Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original height

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Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original height

Postby wobo » May 27th, '12, 10:53

It is always nice to try out layouts and improving our websites and I surely appreciate the work people are doing in this area. I also know that the are much too few helping hands there.

This said, could somebody resize the top nav bar to the original height as soon as possible? It is
- looking bad in this size
- taking too much space, being especially annoying on small screens (netbooks) and renders the site almost impossible to use on a smartphone or tablet.

I know that the "new look" was implemented before it was properly tested and finished, and I can surely live with the messy web pages (if they are repaired soon). But this nav bar in the forum should have top priority in the "repair shop".
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby jkerr82508 » May 27th, '12, 11:24

I agree with wobo. It's an irritation that can be tolerated, but it would better if it were fixed.

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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby rda » May 27th, '12, 19:33

The navbar will get an update for being handled differently depending on the screen resolution, in a matter of weeks; good to open a bug if you want to track the issue.

As to reduce its default height, it's currently driven by the negative space we need around the logo - and the logo being properly sized. But on this very forum, we can recoup some of this height by reworking the very forum header template - I have a rough idea about it, but no time to test it yet (remove the blue "mageia forum/share the magic"/search bar + integrate the current page title in top h1 (like in http://www.mageia.org/en/community/ + reintegrate the search bar) in the user tools block).
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby doktor5000 » May 27th, '12, 21:47

@Romain: Also there's another issue which is much more irritating IMHO: If you jump between forum pages, the bar will shortly vanish and come back after loading the new forum page, which is rather weird, as the whole page then jumps up 70-80 pixels or so and then pops back down during the loading time of the new page. This is with Firrefox 10.0.4 on Mageia 1. Just ask if you need more details.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby jkerr82508 » May 27th, '12, 23:20

doktor5000 wrote: the whole page then jumps up 70-80 pixels or so and then pops back down during the loading time of the new page

Now that I read this, I realise that it is this phenomenon (the jumping up and down of the page) rather than the size of the top bar that irritates me. Not knowing anything about web design, I had assumed that one was the consequence of the other, but that's probably not the case.

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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby martinw » May 27th, '12, 23:41

Agreed, the jumping up and down is extremely irritating.

Also, for me (Mageia 2, Seamonkey 2.9.1), the nav bar doesn't work. Clicking on a link gives a 404, e.g.
Code: Select all
Not Found
The requested URL /en-gb/about/ was not found on this server.
Apache/2.2.14 (Mandriva Linux/PREFORK-1.6mdv2010.0) Server at www.mageia.org Port 443
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby doktor5000 » May 28th, '12, 01:41

On a related note, the new nav bar isn't visible from the wiki nor the german forum.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby wobo » May 28th, '12, 07:09

I thought this is due to the nav bar being in test mode and not implemented on all pages yet.

As for the height:
It was clear that the space needed for the logo is the primary cause for the height of the whole nav bar. So the logo should get its own "space" and the nav bar should follow as an own entity, resizing it tto the height it had before. This is done on many websites where the logo has a larger size than a usual bar.
I also recommend avoiding the thin separation lines between the single links in the nav bar.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby filip » May 28th, '12, 11:01

doktor5000 wrote:@Romain: Also there's another issue which is much more irritating IMHO: If you jump between forum pages, the bar will shortly vanish and come back after loading the new forum page, which is rather weird, as the whole page then jumps up 70-80 pixels or so and then pops back down during the loading time of the new page. This is with Firrefox 10.0.4 on Mageia 1. Just ask if you need more details.
I think this is due to Javascript snippet way for that. I prefer direct HTML & CSS solution. Javascript solution also needs a fallback as some users or devices block it.


EDIT: I forgot to say thanks to Romain for his work. I learn from it. I know that universal solution is not easy at all. I used this solution on site I admin but it can't compare to this as there are only some pages and phpBB for now.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby rda » May 28th, '12, 11:29

Thanks to all for your feedback.

  • jumping page when the bar is loaded: fixed on this forum; the bar still slides, but the page is already at the right place. I will check later (on the road now) how to deploy this in the service itself.
  • 404 from the navbar: fixed.
  • bar not visible on German forum, neither the wiki (and other parts yet, among which identity): it has an issue with the wiki stylesheet right now (which may change as well anyway), and I'd prefer to fix it here on the English forum before deploying on the others.
  • altering the height of the navbar elements: wontfix; at least, for now, when the goal is to build and deploy the service on the whole mageia.org and see what all the constraints will be. So it is left as an exercise/patch for who wants to build and propose an alternative design to the navbar.
  • Fallback for people not using JS: wontfix; same as above, left as a patch for a volunteer.
  • Using HTML/CSS directly: no. Cumbersome to update and defeats the whole purpose to deploy updates to the navbar from a single place. Using it through a caching script querying the remote service: yes, maybe, that's what I did at mdv before. But not the time to rewrite this now. So same as above, left as a patch for a volunteer.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby wobo » May 28th, '12, 17:39

rda wrote:[*]altering the height of the navbar elements: wontfix; at least, for now, when the goal is to build and deploy the service on the whole mageia.org and see what all the constraints will be. So it is left as an exercise/patch for who wants to build and propose an alternative design to the navbar.

I understand and agree to your reason why you will not use CSS (where this would be a matter of seconds). But still this issue should have top priority, higher than all other issues. Because
- it is the most visible issue among the issues there are,
- the forum is the most used page of all
- the height of the nav bar is a PITA especially on screens of netbooks and even on subnotebooks.
While all other issues are not as annoying and not even visible for the users.

I think it would be a good solution to use the old navbar instead until all the issues of the new one are fixed.
Using the real life site as test bed is not always the best idea.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby jkerr82508 » May 28th, '12, 17:44

rda wrote:jumping page when the bar is loaded: fixed on this forum; the bar still slides, but the page is already at the right place.

Thanks for the prompt action. This irritable old man is now less irritated. :)

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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby rda » May 28th, '12, 18:31

wobo wrote: - it is the most visible issue among the issues there are,

That's among its goals: to be visible enough so people get a sense of where they are in the whole mageia.org Web thing; to be large enough so that it can be easily grasped from touch interfaces (although this still requires more testing, as there's a play here between the nav and the app styles and experiences).

- the forum is the most used page of all

While it certainly has a certain amount of traffic, we have no metric to know this, relatively to www, wiki or blog for instance. Although I'm ok to add an analytics tracker here as well to know (would be good anyway).

- the height of the nav bar is a PITA especially on screens of netbooks and even on subnotebooks.

This is planned with the CSS media queries update. I will have a look at it as soon as I can.

Or, again, alternative designs and patches are welcome.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby wobo » May 28th, '12, 18:52

rda wrote:
wobo wrote: - it is the most visible issue among the issues there are,

That's among its goals: to be visible enough so people get a sense of where they are in the whole mageia.org Web thing; to be large enough so that it can be easily grasped from touch interfaces.

1. There's a difference between "visible" and unnaturally large as if it were a display for people with reduced sight or senior citizens.
2. There's a difference between usual computer displays and touchscreens where each item is large enough to use it with a thumb.
But ok, if you insist then at least provide a nav bar which matches the rest of the page as an option.

- the forum is the most used page of all

While it certainly has a certain amount of traffic, we have no metric to know this, relatively to www, wiki or blog for instance. Although I'm ok to add an analytics tracker here as well to know (would be good anyway).[/quote] Sorry, but are you kidding? There's no need to have numbers or analytics. How about reading all those forum posts where we need to give directions to the blog or the wiki? Or even to the download page because people rush to the forum first? But of course, if you need hard proof for a matter of course just ask your analytics.

The alternatives you ask for are hardly possible because you do not want (with reason) to do this with CSS and/or HTML.

And please consider to roll back the life pages to the old nav bar and do all the changes in a testbed - this will stop all discussion, takes the pressure from you and will give you all the time to develop a good and stable solution.

A reason against the current nav bar I did not give yet because it is based on individual taste: IMHO it just looks ugly because of its size.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby rda » May 28th, '12, 19:25

wobo wrote:Sorry, but are you kidding? There's no need to have numbers or analytics. How about reading all those forum posts where we need to give directions to the blog or the wiki? Or even to the download page because people rush to the forum first? But of course, if you need hard proof for a matter of course just ask your analytics.

That's precisely for this kind of directions that this new bar is here, providing more global context. And there will be a learning-phase. If experience and data can show we need to improve it, fine, we'll do. At least we try something different this time.

As for the analytics, yes. I'm perfectly ready to oblige if it shows the forum gets more trafic, no problem with that. At least, we'll have it with data to support it. Will ask about it in Council this evening.

The alternatives you ask for are hardly possible because you do not want (with reason) to do this with CSS and/or HTML.

What alternatives?

And please consider to roll back the life pages to the old nav bar and do all the changes in a testbed - this will stop all discussion, takes the pressure from you and will give you all the time to develop a good and stable solution.

  • We have no public testbed (yet). And that would be awesome to have someone set one up with our sysadmin team.
  • Working in the testbed brought little feedback (on mageia-marketing and mageia-web lists), mostly positive for the release of it. That was short (a few weeks before the final release), although the preparation work before took a few weeks.
  • I feel no pressure. And this discussion already brought some serious improvements and more are coming (see https://bugs.mageia.org/show_bug.cgi?id=6132 + the handling of different screen resolutions)
  • It is a stable solution, and it is better than the previous one, in the whole schema (new, flexible documented deployment, new map, new navigation scheme and a new community landing page - that itself needs a lot of work too). Of course it can still be improved with more time and more hands. The Web team has its arms wide open to contributors and will be happy to see someone ready to be in charge for the coming months.
  • It's not only a navigation bar, it's a branding element as well. It's currently aligned with the Mageia.Org theme, only more clear (previous one was a list of links with no identity in it). And it's perfectly fine to upgrade it, in a controlled manner. I have no problem with that either.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby doktor5000 » May 28th, '12, 20:46

Well, actually that's quite of a bit of inconsistent reasoning. F.ex. what i'Ve tried to put up earlier, the wiki is made to be in fixed width for the content area, to remove the need for hoizontal scrolling and optimize it somehow for netbooks, but with the navigation bar you do quite the opposite, but again waste real screen estate? I don't care for this one, as most times i don't see it and need to scroll all the way down in the forums, but it's still a pity when real screen estate is wasted.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby wobo » May 28th, '12, 21:15

rda wrote:That's precisely for this kind of directions that this new bar is here, providing more global context. And there will be a learning-phase.
Good luck then, maybe you succeed in what so many others have tried in vain.
The alternatives you ask for are hardly possible because you do not want (with reason) to do this with CSS and/or HTML.

What alternatives?
You talked about "Or, again, alternative designs and patches are welcome." in yoour previous post.

[*] Working in the testbed brought little feedback (on mageia-marketing and mageia-web lists), mostly positive for the release of it. That was short (a few weeks before the final release), although the preparation work before took a few weeks.
You can give access to people who want to test. Same as in QA. Besides, if even among those few people (not much nore than a handful) was negative feedback, this should mean something, no?

[*] It is a stable solution, and it is better than the previous one,
Well, I can't talk about other pages because all I've seen so far is the download page and the forum. In both this fat nav bar sticks out as being an entity alien to the page it is on, in the download page even more than in the forum. It just does not fit in there. It's like having 2 big horses in front of a kid's toy carriage.
.
[*] It's not only a navigation bar, it's a branding element as well.
OMG! The more I sincerely hope for a change.

Romain, this is nothing personal and I really do not mean to annoy you - it is just reason and taste. And style - it is never good style to have something fat on top which leads the focus away from the contents of a page.
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Re: Request: Change of the top nav bar to its original heigh

Postby morgano » May 28th, '12, 21:34

rda wrote:As to reduce its default height, it's currently driven by the negative space we need around the logo - and the logo being properly sized. But on this very forum, we can recoup some of this height by reworking the very forum header template - I have a rough idea about it, but no time to test it yet (remove the blue "mageia forum/share the magic"/search bar + integrate the current page title in top h1 (like in http://www.mageia.org/en/community/ + reintegrate the search bar) in the user tools block).


Thank you for all the work done.

I wonder if it is possible to have the top bar only span half width; from left to middle, and from middle to right place the pane that now is under the top bar?

Then spece will be better used on wide low screens.
But then it is needed that the contents of the panes wrap nicely on narrow low resolution screen of course...
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