Posting Date: October 01, 2002
WebWord Comment -- I just made a couple of small changes to WebWord to improve the overall usability and address some design issues. First, I have added horizontal lines between all comments. I've noticed that it is hard to scan through pages because all the text bleeds together. Also, on a certain design list *cough* Yah Hooray *cough* someone commented that it is hard to scan through pages. So, I made the change. Second, *cough* because of Jack Schonchin *cough* I opened up the archives so that it is possible to comment on old items. And, with some work, this also means that you can scan through the archives to find old comments. As always, thanks for the feedback. I do listen, even if I don't always act immediately.
Oh, and third, I have increased the size of the comments box. Enjoy!
Thanks for the changes - I also noticed that a Search box appeared, and there was a "comments" box added to the news submission area!
Lydia, that's right. That was recently added too!
Do you want to get into other suggestions now?
Vincent Flanders' forums would cookify you (and yes, I would accept your cookies, John, just don't too big a head) and would highlight threads where there were additional comments since your last visit. Nice touch, I always thought...
Frank, that is a great idea. A long time ago, someone else also mentioned that idea to me. I think maybe it was Mac. I'll keep it in mind, certainly.
Surely you'd be better of with a few big monkeys instead of lots of little ones?
Who ever said throwing more monkeys at a problem won't help fix it?
Hi John, is there any way a webwordie can subscribe to discussions/postings without having to 'pogo-stick' in and out of postings? i.e. receive postings/threads in the email?
Discussion - when I was in London this year attending a usability seminar (run by Caroline Jarrett - *plug plug* - www.effortmark.co.uk), an interesting point was raised. How many of us ("usability folks") have applied our own methods on our web site designs *some of us stared blankly into space and twiddled our thumbs* This was about the time I decided to do a re-brand of Apogee's site, including usability activities as part of the process including user analysis and usability walkthrough (also incorporated the user feedback received after posting our ad. in webword). Would be an interesting one to put to the vote - how many usability people have taken their own medicine? May get some interesting results.
I would normally sneak this chance to put in a plug for my website, www.morriscox.com, but the site is down, as is the site of the ones I got my website from. A traceroute stops at custname-gw.customer.alter.net [126.96.36.199. My usability question is: why can't I get any information on what happened and the status of the repairs? It's like staring into a black hole. I can't contact my hosting company and alter.net turns out to be uunet. Their network status page claims all is well. It's been this way for 36 hours (at least) so far.
Hi Morris, a quick domain lookup at www.register.com reveals that your domain www.morriscox.com expired on 22 Sept 2002. If you have not renewed your domain name, my understanding is that your DNS entries get put on hold. Does any of this ring a bell?
So can we conclude from this that (at least some of the) folks over at Yayhooray "understand usability"? I sure hope so.
John, I cannot take credit for first suggesting the highlighting of new threads. The earliest suggestion that offered a simple solution came from Eric Schied on this webword item.
I prefer incremental changes to 'big bangs' because it is much easier to assimilate them without having to re-learn how to suck eggs.
Re: Scanning Old Comments. I have improved (hopefully) the Webword DNA stats page so that you can view all comments broken down into weekly chunks, and view all comments by the top 20 or so active posters.
Adam, A number of us already have acknowledged that some of the people on YahHooray made some good points about usability. On the other hand, some of them don't know what they're talking about. I suppose they would be the people who aren't 'practising designers'?
Daniel, I can't reach www.doteasy.com, the ones that I got morriscox.com from, so that I can renew.
Morris, I can see the title of the site load in the browser's title bar, but the rest of the page is taking forever to load.
What about comment permalinks?! They would be oh-so-nice. No more "scroll down to see my comments."
Scroll down to see my comments in the above link. *grin*
As soon as I finish my current project (hopefully end of October), I'm redesigning Webword - with John's help/consent or without. ;)
This I swear on the [insert Jedi holy book here].
Hey Madman/John, if there is a re-design, how about we implement some good *old fashioned* usability activties on some of the sample designs before going to launch :) I would be pleased to run a few evaluation (walkthrough/testing) sessions in Hong Kong to see what feedback you get from the usability community here.
Update - I have my site on www.legran.com for now.