need help for the website overhaul

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andrewweb
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by andrewweb » Sat May 12, 2012 5:53 pm

Webunny wrote:
We could just take the current site, add some rounded corners, gradients, and drop-shadow, and we'd be done. There's nothing wrong with it, really.
Infact, that wouldn't be all that a bad idea. And probably more possible within a realistic timeframe, instead of trying to revamp the whole thing completely, like they are trying to do for the last 3 years and yet still not getting half-way after all that time. There is actually nothing inherently wrong with the current site; some small improvements to the layout and user-friendliness, and a new, more modern visual 'feel' to it, as you say, and it could go forth into the 21st century for the next decennial without much problems. People here of all places should know the adagium: "If it ain't broken, don't fix it."
Yeah. The only thing particularly wrong with the site just now is the fact it uses tables for layout in some places, but I expect we can fix that with not much effort.

Webunny
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by Webunny » Sat May 12, 2012 5:55 pm

Ps. Not that I'm saying the people involved and who managed to get halfway didn't do their best; it's just that one has to remain realistic. If it takes 3 years to come halfway, it could take another 3 years to complete. By then, the site will be 5-6 years old from when it was first envisioned. At that rate, it's already obsolete when it comes out. So if the purpose it to give a completely new experience and functionality, yet this is already outdated by the time it's rolled out (if ever), one could as well just stick with what we got and give it a slight overhaul, so that it looks better and is a bit more userfriendly. Is anyone really waiting for a drupal-site? I doubt it.

For most people it's unimportant what the underlying technology or system is, as long as it looks good and they can easily find what they are looking for.

The same can be accomplished by just making a visual overhaul of the current site, and some slight improvements on lay-out and link-placements. This, at least, could be done in months, instead of years. Even if one would decide to still go for the complete revamp, it may be a good idea to do it for the meantime (the many years that will undoubtedly still pass before it's ever finished).

Z98
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by Z98 » Sat May 12, 2012 6:35 pm

Except that RosCMS is a complete pain in the ass to admin and the sooner we get off it the better. The average user might not "care" about the underlying CMS, but the harder it is for us web admins to deal with it, the less motivated we are to try to improve the basic user experience or even getting new content up. The number of places where it is broken behind the scenes isn't even funny.

andrewweb
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by andrewweb » Sat May 12, 2012 7:18 pm

Z98 wrote:Except that RosCMS is a complete pain in the ass to admin and the sooner we get off it the better. The average user might not "care" about the underlying CMS, but the harder it is for us web admins to deal with it, the less motivated we are to try to improve the basic user experience or even getting new content up. The number of places where it is broken behind the scenes isn't even funny.
Ah. Well, I guess we should get rolling then. New design isn't the issue, it's the CMS, yes?

Webunny
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by Webunny » Sat May 12, 2012 8:58 pm

Except that RosCMS is a complete pain in the ass to admin and the sooner we get off it the better. The average user might not "care" about the underlying CMS, but the harder it is for us web admins to deal with it, the less motivated we are to try to improve the basic user experience or even getting new content up. The number of places where it is broken behind the scenes isn't even funny.
Well, there you have it. Apparently it IS broken, then. Guess has to be fixed, then, indeed.

That said, maybe it still wouldn't be a bad idea for someone to update the visuals on this site a bit, to span the period until it's completely revamped and working with a complete new CMS by 2015 or something.

But I suppose none will feel up to such a task; the developers have better things to do, the guys working on the totally revamped site will not waste even more time on temperoraly facelifting this site, and I'm not going to go at it on my own (and it's not really my forte anyway).

(Though I would add the meeting minutes).

How are your skills in html and css and the lot, Andrew? Maybe you can give it a try, if you get the go for it?

andrewweb
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by andrewweb » Sat May 12, 2012 9:02 pm

Webunny wrote:
Except that RosCMS is a complete pain in the ass to admin and the sooner we get off it the better. The average user might not "care" about the underlying CMS, but the harder it is for us web admins to deal with it, the less motivated we are to try to improve the basic user experience or even getting new content up. The number of places where it is broken behind the scenes isn't even funny.
Well, there you have it. Apparently it IS broken, then. Guess has to be fixed, then, indeed.

That said, maybe it still wouldn't be a bad idea for someone to update the visuals on this site a bit, to span the period until it's completely revamped and working with a complete new CMS by 2015 or something.

But I suppose none will feel up to such a task; the developers have better things to do, the guys working on the totally revamped site will not waste even more time on temperoraly facelifting this site, and I'm not going to go at it on my own (and it's not really my forte anyway).

(Though I would add the meeting minutes).

How are your skills in html and css and the lot, Andrew? Maybe you can give it a try, if you get the go for it?
Well, we already have a new design in html and css, but I could work on the existing one. I'm involved with quite a few things just now though, it would probably be best to not get involved in any more.

Webunny
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by Webunny » Wed May 16, 2012 10:09 pm

andrewweb wrote:
Webunny wrote:
Except that RosCMS is a complete pain in the ass to admin and the sooner we get off it the better. The average user might not "care" about the underlying CMS, but the harder it is for us web admins to deal with it, the less motivated we are to try to improve the basic user experience or even getting new content up. The number of places where it is broken behind the scenes isn't even funny.
Well, there you have it. Apparently it IS broken, then. Guess has to be fixed, then, indeed.

That said, maybe it still wouldn't be a bad idea for someone to update the visuals on this site a bit, to span the period until it's completely revamped and working with a complete new CMS by 2015 or something.

But I suppose none will feel up to such a task; the developers have better things to do, the guys working on the totally revamped site will not waste even more time on temperoraly facelifting this site, and I'm not going to go at it on my own (and it's not really my forte anyway).

(Though I would add the meeting minutes).

How are your skills in html and css and the lot, Andrew? Maybe you can give it a try, if you get the go for it?
Well, we already have a new design in html and css, but I could work on the existing one. I'm involved with quite a few things just now though, it would probably be best to not get involved in any more.
Well, there is no point in it, then, when one can't be sure of what time one can spend on it. I guess we better just wait until they finish the total website-revamp, then starting something and only go halfway trough (that's why it takes the revamp so long too, I suspect). Ah well, my suggestion of placing the meeting minutes on the homepage in the newssection was accepted, so people will have that, at least.
Last edited by Webunny on Wed May 16, 2012 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

milon
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by milon » Wed May 16, 2012 10:31 pm

Z98 wrote:Except that RosCMS is a complete pain in the ass to admin and the sooner we get off it the better. The average user might not "care" about the underlying CMS, but the harder it is for us web admins to deal with it, the less motivated we are to try to improve the basic user experience or even getting new content up. The number of places where it is broken behind the scenes isn't even funny.
I take it that RosCMS is a CMS that was made specifically for ROS, and no one else uses/supports it? I really want this migration to happen. Where can I learn about the workings of RosCMS?

DangerGround
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by DangerGround » Thu May 17, 2012 12:09 am

There is no need to learn anything about RosCMS. I started a new approach from scratch with typo3 about two weeks ago and there progress (migrated user database, integrated forum and working wiki and some other minor improvements). Basicly the same design as the current, just some improvements to the underlaying html and css code. There is still a bit todo and any help (fixing theme, working on extensions, ...) is welcome, so if someone wants to help, I try to be online in #reactos-web on freenode.

Webunny
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by Webunny » Thu May 17, 2012 12:17 am

DangerGround wrote:There is no need to learn anything about RosCMS. I started a new approach from scratch with typo3 about two weeks ago and there progress (migrated user database, integrated forum and working wiki and some other minor improvements). Basicly the same design as the current, just some improvements to the underlaying html and css code. There is still a bit todo and any help (fixing theme, working on extensions, ...) is welcome, so if someone wants to help, I try to be online in #reactos-web on freenode.
Two weeks ago? I thought the project to convert/revamp the site was started/made in 2009?

DangerGround
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by DangerGround » Thu May 17, 2012 12:22 am

It was, but the idea back then was to use a new design and restructure the website. Didn't work out because we couldn't got the design finished. Current approach is to change the underlaying CMS and restructure the website while keeping the basic layout, which could be changed/improved easily later. I was busy with other stuff in the last few years, and other people which worked on drupal in the last two years also disappeared from time to time. Hope I can finish the transition, before disappearing again :p

Webunny
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by Webunny » Mon May 21, 2012 8:51 pm

DG, anything to show, yet? Is the work in progress viewable by any means?

DangerGround
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by DangerGround » Tue May 22, 2012 12:12 am

nothing public yet. And there is no roadmap with fixed dates when things will be done.

Webunny
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by Webunny » Wed May 23, 2012 11:36 pm

1)Content

I've been looking at it a bit closer, and the main problem with the site (apart from parts being broken and a difficult CMS, according to z98) is the fact that there is much redundancy. It needs a big cleanup. The info could be merged with the FAQ, the links that link to pages that show almost nothing be deleted, Icons with links for the development be grouped together and being cut down when it's redundant or obsolete, etc.

All that pertains to the development should be put there, and not mixed on other pages. Broadly interested and curious parties should find all they need to know on the first page, with some nice titbits of (updated) news. Then an area for the bit more in-depth interested persons who want to try out, and one specifically for the devs.

2)Graphically

It could use an overhaul too, but it's not all THAT important, compared to the rest. Some new graphics with shadow and rounded corners would be nice, but I thought there were already some nice examples when the site-overhaul was first discussed in 2009 (which apparently went nowhere). The main theme should be kept throughout the site, though: white and variances of blue/grey. The site must have a uniform feel to it.

3)Technically

This is the most arbitrarily chosen decision. Is it still the prevailing wish to go for Drupal? I'm not sure if it's all that a wise a decision, but I guess one has to start somewhere. As it is now, even an ordinary site with html5 and CSS would already be better maintaining-wise, if I understood correctly. A CMS is all fine, but it's better to have none than a bad one. Of course, a new forum (and underlying mechanism) would be highly recommended too. All in all, you have a lot of possibilities to choose out, these days.


Well, so far my suggestions. The main reason it's gone nowhere during these last years (from 2009 to now) is mainly because different people have to agree on different things during a considerable time. Neither the first nor the last requirement is easily met, where ego's and different views may collide and other r/l demands take peoples' time. And if it's not an open project, things stagnate once enough people 'disappear'. It would therefore be better, imho, that such a project/overhaul would be tried in incremental steps (publicly accessible and viewable), as a true open source-like project. That way, it never really 'vaporises' into thin air, and as long as there's a small dedicated amount of people working on it, it gets better, up until the point it's good enough to transit to completely.

andrewweb
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Re: need help for the website overhaul

Post by andrewweb » Wed May 23, 2012 11:43 pm

While we're at it, should we make the ReactOS website run on ReactOS? :)

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