[ZWeb] NZO / Plone / etc

Paul Everitt paul@eurozope.org
Fri, 21 Feb 2003 18:07:41 +0100

On jeudi, f=E9v 20, 2003, at 15:25 Europe/Paris, george donnelly wrote:

> [Paul Everitt wrote (paul@eurozope.org) on 2/20/03 5:49 AM]
>> 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=20=

>> to
>> ourselves.
> Ok, sounds good. I can set aside some time to work on this tomorrow or
> saturday.

I'm visiting family on Saturday, alas.

>> <title>Zope.org Home - Open Source Application Server</title>
>> ...for the homepage?
> That's an excellent start. I think we should drop in Content =
> System after that, like this:
> <title>Zope.org Home - Open Source Application Server, Content=20
> Management
> System </title>
> Or alternatively, identify the competitors and target their keywords.=20=

> ;) Key
> Question: What searches do we want zope.org to come up in the top 5=20
> for?

I think it's an edict that Zope is an app server, not a CMS.  In my=20
opinion, it's one or the other, but calling it both is evil.

To compromise, I put this as the official definition of Zope: "Zope is=20=

an award-winning open source application server for building content=20
management systems, intranets, and custom applications."

We should only revisit that if we REALLY want to suck up years of our=20

Instead, I'd prefer somebody declare themselves the BDFL on Zope market=20=

positioning and shove their decision down our throats.  Seriously. =20
Consensus is elusive on this point.

>>> On navigation: the top 5-9 sections of the site should be identified=20=

>>> and be
>>> prominently and redundantly navigable. The left-side navigation box=20=

>>> is
>>> excellent and I think an abbreviated site map should be at the=20
>>> bottom of all
>>> the pages and i think we should consider a nav bar across the top,=20=

>>> running
>>> under the logo and search box.
>> I'm not sure I understand about the "bottom of all pages" and nav bar=20=

>> part.
> wrt to the abbreviated site map, i mean that it should go in the=20
> footer, at
> the very bottom of every page, to facilitate navigaton. Something in a

I think the "Back to the Future" layout resurrected by Sidnei=20
reinstalls this idea, by having clearly-defined sections in the left=20
side.  I also think this is a common approach.

> roughly similar vein as these sites have (tho a bit more abbreviated):
> http://poorbuthappy.com/colombia/
> http://www.ColombiaUpdate.com/
> wrt to the nav bar, i mean a a horizontol bar that runs across the=20
> screen
> below the logo and has a link to each of the top, 5-9 site sections.
> Something like what zope.com has but with less sections and in a =
> font.

I'm not sure we need both, one in the footer and one in the nav area.

>>> Why are there two Documentation sections? I think they should be=20
>>> merged.
>> Welcome to the long-postponed IA discussion. :^)
> I'm guessing ZC or someone wants to distinguish between the "official"=20=

> and
> the community-contrbuted (tho there's not that much distinction here).=20=

> But I
> think for the user, especially the new user, 2 sections for "the same=20=

> thing"
> is confusing and can cause some loss of confidence in the site.
> Looking at it from the POV of the user, documentation is documentation=20=

> and
> you don't care if ZC or zopeboy101 wrote it (well, in most cases at=20
> least).

Jeffrey is that person, AFAICT.

>>> Let's put News and Members in here.
>> Let's also agree on a limit.  What is the maximum number of items?
> I think 5-9 top level sections is a good number, in fact i would say 7=20=

> max.
> =46rom my days as a teacher I remember reading research multiple times=20=

> about
> how our short term memory can only hold between 5-9 items at any one=20=

> time.
> IA and Usability reaearch makes use of this hypothesis as well.
>>> 4. Javascript:
>>> I think the javascript stuff should be dumped. It slows things down=20=

>>> and its
>>> hard to make this work reliably across all platforms. Also, I=20
>>> suspect the
>>> main user of zope.org is the developer and and developers do not=20
>>> seem to be
>>> javascript fans.
>> I disagree with this last hypothesis.  Look at:
>> http://devedge.netscape.com/viewsource/2003/devedge-redesign/
> I'm not a big user of that site but I would hazard the guess that its
> audience is mainly html/css/js people. Their tech section is basically=20=

> all
> client-side technology ( http://devedge.netscape.com/central/ ).
> So I think their audience is still different from zope.org's.

Their audience is people looking for reference material on building=20
websites.  When compared to porn sites and growing organic tomatos,=20
it's pretty close to our target audience.  Particularly from a goal=20
perspective and a content organization persepective.

>> Their site has a similar target audience as ours, and the audience=20
>> uses
>> the site in similar ways.  (In fact, we could probably learn a lot=20
>> from
>> that site and that page).
> I would definitely like to implement CSS layout, which is what they=20
> have
> done. And their design is attractive, so I would agree that we can=20
> learn a
> lot from them.
>> We should be careful about JS, but we shouldn't banish it.  Rather, =
>> shouldn't be *required* to reach resources.
> Can we turn it off by default? Really my main problem is that it slows=20=

> down
> page rendering and so people who just look at the Big PictureTM=20
> conclude
> that "Zope is slow".

I'll reference this below...

>>> 5. Input Buttons:
>>> The input buttons look weird to me, like caved in. I think one thing=20=

>>> that
>>> would help is giving them some padding so they're not so cramped.=20
>>> Also
>>> perhaps giving them a background color that better distinguishes=20
>>> them from
>>> the white background, perhaps a darker gray with white text or the=20=

>>> 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...
> Perhaps its just my browser (IE5.1.6/Mac). Right now I'm rooting for=20=

> making
> them blue background with white text.
>>> Let's put the actual comment form on the page. To have to wait for=20=

>>> an extra
>>> screen to load before you can input your comments seems wasteful of=20=

>>> time and
>>> an unnecessary barrier. Let's do it the way everyone else does it. I=20=

>>> think
>>> it would be good to offer this as a tab as well along with View and=20=

>>> 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=20
>> "comments"
>> pops up a separate browser window.
> I don't read blogs as much as I used to but the way I remember this is=20=

> that
> many blogs used to host in places where they couldn't install any=20
> software
> or write any useful code (either due to lack of knowledge or lack of
> access). ie they hosted as cheap as possible.
> A service sprung up to host/provide commenting service for these blogs=20=

> and
> this is how they did it because it was much easier to put a remote=20
> link on a
> page than to put a remote form on a page.
> my example is metafilter.com (gotta be logged in tho).
>> Doing it this way can also help performance, as we can cache longer.
> So do we really want to sarifice usability for performance?
> Hmm, MySQL.com does it the same way as NZO...., perhaps it is more
> appropriate
>>> 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=20=

>>> me
>>> people any clue as to what Zope is or does.
>> Would this be part of the graphic?  If so, it might need approval =
>> ZC.  If not, where would you like it?
> Well, a tag line usually does go up around there, where the graphic=20
> is...

Only Jeffrey can make this happen, I believe.

> Its really not clear to a new user what zope is and that is important.
>> 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=20
>> ZopeZen
>> and other sites, there's a pretty common pattern to follow.
> Sounds good.
>>> I'd also like to implement that blog here that I was selling before.=20=

>>> ;)
>> Which blog?
> The one that i was pushing a while back as a workflow/more digestable
> version of Zope News.

Ahh, yes.  Did you make progress on it?

>>> 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=20=

>>> intro.
>> Getting from that two-line paragraph, and into reality, will take =
>> more work. :^)
> I see Sidnei made some change to the frontpage overnight. A definite
> improvment. I'm willing to put some work in here.

Me too, after Sunday.

Feel free to assign some things to me.  Especially some things you know=20=

I'll disagree with. :^)

>> We should drop the link to the Zope book at Amazon.  It's wrong to=20
>> push
>> one book versus another book.
> Given the work put in by the community-at-large without pay into the=20=

> Zope
> book, I'm not sure I agree. I think promoting the one official book=20
> that has
> heavy input from the community is a way of valuing the community and=20=

> saying
> thanks.

Actually, this work didn't make it into the printed version at Amazon=20
so much, and the proceeds don't go back into the community.  I'd prefer=20=

to highlight the online Zope Book rather than the old, out-of-date=20
Amazon book.

However, I don't feel too strongly about this...

>> I agree.  I propose that you and I just start doing some things, once=20=

>> we
>> are allowed to do so.  We should pick one very easy thing and get it
>> done, just to overcome inertia.
> Sounds good. How about navigation/site sections? perhaps not terribly=20=

> easy
> but its something that needs to get settled before doing some other=20
> stuff.

That's a pretty good idea, at least, if I understand your point. :^)

> Are there any other sections that should be added? or removed? Is=20
> there some
> reason why we can't merge the two documentation sections? dump members=20=

> for
> now? add downloads?

I think the section layout we had back in May, and which Sidnei=20
restored in Back to the Future, should become the new official starting=20=

point.  It had a lot of discussion and refinement and was informed by=20
Seb's survey.

Speaking of which, Seb's survey indicated that improving searching was=20=

the highest priority.  If so, that would make searching a good place to=20=

begin as well.