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Gotland

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Re: How to grow the forum
« Reply #60 on: May 16, 2014, 21:54 »
One of my best cycling experiences comes from watching a rare televised women's race and chatting with three people. The same goes for watching track (which I have zero knowledge about) and having a possibility to ask someone in the know  noob questions.

Google is often great but sometimes you want to elaborate or just follow up your question. So do not under estimate  the value of if three people want to watch Municipal tour of Zambia and borrow a chat room to discuss it in real time. Possibilities like that makes VR a unique place.

If the race calendar is pretty much empty, there's no need to have all chat rooms open. Then it is better to *force* members to comment on content in threads, or start new topics.
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    AG

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #61 on: May 17, 2014, 00:45 »
    for anyone who wants to do that - if there are a couple of people wanting to watch a race ...

    we have a 'General Race Chat' .. which is always open.  You are free to use it any time you want, for any race you want.
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  • cj2002

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #62 on: May 19, 2014, 12:08 »
    From a Giro-related chat in the shoutbox just now...

    Quote from: JSG
    this where chat boxes do not help the forum ;) all that in the thread might ? orvshould I be quite.
    Today at 11:43:25

    Quote from: me
    actually - in response to your good point, JSG... having it in the thread would make the numbers look like we were having more discussion. but it would be less spontaneous. we need to adopt a sort of collective responsibility to copy any discussions of interest into the relevant thread
    Today at 12:03:28

    that way, anyone coming along later can join in the (spontaneously started) discussion
    Today at 12:04:04

    a philosophy which i will now attempt to live out by copying these posts into the how to grow the forum thread
    Today at 12:05:09
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    Eric

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #63 on: May 19, 2014, 12:47 »
    Live race chat is fine and gives VR a unique selling point in the world of cycling forums (compared to CN for example where you can only discuss a race in a thread), but the problem with using it exclusively it is that you can't really deeply discuss what's going on - the chatbox doesn't lend itself to complex debates, it's just too difficult to follow a conversation especially towards the end of a race. So while it should definitely stay, the current set up is hampering the activity levels (in terms of posting), the quality of discussion, and therefore the growth of the forum. No policy changes from the admins are required, we've just got to find the balance ourselves between using the chatbox and the thread. :)

    Using the chatbox alone as a way of enticing guests to sign up isn't going to work out very well. If a guest comes on VR on a race day and sees the thread is fairly inactive while the chatbox is active, they have no incentive to sign up. Why would somebody want to discuss something in the relatively informal framework of a chatbox with strangers when they could do the same with their friends on Facebook or whatever else? An active threaded discussion is something no other internet website except a forum can provide (those crap Youtube-style comments sections are the best they can do), and it's the main reason why people go out of their way to interact with strangers online.
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    Carlo Algatrensig

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #64 on: May 19, 2014, 17:49 »
    I don't know if this happened for other people but when I first came across this forum I didn't sign up because I looked at the race threads and thought there was very little discussion going on during the actual races. I hadn't noticed that the chatboxes were at the top and that that is where most of the discussion occurs so making them more prominent might be an idea or it could be that everyone else notices them and I'm an idiot for not seeing them.
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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #65 on: May 28, 2014, 12:25 »
    ok some may have seen my dummy spit before

    it has been pointed out that I can not force or anyone can not force the forum to act in a certain way

    I can see that, maybe I need some time away, it has been pointed out to me as well

    1st I love the chat, for getting to know people behind the avatar of name.

    but if we just had that and maybe wow did you see that link off to the thread , and posting re cycling in there, we would have more discussion more posts

    people seem to think we are not active but a core group and lots of race chats we are busy

    AG putting the race chats in the threads is great

    but the news and important stuff maybe gets 1 post and 56 shouts it does not show an active vibrant forum

    I love the fact I have got to know some people, and the chat is great for that talking about my kid or Mr AG  or CJ choir or Search going overseas to watch football flo the dentist etc etc etc etc etc.

    but I do which the cycling discussion after an intial shout would go in the threads, members log on in 30 min can see a thread and read the news and be up todate, miss the chat session and you have no idea or have to go to twitter to find news.

    hence my point, i have made it a few times, but I am grumpy today so purhaps was not very tactful.

    sorry if I peeed anyone off
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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #66 on: May 28, 2014, 12:29 »
    Would it be possible to put the chat in a pane on the right of the thread? And would that help?
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #67 on: May 28, 2014, 14:33 »
    For big races like the giro i could put the race chat shoutbox to the right of the giro section. Only danger then is spoilers for people visiting the giro forum
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #68 on: May 28, 2014, 14:34 »
    Using the chatbox alone as a way of enticing guests to sign up isn't going to work out very well. If a guest comes on VR on a race day and sees the thread is fairly inactive while the chatbox is active, they have no incentive to sign up. Why would somebody want to discuss something in the relatively informal framework of a chatbox with strangers when they could do the same with their friends on Facebook or whatever else? An active threaded discussion is something no other internet website except a forum can provide (those crap Youtube-style comments sections are the best they can do), and it's the main reason why people go out of their way to interact with strangers online.

    this is a good point. We can post in the race thread to say chat now live.. maybe a graphic would be better and more eyecatching though.
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  • froome19

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #69 on: May 28, 2014, 14:35 »
    What could be done is it is automatically set to the panel being minimized, and then people can maximise when they want to view it. Reducing the chance of spoilers.
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    AG

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #70 on: May 28, 2014, 14:36 »
    we have been posting in all the giro threads with a link to the chat ...

    and something on the main chat box too.

    I agree though - making the chat box links more visible might be a good thing
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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #71 on: June 01, 2014, 19:12 »
    Reducing the chance of spoilers.

    Is that really a risk, I mean who would visit a forum about the Giro without either knowing result, or wanting to know result. Can't see a situation where the race day chat would spoil.
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  • hiero

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #72 on: June 15, 2014, 13:25 »
    I don't know how to bring quotes here from chat, but

    Quote
    AG: and what dont you like about it>
    Today at 13:06
    AG: new - since when?
    Today at 13:05
    hiero: new format - the forum format
    Today at 13:04
    hiero: I was wrong about the break - a group of ~15 riders are off the front w/ ~55 seconds lead.
    Today at 13:04
    AG: what new format?
    Today at 13:04
    hiero: btw - since I'm pretty sure one of the mods will see this - I'm not keen on the new format. I find it pretty, but difficult to find my way around. Sometimes it seems messy.
    Today at 13:01

    I find navigation around the site difficult. I like the chats, and recent posts sidebar, but I usually go to the forum to look for the topic I want to talk about. And I find that hard to do. Too much stuff going on. The section in the middle front - where the "hot topics" get posted like mini-headlines? Usually my browser does not render that cleanly - so I get over lap. And it is confusing. When I get to the forum, it takes more scrolling to explore than I like.

    These are all gui, visual complaints. Other than the rendering issue, anyway. I run Firefox, btw, fwiw. I am not sure how to fix things, but clearer borders might help. I wish I could say do this, or do that, but I am really not sure - the visual design of an app is not one of my strengths. I CAN say I'm finding it difficult to work with though.

    And I could be wrong about "new". I don't recall when we started seeing those mini-headline blocks on the front page. It could have been that I just ignored them and went about trying to do what I wanted to do. So, I had been dealing with it, but after keeping noticing it, I figure that it wasn't just an adaptation issue. So I just thought that maybe I should speak up and say something about it.
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    LukasCPH

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #73 on: June 15, 2014, 14:04 »
    I find navigation around the site difficult. I like the chats, and recent posts sidebar, but I usually go to the forum to look for the topic I want to talk about. And I find that hard to do. Too much stuff going on.
    Let me start by saying that my bookmark takes me directly to the forum, so I rarely, if ever, see the frontpage. I agree that the connection between frontpage and forum can be improved upon.

    I had a look at the frontpage just now, and my suggestion would be to have links to the various subforums (at least the most important ones - Races, Men's & Women's Road Racing, Dark Side; and specials like Classics/Giro/Tour) in the sidebar, at the very top. The race calendar is all well and good, but at the end of the day we want people to post more. You don't post in the race calendar, you post in a forum thread.
    So, I'd suggest this order for the sidebar:
    1) most important subforums
    2) live chat links
    3) race calendar
    4) other stuff (videos, roadbooks, links etc.)

    The section in the middle front - where the "hot topics" get posted like mini-headlines? Usually my browser does not render that cleanly - so I get over lap. And it is confusing. When I get to the forum, it takes more scrolling to explore than I like.
    I think the "hot topics" work really well. You get instant access to the most important stuff right now, without having to search much. Of course that requires that your browser works as intended (sorry to hear yours doesn't).
    And yes, it is a bit of "nudging" by the staff towards certain threads (as is the front carousel). But everybody does that these days, right? ;)

    And I could be wrong about "new". I don't recall when we started seeing those mini-headline blocks on the front page. It could have been that I just ignored them and went about trying to do what I wanted to do. So, I had been dealing with it, but after keeping noticing it, I figure that it wasn't just an adaptation issue. So I just thought that maybe I should speak up and say something about it.
    And we appreciate it. :cool
    If I remember correctly the "hot topics" were introduced in April.
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    DB-Coop

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #74 on: June 15, 2014, 15:12 »
    I agree that the connection between frontpage and forum can be improved upon.

    I had a look at the frontpage just now, and my suggestion would be to have links to the various subforums (at least the most important ones - Races, Men's & Women's Road Racing, Dark Side; and specials like Classics/Giro/Tour) in the sidebar, at the very top. The race calendar is all well and good, but at the end of the day we want people to post more. You don't post in the race calendar, you post in a forum thread.
    So, I'd suggest this order for the sidebar:
    1) most important subforums
    2) live chat links
    3) race calendar
    4) other stuff (videos, roadbooks, links etc.)

    Just the main problem I see too, I normally access through front page, and then normally move on by clicking any of the topics I follow/created that are trending. However when only topics I don't follow pop up I then feel forced to load some random topic just to get the top menu to move to Men's Road Racing or where ever.
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #75 on: June 15, 2014, 15:42 »
    Short one from me, will go in more depth later.

    I view the "front page" and the "forum" as having two very seperate purposes. Consider it a bit like cyclingnews or velonation where the main front page is the news site, and to access the forum you click forum. Most regular members just have the forum bookmarked and go to that. i personally only use the front page a few times a day for checking things etc.

    The front page is aimed primerily for guests. when they visit the site they are immediately greated by all the highlighted "news stories" as they are on a regular news site, the only difference being when they click those "articles" they are written by members of the forum. Its designed more as a portal to highlight the featured topics, and content to draw people into that content, rather than for the regular members of the forum that have the main forum page bookmarked.

    theres also certain search engine logic going on. Google looks at the whole site but the front page is given priority which means that our key articles are indexed more frequently than the rest of the forum.

    just a note on the calendar on the front page. clicking the race actually takes you direct to the race thread, NOT the calendar.

    will post more when ive read up and digested. :D
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #76 on: June 15, 2014, 15:43 »
    on a side note, im aware of some issues in firefox. firefox is crazy buggy at the moment, the gecko engine is really starting to lag behind chromium now and doesnt support webkit which is endlessly frustrating. :(
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  • LukasCPH

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #77 on: June 15, 2014, 16:05 »
    just a note on the calendar on the front page. clicking the race actually takes you direct to the race thread, NOT the calendar.
    I guess this is the time where I admit I've never clicked on a race there. :D
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  • hiero

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #78 on: June 15, 2014, 19:58 »
    Re: rendering. I'm running ver 30 of FF. I'm guessing you guys aren't actually doing the site coding - you're probably buying a package. The authors may want to know. You might be doing it yourself via a Wordpress or Joomla template or the like, too. Same situation - the template author would probably want to know.

    They might want more OS detail - let me know if that is the case.

    If you guys are doing the writing and testing on different targets yourself, power to ya.  Following the credit link to Simple Portal - looks like they are writing your template. Ok, so they'll want to know.

    As for the front page - to my mind it has too much going on. The sections are hard to tell apart, and there is little visual focus. So it makes it hard to find things - or at least I seem to be having issues, as I've ended up in the wrong place a couple of times.

    I understand the desire for the headliner section, but it seems to me to be part of the problem. It just makes things too crowded.  If the rendering got fixed . . .

    Actually, I think probably what I will end up doing is going straight to the forum page and bookmarking there. From there I can get to the chats via the links at the top, and see recent activity in a sidebar. It's a little simpler.

    I like all the jazz on the home page - it is pretty - nice eye candy. Just soo much of it.

    Possible solutions, I guess: stronger border lines between sections. Larger nav links, or somehow more prominent visually.

    Btw - I run Chromium also, and Chrome, but for different purposes. My browser of choice for this purpose is FF. The only browser you will almost never see me use is IE. Avoid it, but then I also avoid Safari. Both have poor security imo. Poorer security. Every browser has security issues today. Even TOR.
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  • AG

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #79 on: June 16, 2014, 00:39 »
    yeah I have bookmarked the forum page and go directly there (which is my excuse on why I didnt know what you were talking about  :lol )

    Gives us a good few things to think about.

    Thanks
     :cool
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #80 on: June 16, 2014, 00:56 »
    Re: rendering. I'm running ver 30 of FF. I'm guessing you guys aren't actually doing the site coding - you're probably buying a package. The authors may want to know. You might be doing it yourself via a Wordpress or Joomla template or the like, too. Same situation - the template author would probably want to know.


    The site is built on SMF (Simple machines forum), with Portal (the side panels etc) from simple portal. But vast swathes of it are handcoded now (to the point where if i try to run a SMF update it just laughs at me). Theres a lot of custom JS, and a lot of the styling is being slowly moved across to webkit compatable stuff with FF does draw issue with. (that said, the latest dev release of opera based on chromium theyve screwed up and nothing works)

    The front page scrollbar issue is user error this end ;) the featured posts show the first x number of characters and its all at set sizes, so if someone adds to featured without checking the post and editing if needed it overflows. This isnt so much of an issue with browserss supporting webkit as ive styled the scrollbars etc, but in FF you get the ugly scrollbars. I do check this daily to make sure no users have made such an error :D

    But yes, the "portal" page is pretty much designed for guests, or for people who perhaps arent so familiar with a forum layout (forums still have a certain stigma attached to them).

    If there are specific bugs, if you can either post them in the bugs thread, or send me a pm, ideally with browser and a screenshot and i can look at them.

    Everything is still a work in progress. The front page is fairly new and does still need some work, i coded it at the start of the year but the then giro and now the tour have hampered any further work. in retrospect i should have done it last october and used the winter to improve it, but im not the most organised person :D

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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #81 on: June 16, 2014, 00:57 »
    Going to read all this properly and see what can be done and have a fresh look at the front page again.
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  • hiero

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #82 on: June 16, 2014, 04:05 »
    The site is built on SMF (Simple machines forum), with Portal (the side panels etc) from simple portal. But vast swathes of it are handcoded now (to the point where if i try to run a SMF update it just laughs at me). Theres a lot of custom JS, and a lot of the styling is being slowly moved across to webkit compatable stuff with FF does draw issue with. (that said, the latest dev release of opera based on chromium theyve screwed up and nothing works)

    The front page scrollbar issue is user error this end ;) the featured posts show the first x number of characters and its all at set sizes, so if someone adds to featured without checking the post and editing if needed it overflows. This isnt so much of an issue with browserss supporting webkit as ive styled the scrollbars etc, but in FF you get the ugly scrollbars. I do check this daily to make sure no users have made such an error :D

    But yes, the "portal" page is pretty much designed for guests, or for people who perhaps arent so familiar with a forum layout (forums still have a certain stigma attached to them).

    If there are specific bugs, if you can either post them in the bugs thread, or send me a pm, ideally with browser and a screenshot and i can look at them.

    Everything is still a work in progress. The front page is fairly new and does still need some work, i coded it at the start of the year but the then giro and now the tour have hampered any further work. in retrospect i should have done it last october and used the winter to improve it, but im not the most organised person :D

    Wow, dude, your js skills are so way beyond me . . . I am in awe. It seems like SO much work just to be cross-BROWSER compatible, not to mention cross-platform.

    Opera - doing a dev release based on Chromium?? OMFG. I used Opera for years back in the 90's. Eventually FF caught up again. All I can say there is wow.

    Front page scroll bar - set sizes - that sounds exactly like what I'm seeing. Essentially all the stuff is overlapping. The headline overlaps the first text. The bottom text overlaps the footer and the next lower headline sometimes I think. Messy.

    But kudos for all the coding . . . no simple task there! Last year, for the 1st time in over 10 years, I put up a website. And discovered Wordpress/Joomla templates etc. Simple html doesn't hack it today. You have to not just be cross-browser, but you have to be viable on mobile platforms. Phew. I'll let somebody else deal with that, thank you. So the only way it can be done is by using scripts. Which is a security risk, but one that we have to accept to use the medium. If you don't use scripting, you'd have to build different sites to suit each end-user-hardware type. Like cell phone, tablet, desktop.

    ne-way, time to go to bed here, get some sleep.

    Later, all.
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  • hiero

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #83 on: June 16, 2014, 04:09 »
    Oh - and I'll get some screen shots to send you when I get a moments concentration free!
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #84 on: June 16, 2014, 12:28 »
    Wow, dude, your js skills are so way beyond me . . . I am in awe. It seems like SO much work just to be cross-BROWSER compatible, not to mention cross-platform.

    Opera - doing a dev release based on Chromium?? OMFG. I used Opera for years back in the 90's. Eventually FF caught up again. All I can say there is wow.
    =
    Later, all.

    Opera has been based on chromium for about 6 months or so now, they have three release threads, stable, next, and developer. Its part of the reason the chromium engine has come so far in the last few months, the opera devs have actually been working on it and doing bugfixes. Google devs would have issues outstanding for months.

    Its a shame though, i used opera from the old days when you paid for it, right up until its switch to chrome. Presto was the best, and is still probably the best rendering engine.
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  • hiero

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #85 on: June 24, 2014, 16:16 »
    we have been posting in all the giro threads with a link to the chat ...

    and something on the main chat box too.

    I agree though - making the chat box links more visible might be a good thing

    I like the idea of the chat in a right-side sidebar next to the thread. OR have a prominent always-on link both ways - FROM chat TO thread, and vice versa. Maybe it is already there, I didn't look as I was reading and thinking.

    But, what I came for today!

    I did a couple of screen shots of the home page. Now, I know I am not very good at designing gui interfaces - I've done enough db work to know my results are not what I would like them to be. BUT, I do know something about graphic design from both page layout and when I was a photog some decades in the past.

    Take a look at the headline clip - you see fonts walking on top of each other. The result is messy. That is one issue.

    Now take a look at the whole page clip.
    • * All the colors are too much. The eye has no place to "land" and focus.
    • * Too many things happening, same result. The eye jumps around the page. You should have a single initial focus, then a smooth spiraling path as the eye - and brain - take in the info.
    • * The Headline Section requires considerable scrolling - and it has scroll bar issues. You have to scroll down just to see the second level - and there is no visual cue that a 2nd level exists. I find it annoying trying to scroll down to see the topic better vs the page. It requires attention to where the FOCUS is (as in programming focus, not eye focus - but where the code thinks your cursor, and therefore your focus, is) or you end up scrolling the wrong section. Annoying.

    Here is what I would suggest. Yahoo pages are ugly - but they communicate pretty well. Take a look at what they do. The grey is easy on the eyes, but dims the borders between areas. Consider dropping it - or increasing border strength.

    The Headlines and scroll bars are overkill. Shorten the Headline to one para or just a few lines - add a Read More link at the bottom. Many news feeds use this technique now. That way you can use a central column vertical stacking format - and the user knows there is more below and will scroll down.
    Like this
    Item 1
    blah blah blay - Read More

    Item 2
    blah blah blay - Read More

    Item 3
    blah blah blay - Read More
     etc

    Or, you can stick with the horizontal layout, but just do the shortening and the Read More. I don't see keeping the scroll bars as a good user idea, since if they want to read more - you want them to click through anyway.

    Next - the Race Chat and Race Calendar. I would suggest at LEAST for the race chat to move it into the menu next to Forum. If you can't do that - then move it up into a click box directly under the menu bar and do NOT keep the graphics on the front page. Give Race Chat its own nav page. Put those beautiful graphic links on that.

    I like recent topics and posts. Those are good sidebars. They work. Maybe Race Calendar fits in that category, I'm not sure.

    You also might consider increasing the font size in the menu bar. Maybe, not sure, but maybe. It might benefit from being a little more stand-out. But I don't think a color change is the answer.

    I guess that's it. I hope the clips make it through the upload correctly. I'm not sure it is working correctly for me.

    Edit: they didn't seem to work.
    So:

     
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #86 on: June 24, 2014, 17:09 »
    ok, this is a page width issue, VR should be forced to a minimum page width so this shouldnt happen, but either i forgot to move the page width from the giro theme which i think is what i was using at the time to the blue theme, or something other than that is amiss.

    the left hand one is page width problem which i will fix. for some reason its allowing widths under what it should do which is causing that scroll bar to appear.

    the right hand one is user problem, whoever added that to the features didnt correct the post beforehand to allow for the 500 character limit and it is overflowing ever so slightly.


    neither of these should happen.

    ive fixed the latter, this is down to us, when we add to features we have to edit the post so that it fits in the space provided, someone forgot. The former is me just checking the CSS to make sure the page width setting is in, which it doesnt seem to be. 

    most of the problem you are having initially is the scroll bars, which just shouldnt be there. tis a bug.
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #87 on: June 24, 2014, 17:15 »
    Ive increased minimum width by 80 pixels. Can you check now ctrl-f5 and see if scrollbars are gone.
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  • hiero

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #88 on: June 26, 2014, 20:32 »
    Ive increased minimum width by 80 pixels. Can you check now ctrl-f5 and see if scrollbars are gone.

    Scrollbars are gone. That helps. Title is still overlapping -

    Ask the Right
    Question

    among others, and I see that affects other pages in some circumstances as well.



    Slight change in topic/focus: ever since I first got involved over at CN, I wondered something. How can all those people keep saying "the forum is dieing, the forum is dieing!" and it never does? Well, I have no numbers to back it up - but here is what I think is going on. CN has the nexus of CN news to draw people back, time and again. I don't go to VeloNation, or inrng, or any number of other locations. I also go to VN, though.

    I think what happens is that some people leave - and you get churn. If the boards there were well run, they would see 5-10 times the traffic they get now. But the traffic that CN attracts keeps the posting and viewing numbers steady, not declining. Just lots of churn in who is active.

    How can VR mimic that dynamic?
    1 - be associated with a major news site.
    2 - get linked to or referred to by other cyccling sites on a regular basis. (These interviews might be good for that for a bit.)
    3 - OR ??? (idk)

    But I think you will get the idea.

    Maybe strike a deal with PeopleForBikes or AdventureCycling - or both - to be their very own forums. Rewrite that sentence with similar groups in EU, or Oz. Not sure what to do - but if we can figure out a way to run under people's noses 10 times a day so they go "oh, look at that" and click thru . . .
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  • Dim

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    Re: How to grow the forum
    « Reply #89 on: June 26, 2014, 21:06 »
    Scrollbars are gone. That helps. Title is still overlapping -

    Ask the Right
    Question

    I get that in firefox but not in chrome or opera. looks like a firefox issue :hb :pc


    Quote
    Slight change in topic/focus: ever since I first got involved over at CN, I wondered something. How can all those people keep saying "the forum is dieing, the forum is dieing!" and it never does? Well, I have no numbers to back it up - but here is what I think is going on. CN has the nexus of CN news to draw people back, time and again. I don't go to VeloNation, or inrng, or any number of other locations. I also go to VN, though.

    I think what happens is that some people leave - and you get churn. If the boards there were well run, they would see 5-10 times the traffic they get now. But the traffic that CN attracts keeps the posting and viewing numbers steady, not declining. Just lots of churn in who is active.

    How can VR mimic that dynamic?
    1 - be associated with a major news site.
    2 - get linked to or referred to by other cyccling sites on a regular basis. (These interviews might be good for that for a bit.)
    3 - OR ??? (idk)

    But I think you will get the idea.

    Maybe strike a deal with PeopleForBikes or AdventureCycling - or both - to be their very own forums. Rewrite that sentence with similar groups in EU, or Oz. Not sure what to do - but if we can figure out a way to run under people's noses 10 times a day so they go "oh, look at that" and click thru . . .

    This is something weve talked about a lot behind the scenes.

    The "traditional" forum approach is a forum attached to a website, so the website, be it cyclingnews, pcuser, its the main site that is the draw, the revenue earner and the name, while the forum is an add on, to complement it. Certainly there are many many sites that are just forums, but on the whole they are in niche areas or specialist areas.

    Forums do still have a certain stigma, and in many ways they havnt really evolved which everything else has moved on, anyone can have a blog now, people use twitter, facebook, etc. I was (or still am) a member of a music forum that at its peak had in excess of 100,000 posts in a month, now its barren. those people still talk to each but are now all facebook friends, phone each other, and the new breed coming through werent interested in forums, they prefer facebook, etc.

    Theres definately a gap between traditional news sites, and the blog sites which are very one sided with only comments sections to use. Podium cafe's model goes beyond that a bit but is still very much a blog site with multiple contributors. We are slowly evolving into something a mix, a forum, but a forum that is content driven rather than discussion driven,

    so on one side we have the traitional forum aim of "how do we get new members to participate in discussion", but we also have the content side of "how do we get more people to provide content".

    So we have created a niche for ourselves. its how to develop that.
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