[Freedombox-discuss] [FBox-Visual] New FBx Foundation Website Theme

Sean O'Brien me at seandiggity.com
Wed Apr 4 15:14:47 UTC 2012

Robert -

No more need to go back and forth on this, the current design looks nice
and clean, and I'm not married to the footer I came up with :P

We're still going to need a testing environment for this.  I think the
best way to do it may be setting up a separate ikiwiki install.  If you
don't use git, I will also put together a tarball to download.  The
templating system takes a completely different approach than ours with
HTML5 (parsing different markup before pageload based upon user-agent
string).  Besides that, it's just smart copy/paste from what we have
now, plus these dynamic elements:

* only loading the intro quote/video div for the home/news page
* truncating the latest news item for the home/news page
* generating those news archive links with dates
* translation dropdown at top.  I like the little flag that comes on the
default friendica template (e.g. https://foojbook.net) so I'll try
something like that that floats right in the header

So, I'll create a testing environment and we can go from there.

~ Sean

On 04/04/2012 07:59 AM, Robert Martinez wrote:
> On 02/04/12 18:03, Sean O'Brien wrote:
>> Let's see if we can get this rolling within a week; if there are only
>> minor criticisms at this point I think that's reasonable.
>> Links to the two (slightly different) themes so far:
>> http://mray.de/fbxfoundation_robert/theme.html
>> http://seandiggity.com/fbxfoundation/theme.html
>> Robert -
>> Here's a list of the current issues, and my thoughts on them:
>> * Change in background tile: I like the grittier "concrete" one better,
>> just didn't have the pattern to work with, so I went with the diagonal
>> tiles.
> Ok great.
>> * Width of the main content: Is there a reason to shrink the design?
>> This is a very wordy website, likely to fill in with even more text.
>> We're already using a big font size and a lot of padding around the
>> content, so I think it's a bad idea.  For mobile views, we can start the
>> zoom at 100% and let users zoom in/out as desired.  Or we take a look at
>> the Bootstrap javascript/css and try to better integrate the
>> "responsive" stuff they've done so that the mobile view is different and
>> more compact horizontally, without having two separate themes (the view
>> wouldn't change based upon user-agent string, but the pixel size of the
>> viewport).
> My reason is exactly the one that this will be a wordy website.
> The current character count per line in my current version of the theme
> is 100 over the full length. The front page is an exception here.
> This is also why my initial mockup was even smaller. I think going
> beyond 100 characters per line won't be appreciated by the readers. The
> goal isn't to fit in as much content as possible, but to make it easy to
> read.
> Optimizing for mobile viewing is always a good idea, but i would do that
> in a second iteration.
> I don't care if the look gets changed completely, responsive web design
> rocks.
>> * Footer: Maybe I'm just partial but I think the one I came up with
>> looks nice, separates the footer from the main content well, and isn't
>> distracting.  The gray tones should go well with the "concrete"
>> background pattern too.
> In the end this is probably more about personal preference.
> my decision not to mirror the top bar was based on the strong emphasis.
> The design does not rely on having a "basement" nor was there a need to
> emphasize anything. all it needs in my eyes is a clearly visible end.
> Also i like the openness towards the bottom a lot.
> I just finished the work on the footer - so maybe that changes a bit.
>> * favicon: Thanks for changing this; do you have a larger version so
>> that I can also change the "web clip" icons for iOS?
> yes i can create a svg version of it so you can extract any size you need.
> i just created a 3-pronged version for very small sizes, too. both
> attached.
>> * Top navigation: Left-aligning this is fine.  Still not crazy about the
>> "sea green", but I don't have another color that doesn't make us look
>> like Twitter or Drupal.
> i admit the green is something special. maybe too special?
> For me it works for those reasons: it nicely catches the color of the
> green triangle underneath and integrates it on the blue. it very clearly
> keeps its distance to the logotype AND the content, and finally the
> white active/hover state works awesome to highlight the active menu points.
> going for a completely new color is out of the question for me, the
> solution would be to just invert normal <-> active.
>> * Bottom nav links: If we're going to be doing a left-aligned grid for
>> most content, these should be left-aligned too, and probably moved
>> closer to the footer than the main content.  Using the green here is
>> better than the blue in my design, but I'm not sold on the green
>> diagonal line.  Maybe just use the gray line.png from above?
> I have no hard feelings for the line since i just introduced t to make a
> clear statement that this is the end of the normal content. we can
> remove it.
> the center alignment is another tool that i wouldn't discard - a sudden
> switch of alignment, font size and color are great subtle hints that
> there is something ending/beginning. therefore i would also keep enough
> space between content and footer to underline the efforts to separate them.
>> * News links: We should be able to pull the date from ikiwiki and print
>> that out without any trouble.  We'd have to make sure the links were
>> sorted by date anyway.
> ok great, but that sounds like something we can address in the next
> iteration.
> i have some small faint green typo in mind, left aligned under the
> title. but we can care about that later.
>> * RSS and Atom links: Why not have them floating on the right of the
>> news links?  Makes that area of the screen look very busy if they're
>> floating left (i.e. in the center of the design).
> I regard those links as content of the Archive box, which is completely
> left aligned. So steping out of this alignment seems to bring more
> disturbance in the design.
> Apart from that I'm still not sure if the Archive box is really the
> right place - i just arranged them there to fit your markup :P
> what do you think about putting them over the first news entry along
> with the text "NEWS" just like in my mockup (instead of the gray line)?
>> * Language menu: Making a dropdown menu in the top-right isn't a big
>> deal, but I'd also say it's wise to keep the footer how it is
>> (especially because it shows the current state of the translations).
> if the drop-down could also contain this information there shouldn't be
> a problem.
> Putting them at the bottom is REALLY hiding the translations.
> Every foreign reader would first have to read the whole page before
> encountering them!
> I doubt it is common to search for languages at the bottom of the page.
> And hey! we have lots of space on the top right :)
>> * Intro quote: Shortening it is fine, but making it too prominent on
>> every page is a bad idea.  I've written a short script before that goes
>> through a text file or a DB of quotes, stores them in a session array
>> and shuffles the array, then grabs one line of the array to print until
>> the array is empty.  If we do go with random short quotes, it's a good
>> approach because the user doesn't see the same quote twice until she has
>> seen them all during a browser session.
> This is more a content than a design issue.
> Are you talking about randomly replacing Eben Moglens quote?
> I'm not sure even this quote works well, replacing randomly would work
> less.
> We should make the effort to distill a very short and easy Sentence that
> gives a quick rough impression about what this here is all about.
> Eben Moglen may say the right thing there, but for the front page it is
> too long and too complicated imho.
>> * Video: Clipping the video and hosting it on our site seems like the
>> best approach.  I'd be happy to clip a video, although working from a
>> low-quality version is probably not best.  We should also have a page
>> linking out to youtube, vimeo, etc. for the videos there (or perhaps our
>> own hosted versions).  If we're looking for a newer vid, can we get a
>> video of Bdale's keynote at FOSDEM?
>> The next step is just pasting the markup etc. into ikiwiki's templates
>> and making sure it works.  I can test locally, but pushing to the git
>> repo would change the actual site.  So, let's make any final changes to
>> these demos (the commentary above is probably my last contribution to
>> that), get it into ikiwiki, and do some testing.
> In order to avoid confusion i would just link to the video that was
> linked on the old theme.
> this should be resolved separately since the whole subtitle issue isn't
> clear.
> To wrap up my updated version:
> http://mray.de/fbxfoundation_robert/robert_mockup01.jpg
> http://mray.de/fbxfoundation_robert/theme.html
> http://mray.de/fbxfoundation_robert.tar.bz2

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