12 Replies Latest reply on Jan 29, 2009 10:25 AM by bregent

    Shiny Thunder Productions Website

    Karl Warnke
      I have wrapped up the design on my site. I received a lot of help from this forum so I thank you all that help everyone.

      www.shinythunderproductions.com

      If you want to take a look and give me any advice or tell me of any problems, I would love the help. I do have a few adjustments (once I figure out how) on the opening of the video trailers.
        • 1. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
          bregent Most Valuable Participant
          You have made the major mistake of trying to align text over a background image. This never works well because you don't know how the visitor has their text set. On my PC, the text spills out of the background area you have set up for it and it becomes unreadable. The contact link is also not in the menu bar on top. Also, don't expect anyone to find the link at the top that opens the main.html page - this is mystery meat navigation.
          • 2. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
            bregent Most Valuable Participant
            Karl, I don't mean this to sound harsh, but I would also strongly urge you to remove 'Web Design' from your list of services at this point. You simply aren't there yet and it may lead prospective clients to believe that your other services are not up to snuff either.
            • 3. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
              Level 7
              .oO(Karl Warnke)

              >I have wrapped up the design on my site. I received a lot of help from this
              >forum so I thank you all that help everyone.
              >
              > www.shinythunderproductions.com
              >
              > If you want to take a look and give me any advice or tell me of any problems,
              >I would love the help. I do have a few adjustments (once I figure out how) on
              >the opening of the video trailers.

              I have to agree with Bregent here. You definitely shouldn't offer web
              design as a service, when your own site has such severe usability and
              accessibility problems. This is more a PDF flyer than a website with
              almost no usable content! What do you see with images disabled? This is
              not going to work in the WWW.

              Micha
              • 4. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                Level 7
                1) As Bregent already said, your layout is too rigid for the web. When text
                size or content exceeds the height of your background images, your pages
                fall apart.

                http://alt-web.com/Image-slices-in-a-CSS-based-layout.html

                2) Home Page #contentWrapper has a height of 450px. Remove it and take out
                the kaleidoscope background image.

                #contentWrapper {
                width:800px;
                background: black
                margin:0 auto; /**centers container screen**/
                }

                Then insert your kaleidoscope image into the html table row below your link
                text. This will make your home page less rigid.

                3) There's isn't any keyword rich content on your home page for Search
                Engines to grab onto. No h1, h2, h3 headings. Content on your home page is
                very important if you want to get noticed by search engines.
                SEO browser tool shows your page the way spiders see it.
                http://www.seo-browser.com/

                4) Your navigation menu leaves a lot to be desired. An image map menu may
                have worked in the mid 90's but it doesn't cut it by today's web standards.
                And as already said, your menu doesn't line up with the page background
                image so it's off kilter in FF3 and messed up in a whole different way in
                IE6. Rethink this approach. Have a look at some of the simple CSS menus
                here: http://www.cssmenumaker.com/

                5) Footer. The contrast of dark text on dark screen is inadequate. I can
                almost make out that there is something in your footer. But I had to
                highlight the text to actually read it. Increase contrast.
                http://www.webdesignfromscratch.com/contrast.php

                6) It may help you to run site pages through the W3C's on-line validation
                tools.

                HTML - http://validator.w3.org/
                CSS - http://jigsaw.w3.org/css-validator/

                --
                Nancy O.
                Alt-Web Design & Publishing
                www.alt-web.com



                • 5. Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                  Karl Warnke Level 1
                  Wow...lots to reply to. And I do appreciate all the criticism...though I'm a INFP so I take criticism hard.

                  So here is some of my defense (which doesn't mean there are not problems):

                  Bergent, I do agree with your Web Design statement. I'm not advertising this page until I have all of the bugs fixed. But really all I do on my end is Photoshop for web design assets. I need a web "coder" to take care of the things I don't understand...such as all the points you've made in this thread.

                  Not advertising thus I haven't researched web search optimizations yet. But I am very grateful for the links NancyO.

                  As to the spillage...hmm. Well I created the page on a Mac with Safari as my preview. I didn't get to the site validations yet, and am completely unaware of the text setting component that you have brought to my attention. A friend also sent me a screen shot of the contact button and other piece floating below the menu bar. This is definitely something I need to fix. But I opt for the 90s version, below I'll go into the part I don't actually see eye to eye with everyone on here, but so far so good...

                  Ok...I think I need a DISCLAIMER for the rest of what I am about to type. I VERY MUCH appreciate the help and advice and criticism on all the points. Because I can see your side and I can understand why you have given such advice on my page. The following is not meant to say your wrong in anyway and I hope it doesn't affect your additional criticism.

                  Let's say that I magically fixed the spillage problem...and the menu bar worked perfectly on all browsers with all text settings etc... Here are some of the things my stubborn brain are thinking about the tips you gave:

                  >NancyO 5) Footer issues
                  I did this on purpose. I can read it on my computer, but the goal of the text was to not really be there thus the close contrast between the background and the text. I wanted an open feeling on the bottom of the page.

                  >NancyO 4) Navigation Menu
                  I like the menu. In my initial design the "Jump To:" Form was up in the bar, however I could not align it the way that I wanted. Besides adding that I am ok with the navigation menu. (see end for navigation ease statement)

                  >MICHA Like a PDF Flyer...
                  YES. Exactly.

                  >MICHA Usability and Accessibility
                  I guess I favor art over these two...

                  I also am not concerned, at this point, with the user who disables images, as this is the content of my site.

                  >Bregent Mystery Meat...
                  YES. lol. I am very sorry, I am not making fun of any response here, just trying to explain my stubborn self. My site has two EasterEggs, I love the way the site is navigated, it is not clear how exactly to go from place to place, though the bottom of all the pages have a JumpTo form.



                  So to all, I hope this isn't immensely annoying and frustrating to read. I don't aim for my site to be as useable as the next, at this point my accessibility is down on the priority list, but I definitely need to make the site work across all browsers and settings.

                  That and adding the ability for search engines to even find the thing....It's a good thing the search engines can't find it yet, right!? Thanks and I hope this is fun not frustrating.
                  • 6. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                    Level 7
                    > >MICHA Usability and Accessibility
                    > I guess I favor art over these two...

                    So - you don't want people who are visually- or motor-impaired to feel
                    welcome in your site? And by the way, this is not a binary choice. It's
                    entirely possible to have art and usability/accessability.

                    > I love the way the site is navigated

                    And how does someone who never saw your site feel about this navigation?
                    They come to your site for information, not conundrums.

                    --
                    Murray --- ICQ 71997575
                    Adobe Community Expert
                    (If you *MUST* email me, don't LAUGH when you do so!)
                    ==================
                    http://www.projectseven.com/go - DW FAQs, Tutorials & Resources
                    http://www.dwfaq.com - DW FAQs, Tutorials & Resources
                    ==================


                    "Karl Warnke" <webforumsuser@macromedia.com> wrote in message
                    news:glop4s$f8s$1@forums.macromedia.com...
                    > Wow...lots to reply to. And I do appreciate all the criticism...though
                    > I'm a
                    > INFP so I take criticism hard.
                    >
                    > So here is some of my defense (which doesn't still mean there are
                    > problems):
                    >
                    > Bergent, I do agree with your Web Design statement. I'm not advertising
                    > this
                    > page until I have all of the bugs fixed. But really all I do on my end is
                    > Photoshop for web design assets. I need a web "coder" to take care of the
                    > things I don't understand...such as all the points you've made in this
                    > thread.
                    >
                    > Not advertising thus I haven't researched web search optimizations yet.
                    > But I
                    > am very grateful for the links NancyO.
                    >
                    > As to the spillage...hmm. Well I created the page on a Mac with Safari as
                    > my
                    > preview. I didn't get to the site validations yet, and am completely
                    > unaware
                    > of the text setting component that you have brought to my attention. A
                    > friend
                    > also sent me a screen shot of the contact button and other piece floating
                    > below
                    > the menu bar. This is definitely something I need to fix. But I opt for
                    > the
                    > 90s version, below I'll go into the part I don't actually see eye to eye
                    > with
                    > everyone on here, but so far so good...
                    >
                    > Ok...I think I need a DISCLAIMER for the rest of what I am about to type.
                    > I
                    > VERY MUCH appreciate the help and advice and criticism on all the points.
                    > Because I can see your side and I can understand why you have given such
                    > advice
                    > on my page. The following is not meant to say your wrong in anyway and I
                    > hope
                    > it doesn't affect your additional criticism.
                    >
                    > Let's say that I magically fixed the spillage problem...and the menu bar
                    > worked perfectly on all browsers with all text settings etc... Here are
                    > some
                    > of the things my stubborn brain are thinking about the tips you gave:
                    >
                    > >NancyO 5) Footer issues
                    > I did this on purpose. I can read it on my computer, but the goal of the
                    > text
                    > was to not really be their thus the close contrast between the background
                    > and
                    > the text. I wanted an open feeling on the bottom of the page.
                    >
                    > >NancyO 4) Navigation Menu
                    > I like the menu. In my initial design the "Jump To:" Form was up in the
                    > bar,
                    > however I could not align it the way that I wanted. Besides adding that I
                    > am ok
                    > with the navigation menu. (see end for navigation ease statement)
                    >
                    > >MICHA Like a PDF Flyer...
                    > YES. Exactly.
                    >
                    > >MICHA Usability and Accessibility
                    > I guess I favor art over these two...
                    >
                    > I also am not concerned, at this point, with the user who disables images,
                    > as
                    > this is the content of my site.
                    >
                    > >Bregent Mystery Meat...
                    > YES. lol. I am very sorry, I am not making fun of any response here, just
                    > trying to explain my stubborn self. My site has two EasterEggs, I love
                    > the way
                    > the site is navigated, it is not clear how exactly to go from place to
                    > place,
                    > though the bottom of all the pages have a JumpTo form.
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > So to all, I hope this isn't immensely annoying and frustrating to read.
                    > I
                    > don't aim for my site to be as useable as the next, at this point my
                    > accessibility is down on the priority list, but I definitely need to make
                    > the
                    > site work across all browsers and settings.
                    >
                    > That and adding the ability for search engines to even find the
                    > thing....It's
                    > a good thing the can't yet right!? Thanks and I hope this is fun not
                    > frustrating.
                    >

                    • 7. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                      Level 7
                      >NancyO 4) Navigation Menu
                      I like the menu. In my initial design the "Jump To:" Form was up in the
                      bar,
                      however I could not align it the way that I wanted. Besides adding that I am
                      ok
                      with the navigation menu.

                      But it's your visitors opinions that count here and you're ignoring them


                      >>> I love the way the site is navigated, it is not clear how exactly to go
                      >>> from place to place,

                      The problem here is that you appear to be designing the website for
                      yourself, not for your visitors.

                      If it's meant to be a personal homepage where you play around with ideas and
                      generally express yourself to your heart's content then go for it.

                      However, if it's supposed to be a professional website selling your services
                      then it must be designed for your visitors, and plainly it's not.

                      Are you assuming that your visitors will revel in exploring the menu? As it
                      stands, most visitors will stay for 20-30 seconds before they hit the Back
                      button. It's just too confusing to understand easily and not engaging enough
                      to explore.

                      You're doing your site a great disservice by not heeding the feedback you're
                      receiving.

                      >>>though the bottom of all the pages have a JumpTo form.

                      I didn't know there was one until you mentioned it. It's wasted at the
                      bottom of the page.

                      Good luck with the site!

                      --
                      Regards

                      John Waller

                      • 8. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                        Level 7

                        >
                        > >MICHA Usability and Accessibility
                        > I guess I favor art over these two...
                        >
                        > I also am not concerned, at this point, with the user who disables images,
                        > as
                        > this is the content of my site.
                        >
                        > >Bregent Mystery Meat...
                        > YES. lol. I am very sorry, I am not making fun of any response here, just
                        > trying to explain my stubborn self. My site has two EasterEggs, I love
                        > the way
                        > the site is navigated, it is not clear how exactly to go from place to
                        > place,
                        > though the bottom of all the pages have a JumpTo form.

                        so... you're not making the site for anyone but you then, correct? If you
                        don't really care if the end-user has any issues, then why publish/create a
                        website at all? What is the purpose of the site? By ignoring what problems
                        the end-user may have, well it comes across as a piece of pure vanity... an
                        "art for art's sake" piece which would drive people *away from* and not *to*
                        the site.


                        • 9. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                          Stuart Smitheringale Level 1
                          Hi,

                          First, let me deal with a criticism. The website confuses me and i'm still not sure what you're about.

                          However, WOW! Great videos. Nice use of sound, movie and imagery in the ones i've seen.

                          If this is the first iteration of your website, it can only get more refined, although design wise it looks good. Yes it's confusing, but after Ecuador, perhaps refine a few rough edges and see where it goes.

                          It looks good and great video production skills.
                          • 10. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                            bregent Most Valuable Participant
                            Karl, one more suggestion. I wanted to view your video but I don't have QT on any of my computers and know very few PC users that still do. I think it's pretty much dead. I suggest converting these to a more commonly used format, maybe Flash.
                            • 11. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                              Karl Warnke Level 1
                              >But it's your visitors opinions that count here and you're ignoring them

                              John, I'm most definitely not ignoring them, I haven't made up my mind as to what to do for my site, I am just debating what is important vs sticking with standards. I see all of your points-of-view.

                              >so... you're not making the site for anyone but you then, correct?

                              I'm stubborn, but maybe I'm thick too. I don't believe that the site is such a mind-boggling site. It is definitely different, and that is one thing I am trying to do. It does stray into the art for art's sake rather than for increasing my business's profits. I have endless work, but this website is just a draft...a starting point.

                              This is actually a fun thread for me, because it's hard for me to realize whether I'm just sticking to my guns or whether I truly want something more artist than functional.

                              Stuart, thanks much for the video compliments. We are heading to Ecuador in less than a week for a two month stay. I can't wait to get more footage and edit on the beach.

                              >First, let me deal with a criticism. The website confuses me and i'm still not sure what you're about.

                              Do you think that I should plainly state that we are a video production company working with a network of artists? I've debated that. At this point it is going to be more mysterious than that, we have plenty of projects to keep our plates full, but in the future when we seek business it might better suit to answer your question with the website.

                              >I suggest converting QT to a more commonly used format, maybe Flash.

                              Bregent, what happens when you try to download trailers from the Apple website? Does it detect windows and play view windows media player? I might stick to the Apple side of things. Which does limit my audience where flash wouldn't. There are two videos in the website that are not trailers, but just fun videos...those are flash.

                              • 12. Re: Shiny Thunder Productions Website
                                bregent Most Valuable Participant
                                >Bregent, what happens when you try to download trailers from the Apple website?
                                >Does it detect windows and play view windows media player?

                                No, because they are QT trailers, it detects that I do not have QT installed and prompts me to install it.
                                On your site, it simply opens my download dialog. Since I don't have QT or a QT codec for WMP, I can't play them.