www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

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#1 skodateam   User is offline

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www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 26 June 2009 - 03:08 PM

Hi everyone,

thanks for stopping by :)

I have got a few people to comment on my new portfolio website which is still under development. One of them labeled the site as confusing and that sort of freaked me out, nevertheless, I dont want to fool myself into believing that everything is ok if you guys think that there is a room for improvement..

My aim was to deliver a product close to the Adobe style (using their lovely colors) and something "simple and easy" to use.

My main questions:

1, how easy is it to navigate around the site ?
2, are the URL links clearly visible ?
3, what would you change ?
4, is it ok to use the Flash logo ? i suppose not...

Link: http://marostakac.co.uk
Cheers and look forward to some good comments

Maros

This post has been edited by skodateam: 26 June 2009 - 03:09 PM


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#2 BetaWar   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 26 June 2009 - 03:16 PM

It looks fine to me. Everything is pretty straight forward and I get the nav quickly. Someone just doesn't understand websites I am thinking (whoever said it was confusing).
Now, the project links took me a little longer to find. I would suggest making each of the images in the artwork section a link to their project site. That would be quite a bit easier. I would also change the "See the project" link so it changes color on mouseover.
I would try to get it so you don't need to have the site in fullscreen mode, maybe change the size requirements to 600 to 700 pixels high.
You should also probably change the logo, flash may have a problem with you using it :)
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#3 baavgai   User is online

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 26 June 2009 - 03:53 PM

View Postskodateam, on 26 Jun, 2009 - 04:08 PM, said:

3, what would you change ?


Never use Flash. Ever. However, since that's obviously your shtick...

View Postskodateam, on 26 Jun, 2009 - 04:08 PM, said:

4, is it ok to use the Flash logo ? i suppose not...


I did find this rather confusing. If you're going include the logo, you might want to put some obvious embellishment around it.

The "glamorous acts" image appears in two categories, confusing which category you're in. The up down buttons break the standard side to side page flipping metaphor. Everything is exceptionally spread out, it makes the elements feel unconnected.

When I see the message, "you need flash" to view a site, I generally don't.
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#4 nick2price   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 26 June 2009 - 04:49 PM

Isnt it true to also say that flash sites are not recognised by search engines?
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#5 RudiVisser   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 26 June 2009 - 05:54 PM

View Postnick2price, on 26 Jun, 2009 - 03:49 PM, said:

Isnt it true to also say that flash sites are not recognised by search engines?

Correct. That's why most sites have a "HTML Alternative", which is generally crap site just thrown together in 5 minutes for search engines.

Flash websites are pointless, Javascript can produce almost exactly the same effects nowadays in an un-obtrusive style.
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#6 BetaWar   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 26 June 2009 - 07:59 PM

Quote

QUOTE(nick2price @ 26 Jun, 2009 - 03:49 PM)

Isnt it true to also say that flash sites are not recognised by search engines?


Correct. That's why most sites have a "HTML Alternative", which is generally crap site just thrown together in 5 minutes for search engines.

Flash websites are pointless, Javascript can produce almost exactly the same effects nowadays in an un-obtrusive style.

However, that won't be the case for long. Adobe released the Flash API and everything to a few of the major search engines (google being one) so it is only a matter of time until you can search for flash sites exactly the same as any other site.
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#7 skodateam   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 01:34 AM

Flash sites are pointless ? sorry but I strongly disagree with your statement.

The best looking, the most innovative sites are Flash-based and you cant even think of comparing those rubbish html/css with them. Javascript can do the same ? dude, there is a lack of knowledge on your side, you have obviously never touched Action Script which has become one of the most sophisticated languages available now for coders.

Google and Flash actually like each other and there is going to be a lot of support and innovative techniques for looking up flash sites. but every rose has got its thorns, and most importantly Flash is designed for well-known people, artists or those interested in something "special".. meaning no rules, driven by innovation.

you may want to check out PAPERVISION and then come back with some good statements, javascript is 20 years behind Flash and will never reach its standard.

cheers
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#8 moopet   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 02:20 AM

Without wishing to start a war, the notion that google may be able to index flash one day is not the biggest problem. Apart from the fact that it's in the future, and nobody knows how well it will work:
Flash breaks the semantic web.
You can't use the browser's back button, can only copy text that's set up that way, can't bookmark parts of the site, aren't guaranteed to be able to see it in browsers or on operating systems which aren't directly supported by Adobe, have to learn to look in new and exciting places for navigation. Also, most flash sites seem to think it's cool to, for example, replace the scrolling with some kind of horrible mouse-waving thing which is slow and annoying. I think actually a lot of complaints about flash are to do with flash developers going through the equivalent of HTML/JS in the mid-90s. Customise everything! Mystery meat navigation! Blah.
Can you print a page of your flash site? The real problems lie in useability and accessibility.
Can I resize it? The font is small and fussy on my high-res monitor and no, I can't resize it with my browser.
Just because you can make something that on the surface looks like a web site, doesn't make it useable.

That said, your site looks ok. I'd ditch the capital letters and change the title to something other than the web address, which looks odd, especially broken with a space.
I'd also ditch the page transitions. There's just too much going on when you click ABOUT or CONTACT. It's distracting.
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#9 baavgai   User is online

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 03:13 AM

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 02:34 AM, said:

The best looking, the most innovative sites are Flash-based and you cant even think of comparing those rubbish html/css with them. Javascript can do the same ? dude, there is a lack of knowledge on your side, you have obviously never touched Action Script which has become one of the most sophisticated languages available now for coders.


Of course, it's only the best looking if you see it. I block Flash by default. When I do look at Flash sites, they're generally trying to impress me with their clever eye candy. I'm looking for content and Flash is a sign that I'm about to get all sizzle and no steak.

Flash is another embedded widget. It's hardly more sophisticated than it's peers. Silverlight leverages the .NET framework. Java applets have a massive code base and a clean OO language. ActiveX is like running a local program in the browser. They all have the same problem. They step outside the hypertext contract and for this they are insufferable.

On most web pages that are poorly designed, I can still get to the content. If they're simply stylistically horrid but competently created, I can rip the style out and just view the content with a click of a button. An embedded widget is not a web page and comparing it to one shows a fundamental lack of understanding.

I want my content in HTML/CSS so that my browser has a chance to show it to me. My browser might be on a standard Windows desktop. Mine is usually Linux, where Flash is not at it's best. It's sometimes on my phone, where most embedded uselessness disappears.

Sorry, didn't mean to sidetrack into a Flash bashing thread. Flash has it's place, along with it's embedded brethren. It makes a surprising pleasant game engine and I've enjoyed many Flash games. When used in addition to web standards, it can certainly add visual enhancement. However, alone, it is not the basis for a web site.
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#10 skodateam   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 04:54 AM

I do respect your opinion, however let me list a few points to take into account.

1. We are web developers which means that we dont act like children when it comes to a particular technology. Blocking Flash ? you have just erased a huge number of potential customers. You dont have any limits when it comes to web..

2. Flash represents the next generation of web due to the following:
create your own components, customize them the way you want them so you are not dependant upon those ugly, horrible-looking default ones. Especially, artistic people are disgusted by them. remember that we are here to make our clients happy and people like nice things, not old crap from the the 80`s.

3. this is the bottom line: CROSS-BROWSER ISSUES
how many times have you ended up in tears because your site would not look "ok" in your browser ?? do you actually enjoy that ? sorry, I dont and that is why I moved away from HTML/CSS because I was not willing to break the CSS rules just to accomodate IE`s special needs... My flash runs simply everywhere as long as you have Adobe Flash Player which is free of charge and reliable like hell. basically anything produced by Adobe is simply great ( that is just my opinion)..

4. FONTS = how many fonts do you have available in html ? 1 or 2 ? I am a client with 50 000 pounds in my pocket and I INSIST on having special fonts on my site.. what are you going to do?

5. url linking = you can embed Ajax into Flash and everything can be bookmarked.. see my latest flash site.. it takes you a particular image !! that is something i guess.. refer to SWFAddress = does more than html...

6. resizing = would you like to see some examples ? even fonts can resize...

7. big resolution issues = www.w3.org/ = 1024x768 is the standard resolution and you site should be optimized for that according to those you are in favour of.

I can clearly see where you are coming from, I used to have those opinions but the art is to stay open-minded and avoid letting personal preferences affect your general viewpoint.

Blocking Flash or any other technology is simply wrong and running on Linux is.. well.. less than one percentage of people using it ? make your conclusion out of it..

Cheers
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#11 baavgai   User is online

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 07:05 AM

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

1. ... Blocking Flash ? you have just erased a huge number of potential customers.


You're coming at this from a distinctly different point of view. Me, the potential customer, chooses to block Flash because I find it bothersome. You, the content provider, have chosen to dismiss me simply because I don't want your web breaking eye candy.

I am not alone in this, one of the most popular Firefox add-ons for Flash is Flashblock, currently with nearly seven millions downloads to date. It can be argued that NoScript, one of the most popular of all time, is essentially a flash blocker.


View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

2. ... remember that we are here to make our clients happy


Again, there is an odd POV warp going on here. You are a contractor and the client is the one that you create a site for? I am customer, the client your client wishes to reach. It is your job, as the web professional, to explain to your client their options and the advantages and disadvantages of different technologies. Try explaining that they are trading loss of customer base for their desire for total control.

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

7. big resolution issues = www.w3.org/ = 1024x768 is the standard resolution and you site should be optimized for that according to those you are in favour of.


Actually, their main page behaves perfectly well down to about 500px width. The w3c has never defined a standard resolution, though in the past has acknowledge trends, primarily in width increase, 600, 640, 800, 1024. However, now with mobile devices and netbooks, this may be an issue. If you actually want to reference them, read their material.

Quote

Although a screen resolution of 1024 x 768 is predominant in the US, Europe, and Japan, in some areas, such as South East Asia, smaller screen sizes such as 800 x 600 may still be common. Flexible design approaches help significantly in addressing such differences these days. On the other hand, there are also a lot of other devices (PDAs, cellphones,...) with much more restrictive screens. Although not all Web pages may need to work on cellphones, try to design with as few limitations as possible.
-- http://www.w3.org/In...ay-capabilities



View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

Blocking Flash or any other technology is simply wrong


No, it's the prerogative of the consumer. Using such logic, blocking Silverlight is wrong. But consumer adoption has been slow, the people have spoken. If you take the stance of "I know better, I know what's right, yours is ugly, mine is art" you're just being pretentious. Probably less than 5% of the movies made every year are artistic, meaningful works. Most are easily approachable reruns of things people find comfortable; you may draw conclusions from that as well.

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

and running on Linux is.. well.. less than one percentage of people using it ?


Lol, perhaps. The phones and netbooks aren't that large either, but they're coming.

So, your basic argument is screw the consumer if they choose not to adopt my favored technology or simply can't use it? As long as you understand it's that consumer that ultimately pays the bills and are comfortable with that. Good luck.

Edit: buggered quotes

This post has been edited by baavgai: 27 June 2009 - 07:06 AM

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#12 moopet   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 07:16 AM

I think most of your points have been argued, but

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 10:54 AM, said:

5. url linking = you can embed Ajax into Flash and everything can be bookmarked.. see my latest flash site.. it takes you a particular image !! that is something i guess.. refer to SWFAddress = does more than html...

Where is your latest flash site? The URL in your profile here 404s and you didn't give any link.

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 10:54 AM, said:

6. resizing = would you like to see some examples ? even fonts can resize...

I'm looking at http://www.marostakac.co.uk right now and it doesn't resize at all. How are you managing it?
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#13 skodateam   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 08:00 AM

View Postbaavgai, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 06:05 AM, said:

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

1. ... Blocking Flash ? you have just erased a huge number of potential customers.


You're coming at this from a distinctly different point of view. Me, the potential customer, chooses to block Flash because I find it bothersome. You, the content provider, have chosen to dismiss me simply because I don't want your web breaking eye candy.

I am not alone in this, one of the most popular Firefox add-ons for Flash is Flashblock, currently with nearly seven millions downloads to date. It can be argued that NoScript, one of the most popular of all time, is essentially a flash blocker.


View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

2. ... remember that we are here to make our clients happy


Again, there is an odd POV warp going on here. You are a contractor and the client is the one that you create a site for? I am customer, the client your client wishes to reach. It is your job, as the web professional, to explain to your client their options and the advantages and disadvantages of different technologies. Try explaining that they are trading loss of customer base for their desire for total control.

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

7. big resolution issues = www.w3.org/ = 1024x768 is the standard resolution and you site should be optimized for that according to those you are in favour of.


Actually, their main page behaves perfectly well down to about 500px width. The w3c has never defined a standard resolution, though in the past has acknowledge trends, primarily in width increase, 600, 640, 800, 1024. However, now with mobile devices and netbooks, this may be an issue. If you actually want to reference them, read their material.

Quote

Although a screen resolution of 1024 x 768 is predominant in the US, Europe, and Japan, in some areas, such as South East Asia, smaller screen sizes such as 800 x 600 may still be common. Flexible design approaches help significantly in addressing such differences these days. On the other hand, there are also a lot of other devices (PDAs, cellphones,...) with much more restrictive screens. Although not all Web pages may need to work on cellphones, try to design with as few limitations as possible.
-- http://www.w3.org/In...ay-capabilities



View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

Blocking Flash or any other technology is simply wrong


No, it's the prerogative of the consumer. Using such logic, blocking Silverlight is wrong. But consumer adoption has been slow, the people have spoken. If you take the stance of "I know better, I know what's right, yours is ugly, mine is art" you're just being pretentious. Probably less than 5% of the movies made every year are artistic, meaningful works. Most are easily approachable reruns of things people find comfortable; you may draw conclusions from that as well.

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 05:54 AM, said:

and running on Linux is.. well.. less than one percentage of people using it ?


Lol, perhaps. The phones and netbooks aren't that large either, but they're coming.

So, your basic argument is screw the consumer if they choose not to adopt my favored technology or simply can't use it? As long as you understand it's that consumer that ultimately pays the bills and are comfortable with that. Good luck.

Edit: buggered quotes



My basic argument is not what you said. it never came out of my mouth.

it would appear that you are prejudiced against Flash which is fine by me but at the end of the day, you wanna know who your customers are and how you have changed their business. I am very happy with my customer base because I DO care about them and therefore give them what i believe is the best solution. and in most cases, they do ask for Flash (more than plain text and ugly endless pages ) = sorry, I am not targeting those ! check out my portfolio and use wikipedia to get the idea of what i do.. maybe then you understand what i am talking about and whether you would dare offer your products to my clients...

By the way, I have heard some lies here BECAUSE YOUTUBE, the biggest video content provider and please dont argue with me here USES FLASH ! not much point because we both know who makes sense. how do you view youTube videos ? answer that please ! and the entire world ? are you going to tell me that youTube is losing its market because of Adobe Flash Player ? hm..think not..

All i can say on the subject is that I will stick to flash because it is the most popular multimedia-based technology and its popularity just keeps on increasing which you and I know already.. silverlight, please i would not even mention that.. Adobe owns the market with their Flex/Flash apps and glorious ActionScript...

as for that script or whatever for Firefox, you chose to see that, you create your own reality. I focus on things that drive me towards exploring what other people have to offer to me with their creativity, not BLOCKING it..

Using Linux and all that blocking stuff speaks for itself and therefore let me wish you good luck with your web career... and thanks for your points. Install Windows or Mac OSX + adobe Flash professional CS4 and you will never look back !

cheers
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#14 skodateam   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 08:06 AM

View Postmoopet, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 06:16 AM, said:

I think most of your points have been argued, but

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 10:54 AM, said:

5. url linking = you can embed Ajax into Flash and everything can be bookmarked.. see my latest flash site.. it takes you a particular image !! that is something i guess.. refer to SWFAddress = does more than html...

Where is your latest flash site? The URL in your profile here 404s and you didn't give any link.

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 10:54 AM, said:

6. resizing = would you like to see some examples ? even fonts can resize...

I'm looking at http://www.marostakac.co.uk right now and it doesn't resize at all. How are you managing it?



my latest flash site is: www.madelonvriesendorp.com = that demonstrates how you can use AJAX to enable people to use that "fancy" back button in your browser.

as for resizing> I asked a question... would you like to see some sites that resize their content automatically ? if yes, let me know and I`ll send you as many links as you like..

as for my site. I did not implement that because there is no need for it and it really depends on your content. for portfolio sites with heavy-duty images, yes.. that makes sense because you want them to scale up as you resize your browser.. otherwise, it is pointless..

www.apple.com uses a fixed width... and it does not resize.. does it have to ? no!

Cheers
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#15 moopet   User is offline

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Re: www.marostakac.co.uk = confusing ?

Posted 27 June 2009 - 10:06 AM

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 02:06 PM, said:

my latest flash site is: www.madelonvriesendorp.com = that demonstrates how you can use AJAX to enable people to use that "fancy" back button in your browser.

That's actually really clever. The only things it breaks for me are sizing, the status bar, copy/paste and the context menu.

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 02:06 PM, said:

as for resizing> I asked a question... would you like to see some sites that resize their content automatically ? if yes, let me know and I`ll send you as many links as you like..

I'd like to see sites that let me adjust the size of the font with my browser. I'd like to see sites that are compatible with screenreaders, mobile phones, vision impairments like colourblindness - which in a real web page can be overridden quite easily.

View Postskodateam, on 27 Jun, 2009 - 02:06 PM, said:

as for my site. I did not implement that because there is no need for it and it really depends on your content. for portfolio sites with heavy-duty images, yes.. that makes sense because you want them to scale up as you resize your browser.. otherwise, it is pointless..

www.apple.com uses a fixed width... and it does not resize.. does it have to ? no!

Cheers

Apple's website resizes fine in firefox. Ctrl + and Ctrl - are the browser's shortcut keys. I can make it bigger to fit my bigger monitor or even override the stupid style sheet they have so I don't have to put up with light grey on dark grey text in odd places.

Incidentally, what you said about youtube is valid. At the moment, flash is the easiest delivery method for video content for sites like that. HTML5 (which will be out in about 900 years) has decent video embedding support, using open standards, which will hopefully do away with flash video, though.
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