Renewed web site

  steve263000 08:26 19 Jun 10

Hi, I have updated my web site click here using Serif WebPlus 4X. It really is a good program, but maybe it is me being thick but is not quite as easy to master as is advertised!

However after a few problems uploading and the usual great help from Heart Internet it is now up on the web. As this is the first renewal for several years and I am only just getting to grips with the new program could I have some critique on the site please?

  steve263000 16:16 19 Jun 10

Thanks for the critique Forum member. I had found the text on the menu a little small myself but it was fine on the build site. I will look at that again. 'edition'. Yes I get that and of course will sort it. The flags, well they are from my country, Wales of course and I will think about them but I do like them, and as for the hit counter, you have a good point.

  Chris the Ancient 16:21 19 Jun 10

I'm wondering why the menu at the top is in Flash. I'm not alone (I'm sure) in having a flash blocker to make some sites load faster - so I didn't realise that the menu was there.

  steve263000 16:32 19 Jun 10

The flash menu is offered as a choice when putting the menus in. I had thought that most would have flash installed as a matter of course. However I will have to replace the menu somehow anyway as the text has come out quite small. You have a good point about some people blocking flash, and that will be something to think about.

  steve263000 09:24 21 Jun 10

I have made a few changes after the critique of the site so thanks to those that came through. I have changed the menu to a drop down and of course 'edition' has now been replaced. The flags are staying there for now. If anyone has time I would appreciate some more critique. Thanks for now.

  Chris the Ancient 16:20 21 Jun 10

That menu system is a lot better than the Flash one.

I do feel that it is a little on the unconventional side, though - and some people may not realise that that is actually the menu. I appreciate that you are getting to grips with Serif... well done, you are getting on well with it.

I'm going to nag (again) about the menu. Purely from a a personal point of view, I far prefer a more conventional drop-down system. It is instantly recognisable for what it is. The drop-down list did have me flummoxed for a moment or two until I realised what it was. (But I bet you learnt a lot doing it!)

I was wondering (never having used Serif), can you do text as justified? It will add a certain 'crispness' to the site.

I haven't had a real trawl through the site; as it seems to be an on-line family type thing.

I do think you have done well - especially as you are working with a new package.

  Forum Editor 19:41 21 Jun 10

we spent some time on that, and I have to say I think I preferred it to this version - at least so far.

I'm 50% Welsh, but I'm with fourm member on the flag thing - I hate fluttering flags on websites, in fact I hate almost all animated gifs, they distract attention from the content.

The navigation needs totally revising - why not opt for a perfectly conventional left-hand side bar, with buttons? Most people instinctively look to the left for navigation buttons, so why confuse them?

There are spelling errors/typos scattered over the site - I haven't checked all the text, but 'Photo's' should be 'Photos' and 'Rouges gallery should be 'Rogues gallery'. No real problem - just a question of carefully checking your text - you'll find a few others.

I know you put a lot of hard work into your first site, and it showed. Now that you've retired you can probably spend more time on this version, and you'll get there - it's a question of methodically working your way through each aspect of the design and layout to see if you can make improvements. For instance.... try reversing the page background and text colours - make the text blue and the background white; see how that looks. You may find that the whole feel of your site changes for the better. Play with the layouts, and see if you can make the text flow around the images - it's a matter of getting to know the new software, and it takes time.

Good luck, and congratulations - lots of 62 year-olds wouldn't take something like this on. I look forward to watching progress.

  steve263000 08:36 22 Jun 10

F.E. thanks for the critique on the site, (and Chris). As you have said it is taking time to get to know the software. This is the whole reason that I put this up to the forum for critique because I know that others will see it in a completely different light than me. I will site and have another play around with it and come back again in a few days.

  steve263000 17:00 25 Jun 10

(From the book Jurassic Park?) Oh well. Is the chaos theory true and has my site fallen apart through to much messing around? click here

Or have I finally got a handle on the software? I have just about completely changed the look of the site. Not all will like the colour, but really it is the way I have used the web design software I would like critique on.

Two of the pages are just in there to try out aspects of the new software, click here and click here I would really like to know if I am on the right track.

I will almost certainly mess around in the future with it, but unless anything big comes up will not bother the forum again for this site at least.

  steve263000 07:24 27 Jun 10

Thanks for the taking the time forum member. I have fixed the scroll bar. That was just getting the page size right. I have extended the blog page size a bit but as I said it really was just an experiment and may not stay. I will see.

Am I a bit thick in not quite understanding the first part though? One of the main complaints was (rightly) the menu, and as far as I can tell the menu is easy to read and navigate. Do you mean that the hyperlink font is a different font to the main pages?

  steve263000 16:06 27 Jun 10

Thanks for that F.M. I will have a look at that soon. I am very grateful for the time you and others have taken to look at what after all is a small site.

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