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NEW HOMEPAGE DESIGN DISCUSSION - Page 4

post #151 of 427

 

CHUD15.jpg

I'd keep the slideshow personally, as its a 'revolving' version of the current film strip, highlighted content from all over, interviews, giveaways etc. Left hand side should be for features and regular stuff. I do think the podcast should be among that.  Obviously I don't have pictures for all the boxes, but I'd but crossing streams, reboot vs remake on there. I also don't think its a lot to ask people to scroll beyond the slideshow. At that point you're in danger of becoming too simple, of making the site look unhelpful to NEW people. People who might not check everyday, for who that content would be lost among the rest of the daily updates. Also, if/when the chud videos return, they could go in the place of the slideshow, to maximize views.

 

I would also say, I took it upon myself as a graphic designer to come up with something in the right direction, so if anyone officially from chud is annoyed at me, apologies - just trying to help. I don't have access to the actual graphics, but if everyone likes it, especially Nick, I'd happily do the designs properly for Joshua to implement. 

 

Edit: A little confused by one of the comments on the last page, are people thinking that because on these design mocks, the center is made up on Franchise me's, that's how the main page will look? Because it won't, it'll be the latest of everything, news, interviews, features, reviews. The left hand column will house specific permanent links to the features.


Edited by SeanCE - 12/4/11 at 2:33pm
post #152 of 427

That looks sexy.

post #153 of 427

Yep, I like it a lot. I almost never use slide shows on news/reviews sites myself, I go straight to the Latest News columns, but if they're implemented well with a dynamic feel (4-7 second rotation) they can add a lot to the vibe. They're really just a gimmick, but they can be a cool gimmick as long as they don't get in the way of the main content.

post #154 of 427

I don't know what the ad situation is on the site for revenue (it would be really great if Nick could step in here and give some advice). Again, I hate vertical banners, but hows this?

 

CHUD17.jpg  CHUD18 copy.jpg  

Edit: Also, the square design on the right with images, albeit, the same image. (I'm lazy)


Edited by SeanCE - 12/4/11 at 5:00pm
post #155 of 427

Oh shit, before I flood this thread, whats the consensus on having widgets etc for social networking, yes/no? Lots of people have them, but do they do sites any good? 

post #156 of 427

I like the widgets.  Makes posting on Facebook easier.

 

That mockup is great!  I love it.

post #157 of 427

yea, lovin it.

post #158 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

 

CHUD15.jpg


I like this but some of the text on the right needs to be axed if you have picture links to the Feature Columns on the left.  I like the 16x9 look to those pics as well and prefer the filmstrip graphic to be used in this manner than across the page; that always irked me.

 

Still too blog-like for my tastes but I can't exactly articulate how to make it look different so I'll go with the flow from here.

 

Can you animate the Feature Column filmstrip or would that be too much motion with the "Wayne Knight" animation?  If the Feature Column filmstrip is kept then lose the links to the right to those columns and whenever one is updated it needs a banner across it like the old Reviewed/Movie Poster set-up we had prior to the redesign.

 

Otherwise, besides too busy I feel that is the best look we have seen so far.  Not 100% on keeping "Latest" in the middle away from that crucial first glance or what still appears to be the first "Latest" post being below the fold.

 

post #159 of 427

Quote:

Originally Posted by TzuDohNihm View Post
If the Feature Column filmstrip is kept then lose the links to the right to those columns and whenever one is updated it needs a banner across it like the old Reviewed/Movie Poster set-up we had prior to the redesign.

Film strip can't animated on what is essentially a tweak. I'm not sure what you mean by this. The links on the right would not be to features, it would be for news/reviews or something. The text in there is just a placeholder. 

 

"The Wayne Knight Animation" would make a great post punk band name.

post #160 of 427

I personally never use (or even pay attention to) a slide show. I like to get to the bread and butter of a site and I'm sure most people are like me when they think slide shows are a "nice touch" but really, who is sitting there going "Okay... I see that one... noooow here comes the next one... noooooow here comes the next one.... nooooow.... " I mean really, who does that? You get to the site and you want to see a clear list of recent stuff. Either way, I think ALL of these designs are great and would do the site plenty of good but I do think having the slide show included in the other changes is sort of a "3 steps forward 1 step back" situation.

 

That's my two cents but Sean is doing an awesome job getting stuff out there, taking suggestions and really getting some discussion going. I'm sure its appreciated by all, my man.

post #161 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

Quote:

Film strip can't animated on what is essentially a tweak. I'm not sure what you mean by this. The links on the right would not be to features, it would be for news/reviews or something. The text in there is just a placeholder. 

 

"The Wayne Knight Animation" would make a great post punk band name.



I realize you can't animate it but if it could be animated on the site rolling the Feature Column picture up every few seconds then if not too busy, to me, just gives that extra punch to movies aspect of things.

 

As to the "reviewed/movie poster" banner... here.

 

I realize everything is a placeholder but I'm just concerned with it being too busy text-wise.

 

Otherwise, good stuff.

 

post #162 of 427

I think Joshua, who is in charge has said it won't be drastic, so animating is probably off the cards, it'll take too much to code for it. I also think It would probably be too much with the slideshow and might well slow the site down.

post #163 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy Q View Post

I personally never use (or even pay attention to) a slide show. I like to get to the bread and butter of a site and I'm sure most people are like me when they think slide shows are a "nice touch" but really, who is sitting there going "Okay... I see that one... noooow here comes the next one... noooooow here comes the next one.... nooooow.... " I mean really, who does that? You get to the site and you want to see a clear list of recent stuff. Either way, I think ALL of these designs are great and would do the site plenty of good but I do think having the slide show included in the other changes is sort of a "3 steps forward 1 step back" situation


Gotta agree with that. I always, always, always give up on filmstrips on other sites. My clicking is generally 75% inspired by the thumbnails already visible within the first couple seconds of a particular site loading; I presume that is the way for most (relatively) young people. I have most certainly either clicked on a link or moved on from the site entirely within a few moments after heading to the site in the first place (especially if it's off a Facebook link). I would need to be very dedicated to a site to sit and silently watch a filmstrip through its full cycle (I don't even like the kind that accentuated filmstrips that sites like ShockTilYouDrop have). And If I'm already a dedicated fan, then I don't even need a filmstrip in the first place because I'm willing to do the necessary exploring to find shizzle. 

 

post #164 of 427

Take a look at the new YouTube.  It closely resembles what you have going on and might be a good thing to ape.

post #165 of 427

I don't think the text looks too busy at all, I think in that latest mock-up the text is really nicely streamlined. Bold green headline, smaller white byline and then smaller white text is the way to go.

 

It's about delivering information in as clean and quick a manner as possible. Nothing achieves that better than a headline. The images should be there to compliment the text, not to lead in the information delivery. Both are important but the headline is primary and the image is secondary.

 

I mean, an image is a thousand words and a headline is 6-12. Who has time to skim a thousand words?

post #166 of 427

Okay, so some people aren't liking the slide show. I personally like it, I think people do use them, but not on this site, as it is now, because the grill graphic is in the way. Its mentioned above that that people would be waiting for it to scroll past? I don't think anyone does that either, but this slideshow does have buttons on it, so you can scroll through yourself, you're not at the mercy of the timer.

 

Anyway, I've done this, taking a leaf from the previous designs. See what you think, I imagine the chewers will like it, but I don't think casuals will, I still think the best way to go is the slideshow. I'd be wary of new people thinking it looks 'old'. Graphically, I don't like this, just because it ruins the shape of the green lines, breaking them up by with the ad. Oh and from a graphic design position, new youtube is horrific. 

 

CHUD20.jpg

post #167 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

Okay, so some people aren't liking the slide show. I personally like it, I think people do use them, but not on this site, as it is now, because the grill graphic is in the way. Its mentioned above that that people would be waiting for it to scroll past? I don't think anyone does that either, but this slideshow does have buttons on it, so you can scroll through yourself, you're not at the mercy of the timer.

 

Anyway, I've done this, taking a leaf from the previous designs. See what you think, I imagine the chewers will like it, but I don't think casuals will, I still think the best way to go is the slideshow. I'd be wary of new people thinking it looks 'old'. Graphically, I don't like this, just because it ruins the shape of the green lines, breaking them up by with the ad. Oh and from a graphic design position, new youtube is horrific. 

 

CHUD20.jpg


I think you hit a homerun with this one.

post #168 of 427

I've thought about sites that use slide shows that work. Sites like ESPN.com and SI.com... they have the slide show to the upper left and all of the news to the right. They maximize the real estate by including their columns and a ton of other related links within the slide show. They don't slide everything down to highlight a single item at a time. I think that's the difference between what works and what hasn't worked here regarding slide shows. 

post #169 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy Q View Post


I think you hit a homerun with this one.



I agree. Looks awesome.

post #170 of 427

IGN has the only slideshow I like because it has the smaller pictures of what is in the slideshow below it and allows me to quickly jump to one of those without waiting for the whole thing.  Otherwise I hate slideshows.


Edited by TzuDohNihm - 12/4/11 at 7:02pm
post #171 of 427

ESPN is horrible to read, its so busy and clumsy. That would never work for this site, which needs to retain it's sense of self. Something like that is good for facts etc, I think you'd lose the personalities in that jumble.

post #172 of 427
Quote:

Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post


See what you think, I imagine the chewers will like it, but I don't think casuals will, I still think the best way to go is the slideshow. I'd be wary of new people thinking it looks 'old'. Graphically, I don't like this, just because it ruins the shape of the green lines, breaking them up by with the ad.


 

I don't get why casuals would react any differently to a slideshow than regulars. Doesn't anyone who comes to the site, new or old school, just want to get to the content as easily as possible? Doesn't a column of headlines and thumbnails fascilitate this the best?

 

If anything it's newer readers who prefer things simplified. Usually whenever I check out a new site, if it's not laid out in a visually logical manner which lets me orientate myself quickly I bail pretty quick. To me the way you make a site feel modern isn't by messing with proven layout techniques, it's by making sure the graphics (images, fonts, colours etc) don't feel dated.

 

Agree about ESPN though. That thing is clutter central.

post #173 of 427

The thing about a slide show is that it hides content.  Unless you sit and watch the whole thing go by, or deliberately scroll through everything, you're going to miss a slide or two.  The average reader is going to hit the headlines and thumbnails for where they want to go.  They're going to use the main page as a portal, not a destination.  It should therefore facilitate that.

post #174 of 427

Okay, so I've played around with the sizes of things, so when you open it in a browser you should be seeing 12 articles straight away.

CHUD21.jpg   CHUDcompare.jpg

post #175 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

Okay, so I've played around with the sizes of things, so when you open it in a browser you should be seeing 12 articles straight away.

CHUD21.jpg   CHUDcompare.jpg

Nice. I'm still a little conflicted about the left sidebar, but I like the general look of this design. Maybe the left sidebar would look more uniform if the images were in black and white?
post #176 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by natalia View Post

Nice. I'm still a little conflicted about the left sidebar ...


 

As in, "If the columns are featured in the right sidebar they don't need to have a separate sidebar on the left"?

post #177 of 427

Use that left side bar to highlight ongoing series.

post #178 of 427

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bucho View Post

As in, "If the columns are featured in the right sidebar they don't need to have a separate sidebar on the left"?

 

Except they won't be featured on the right side. Those lists and features are more likely to get traffic if they're images. They're also likely to be updated less, so the flow of news and reviews daily, gets spread out over the middle and right side columns.

post #179 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

Except they won't be featured on the right side. Those lists and features are more likely to get traffic if they're images. They're also likely to be updated less, so the flow of news and reviews daily, gets spread out over the middle and right side columns.

 

 

Gotcha. I get what you mean about the green bars but I think the latest mock-up is very effective.

 

post #180 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bucho View Post


 

As in, "If the columns are featured in the right sidebar they don't need to have a separate sidebar on the left"?


Sort of. I get that the left sidebar could be used to permanently feature the columns that generate the most amount of traffic. But is the objective of this redesign to increase traffic to the site by decluttering and improving the readability of the home page, or by increasing direct access to the most amount of content possible? The current design has a three column layout and provides access to a lot of content but it's clearly turned off a lot of people. A two column layout would streamline the look of the home page but direct access to some content would be sacrificed. SeanCE's latest layout looks very nice but I get the feeling that the left sidebar could ultimately make the new homepage translate into a prettier, better organized form of the same clutter we have right now.
post #181 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bucho View Post

As in, "If the columns are featured in the right sidebar they don't need to have a separate sidebar on the left"?


In an ideal world, a lot more would be changed, but I'm doing this on my own time, for free, trying to figure it out for people. I think you're wrong about it being cluttered, you'd be able to see everything right away. Part of the sites problem at the moment, beyond design, is that there's lots of filler. That needs to be cut, so the good stuff isn't lost. 

 

I'd love to do more, but this is just a tweak, and I'm pretty confident the one above could help a lot. Removing the left side and the pictures knocks the text quota up on the home page, which will be horrible. 

post #182 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

Okay, so I've played around with the sizes of things, so when you open it in a browser you should be seeing 12 articles straight away.

CHUD21.jpg   CHUDcompare.jpg


Make those photos on the left a hair smaller and widen the middle accordingly and I think this is as perfect as you can get with "tweeks". Looks great. 

 

post #183 of 427

Hmmm, I've just tried going that, but if fucks up the 'first look' in the browser, essentially, right now, the side bar, middle and right line up perfectly to display the very latest stuff.

 

widing the middle means you only get one news item from the 'latest from chud' column and 2 1/2 'features'. So I'm not sure that will work.

post #184 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post




In an ideal world, a lot more would be changed, but I'm doing this on my own time, for free, trying to figure it out for people. I think you're wrong about it being cluttered, you'd be able to see everything right away. Part of the sites problem at the moment, beyond design, is that there's lots of filler. That needs to be cut, so the good stuff isn't lost. 

 

I'd love to do more, but this is just a tweak, and I'm pretty confident the one above could help a lot. Removing the left side and the pictures knocks the text quota up on the home page, which will be horrible. 

I get it. Your efforts are much appreciated, sir.

As a final tweek I'd suggest...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy Q View Post




Make those photos on the left a hair smaller and widen the middle accordingly and I think this is as perfect as you can get with "tweeks". Looks great. 

 


This. And make the left sidebar images partially desaturated or black and white. Upon implementation they could go back to color on mouse over.
post #185 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

Hmmm, I've just tried going that, but if fucks up the 'first look' in the browser, essentially, right now, the side bar, middle and right line up perfectly to display the very latest stuff.

 

widing the middle means you only get one news item from the 'latest from chud' column and 2 1/2 'features'. So I'm not sure that will work.



I only suggest it because it still feels like the "Latest" (most important aspect of the site) is getting choked out a bit but overall I think it looks fine. I like the idea of desaturating the photos and having them brighten up when you hover as well but I realize we could go on and on about this stuff. 

 

Also, I hope the idea of having a list of "latest" on the right in the actual articles isn't lost in the shuffle when this homepage is finished. That was a great touch you brought up before.

post #186 of 427

Wait, which design was that, there's been like 20 so far?

post #187 of 427

The very last one you posted is the best as far as I'm concerned. You suggested (maybe a page back?) that within actual articles there should be a list on the right of "latest" so you don't have to go back and forth while reading stories. That was a great idea.

post #188 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

In an ideal world, a lot more would be changed, but I'm doing this on my own time, for free, trying to figure it out for people.


 

Sure, and I think where you've got it to is pretty much spot on and I, for one, appreciate the heck out of it. I can see where Timothy is coming from when he suggests having the main column wider and the left bar slightly narrower but if something about that is mathematically screwy then so be it.

 

The one other tweak I'd suggest would be in that main "Latest" column to have those headlines in larger font and have them start at the left of that main column rather than start beside the thumbnail. So you have the headline across the top of each story and beneath that you have the square thumbnail and on the right of the thumbnail you have the secondary text of each story and the "read more" button.

 

That way you have the primary source of front page information - the headlines - more visually prominent than the supplementary source - the thumbnails.

post #189 of 427

Ah okay, I get you. Thats really something that would have to be sorted out in the code, as it might not be possible. WP is a bit annoying like that. Design wise though, I'd like to get some feedback from the people in charge, whether they like this or not.

 

Also, going back to something Nick said when this thread started.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Nunziata View Post

Nothing is sacred, design wise. If it's going to make it easier and boost traffic and clicks, I'm for it.

I've drawn up something very different, however I know this isn't going to get implemented, its interesting to see what the site could look like

 

   CHUD25 copy.jpg    CHUD26 copy.jpg

  CHUD27 copy.jpg   CHUD28 copy.jpg

 

 

 


Edited by SeanCE - 12/5/11 at 6:24am
post #190 of 427

I like what you're doing, Sean. A lot.

post #191 of 427

I may be sort of anathema around here, but I love the one with the lighter background.

post #192 of 427

Yes I am attached to the white and  black, but even I must admit that OPTION #1 is the best. Excellent work, Sean. You've done CHUD proud

post #193 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

Ah okay, I get you. Thats really something that would have to be sorted out in the code, as it might not be possible. WP is a bit annoying like that. Design wise though, I'd like to get some feedback from the people in charge, whether they like this or not.

 

Also, going back to something Nick said when this thread started.

 

 

I've drawn up something very different, however I know this isn't going to get implemented, its interesting to see what the site could look like

 

   CHUD25 copy.jpg    CHUD26 copy.jpg

  CHUD27 copy.jpg   CHUD28 copy.jpg

 

 

 

 

I know people like to bitch about the black looking old but to me that white one looks more 90's than the black.  Maybe it's that old starfish logo.

 

It's all still too busy I think.  I believe something is not being thought about here; not every inch of screen real estate needs to be filled with something.

 

 

post #194 of 427

I have to say, having been an ardent supporter of black text on white background, the green on black looks way classier than the green/gray on white.  White background sort of looks cheap.

post #195 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post


  CHUD27 copy.jpg   CHUD28 copy.jpg

 

 

 


 

I like the way the left hand sidebar images are separated from the article thumbnails in these but I'm still in love with the 9:16 idea for the left sidebar because those images and the thumbnails would still work better as a team if they were at different dimensions. But rather than an image-heavy left hand side there's a balance to proceedings by moving the thumbnails over.

 

I also see where Tzu is coming from about it looking packed, but if the Latest headlines were in a larger, bolder font it would make the text sections feel less crammed. I don't know if you can do this Sean, with the limited tweakability you're working with, but it would be easily accomplished in the code.

post #196 of 427

Yes, very nice...but does anyone know why the home page hasn't had any new content added for 6 days?

post #197 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Shrinker View Post

Yes, very nice...but does anyone know why the home page hasn't had any new content added for 6 days?



This.

 

A friend just asked me about this and was incredibly confused when I informed him that content HAD been added in the past six days. So apparently this is happening to other people besides just my friend? WTF?

 

Shrinker, what is the last post that appears for you?

post #198 of 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCE View Post

 CHUD25 copy.jpg    CHUD26 copy.jpg

  CHUD27 copy.jpg   CHUD28 copy.jpg

 

 

 


I like the third. Very nice.
post #199 of 427


 

Quote:
A friend just asked me about this and was incredibly confused when I informed him that content HAD been added in the past six days. So apparently this is happening to other people besides just my friend? WTF?

 

Shrinker, what is the last post that appears for you?


 

Long time reader just popping in to say that I've had this issue as well. For me, the front page hasn't updated since November 30th and the last news item is "A Few Tits And You've Got A Shame Red-Band Trailer". However, just a few hours ago the front page updated with all the new content, but when I click the MORE button to see what other content I've been missing, I'm still only seeing stuff until November 30th. I imagine it's a cache/proxy issue with some ISP's?

post #200 of 427

Okay, I think I've thrown enough variations into the ether now, I'm not keen on the last 4 I put up, but I figured I'd show them anyway. I'm not too sure what can be added now, because of the limitations on the coding. What should I do next? I've done so many now and changed stuff based on peoples comments, I'm a little lost as to how to move forward. I think we've got something that's really workable and who knows, if it works, maybe sometime next year, a more thorough overhaul can happen. 

 

And Nick, thanks, nice to know you're aware of what I've been trying to do. 

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