Forest BB

The digital grapevine of The Forest.
It is currently Wed Aug 20, 2014 4:34 pm

All times are UTC




Post new topic This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 101 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 3:07 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
This incarnation of the website has not been around for that long.

We had the old Joomla site before that, remember?

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 10:56 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2006 4:12 pm
Posts: 2734
Location: there and then
Quote:
I don't think I'm gonna vote in the poll. I'm not sure how the results of the poll will help us, and forest doesn't make decisions by polls or by majority. The poll is useful in that it sets out a number of possible solutions though. It doesn't look like the two camps are going to see eye to eye on this so a compromise is going to be needed. I suggest we all get together in a meeting, which will need a good facilitator who is not firmly in either camp, and use the options from the poll as a starting point to come to a consensus.


Straw polls can be useful even if you do make decisions by consensus. A temperature check can be a good way to see how people are feeling - it is different than saying that the final decision will be made on the basis of a 50-plus-one-majority-rules internet poll. I don't think Jane suggested that.

But yes, a meeting. I won't be there - I'm on strike from meetings.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:57 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
chombee wrote:
Yeah, I remain in favour of tumblr (or equivalent, free software hosted blog service) and simple, hand-crafted HTML&CSS for front pages. Assimilating these ideas into drupal just seems to be a lot of time and effort,


Really, no. It's a matter of an hour or so to get Drupal set up to do what Tumblr does.

chombee wrote:
and I don't see drupal's additional features as a benefit.


Well it all depends what we actually want to be able to do with the site.

If we want a system for posting media, then tumblr is that. But a Drupal site can grow and evolve as we find more uses for it.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 10:46 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2007 5:50 pm
Posts: 944
chombee wrote:
I suggest we all get together in a meeting, which will need a good facilitator who is not firmly in either camp, and use the options from the poll as a starting point to come to a consensus.

We don't need to be this serious about it. It's a website! A simple compromise is required. Let's give Joachim a chance to tidy up what's there already with Drupal. This current site has only been live for around six months. It would be harsh for others to come and tear it down without giving more of a chance for it to get better.

Let's look at what we can agree on. I think most folk would agree that we need a more simple, striking, visual first page to greet people who look up the site, and that this front page should serve as the springboard to access the various other forest sites now out there. I hope others would agree that the new sites such as old hat, records and publishing are excellent and should be drawn attention to way more than they have been so far.

Let's forget about polls and meetings and get on with a compromise. Let's go with Chris's skeletons front page for now. It's cool, so why not? Let's leave aside Tumblr for the moment. It's a big step to ditch Drupal and move to something else, so let's wait and see if it's really necessary. Let's make simplifying the Drupal pages a priority, in terms of simplifying the organisation of the pages, and simplification of the content of the pages. A less is more approach. We can review in a couple of months whether this is working or not, with the option to switch to a (hopefully improved) Tumblr version of the site if Drupal doesn't work out.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:54 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
Good post Neil.

Milk has already started making the site simpler. Have a look at the front page now.

Designers! Start thinking about a design for the front page. As soon as we can, we'll tell you what menu items you need to incorporate and then we can get a selection of front pages to display!

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 9:37 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2005 12:04 pm
Posts: 1410
can we get the skeletons up now though for the time being?
D x

_________________
Our big brother's got no heart,
when I get my chance I'm going to punch him in the nose, in the nose, in the nose


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 10:20 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
I don't want to cause bad feeling, I just want it to look good and be navigatable for our legions of fans worldwide. This is our shiny face for the far-away world, after all.

In the meantime to cheer everyone up, here is a fancy accessory for your ignition:


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 12:49 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
Though yes, in seriousness, can we put up the skeletons now? And also decide what our deadlines are for making it different?

I am still in favour of changing to tumblr in the interim until we are happy with drupal. This isn't "tearing down" anyone's anything, it's just that primping and preening is best done behind closed doors in the privacy of your bedroom mirror BEFORE showing your pretty face to the world, rather than tinkering with the live site so it comes up half-loaded, as I think was happening yesterday with the new icons. I'm not saying ditch drupal altogether, just that getting changed in public is never that classy.

chombee wrote:
I think that a lot of people have put a lot of work into it is not a good reason to keep the website around if it isn't meeting our needs.


A large part of the argument for sticking with the drupal for now during the changes is that it has been worked hard on, not that it is better looking than the other tumblr site (or do any of us prefer it visually?) No one minds throwing chris' work away because it didn't take him so long.

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 1:06 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
Jane wrote:
as I think was happening yesterday with the new icons.


I think that was me and Milk both trying to do stuff yesterday evening without communicating about it...
Sorry!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 1:09 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2006 4:12 pm
Posts: 2734
Location: there and then
Quote:
I am still in favour of changing to tumblr in the interim until we are happy with drupal. This isn't "tearing down" anyone's anything, it's just that primping and preening is best done behind closed doors in the privacy of your bedroom mirror BEFORE showing your pretty face to the world, rather than tinkering with the live site so it comes up half-loaded, as I think was happening yesterday with the new icons. I'm not saying ditch drupal altogether, just that getting changed in public is never that classy.


Double true.

This could be a compromise, eh?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 1:10 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
Well if we are then the tumblr site needs to be fixed up.

Firstly, it's long a scrolly on the main page, which funnily, although correct me if I'm wrong, was a complaint about the current site.

Secondly, huge swathes of text have been copypasted from the current site, meaning that none of the links work. They look like links, but they do nothing when you click on them, rendering half the site non-functional.

You've convinced me, it's a great idea! Lets change over to a site that, while it looks pretty, is impossible to navigate around or find the info you need. That will help potential customers, right?

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 1:39 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
There's nothing Tumblr does that that the current site can't be made to do over another afternoon of me & Milk slogging at it (especially if supplied with regular top-ups of coffee and cake).

And yup, the scrolliness is a feature of Tumblr too. It's generally a feature of the fact that it is currently set up to be a long list of recently posted stuff in reverse chronological order. Now this is the only thing Tumblr can do. It's far from the only thing Drupal can do.

If we want to move away from a scrolly-type front page, then what do we want instead?

A flat HTML splash page at the front is a turn-off for a site. People don't visit a site, they return to a site, and they want new stuff when they come back.

What we could do with Drupal is a combination of splash page and dynamic content: stick recent news headlines & upcoming events down the side of something big and splashy (such as whatever these skeletons are...)

Before people really get stuck into designs, we need to think about what the page elements are going to be and where, and start drawing up wireframes. So by all means start pondering colour schemes and graphics, but don't get too rigid just yet. Once we have the essential tidy-ups done on the site, I'm going to look at getting a new theme set up that those of you with enough CSS know-how to be dangerous can start playing about with.

(Who was it I spoke to yesterday who knew about setting up a git repository?)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:14 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
joachim wrote:
There's nothing Tumblr does that that the current site can't be made to do over another afternoon of me & Milk slogging at it (especially if supplied with regular top-ups of coffee and cake)


If that is true then that's great! As far I was aware from the notes from the meeting, the mention was of "a few months" or six months, depending whether it was chris or milk reporting it. If we're talking about that kind of timescale I think we should be looking at options for the interim. If we're looking at a timescale of a day, then that changes things.

joachim wrote:
A flat HTML splash page at the front is a turn-off for a site. People don't visit a site, they return to a site, and they want new stuff when they come back.


I'm not sure I really understand what a flat HTML splash page is, so maybe I'm arguing against a straw man here, but I presume you mean the kind of front page we've been discussing with pretty visuals and links. If so, I disagree. I want to be the one to decide what information I'm looking for when I visit a website. I want the most obvious thing to be the path I need to take to get to (for example) the TK gallery, or the darkroom, or the events, or the publishing, or whatever. I don't want to be initially bombarded with "new stuff", which at the moment is an action working group meeting, a text description of the golden hour, a programme, a job advert, another job advert, another programme, another job advert, and a barcode. I'm not interested in that news, apart from maybe the golden hour, but I'd rather look at the dapper-designed poster image than read that text.

If I was interested in going to an action working group meeting, I would want to find out about that by an obvious link to a "calendar of meetings". If I was interested in volunteering positions I would want there to be a link to volunteering positions.

I especially think this is true for a sprawling organisation such as the forest where we have so much going on an no hierarchy of content control to decide what should be going up first as news on the website. I would like people to be dazzled and intrigued and enticed by their first view and I think something like Gareth's mock-up made pretty with a link to a scrolly blog for updating events and news that change is the best solution.

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:17 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
ChaoticReality wrote:
Firstly, it's long a scrolly on the main page, which funnily, although correct me if I'm wrong, was a complaint about the current site.


Yes, it's a complaint I've been making about the tumblr site too, as I've said before I would like to see this used behind a static pretty front page, like Gareth's idea or Chris' skeletons.

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:45 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
You're now hitting a deeper question of 'What is the website for?'


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:03 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2006 12:35 pm
Posts: 1084
I don't like the skeletons page at all as it stands, for two reasons:

1. There is nothing on it that says what forest is and where it is. These are the very first things someone should find out by following a link to our site.

2. You can't see what the options are. You have to wave your mouse around over the skeletons to see them. This is a silly game that slows people down deliberately, i.e. makes the page hard to use. Having the colours appear as the mouse goes over is fine, but the text should always be visible.


Martin


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:23 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
/me looks on the first page of the thread...

Oh right, those skeletons.

Nice artwork :)

First, a technical point: that HTML is table-based and non-semantic, so it would need its code completely rejigging.

And I agree with the previous post that it's kinda faffy to navigate. Something like this is fun and amusing the first couple of times you see it. After a few visits, and when all you want to do is get to the website to check the start time of the thing you're going to, it's a pain.

On a more aesthetic point, I'm not sure how skeletons say The Forest. It's also going to get a bit tired after a few months, so we would need a new one of these on a fairly regular basis.

If there is a real interest in producing artwork like this -- and the technical skills to turn it into the required graphics -- then there is no reason why we can't make a system in Drupal for outputting this and uploading a new one each couple of months. But I think something like this really needs to incorporate a regular text menu and some dynamic content. We'd need to design a front page wireframe with those elements in it for the graphic artists to work with.

> I especially think this is true for a sprawling organisation such as the forest where we have so much going on an no hierarchy of content control to decide what should be going up first as news on the website.

The news should perhaps be actual news? The weekly programme should really be posted as individual events in the calendar, and perhaps only the events coming up in the next 7 days should get headlines on the front page (or thumbnails of the posters, if they have them). Though this sort of thing really needs to be thrashed out in a wireframing meeting.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:30 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
joachim wrote:
(Who was it I spoke to yesterday who knew about setting up a git repository?)


That was me. More details to follow.

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 9:01 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
Mike? I would appreciate it if you would reconsider you patronising tone, until your involvement in this discussion everyone has been fairly respectful and pleasent to one another.

ChaoticReality wrote:
Well if we are then the tumblr site needs to be fixed up.

Firstly, it's long a scrolly on the main page, which funnily, although correct me if I'm wrong, was a complaint about the current site.


The tumblr site isn't live, so i can play around and adjust settings if i please, cos it doesnt affect anyone. i can make the page long or short.. oh look i just made it short again.. (although, actually i like it long, provided the content is mainly good pictures...)

When you guys mess around with the live drupal site, making it do weird stuff, what do you think the reaction of all the people using it is going to be?

ChaoticReality wrote:
Secondly, huge swathes of text have been copypasted from the current site, meaning that none of the links work. They look like links, but they do nothing when you click on them, rendering half the site non-functional.


Do you really think i am going to spend my time re-writing text for a website that may never see the light of day? And is it hard to fix the links? actually i didn't just copy over all the text, a lot of it was so badly written, that i quickly went through it to make it more readable and often way shorter. Still I would delete a large chunk of it, and spend more time rewriting other parts, but you know what? Until it is worth doing that i do not see the point.

ChaoticReality wrote:
You've convinced me, it's a great idea! Lets change over to a site that, while it looks pretty, is impossible to navigate around or find the info you need. That will help potential customers, right?


The point of this site is that it is attractive, and very easy to use, both to post to, and as a "customer". I find it extremely easy to navigate around, as it is a one layer heirarchy and all the links are on the front (on the side panel to the right, if you missed it).. I don't get the impossibly hard bit (was it the broken links you were referring to?).

Chris

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 9:18 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
hey Joachim! nice to "see" you on the bb!

i have a response to this point:

joachim wrote:
On a more aesthetic point, I'm not sure how skeletons say The Forest. It's also going to get a bit tired after a few months, so we would need a new one of these on a fairly regular basis.


Iif you look earlier in this thread, there is discussion of totally changing the front page design every two months or so (in fact this idea receives quite a lot of support). And keeping it very simple and graphical, so that an artist can have a total free hand. for example how would those skeletons work if you include lots of text and pictures? I'll tell you now! they won't! they would lose their impact, which is also what happens if i included all the text visible on the rollover buttons, as soon as you include all that, the picture is muddied and loses its visual impact.

additionally.. for me, skeletons say the forest :)

Chris xx

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 10:33 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2006 2:01 pm
Posts: 1327
I would like to put this web team into a git repository! Ha ha ha! Naah, only joking :)

(Rushed home to get to that joke before Swithun.)

_________________
I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 10:49 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2006 2:01 pm
Posts: 1327
Seriously, I'm glad we're going to have a meeting about this. We clearly do need one, because a number of different solutions have been suggested and different people have expressed preference for different solutions, so it won't do for drupal to just steamroller the tumblr camp because 'we don't need to be this serious about it', and also because this thread is starting to get divisive so it's a good idea for us all to meet in person at this point.

This developing on the live drupal site is bad form, please don't do that.

I'm not convinced that staying with drupal (even with further development) is necessarily the best way. I think that by copying the tumblr layout, colours etc to drupal you're going to end up with a bad imitation of tumblr in drupal (see what I said earlier about the results of compromising between two different visions) which continues to beg the question of why we don't just use tumblr.

But I (and I'm sure the rest of us) am willing to be proven wrong on this point. Like others I'm still in favour of moving to tumblr with a static front page now and moving back to drupal if and when it's better than tumblr.

Anyway, lets get together soon and hammer out a course of action.

Side not: Joachim, no, the table-based non-semantic HTML would not need completely rejigging. That would be missing point. It works as it is, and it looks good! :)

_________________
I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 11:10 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
chombee wrote:
Side not: Joachim, no, the table-based non-semantic HTML would not need completely rejigging. That would be missing point. It works as it is, and it looks good! :)


Yes, it would. I'm certainly not going to be a party to putting anything on the web that is table-based layouts. Unless you have a time machine and care to rewind us all to the late 90s. It's lousy form, it's ugly code, and it breaches the DDA to boot.

> This developing on the live drupal site is bad form, please don't do that.

Fair point. On Saturday we should have just switched the site into maintenance mode for the afternoon while we tinkered with it. I'll remember to do that next time.

> I'm not convinced that staying with drupal (even with further development) is necessarily the best way. I think that by copying the tumblr layout, colours etc to drupal you're going to end up with a bad imitation of tumblr in drupal (see what I said earlier about the results of compromising between two different visions) which continues to beg the question of why we don't just use tumblr.

Tumblr simply doesn't do the stuff I would like the website to do. It doesn't do the stuff I think WE want the website to do. Tumblr does one thing only and does it very well with shiny bits and knobs on. Drupal does pretty much anything, for varying amounts of effort. I am interested in developing the site to make more of the events calendar and have subsections with content for different groups that use the Forest. I am really not interested in working with a one trick pony like Tumblr.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:16 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
hey Joachim and Milk!

I don't quite get it! By your own admission neither of you are designers, but both like the awesome power of drupal. So why are you changing the style of the current site, when you are not working to any design? it seems i agree with chombee again, and either you have to go the whole way and copy the tumblr site exactly (seems totally pointless), or you should be working to a different pre-determined template, designed by someone who does have aesthetic judgment. Doing anything else would seem to be a waste of your time.

Form, colour, and content must be balanced, to create a harmonious and attractive design. Just copying the colour scheme from the other site is kinda not enough....

additionally you are still developing the live site, i just looked at it there are a load of errors:

* There is no new syndicated content from Forest Publications.
* There is new syndicated content from Minutes.
* There are no new items.
* There are no new items.
* There are no new items.
* Expired 0 records from feeds_data_feed_fast.

.....why not develop a backup version of the site????????????????????????????

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:51 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
joachim wrote:
You're now hitting a deeper question of 'What is the website for?'


True. I am a philosopher, after all. So, what do you think the website is for?

If we were going to stick with this site for now I have a bunch of recommendations which I would like to discuss in a meeting. Some examples: the shop link should link to the shop site, not the biz art description which is there currently, biz art does not exist any more. The books link under that should link to the forpub shop as currently it has hardly any of our stock on sale. The events page should not say n.b. there is currently a bug in the software which shows events that cross midnight on the following day also. please be aware - a fix will be applied as soon as it becomes available. and, er, there is another bug that means one can't view the nest or previous months using the links on this page, but saying that, you can on this page. needless to say, we hope to squish these inconsistancies out as soon as possible! thanks for bearing with us... because, spellcheck required aside, this makes us look stupid. On the visuals page there seems to be lots of different links to martin's 888 photos/cia nights issue one/milk's cowboy ghost party photos, there should be one big mashup or one link to each (I would like one mashup also incorporating more of the old photos which seem to be missing now, or maybe I just can't find them). Also, you should be able to click on a photo to go to the next in the bunch rather than making it disappear. On the about page talking about the working groups should be replaced by talking about what interesting things we actually do, focussing on managerial structure is always less than inspiring, and in the case of forpub and forest records it's just not true, artist facilities have nothing really to do with them. Change it to a "if you want to get involved, email forest.publications@gmail.com and whatever records use. Under visuals if we don't have video we should make the link invisible until we do have it, not say coming soon. We don't need two phone numbers for "inside" and "outside" UK - anyone can work out to +44 for the UK. The logos should also show a whole logo as opposed to a snippet, I personally had no idea that the "at" was going to old hat books and I know their website. And and and. There are a load more. We should sit down.

joachim wrote:
It's lousy form, it's ugly code, and it breaches the DDA to boot.


What do you mean? Are you suggesting we can't have a HTML front page because it's illegal because blind people can't read that, or am I mistaken?

joachim wrote:
The news should perhaps be actual news? The weekly programme should really be posted as individual events in the calendar, and perhaps only the events coming up in the next 7 days should get headlines on the front page (or thumbnails of the posters, if they have them).


I agree, absolutely. The problem is that with the forest it is hard to decide what is actually newsworthy because everyone has a different idea what is important. Right now it is only the web team updating the front page, which is why the last time I looked at it 3 of the 8 "news" items were adverts for people to help with the website. 0 of the 8 were visually attractive (all were text apart from a barcode which I didn't understand why it was there). 2 of the 8 were things already in the programme which were repeated. The other 2 were the programmes.

For me, there was little that incapsulates the forest that inspired and excited me to be a part years ago when I looked at the website and it was full of pictures of dreamy KMs and dancing promises and lazers and light and excitement. This kind of sentence and management-speak being the first thing people read on the forest website: "Thinking creatively about how to better the internal and external user experience" - it actually makes me die a little inside. I hear people say this is not something serious and it is just a website, but really, I remember being nineteen and looking at the forest website and thinking "ohhh these people are amazing, I want to be part of this" and that is something important. Seriously. Every time you replace a photograph with management-speak, or tell mckenna to redesign his posters because they're too illegible, the world becomes a little bit more grey and we stop seeing things quite so much in lenticular lenses.

Anyway, romantic bullshit aside, I think a static front page would be better because we are not seriously all going to get together every day to agree what should be on the website prioritised, and letting anyone update anything is like handing brushes to everyone in the cafe and saying "paint on the walls whatever you like". It will end up ugly. Events should be updatable by all and they should be done so in a system that files them and organises them. Ditto workshops, meetings, etc. The front page should definitely NOT be done by anyone all the time. That's what my problem from the start has been with the unmanagability of the front page. That's why I dream of something static. Non-hierarchical structure does not work well with this style.


x

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 9:58 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
It is important that the forest site is great looking and fast!

One reason for this is that I am currently approaching a number of external organisations who know nothing about forest, all they have to go by is our website. Currently I find this rather embarrassing, and I feel it gives us a bad impression. This makes it much harder for me to encourage them to be involved and get excited about things I want to organise for us.... :(


incidentally i agree with most of janes points.

i would add these to the list:

Photos on the website should be curated. Only good pictures, most of the photos on the current site aren't very attractive, and belong in a regular flickker/facebook gallery, not on our website. - great photos illustrate what we do way better than text can, and they give a feeling and flavour of us and forest.

I do not like this description of forest, and i do not think a statement of what forest is needs to be totally in your face and take up so much space.:
"The Forest is a volunteer run, not-for-profit arts, social and events space masquerading as a groovy veggie café in the heart of Edinburgh. All events are free. All are welcome to help, admire or perform. Forest is people. People is Forest. You is people. You is Forest."

I think the massage corner and sip and snip are awesome, but I do not think they are forest projects. I am keen to support them, but I don't think they should have large top of screen front page links.

why is there a link to google? everyone already has google, why on earth would anyone at our site want to click that?

that whole bit with the search, google, rss, donate, looks ugly.

has anybody ever donated to us using that donate button? i would not place it top of screen.

I dont think a login section is needed at the bottom of every page.


there are loads more things i could add to this list, but this gives a flavour of my criticism..

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 10:48 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2007 5:50 pm
Posts: 944
While I'm reluctant to join the pro-Tumblr movement, I have to say that I think pretty much all Jane's & Chris's points about the look & feel of the site are valid.

I also have to agree with Chris's views about the urgency of the situation, taking into account what he's trying to do and how the site is not effectively representing us to those who have their first contact with us by looking at it. I've been in a similar situation myself when we had the Joomla site and it was very frustrating.

I thought previously that Drupal would remove the issues caused by Joomla, in that we had a CMS that was only understood by 1 or 2 people, and they were so busy with the nuts and bolts of it that the aesthetics and content never got the attention they needed (although Gareth did a sterling job of patching things up when it became absolutely necessary). However, we are once again in a similar situation as we were with Joomla.

Joachim and Milk are clearly working hard on this. If you guys really want to save Drupal, I think you'll have to get it even further streamlined and the content improved pretty quick.

Chris, maybe you should get your Tumblr site ready go go live? Milk and Joachim, maybe you guys should have one last blast at making Drupal beautiful. And then maybe the FWG should decide at its next meeting which one to go with?

I don't see this being resolved any other way at the moment.... and there's nothing like a bit of competition to drive up standards!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:10 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
neil wrote:
Chris, maybe you should get your Tumblr site ready go go live? Milk and Joachim, maybe you guys should have one last blast at making Drupal beautiful.


That's kinda hard in that I don't know what you mean by 'beautiful'.

People in this thread seem to be mixing up the purpose of the site, the function of the site, and the look of the site. All are completely separate things, and need to be taken one by one and in that order. In other words, don't say 'It should be purple' until you know WHAT should be purple, and don't say what it should be until you know what you are trying to accomplish.

On Saturday we:

- greatly simplified the process of adding images to a new post
- trimmed all the scrolly stuff from the front page
- spruced up the colour scheme a little in an attempt at responding to the complaints about the look of the site

neil wrote:
I don't see this being resolved any other way at the moment.... and there's nothing like a bit of competition to drive up standards!


I would have thought that competition, as an inherently wasteful process, would have been against our principles? I'm certainly not going to put more work into something that may get taken down.

Milk and I are both free this Saturday. I suggest people who have opinions come along and pitch in with the work.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:21 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
joachim wrote:
I suggest people who have opinions come along and pitch in with the work.


But I don't know how to programme Drupal, which was my point in the first place about the designers and writers feeling excluded from the process because people have chosen to use something which we don't know how to use.

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:27 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
joachim wrote:
That's kinda hard in that I don't know what you mean by 'beautiful'.


I know what beautiful is.

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:34 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
Jane wrote:
joachim wrote:
I suggest people who have opinions come along and pitch in with the work.


But I don't know how to programme Drupal, which was my point in the first place about the designers and writers feeling excluded from the process because people have chosen to use something which we don't know how to use.


But you don't have to. :S

You can come along and advise on design and stuff and maybe even make some graphics or make a colourscheme on one of the other PCs which we can then incoporate.

You don't need to know how to program Drupal, that's what we're here for, but you do need to come and tell us what you want. And if you can do it *while* we're making the changes then they can be incoporated (or at the very least, planned) there and then rather than endless back and forths on the forum ("We've done this", "We don't like it, can you do this instead?", "Ok, done", "Actually, can we do this as well?", etc) that slow the progress.

So yes, please come along on Saturday. Let's make the website beautiful and useful and functional as a team. Please?

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:55 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
I am not into compromising over the aesthetic design of the website.

There should be a design and it should be accepted by the web team, and implemented as such. The current site design is a bastardised version of a design i suggested last year (i was not happy about that then, and i am not happy about it now). The "new" colour scheme is taken from the tumblr site, again you are taking part of a design not the whole thing. Form and colour go together. Taking a small part of someones design, is an insult to the designer, especially when the people involved do not claim to know anything about design.

I am happy to involved in a new design, but as regards aesthetics there are only certain people I am prepared to work with.

I think a deadline needs to be set for the current site, and if it isnt good by then, it needs to be switched.

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:57 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
chris wrote:
I am happy to involved in a new design, but as regards aesthetics there are only certain people I am prepared to work with.


That's not very Forest, is it?

As for the current (or old, now) design, it was done by Martin Mckenna, I believe. A member of the VAWG and TK. Railing against milk because you don't like the design is a bit counter productive.

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:01 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
The visual look of the site and what it runs on are two completely separate things. (I feel I am repeating myself here.)

We can make Drupal look like anything.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:05 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
joachim wrote:
The visual look of the site and what it runs on are two completely separate things. (I feel I am repeating myself here.)

We can make Drupal look like anything.


You are and so am I with my last few posts. If the people who don't understand Drupal can come along on Saturday, maybe we won't need to keep going round in circles here.

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:07 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
And also repeating: there is little point in producing a design until you know what you're designing.

We start by deciding what the purpose of the site is: what does a visitor to the site want to do?

Here are my suggestions; please refine and ponder your own for Saturday:

- want to know what the Forest is
- want to know what's on
- want to get involved as a volunteer


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:08 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
incorrect. read my post.

my original designs for the drupal site are here:

http://www.theforest.org.uk/bb/download/file.php?id=594

looks a bit similar doesnt it?

and as for your comment:

ChaoticReality wrote:
That's not very Forest, is it?


is also incorrect, when magdas doing her mural do you tell her to use a bigger paintbrush?
we've found repeatedly in forest that choosing colour schemes for rooms through a collective process leads to poor results. Much better is if interested parties come up with there own designs/schemes etc, and then everyone chooses from what is available, combining designs or taking bits of them leads to bad and ugly results.

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:18 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
joachim wrote:
And also repeating: there is little point in producing a design until you know what you're designing.


with all due respect,

i think i have a pretty good idea.


joachim wrote:
Here are my suggestions; please refine and ponder your own for Saturday:


also as far as i am aware we are yet to agree the day and time of the meeting???

Chris xx

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:20 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
chris wrote:
http://www.theforest.org.uk/bb/download/file.php?id=594


I like.

But if we approach design like this we will run into all sort of complexity. I like it, but I also think the top image is too big, because it puts the news and events under the fold. If other designers will similarly decide where to place things and we will end up wanting the way a certain thing is placed from design A, and the colours from design B, and that way we get a mishmash that's almost certainly not the sum of its parts.

Purpose, function, wireframe. THEN aesthetics.

But I like it. Let's get the first stuff done first and then come back to this.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:23 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
Before this gets any more snarky, can we agree that we need to sit down and have a meeting? Instead of deciding this is saturday which some people may not be able to make, can we all fill in the doodle and we'll designate a time this week?

We need to actually agree on what we want the website to look like before we just show up while people are programming and start demanding various changes. As we have seen here already, there is not consensus on that. Making the design decisions while programming is like trying to overhaul the menu while serving customers simultaneously or like trying to copy-edit a book before you've decided what stories are going in it.

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:30 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
http://www.doodle.com/4un5ctzkd32fq7wx

snark

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:33 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
i agree with jane.

additionally i had intended to post this thread, within which i discuss some web considerations, that were unable to be implemented at the time due to a lack of technical knowledge.

http://www.theforest.org.uk/bb/viewtopi ... it=website

this is an old design, and i mention it only to illustrate that the current design, is in someway a descendant of a design i created.

again apologies if i have come across as snarky, i do not mean to be. but it does appear that we (non-drupal devotees) are being somewhat stonewalled.

I am serious when i say the website is very important for funding opportunities for forest and contacting external organisations. having a great looking website can help us enormously with these things.

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:38 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
chris wrote:
ChaoticReality wrote:
That's not very Forest, is it?


is also incorrect, when magdas doing her mural do you tell her to use a bigger paintbrush?


No, but there was a collective decision to ask Magda to paint a mural.

Saying you won't work with some people is exclusive. Just because you personally don't like someone's idea of design, doesn't mean you just get to exclude them or refuse to work with them.

If that was the way things were done, the current web-team could just say they don't like your ideas and refuse to work with you. How would you react to that? Not well, I'd venture.

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:52 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:10 pm
Posts: 1557
ChaoticReality wrote:
If that was the way things were done, the current web-team could just say they don't like your ideas and refuse to work with you. How would you react to that? Not well, I'd venture.


now now, please no more snarky snarky. let's save all this for the meeting. no more personal attacks please.

_________________
"We all tend to idealise kindness and tolerance, then wonder why we find ourselves infested with losers and nutcases." Sebastian Horsley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:03 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
hey mike,

it seems you keep missing the point of what i write, perhaps i am not explaining myself very clearly?

The point is to avoid compromise in design, not to exclude people.

if i want to do a design, i can chose to work with anyone i like who also wants to work with me. So can you, and so can anybody. there can be multiple designs, and hopefully the best one will be selected, either collectively, or through a vote (which i think is acceptable in such a case).

I do not think it is on to chop peoples designs up and implement them ad-hoc, and i personally would not chose to paint a mural with someone whose aesthetic sense i do not like. That is my personal decision. and it goes for a website as well.

so yeah, we collectively asked magda to paint a mural. We did not tell her what to paint or tell her to change it, or ask another artist to change it after she'd done it, or tell her she has to work with so and so. that would all be wrong.

of course i can chose who i work with, and obviously i cannot dictate what will happen to the website, i just want it to be good, if you guys can do that in an acceptable time scale then thats fine. as i've said repeatedly i am happy to be involved in this process, but there are somethings i will not do. i will not learn to code drupal. and i am not interested in a aesthetically compromised website.

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:04 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
Jane wrote:
ChaoticReality wrote:
If that was the way things were done, the current web-team could just say they don't like your ideas and refuse to work with you. How would you react to that? Not well, I'd venture.


now now, please no more snarky snarky. let's save all this for the meeting. no more personal attacks please.


Actually, Chris made that point first:

chris wrote:
I am not into compromising over the aesthetic design of the website.

<snip>

I am happy to involved in a new design, but as regards aesthetics there are only certain people I am prepared to work with.


I was merely asking him to consider what he said from someone else's perspective. How would he like it if someone had that attitude towards him? If I don't agree with Chris' ideas of design, can I just exclude him? Because that seems to be his attitude and to be honest, it's crap and when I realise that that's the sort of attitude I will be arguing against, it puts me off being involved.

Sorry if this is snarky but I think had I made the post that Chris made and said I was going to refuse to work with some people, people would have jumped all over me for it. I thought the idea of Forest was that everyone's ideas and input was equally as welcome, regardless of "time served" but I will quite happily say that, as a relative newcomer, it can be very intimidating when the "old guard" are involved, because it seems they are happy to basically ride roughshod over other people because they "know better".

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:06 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:50 am
Posts: 2638
Location: heartland
read my post.

_________________
Maybe it could work? But it will be a kaleidoscopic blend of mysterious shadows and rainbow hued-dreams seen through compassionate tears.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:10 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:39 pm
Posts: 31
chris wrote:
I do not think it is on to chop peoples designs up and implement them ad-hoc


I agree.

Which is why we figure out what the page elements actually are first, before the aesthetics. Because otherwise, designs will get chopped up.

And, to be honest, any designer on the web will have to accept that as a site grows, their design will be adapted to fit. It's fair to consult the original designer on how to evolve it, but it will evolve.

chris wrote:
i will not learn to code drupal. and i am not interested in a aesthetically compromised website.


That's fair enough. I am not interested in that either, nor in a technologically compromised one.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:16 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:16 am
Posts: 1111
Location: Edinburgh!
I just did. I'd written and posted my post as yours was being posted, so I didn't get a chance to read it before submitting my post.

I'm sorry for some of my comments, as I had misunderstood what you meant about the design. I thought you were proposing that you and your crew did the design we were going to use and that was that so sorry for my misunderstanding.

However, bits of your attitude towards this are still pretty abhorrent to me:

chris wrote:
i just want it to be good, if you guys can do that in an acceptable time scale then thats fine.


So it's fine with you, oh high and mighty one. Thanks for your blessing. (NB: That was sarcasm).

Acceptable time scale? Ok. I would be happy with the tumblr site if I thought it was good. How about I give you a list of what I consider good and requirements for the site and if you can implement them on tumblr in an "acceptable time scale" then I will support the move to tumblr?

Until then, I don't consider the tumblr site "good" and thus don't think we should use it and surely my input is as valid as yours. So, if you can make tumblr do all the nifty things we will have in the Drupal site, then maybe we can use it.

To clarify, I don't think the current site is particularly good either, but it's being worked on and hopefully we can make it suitable to everyone's requirements.

_________________
Mike

Dawnsio 'mlaen i'r gwres prynhawn a rwy'n addo erbyn yfori byddai wedi mynd, hwyl fawr i pawb, hwyl fawr i pawb...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:17 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2006 4:12 pm
Posts: 2734
Location: there and then
Can I suggest that this thread is closed, and anymore website chat waits for the meeting?

I don't think people's differences are going to be worked out on this thread and new misunderstandings seem to emerging.

Pretty please?


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 101 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3  Next

All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group