The original NewsPageDesigner had a fairly minimal entry page. Moving to this site, though, has allowed us to add a number of features that encourage interactivity. The downside is that the home page is looking a little bit like a McDonald's menu. Do we like all the extra activity right out front?
I do find the the recent activity very useful. I don't find the members mugs very useful, however, especially since there are so many mug-less members.
Do you like having the rss feeds of the blogs here? They can be just headlines or have the leads of the blogs included.
As an experiment, I added a slide show of most viewed work. Any interest in that kind of thing?
The goal here would be to put no more than what you really want out there. We're also looking into improving the layout. A larger slide show might be nice, for instance. That would also push some of the noisier material below the "fold".
Thanks Desiree. One of our goals for the new site is to include online work. You can post screen shots with links now, but we expect to have something cooler in the near future. The bigger trick will be to get everyone to post here, since NPD was so print oriented up to now.
I think you're right. The page is a bit cluttered and it does slows down the page. It does get a little sluggish when I get to the home page. I also don't think I need a slideshow on the bottom of my page. It also slows things down a bit.
The other page was very quick and easy. I'd love to see some of those folks come back but many of them haven't come on board yet.
This may sound critical but I hope you see it as a more watered down constructive observation.
Question: Maybe you can't answer this thorough the reply here but is there an easier way I can see how many people have seen one of my pieces without actually signing in, or hunting for my pieces and opening them up and then seeing how many people viewed the piece?
Long winded question but that's slowly becoming an aggravation. Small but it does take a few clicks.
I love the most popular and views option.
The larger slideshow I'm not too big of a fan but as long as it loads fast. I also like the slideshow to showcase work that you've picked or others have picked as unique, interesting, appealing and even wacky. The current way is showcasing the last pages someone uploaded so you just see work from one person and they may all look the same.
Good job so far though. I must go but I'm a huge fan, please keep it up and going, I love to visit and talk to other artists and present my work for critique.
There is a little too much going on, though the new features are very nice. I miss the slideshow from the last Web site. I come here to learn what looks good and what doesn't so I can train my newspaper print eye better. However, without the professional slideshow, I am looking at a lot of raw stuff lately, which I don't find as useful.
I also preferred the more selective slideshow, if that's still an option.
It was always interesting (and fun) to see what work made the cut, especially when it was a big national/world event that most of us covered. Plus, I know several young designers who bubbled up with pride if their page or graphic was chosen. It'd be nice to have something like that again.
Ditto to Jen's thoughts (I remember the first time one of my pages made the cut) and ditto to the fact that the current slide show slows me down too much. In fact, I've got my page bookmarked so i can skip the front page all together.
Personally, I don't think the recently uploaded images slideshow of much use (Possibly as its own page, but not as the main item on the site). The most viewed is a bit more useful, but still flawed. If there is anyway Ning will allow a selective (maybe through a separate user name or something) slide show similar to the one that NPD use to have, I would be happy.
Just some rambling opinions:
Multiple slideshows per page is unnecessary. I think the SND update RSS feed is reasonable on the front page. The latest activity bar shows too many entries -- there isn't enough activity to justify this amount of load time and space. The videos widget seems appropriate for NPD's new agenda.The members widget is useless -- this information can be found elsewhere, in a more valuable form.
Those are my thoughts. I personally liked the old (after the redesign) look of NPD's front page (inside pages were a whole other issue, though). Minimalism for the win.
Thanks for the input everyone. We're going to strip down a bit.
Also, it looks like some version of the original NPD slide show will return. The flash version took a couple hours to do, so I had trouble finding the time to update as often as I should have. (I think over the years, I did a couple hundred of those.)
I tried a slide show using the feature option, which is pretty quick. You can also just make an album and post a slide show of the album. That way, anyone can participate.
I love the addition of the social networking, but I do believe the homepage is too busy and all the other offerings take away from the slide show. I'd like to see the homepage be similar to what the old site was and just have links to all the other stuff. Feature the design first, then go looking for all the other offerings on the site.
I like the mug shots. It's always nice to know what someone looks like.