I have been getting a new website layout that is very awkward. Old website header is missing, information stacked closely on the left side,
some threads jammed all the way to the right side and partly obscured.
I have not noticed any comments. Is this just on my computer or is anyone else have the problem?
I cleaned my Browser History, and that has cleared up some of the problems but about half of the threads are truncated on the right hand side. On another thread, Terry has said they will do more work on it this week, so it will be corrected before they are done with it.
I think the old one needed a spell checker more than it needed a facelift, but once they get it working we will all get used to the new layout.
Glad it helped. I think most of the issues people are reporting are related to screen resolution and the fixed-sized layout they choose.
As a web developer, worrying about end user screen resolutions used to be a common concern but lately we've grown much more used to battling cross-browser issues. Sometimes it's easy to forget for us web devs to forget not everyone has a giant multi-monitor setup!
I found the solution to my problem, i believe. While it is too much trouble to go into the Control Panel and change the resolution each time, as the computer has to be turned off to apply that, IE 10 has a new icon that can change the size of the text with just one click, so I will leave this at the large resolution for other sites, and just reduce the text size so it fits in the new site.
[quote="ERNIECOPP"]Terry denied the extra wide margins were put in to make room for more advertising, but what other purpose does all the blank space serve?
The narrow layout requires more length, which takes more time to scroll down. I would think the text area would have priority and the name and dates column and side bars much smaller.
It's just poor design, for all the reasons you mentioned, plus some others in terms of usability and accessibility. The bars on either side are just empty background; if they were intended to hold content they'd have placeholders there in the HTML. Of course they could place content there anyway -- CSS allows you to place content anywhere -- but I believe them. It's not like people won't notice if ads show up there!
Although aesthetically I do prefer the new title and less busy-ness, and they certainly cleaned up a lot of stuff that appeared to be duct-taped on to the old site, not being able to use the site on my tablet computer now is a major disappointment. Previously, the site was seamless across multiple devices.
On the upside, they didn't make the text medium gray on a light gray background, which is my current pet peeve in "trendy" web site design. *Grrr*
I thought you already knew about changing the text size in the browser when you mentioned 125% text. Using the mouse scroll wheel to zoom in or out while holding down the Ctrl key does this as well if that's easier for you. (And works in most applications, not just web browsers.)
Linda - Terry said on the other thread that "tags" was removed as a feature due to lack of use.
I was familiar with changing the text size in the control center, but that requires rebooting which means having to re enter other programs. Recently, there has been an Aa icon on the top row, to change the text size, but it only works on some screens, not others. I knew, but never used, the control button to change text, but had forgotten the second part, about the scroll.
The icon text sizer just takes a couple of clicks, but i will use the Control/scroll a few times to try both ways.
Apparently, the control/scroll will not work on this laptop. Instead of a mouse it has the pad, and i have to hold control down with the cursor on the the scroll button.
On the tomato thread, in this forum,the text adapts to either larger or smaller, up to the largest, text, by self adjustment for the width.
But on some of the other threads in this forum, like this one we are using now, the program does NOT adapt to the text size, which causes the truncation. So, if Terry finds this problem and is able to correct it, that should take care of the problem.
You might want to post that in the official thread, Linda. I don't think any of the powers that be are looking in here.
But no, they aren't going to center the text on the screen. But you shouldn't have to scroll. You may want to look again at some of the stuff Ernie and I posted on that further up the thread and see if something in there helps you out.
The official thread has so many prolems posted that Terry is overwhelmed. I suspect she is depending on a Tech that is in way over his head. I suffered the same problem when in business. She does not realize it yet, but may very well have to change Techs and redo the entire thing.
You seem to know more about computers than most of us do, and suggestions from folks like you have helped a lot of us now, instead of waiting for the entire redo.
I've been doing web programming for a living for a dozen years and other computer programming before that. And because of that experience, I wouldn't want to point fingers at any one person or group of people, because the problem could be anywhere in the chain of decisions. But it's always the developers that end up getting the blame and working late nights to fix it and the customer service folks who get their ears worn off listening to complaints.
The site has fundamental design issues, and I fear they are trying to duct tape on some technical fixes instead of realizing *why* the site isn't working for so many in terms of scrolling and such.
I've never written a ScriptMonkey plug-in, but I'm getting tempted to learn how so I can restructure the site to make it more viewable.
I pretty well gave up on the site because of the layout problems, and all the added advertising i am seeing, but checked back in this morning, and still seeing some of the old problems and a new one or two.
How is it working for the rest of you?
Before giving up, i did all the recommended changes to my computer, cleaning the history, reducing the text size, etc, but the problems were obviously not because of my OS. I do have an HP Laptop, not a desk top computer, but that has never been a problem with any other site.
I dunno about extra advertising -- I use ad blocking software so I don't see it anyway.
To me, the site has gotten much better than it was. At least the font sizing is back to something reasonable. The HUGE amount of space on the left is very annoying, plus the wasted space all over the screen because they didn't implement CSS has adjusts to the user's resolution. There's nothing like 5" of text in the middle of a 27" monitor. (And for smaller monitors, scrolling around.)
Given that the admins refuse to talk about it anymore, I suspect this is all they are going to do.
I thought maybe some of my problems were that my monitor was only 19'', does that white space get wider and the text box stay the same on a larger monitor. Is CSS the reason other sites fill the screen and the text is larger?
Have you tried viewing the forum by selecting "View", the "Style" then "No Style". The trouble is I have not found a way to keep it selected . But at least you can read the posts much better.
I just tried clicking on "NO Style" and the page centers completely on the screen. Hardly any grey space on either side.
But, I have to click on every single page I go to to make this happen...
And the page setup looks really weird. Text is a whole different font, like a Courier. Picture upload has 5 boxes, upload a file has two boxes, and the normal tabs in the other view appear as a "List" with just the tab headings...
Ernie, I just wanted to verify you were using something relatively current.
I pulled up the site in all different kind of browser formats and compatibility standards. I also tested the site for cross-browser compatibility and it came back good but was dinged for not being responsive web design. (Duh. Fixed width formats = bad.)
The only way I can get it to scroll is if the resolution on the monitor is 1024x768. A lot of older laptops, computers and monitors don't support anything higher. If yours does, you may want to increase the resolution, then use the windows settings to make your icons and text larger.
Since they keep saying they just can't figure out why some people have to scroll, I don't have faith they'll be changing anything.
I downloaded the site's stylesheet and made a couple of small modifications -- namely losing the left column, although you'd also lose the search bar and FB buttons. It needed tweaking, but the real problems were individually style elements which I couldn't control from a master file.
However, when I went to test it, I ran into a problem -- IE used to have a setting where you could apply a style to a single site. It seems that option is no longer there, and I couldn't find an add-on that does it.
Does anyone know where this option went? There's only the option to load a style sheet for all pages, and I don't think Ernie wants to lose every other site's formatting for the sake of DG!
I do have the Windows 7, and do not want to move up to 8, and i intend to stick with MSN because i have had better luck with their security features, but they have dropped a lot of good features to make room for some not so good improvements.
They can leave it like it is if they want to, but there is an awful lot of competition out there for the advertising they are making room for. And without a lot of viewers, that advertising will not be as profitable.
Thanks for all the good info you have offered on this problem.
So, I thought the purpose of changing was to make the site more compatible with the different systems. But by switching to a fixed width box it makes it less compatible? Certainly seems less compatible on my computer.
Ernie, this has nothing to do with Windows 7 or MSN. It (I think) has to do with the resolution your monitor is set at. This site will not display properly on any screen with less than a 1280x1024 resolution.
[quote]But switching to a fixed width box it makes it less compatible? [/quote]
Yes, because by setting a fixed width it won't be compatible with a whole range of modern devices like tablets and smartphones. (If you want an example of good responsive design, go to Disney.com and play with the size of your browser window. No matter what size it is, from huge to phone size, you can see the relevant content and it resizes to fit the window.)
Fixed widths went out of good practice about ten years ago. Granted a lot of existing sites are out of date or sites do it anyway because it's easier, but they generally have the decency to put the ads on the right side of the screen so it doesn't interfere with people actually, you know, using it.
The gardening population has a lot of elderly and disabled people. Assuming that your users have modern computers and don't need to use a larger resolution so they can see what's on the screen is just piss poor design.
Ok, I went to the Disney web site, it was fantastic on the home page! With my zoom at 150 and text size set to Largest the site was awesome! But then trying to be fair, I looked around awhile and realized...The entire site is just one big add! They don't have to worry about a "content" area vs. add area, all the content is ADD area! I looked for a text box of some type to compare to here, could never find any place I could actually type a message in. Still looking around some more I found this page, looks similar to what I see here on DG site on my computer(This was zoom at 100 but still with text set to Largest. Of course I saw no overlapping text areas and I did not have to scroll anywhere on the site!
I am editing this to add that I just noticed that the pale blue background is not as glaring as the white empty space here. I had rather the text be larger the empty space smaller, just saying the pale blue seemed to serve a purpose.
Ha ha, content is content... and most web sites are all advertising! Trust me all that content is generated on the fly using databases just like this one is. No one sits there and reprograms every time they want a new photo on the front page.
The image you posted does have a reason for having a smaller column of text in the middle. It would be really hard to read text that goes all the way across the page on a wide monitor. Our brains and eyes like line breaks when we are reading; I don't know why. In printed books that are really large (like textbooks), they often do two columns of text up and down, but with out a distinct physical page end, on web sites it's harder to do columns effectively.
Also, that's a big terms and conditions page. People would likely want to print it on letter or legal sized paper; no need to create a second "printable" view that way.
The key difference is being able to accommodate smaller widths as well as larger ones, not that you necessarily have to take up the whole space all the time.