[thelist] New site - Critique for look/feel/user experience (http://www.hughblair.com/)

Joseph A Borg jacborg at mac.com
Sun Apr 7 13:54:01 CDT 2002

First: I prefer style 1 by far, some UI issues:
>> Link underlining:
Have to thread slowly on this one: not easy to go against
a Neilsen convention ;-)
Having some background in printed design & typography, I don't think
that underlining is the most important issue with links. The whole page
should be structured around the most important value added: in this case
it's the main menu (see note below), and most important identifier: the
yellow masthead.
>> Main menu:
try to limit the options a user would have to juggle ( menus,
ideas/concepts, lists) in groups of 5-9, at 13 you're going to be
terribly unlucky ;-) Try to restructure the menu and regroup items
according to major conceptual groupings, the way your major users would
need them: newsletters, press releases, faqs, pricing; register,
transfer, renew, manage; tools, whois...
>> LAYOUT structure & color:
The most important page groupings are:
	masthead: top left corner (correct)  (I would always link it to
	simple menu: it's too far right (it's aimed at novices right?
		so place it nearer the masthead using a darker masthead colour (ocre?)
	main-menu: 7±2 the magic number: should be coloured
		similar to masthead lighter maybe?
	main-text area: good as is... though I would re-structure its use:
		the side bar with the news is useless where it is, should be
		incorporated into the main text area: that's where everything
		is happening! Right? So make up some templates for this area
		for news items, short stories, long stories...
	colour scheme one is nice:
		light olive for backgrounds & secondary stuff
		warm yellow for highlights:
			range it to dark ocreish for less important highlights
	even though the eye sees the whole page, a new user has to absorb
	the whole stuff and from the ques you provide, determine what is
	most important, how things group together: the conceptual clusters

	another magic number: 80/20, don't forget that 20% of the site users
	are going to generate 80% of the traffic/value so try to determine who
	they are, and how to best serve them. you are morally justified after
	all you are not peddling spirits to alcoholics...



On Sunday, April 7, 2002, at 07:46 PM, Bob Boisvert wrote:

> A discussion about underlined links quite a while ago on the list
> argued that
> users don't recognize a link if it's not underlined simply because that
> what
> the user is used to.

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