to thier agreement.

dahj
09-29-2003, 10:46 AM
Fairly good design, I woudl stay away from the darker background colors, seeing as it tends to make the page a little harder to read. Using a white background will allow your content to stand out a lot more than it would on a darker background.

Some one also mentioned above that you should design your site to fit a resolution of 800 x 600. This I would agree with somewhat. I would design your header graphic to the resolution of 800x600 but then I would base the rest of your page in with regards to the proportion of the browser window. Use tables that have a percentage size 100% or 95% instead of a set dimension. This allows flexibility among all of your pages, and then your content will always be visible rather than having to scroll to view it. Too many times I have left pages because content was located too far off the page and I had to scroll to view it. You can also use set widths with percentages, set a navigation bar to the left to a fixed width and the cell to it's right to a width of 100%, you get the same effect, and your content is again always visible. If you would like to see an example of what I'm talking about you can visit my site: http://www.seriousoutdoorgear.com/. I use a mixture of fixed and prorportionate widths.

But keep up the good site design.

diablosteamway
09-29-2003, 01:33 PM
Thanks for the feedback!

-- I already changed the Acrobat logo.

-- The statement at the bottom of the site is gone once I figure out how to set percentage of size like dahj said.

-- Once the logo is redesigned, which will have lighter colors, the site will be modified and the background color will be changed to something lighter.

-- I use 1600 x 1200 resolution and this is my first attempt at web design, thats where all the resolution problems stem from.

-- I have never heard of galeon and have never used linux. I'm sorry if I am excluding those customers. I am not sure how to include them, anyway. Wouldn't individuals using obscure operating systems and browsers have enough computer knowledge to make the site view correctly for themselves?

I have looked at the site under many versions of Internet explorer and Netscape using windows or Mac OS at different resolutions. I haven't seen any significant issues except at 800 x 600, the site requires scrolling. Plus you have to remember that we are located near Silicon Valley. The majority of the population here is very computer literate.

Anyhow, thanks for the advice. Iíll let you know when version 2.0 is complete.

zinc
09-29-2003, 01:36 PM
This tool will let you easily see how your page aligns at different screen resolutions: http://www.echoecho.com/toolresizer.htm

torrin
09-29-2003, 06:52 PM
-- I have never heard of galeon and have never used linux. I'm sorry if I am excluding those customers. I am not sure how to include them, anyway. Wouldn't individuals using obscure operating systems and browsers have enough computer knowledge to make the site view correctly for themselves?

Point taken. You're right, you shouldn't have to know about different web browsers or operating systems. Just make sure you code to w3c standards (http://www.w3c.org) and everybody should be able to view it.

As for people with enough computer knowledge, yes they do know how to get sites to view correctly. I'm just ranting because I don't think they should have to change their configuration when the site operator could just code to standards and then everybody would be able to view it. Ah well, this is just my thoughts.

What do other people think?

zinc
09-29-2003, 08:14 PM
I generally only write code for the popular browsers for the sites I create, especially considering some of the other, small browsers just plain lack the support for many standard features. IE + Mozzilla/Netscape is it for me unless a client specifically requests other coding, like for Web TV. Below are one week stats from one of my sites. Out of 10,000 sessions for that week, only 1 was using WebTV.

User Agent Analysis
Analysis for the Week of Sep 21st, 2003.

Total sessions served during period : 10931

Most active browsers by type and version:
AOL 4.x with 4722 sessions (43.93% of all sessions)
Netscape 4.x with 4371 sessions (40.66% of all sessions)
MSIE 5.x with 963 sessions (8.96% of all sessions)
Netscape 3.x with 238 sessions (2.21% of all sessions)
Netscape 5.x with 199 sessions (1.85% of all sessions)
Unknown with 168 sessions (1.56% of all sessions)
Opera 3.x with 35 sessions (0.33% of all sessions)
AOL 5.x with 27 sessions (0.25% of all sessions)
MSIE 4.x with 16 sessions (0.15% of all sessions)
MSProxy 2.x with 6 sessions (0.06% of all sessions)

Most browsers by brand preference:
MSIE with 5208 sessions (48.45% of all sessions)
AOL with 4749 sessions (44.18% of all sessions)
Netscape with 583 sessions (5.42% of all sessions)
Other with 168 sessions (1.56% of all sessions)
Opera with 35 sessions (0.33% of all sessions)
MSProxy with 6 sessions (0.06% of all sessions)
WebTV with 1 sessions (0.00% of all sessions)

One way to solve the different browser problem to have a text only link. I do agree with torrin, its not the visitors resposibility to change his/her settings. Then again, how far do want to take it, and is it worth the extra cost and development time to the client. Most often the client says no.

dahj
09-30-2003, 02:51 PM
One other thing that I noticed you might want to change:

Font -- I've noticed you have a mixture of Georgia, Times New Roman & Arial. I would suggest using Verdana, Arial, sans-serif. They will make your text look a lot cleaner. Times New Roman is not a very good text for web publishing.