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-   -   New Look for Our Community ! (https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/f58/new-look-for-our-community-44287.html)

Andy R 27-07-2010 07:04

New Look for Our Community !
 
As you can see, our community has a new look & feel. I know it's a shock because everyone was so used to the old look and feel, just give it a week and I know you will end up liking this skin better. It's one of those things where the first impression is just sort of confusion but if you hang in there and use it for a while then your mind will all of a sudden start to like it (that's what I am hoping anyway!).

We have also added a right hand column which currently has the recent threads. This will save you the effort of having to go back to the home/portal page to see this list. It's really hand for after posting when you can just scroll up and see what other discussion you want to read or post to.

The old site was designed 8 years ago and screen resolutions changed A LOT in that time. This skin is designed for 1024 pixel wide monitor resolutions but expands up to 1260 pixel wide for wide screen monitors. It does not expand 100% on purpose because we wanted to keep control over the layout and that's difficult with some of the super wide monitors these days. We felt this was a happy medium.

If you have a very low resolution monitor or the right hand column simply looks "weird" to you, we have added the option to turn it off. Just go to your UserCP >> Edit Options >> Turn off Right Column (which is all the way at the bottom).

We have plans to use the right hand column to display other content such as upcoming events, showcases of members boats, we might move the photos from the top over to the right column, etc. The idea is that we have so much information here on the site and all of it tends to be tucked away in it's own section. We want to find ways to promote the content of those other areas so they get more use.

Please post your feedback on the new look and feel here and we will work over the next couple weeks to refine it and iron out any bugs.

Thanks for your patience while we transition to this new look.

Andy

Sailmonkey 27-07-2010 07:08

Hell, I was looking for the button I hit accidentally to change the skin

DeepFrz 27-07-2010 07:10

It was a shock but I do like it.

Pete7 27-07-2010 07:12

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sailmonkey (Post 492210)
Hell, I was looking for the button I hit accidentally to change the skin

that woke up a few dozing in the IT Dept here :D

"Wasn't me Guv, honest"

cdennyb 27-07-2010 07:13

I'll pass on the new look... I hate change...and I hate the puky turquoise colors... Layout is fine...I want the option to have either one... best of both worlds.

MarkJ 27-07-2010 07:22

Shock is an understatement!
I thought it was another forum so I quickly signed up as anew member and started posting.... :rolleyes:


Andy, I am sure the look will be good after a week. :thumb:



Mark

David_Old_Jersey 27-07-2010 07:24

Quote:

Originally Posted by cdennyb (Post 492216)
I'll pass on the new look... I hate change...and I hate the puky turquoise colors... Layout is fine...I want the option to have either one... best of both worlds.

Last week there was that option - didn't realise that it was a new look - had a quick try and went straight back.

For me part of the CF attraction was using software am familiar with from elsewhere and in an obviously familiar layout. I doubt if I will leave over the change - but a fair chance I would not now sign up, life is too short to learn my way around endless new software / variations of. unless I am paid - and even then often can't be bothered :whistling:.

I am guessing that the new banner is either a step along the way of rebranding as Catamaran Forum :devil:- or a continuation of targetting the more money than sense market :whistling:

rwidman 27-07-2010 07:25

Quote:

Originally Posted by cdennyb (Post 492216)
I'll pass on the new look... I hate change...and I hate the puky turquoise colors... Layout is fine...I want the option to have either one... best of both worlds.

Well, the layout is OK but I don't like the color either. And it clashes with the blue screen on my PC. Blue was better in my opinion.

As a suggestion - make the text area wider and the right side narrower. And consider a higher number of "recent threads".

Andy R 27-07-2010 07:30

Quote:

Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey (Post 492222)
life is too short to learn my way around endless new software / variations of...

The software did not change. All the buttons and all the functions and features are in the same place. It's like painting a boat a different color and adding a new bimini. Goes a long way to make it look like a different boat but sails exactly the same.
Quote:

Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey (Post 492222)
I am guessing that the new banner is either a step along the way of rebranding as Catamaran Forum :devil:- or a continuation of targetting the more money than sense market :whistling:

I am not sure what banner you are talking about? Maybe you are talking about the "tag cloud" in the right hand column where it shows tags that are used on the posts. The more a tag is used the larger it shows up in that box. This feature is only temporary while we work on a new tagging system that will render that tag cloud obsolete. It's just there are something interesting to look at now and in the future we will have other content there.

GordMay 27-07-2010 07:31

I see the non-functioning member locater map is gone. Any plans to replace it?

TaoJones 27-07-2010 07:35

I recently spent about a week trying out the new look to evaluate it for look and feel, ease of use, bugs, etc. I, too, was at first put off by the jarring change, as well as a bit of trepidation about finding my way around when the old layout had become so intuitive.

But . . . surprise!

Within just a couple of days I had found all the equivalent ways to navigate the site as I had gotten so used to on the old layout. And, after that, the familiarity and level of comfort grew. It may sound odd, but it isn't really that huge of a change.

Oh, and I believe I had suggested making the color selectable . . . hmmm, maybe I should have pushed harder for that. :p

TaoJones

Doodles 27-07-2010 07:36

I can't tell which threads I've read and which ones I haven't. With the old skin the ones I hadn't use to be BOLD ... what's wrong? Is there an option I've got to turn on or something?

Andy R 27-07-2010 07:38

Quote:

Originally Posted by GordMay (Post 492229)
I see the non-functioning member locater map is gone. Any plans to replace it?

Not only did that feature simply stop working but it was found to be a security issue. We still have all the data and will try to bring back a feature like that in the near future. We might have to build it ourselves since the old add-on has not been updated since 2007.

Andy R 27-07-2010 07:42

Quote:

Originally Posted by rwidman (Post 492224)
As a suggestion - make the text area wider and the right side narrower. And consider a higher number of "recent threads".

You can always turn off the right hand column. See post #1 in this thread for directions on how to do that. As for the number of posts in the recent threads, I will look into adding an option to allow you to do that.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doodles (Post 492233)
I can't tell which threads I've read and which ones I haven't. With the old skin the ones I hadn't use to be BOLD ... what's wrong? Is there an option I've got to turn on or something?

Same thing on this skin. Threads in bold have new posts, those which are not bold have been read.

TaoJones 27-07-2010 07:44

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doodles (Post 492233)
I can't tell which threads I've read and which ones I haven't. With the old skin the ones I hadn't use to be BOLD ... what's wrong? Is there an option I've got to turn on or something?

If you see the little box with the check mark in it immediately before the title of a thread, the thread contains new posts since you last read it. If that check mark box isn't present, there have been no new posts since you read the thread.

If you want to go to the last post in a thread, look for a similar box (but with the check mark, or arrow, now pointing to the right) immediately after the name of the last poster in a thread. Clicking on that box will take you to the last post in a thread.

TaoJones

Stillraining 27-07-2010 07:44

Well I don't participate for the look of the page but rather its members...so if we loose some that will be a shame.

Not a faded turquoise guy myself either though...I think a vote would be good on color...The Deep Blue was very soothing to me.

rwidman 27-07-2010 07:50

Quote:

Originally Posted by Andy R (Post 492241)
You can always turn off the right hand column. See post #1 in this thread for directions on how to do that. As for the number of posts in the recent threads, I will look into adding an option to allow you to do that.

Thanks.

thedudeistoocool 27-07-2010 07:55

As a perpetual lurker I LOVE IT ! The color, maybe not so much, but it isn't so harsh as to be unpleasant either.

Well done admins.

fishwife 27-07-2010 07:56

I'm not keen on the color scheme but other than that, I'll find my way around as usual. I'm glad the right hand column was optional, I really disliked that.

P.

Stillraining 27-07-2010 08:06

Thanks Fishwife I did the same now as well.


Hey!...I just went into my user CP...I use to have 4621 points and 10,854 praises and fan mail...Most of them are all gone now...What happened??? ..I want them back as I read them every morning and every night before bed....twice!

Auspicious 27-07-2010 08:23

Glad to be able to turn off the right column. Too big and not very useful. Fine since I can turn it off.

I do have a wide-screen monitor but I have other things going on on the screen, so don't assume that you "get" the whole screen space.

David_Old_Jersey 27-07-2010 08:23

Quote:

Originally Posted by Andy R (Post 492228)
The software did not change. All the buttons and all the functions and features are in the same place.

Minor technicality.

Quote:

I am not sure what banner you are talking about?
The top picture with 3 Cats and a normal boat.

On the colour thing - haven't explored the options yet, but I can see how those not quite so in tune with their feminine sides (or the 21st century period? :rolleyes:) could feel insecure with pastels :p

dacust 27-07-2010 08:26

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Andy R (Post 492241)
Same thing on this skin. Threads in bold have new posts, those which are not bold have been read.

I can tell which have unread posts by the little arrow, but there is no difference in bold/nobold on my screen. (See attachment)

I also don't like the color that much, but no biggie.

But I LOVE the wide layout. Much, much better.

I'll get used to the other changes in an hour or two of browsing.

Andy R 27-07-2010 08:36

Quote:

Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey (Post 492267)
The top picture with 3 Cats and a normal boat.

Ahhh, the header image. We have some exciting plans for that. Once we get settled and all the bugs/issues fixed we are planning to ask members to contribute their photos and vote on the best ones for the header. Basically we want to change the panoramic photo using member provided photos to keep things looking fresh.

I was told that if you could get the ladies someplace the men would follow! I figured if we had all the lady sailors here the men wouldn't notice the turquoise color, their eyes would be fixed looking further down and not up where it's important (just kidding of course). I will experiment with some other colors and see if we can refine the palate to based on your feedback.

DarkBlue 27-07-2010 09:13

well, I like it!
 
Hey, I like this new look a lot!
The look, the organization and the clean aspect of all the site. I even like this new color!
Thank you.

cdennyb 27-07-2010 09:13

I think this small cross section of comments is pretty plain. People in general dont like change. I know... the guys here at work in the IT dept like to change and tweak things I guess to justify their positions and paychecks but honestly, if it works, don't fix it.
I'm a little alienated by the new look and will no doubt NOT frequent the site as much, (probably a good thing for some out there.) so, do what you want... there's other sites out there that havent changed their layout.
whatever.

YOGAO 27-07-2010 09:31

UGH! Hate it!

The look is bad for me. The ability to increase the text size using a mac works differently.

I liked having the option.

Fair Winds,
Mike

Sailmonkey 27-07-2010 09:35

I don't like the colors much, there's not enough contrast for me. But I'll keep using the site none the less.

TaoJones 27-07-2010 09:44

I access the web via my MacBook running the latest version of Snow Leopard, Mike, and I think I can relate to what you're reporting about text size. Command + increases the text size in steps with each push of the + key, but it won't "stick." That is, when I refresh the page I have increased the text size on, or go to another page, it defaults to a size that is more than a little bit difficult for my old eyes to see. It's annoying to have to constantly do Command / + to re-size the text.

There is also the option with Snow Leopard to Control / scroll to zoom the display image - really a nice, fast way to gain more detail. I've come to rely on it more that Command / + to resize.

TaoJones

Olorin 27-07-2010 09:47

To quote that great philosopher Shrek, "Change is good, Donkey".

I like the colours, I like the layout, I appreciate the effort that went into the changes.

Andy R 27-07-2010 09:48

I'll look into the reason why the text size is not resizing properly.

delmarrey 27-07-2010 10:23

The search function, at the top, doesn't work anymore (for me, iMac).

brianontheroad 27-07-2010 10:42

I like it....makes me feel like I'm not using a BBS :)

dacust 27-07-2010 10:45

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by dacust (Post 492269)
I can tell which have unread posts by the little arrow, but there is no difference in bold/nobold on my screen. (See attachment)

I see a new wrinkle.

In the image I posted first, there were originally four threads with unread posts. I read the posts in 3 of them, then took the screen shot. Every thing was bold.

When I looked just now, it seems to behave differently:
  1. A thread that has un-read posts is bold.
  2. A thread that has new posts and I read them, the heading un-bolds.
  3. A thread that I read all the posts prior to the change, the heading is bold.

-dan

DeepFrz 27-07-2010 10:59

I don't mind the color but if you decide to change it how about a nice desert tan. Blue is just to MS.

Bill_R 27-07-2010 11:05

Great!
 
I think the new layout looks really good. A lot more modern and "sleek". Not the way I prefer my boats, but the way I prefer my websites. Good on ya! :thumb:

Andy R 27-07-2010 11:14

Quote:

Originally Posted by delmarrey (Post 492338)
The search function doesn't work anymore (for me, iMac).

It's working for me. Which search box are you searching from? Can you elaborate more on the "not working" part? Is it just nothing shows up, you get an error or what?

TaoJones 27-07-2010 11:22

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Andy R (Post 492371)
It's working for me. Which search box are you searching from? Can you elaborate more on the "not working" part? Is it just nothing shows up, you get an error or what?

It may be a Mac issue, Andy. I'm getting it, too. Neither Search function (vBulletin, Google) is working. Here's a screen shot of the error message.

GordMay 27-07-2010 11:30

Quote:

Originally Posted by TaoJones (Post 492378)
It may be a Mac issue, Andy. I'm getting it, too. Neither Search function (vBulletin, Google) is working. Here's a screen shot of the error message.

Exactly - me to two too, err, I also.

delmarrey 27-07-2010 11:33

The link in Gords post works but I'm getting the same as TeoJones in all three boxes.

BTW I'm getting use to the scheme already but the color make me thinks I'm get'n too close to shore. :D


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