HCoop's web sites have a very drab appearance at the moment. We need to come up with a visual appearance that will attract potential members.
1. Web site scheme
We need an attractive unifying design scheme for our web sites, including hcoop.net, wiki.hcoop.net, and members.hcoop.net.
I don't think the "dropdown navigation" adds anything over always having all links displayed. The overall layout with the boxes at the top and then normal texty layout below looks uglier than plain boring text, to me. Also, the color scheme drives me out of my mind. --AdamChlipala
You can turn the page style off in your browser in order to view the full menu. The dropdown effect serves only to obscure out-of-context submenu choices -- RickHull
I guess everone has their own taste. I actually like that look better than that of our new wiki, which I find rather ugly (although I guess I could bother to change my theme). --NathanKennedy
I changed the color scheme since Adam's comment -- RickHull
By the way, I think the dropdown is borked in IE6. --NathanKennedy
yup, it'll be fixed soon -- RickHull
Partially b0rked under Konqueror. Needs a little adjustment on the font size. The design is not bad but, like Adam, I think it doesn't add anything to the current page. In fact, I think a few drop of color over added to the current front page would be enough. -- FrancoisDenisGonthier
Here is something I whipped together, after a request on IRC (I'm not part of the co-op.) It's a quick-ish design and I'm open to changes. --Synapse (hcoop at bagheera dot id dot au)
Nice work! --NathanKennedy
An attempt from AdamChlipala. I am far from being an HTML/CSS expert, and I don't particularly want to become one, so treat these as mock-ups that happen to display in browsers. I'm sure I've done all sorts of bad CSS things, and I'm hoping that others who are more knowledgeable would correct them if we chose to use these.
Not bad at all. The front page is still rather busy/disorganized. There should be quick navigation links directly to the wiki, the portal, the signup form, and the board page right at the top and bottom, or top and side, or side and bottom, or anywhere that makes it clear. The logo needs to be transparent or something though, the white box is ugly. Still this is already an improvement over the current page I think. --NathanKennedy
The blue links/text on those bright green boxes are quite hard to see on my laptop. The green is way too bright, IMHO. I recall reading somewhere that good web pages need at most one page down/up to view. The front page needs two up/downs on my standard setting. Maybe make it into two pages? Also, Nathan is right: the logo needs to be within the white area/black border or something similar. Too much wasted white space at top and/or sides. But I'm not that great of a designer either. --JohnHallgren Update: I looked at two of Anil's options using FireFox/Opera. What a big difference from IE! --J.Hallgren
I think it would look better if the bullets were indented, say 0.25in. --DavidBettis
It's not clear to me that the front page should be compacted. I think of it as a document that new visitors sit down to read. The portal is the place where members go to find convenient navigation to assorted features; I view it as a feature that potential members might be turned off by the need to read multiple pages of text to get to the good stuff, since we don't want such people joining anyway! Also, the logo is transparent for me. I suspect that NathanKennedy's browser doesn't support transparent PNGs. Finally, w.r.t. the concrete suggestions about colors and spacing, wouldn't it be great if someone else implemented those and posted the results here? --AdamChlipala
Those two pages seem extremely tacky in appearance to me. The Green and Red in the logo appear to be 'too much' and the side bar doesn't seem right in green. - JeffreyDrake
- The color of samples by Anil are reversed, but either looks much better on laptop LCD than that green. I prefer the blue -- John Hallgren
We need one or more distinctive HCoop logos that we can use in suitable places.
See LogoDiscussion for some potential logos.