The Enid Blyton Society

Website Makeover

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Website Makeover

Postby Tony Summerfield » 19 Sep 2008, 22:43

We are having the decorators in tonight, so when you next pay us a visit you will see that most rooms have had a lick of paint and the furniture may be in a different position. Keith has got his overalls on and has a determined look on his face, so you had better take a last look at familiar surroundings now as soon they will be gone. :lol:

Oh dear, some of you didn't see my post and you've just come in and are wandering about looking lost! :roll:

Never mind, you will soon get the hang of it, have a good look around and let us know what you think.
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Keith Robinson » 20 Sep 2008, 03:18

My determined look has turned to bleary-eyed. The new site is now live, but as usual with major revamps like this it's highly feasible there will be some minor bugs to deal with. Please report away, and I'll deal with things as they come up. I've left the forums alone, changing only the header, so there'll be no difference here at all.

A quick word about the new site width. We decided to "go wide" with the page layout as computer screens these days are larger than they used to be. If there's anyone out there who suddenly finds the site won't fit and horizontal scrolling is needed, well, we're sorry, but you're in a minority these days! Let me know though, as I'm very interested to know just how many people might be affected by this.
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Ming » 20 Sep 2008, 05:13

I love this new look! And the new names for the pages are also very Blyton-like. Especially the Cave of Books - wow I'm lost in a Valley of Adventure! :D :lol:

Will the forums too become "wide"?

PS. Barney looks good. 8)
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Kate Mary » 20 Sep 2008, 06:23

Gosh! thought my computer had gone mad for a second there! First impressions; I think it's great, the book listing looks fresher and more user-friendly, not sure I'll get used to calling it the Cave of Books though. The Secret Passage sounds enticing, we'll probably get more members, and it's nice to see Barney making an appearance. Well done, Keith.

Kate.
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Julie2owlsdene » 20 Sep 2008, 08:36

WOW! :D

The decorators have certainly made a splash with this new re-vamp! It's really very good in fact its absolutely fantastic. Well done Keith and Tony for all your hard work. It's certainly worth it.
Happy to see the forums are the same, as I think I would have lost my way through the secret tunnels of trying to work them out.

The only tiny thing that I feel is a little difficult for me, is that at the top where all the listings are written in red, I can hardly see them. In fact, I couldn't see them at all, :oops:
until I read Kate Mary's post and thought, where is she meaning. So I went back to the home page, and searched hard and I could just make out some red letters, but until I press on them, I can only read them when they come up below. I am wearing my glasses honest :D
But to repeat myself, the site looks great. Really pleased. Barney, bless him, has to be the star. He looks so cool :D

8)
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Anita Bensoussane » 20 Sep 2008, 08:45

Julie2owlsdene wrote:The only tiny thing that I feel is a little difficult for me, is that at the top where all the listings are written in red, I can hardly see them. In fact, I couldn't see them at all, :oops: until I read Kate Mary's post and thought, where is she meaning. So I went back to the home page, and searched hard and I could just make out some red letters, but until I press on them, I can only read them when they come up below. I am wearing my glasses honest :D


Do you mean the red links at the very top of the page, Julie, which say things like "Contact Us," "Society Website," etc? On my browser I can see those well on every page except the Forums pages, where they're partially obscured by the masthead (though even there they still work when I click on them.)

Anita
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"There is no bond like the bond of having read and liked the same books."
- E. Nesbit, The Wonderful Garden.


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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Tony Summerfield » 20 Sep 2008, 08:59

This is a temporary problem with Internet Explorer, as all the links at the top of the page are coming through loud and clear with Firefox. Sorry about this, Julie and others, but this is the one part of the site that we have been unable to check as Keith had to change this page at the last moment with the forums on air at the time. He waited until the middle of the UK night to perform the changeover.
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Julie2owlsdene » 20 Sep 2008, 09:00

No, not along the top Anita. The seven titles in red placed in the little boxes on the left hand side. If you press on a box, the title and what's inside comes up below, which is where I read what the red letters were inside the little picture boxes on the left, going down. They're a heading to each secret tunnel.

Sorry I didn't explain myself correctly. I was still blown away by the fantastic new re-vamp. :D

I think its probably because the lettering is in red, I can't see it properly, and its printed over a little picture. I now know its there, but cannot make out each word. I guess it's an age thing :oops:

8)
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Anita Bensoussane » 20 Sep 2008, 09:09

Thanks for the further explanation, Julie. I don't know what browser you're using but the lettering shouldn't be going over the picture - the little picture should be over on the left of the button, with the red lettering on a white background on the right. Good that you've mentioned it as I've no doubt Keith will be able to wave his magic wand, call out "Hey Presto!" and put things right in a jiffy! :lol:

Anita
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Tony Summerfield » 20 Sep 2008, 10:57

Inevitably there are going to be one or two little teething problems, despite being checked carefully by three pairs of eyes (Keith held the steering wheel, whilst Anita and I made unhelpful suggestions as back seat drivers! :lol: )

I do have quite a bit more to do with individual books in the Cave, particularly with the illustrator listings. I also have to add quite a few more reprints and internal illustrations and finish off the Magazines section. There are two main problems here, Enid wrote sooooooooooo many books and there are only 24 hours in a day! :roll:
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Daisy » 20 Sep 2008, 11:54

Wow! What a surprise when I signed in this morning! I think the new look is great. I particularly like the book listing section where there is an explanation of what is in each category as before I did sometimes find it difficult to decide where it was I wanted to be! The bright banner of illustrations at the top is very striking and eye catching too. I am one of the unfortunates who will have to do the horizontal panning but it is not too offputting and most of what I want is accommodated on my screen without adjustments. Thanks for all the hard work Tony, Keith and Anita. Everything looks very attractive.
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Boodi » 20 Sep 2008, 13:21

Excellent work! Many thanks for taking the time to do it. So far I have not encountered any teething problems and I adore Mr. Goon on the right hand side of the masthead.
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Moonraker » 20 Sep 2008, 13:23

Having discovered the 'Secret Way' to the new look site a few weeks ago, I was looking at the site as it was being developed. I liked what I saw, and I am delighted that It is now live - well done seems to weak a compliment, Keith! I never cease to be amazed at your computer/web design skills, so I guess I am not that surprised that this site looks so great! I know how extremely busy you are (too busy to reply to my emails :wink: but not too busy to appear in my Birthday video!!!), so it is a massive achievement to have completed this re-vamp so effectively.

I have 'toggled' the Society Website (how much better that sounds and appears than Home Page) many times between IE7 and Firefox, and the only difference I see is that the lettering in those seven boxes is a bit sharper on IE. It looks as though you have a 'gremlin' in your browser, Julie, if the lettering appears over the picture in those boxes.

The future's bright....... :D
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Petermax » 20 Sep 2008, 13:34

Initially I feared that perhaps I may have stumbled onto the wrong website. :wink: Once I regained my bearings, I was very pleasantly surprised by what I saw. Also, bearing in mind that first time visitors are very important for the website and the E.B.S, the new look homepage is a very welcoming place indeed, it makes one want explore further! :)

I have encountered no display problems at all with my usual browser Firefox, and also IE6. I still use a rather elderly 17" CRT monitor, so I would imagine that the new site must look absolutely stunning on a more modern LCD display.
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Re: Website Makeover

Postby Keith Robinson » 20 Sep 2008, 14:15

Hello all! Just reading your comments with interest (and with a grin on my face so far!!). I should point out that both Tony and Anita have both been extremely helpful with ideas throughout this process; in fact it may have looked quite a bit different if I had gone with my initial draft. I often find that whereas I'm often "happy" with what I come up, a few more heads around the table usually produces a much nicer result -- even if it takes longer!

So, dealing with problems/questions only for now:

[Ming:]
Will the forums too become "wide"?

Not sure, Ming. I thought about doing that, but decided to wait until the dust had settled first. I'm not sure there's a huge benefit in widening the forums, but I'm open to comments about this.

[Julie2owlsdene:]
The only tiny thing that I feel is a little difficult for me, is that at the top where all the listings are written in red, I can hardly see them. In fact, I couldn't see them at all ... I guess it's an age thing

The left hand buttons are a tiny bit offset in Internet Explorer 6 (I've only just noticed that; they should be centered in the beige area on the left, but IE 6 is notoriously buggy) -- but other than that they display correctly in both IE6, IE8, Firefox 3, Safari 3, Opera 9, and Netscape 7, all on a Windows platform.

Julie, could you please tell me what browser you're using? Go to "Help" at the top and read the "About" blurb, and tell me what it says. Also, are you using a Mac or a PC? Unfortunately I can't check things on a Mac because I don't have one.

[Anita:]
On my browser I can see those well on every page except the Forums pages, where they're partially obscured by the masthead

Yes, another bug specific to IE6 -- IE8 is fine. I've fixed it now though. Anita, update your browser for goodness' sake! :D

[Daisy:]
I am one of the unfortunates who will have to do the horizontal panning but it is not too offputting and most of what I want is accommodated on my screen without adjustments.

You're probably not that unfortunate, Daisy! I'm betting you can fix this if you want to. Assuming you don't have Favorites open on the left (which would of course cut down on your screen space), have you tried changing the resolution? It's very easy. Minimize or close all programs so you have a clear desktop. Right-click anywhere on your desktop and select "Properties." Then select the "Settings" tab. I guess your Screen Resolution is set to 800 x 600? Slide it along to 1024 x 768, assuming that option is available (if not, then you have an old screen and there's nothing you can do). Then click OK. Your screen will then go black for a split second and come back on with smaller pixels. You'll find that websites and programs have finer detail and will therefore fit on the screen better.

[Nigel:]
and the only difference I see is that the lettering in those seven boxes is a bit sharper on IE.

That's not a website issue, more of a browser and/or system setting. Actually mine is the same between all browsers except Safari, in which text is very bold and heavy. One big difference is the "ClearType" setting. In XP, right-click the desktop and select "Properties," then select the "Appearance" tab. There's an "Effects" button there; click that and see if your computer is set to Standard or ClearType. Standard is where the text is sharp and crisp, whereas ClearType has a smoothed look. When you select this, at first text will appear almost blurry in comparison, but after a little while you realize it's MUCH nicer and easier on the eye. When IE7 came along, it overrode this setting and made all web page text smooth by default. I liked this so much that I switched on ClearType across the entire computer.

Any other issues, anyone?
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