[ZWeb] NZO / Plone / etc

Paul Everitt paul@eurozope.org
Thu, 20 Feb 2003 11:49:28 +0100

george donnelly wrote:
> [Sidnei da Silva wrote (sidnei@x3ng.com) on 2/18/03 2:55 PM]
>>Sorry for the confusion. I hope you have time to make some suggestions
>>at least. I would be glad to implement them.
> hi sidnei

This is a good note, thanks!

> Ok, I have some comments/suggestions. If they are liked, then I'll try to
> find some time to implement them. (Though I guess I would need access and
> I'm still unclear as to what I have to do to get this.)

This is a good point for me too.  I haven't signed the form for the 
privacy policy thing.

> 1. HTML Code:
> The template uses ways too many div's. I don't know if there is much of a
> performance cost but it seems needlessly messy. Also, why does it use a
> table? If its for NN4 compatibility then I can implement a way to get
> NN4-compatible all-CSS/no-table layout.

It probably is needlessly messy.  I did the original "de-tablification" 
of the design and probably left in a few too many divs.

I'd like to help on this.  Perhaps you and I could collaborate, and free 
Sidnei up a bit?

If you agree, then I propose that we pick a time to meet in #nzo on 
irc.freenode.net and lodge some collector entries that we then assign to 

> 2. <title>:
> The <title> of the first page should have some keywords in it, eg Content
> Management System, Application Framework, etc so that Zope.org comes up
> prominently on searches for these terms in search engines.

I agree.  How about:

<title>Zope.org Home - Open Source Application Server</title>

...for the homepage?

> 3. Navigation:
> The Welcome, News, Members and Search (should be called Advanced Search)
> links are really kind of obscured and not very useful in their present
> location.


> On navigation: the top 5-9 sections of the site should be identified and be
> prominently and redundantly navigable. The left-side navigation box is
> excellent and I think an abbreviated site map should be at the bottom of all
> the pages and i think we should consider a nav bar across the top, running
> under the logo and search box.

I'm not sure I understand about the "bottom of all pages" and nav bar part.

For nav bar, do you mean the breadcrumbs thing?  If so, it's already in 
there ("You are here:").

> Why are there two Documentation sections? I think they should be merged.

Welcome to the long-postponed IA discussion. :^)

> Utilites is a pretty generic term; its not obvious what would be in that
> section.

I agree.

> Are DevHome and ZopeProjects the same thing?

Perhaps.  "Projects" was my idea, but I didn't do a good job balancing 
how it fit into existing stuff.

> How about a Downloads Section?

True, we're not making "Download Now!" very prominent.

> Let's put News and Members in here.

Let's also agree on a limit.  What is the maximum number of items?

> 4. Javascript:
> I think the javascript stuff should be dumped. It slows things down and its
> hard to make this work reliably across all platforms. Also, I suspect the
> main user of zope.org is the developer and and developers do not seem to be
> javascript fans.

I disagree with this last hypothesis.  Look at:


Their site has a similar target audience as ours, and the audience uses 
the site in similar ways.  (In fact, we could probably learn a lot from 
that site and that page).

We should be careful about JS, but we shouldn't banish it.  Rather, it 
shouldn't be *required* to reach resources.

> 5. Input Buttons:
> The input buttons look weird to me, like caved in. I think one thing that
> would help is giving them some padding so they're not so cramped. Also
> perhaps giving them a background color that better distinguishes them from
> the white background, perhaps a darker gray with white text or the blue
> that's in the header and white text.

Hmm, they don't look caved to me, and they have a background color. 
We'll have to investigate this more...

> 6. About box:
> I frankly don't see the need for the About box that appears on every page.
> How about this:
> Status: this only needs to be seen by a manager or the owner of the object
> Type/meta_type: ditto
> Last Modified: Let's put it at the bottom of every view method like this:
> Last Modified: 2003-01-12
> Creator: Let's put it in a byline under the title of the object. For
> example:
> Created by zettai 2003-01-12

I agree on all of this.  And fortunately, this is something you and I 
can do pretty easily.

> Let's put the actual comment form on the page. To have to wait for an extra
> screen to load before you can input your comments seems wasteful of time and
> an unnecessary barrier. Let's do it the way everyone else does it. I think
> it would be good to offer this as a tab as well along with View and State
> etc.

I'm not sure I agree that this is the way everyone does it.  It seems 
that many blog sites are moving to a model where clicking on "comments" 
pops up a separate browser window.

Doing it this way can also help performance, as we can cache longer.

> 8. Tag Line:
>  Zope.org has not tag line. It needs a short and prominently placed
> description of 8 words or less because the word "Zope" does not give me
> people any clue as to what Zope is or does.

Would this be part of the graphic?  If so, it might need approval from 
ZC.  If not, where would you like it?

> 9. Preferences: 
> I think you should also be able to specify here whether people be allowed to
> contact you via the feedback form(s).

Hmm, this is good, but (IMO) a lower priority than the other things you 

> Also, while changing my prefs i ignored the skin form and simply went with
> the default which was Plone Core. Well, this locked me out of the site, sent
> me a http auth dialog box that only went away after cancelling it 6 times (i
> clicked cancel and it came back, cancel, came back etc) and the showed me
> the CZO style.

Hmm, the other skin must be referencing something with a botched 
security?  Probably in actions.
> 10. Search Results
> Let's do it the normal way:
> linked Title
> Descriptive Text
> Date/Author/Etc
> This works for google, yahoo, etc etc. Let's leverage the standard.

I had originally done a CMF version of the results template that looked 
like this.  I think everyone liked it.  Sidnei, do you know where it is 
these days?

> Let's also make the Keywords of objects appear in the search results linked
> to a search that results only in objects with that subject. The same with
> Author/Creator and Item Type.

Lower priority, IMO.  Good idea, though.  However, it will make us 
confront the "what should the keywords be?" question.

> It would be interesting to be able to search within any given results set.
> 11. News:
> The most important aspect of a news item is the title, right? so let's make
> that the first and biggest part and not the posted by etc etc. Also those
> lines are not necessary. also the title should be linked to the full text.

I think display of news was something that received a lot of talk but 
not much action last year. :^)  I'd like it to look exactly like ZopeZen 
and other sites, there's a pretty common pattern to follow.

> I'd also like to implement that blog here that I was selling before. ;)

Which blog?

> 12. Members
> Is it really useful? Or are there plans to build this out that just haven't
> been realized yet?

Good point.  If nobody steps up and comes up with a good Members page, 
we should remove the link.

> 13. FrontPage
> I would opt for a 3 or 4 column front page that has information
> from/pointers to all of the sections along with a short 1 paragraph intro.

Getting from that two-line paragraph, and into reality, will take some 
more work. :^)

> And let's not forget the RSS feed, the news box, the zope exits and the
> image of the zope book linked to amazon.

I'm not sure how to do the zope exits.  It's been kind of controversial 
and I'm not sure who wants to be the gatekeeper for those listings.

Stated differently: unless someone will volunteer to own that box and is 
given the authority to make those decisions, we should drop it.

We should drop the link to the Zope book at Amazon.  It's wrong to push 
one book versus another book.

> 14. Things that Rock
> The overall design
> The contents view and the recently added items stuff is very cool and looks
> very good.
> The breadcrumbs are excellent.
> The index pages of the sections are very well done.
> All your hard work!
> Like I said, I'm willing to implement this stuff, tho perhaps not very
> rapidly.

I agree.  I propose that you and I just start doing some things, once we 
are allowed to do so.  We should pick one very easy thing and get it 
done, just to overcome inertia.