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The wiki needs a redesign for several reasons:
- It shows that it has been designed by programmer, looks very wiki-ish (AKA it's ugly).
- The organisation is messy and not always consistent, making it hard to find information.
- It does not properly represent the strength and the spirit of XMMS2, and how insanely cool our project is.
- Corollary: it is not very attractive for new users.
Reasons for that include:
- The homepage is cluttered with too much information, making it hard to read.
- There are too many entry points (categories, menus, links).
- The information is not properly emphasized, as most of the pages are plain text with no variations, and little graphical effort.
- It's unclear why one should choose XMMS2, what it's like, where it is and where it's going.
So, many changes are required to improve the XMMS2 website:
- Better organize the pages to remove redundancy and simplify the sitemap.
- Have shorter, clearer menus (7 categories maximum, say usability experts).
- Access all information in a limited number of click (2-3 max); but each page should have a clear purpose and be quickly readable.
- Isolate and emphasize information visually in a more efficient way, using more graphics, isolating components better, etc.
- Make it look sexy and representative of what XMMS2 is both feature-wise and UI-wise (clients).
- Separate the developer content from the user content.
The goal of this discussion is not to define precisely what the website will look like, since that will be part of the new design contest. The goal is to define conceptually what information should be presented where, what pages there should be, etc.
--Theefer 16:33, 5 June 2007 (CEST)andersg pointed out a good question: "Should it be the same site, or one users/marketing site and one dev site?". I think it should be semantically separated, but I am not sure whether we need another site, wiki, or a variation of the design?
The menu is large, and you even have two versions of it (menu, toolbox). In particular, many menu items are more or less redundant: README, About, General Infos; Contact Us and the Community and Development categories. It also puts on the same level Clients (important) and the outdated Project Status page.
Let's try to keep the list short (max 7 items) but complete enough:
- Clients (list of clients)
- Download (release notes, dependencies and download link; link to Installation page and Clients page)
- Community (page linking: mailing list, email contacts, IRC channel, planet and email contacts)
- About (description and feature list; link to history, roadmap)
--Theefer 16:24, 5 June 2007 (CEST)andersg suggests Download could be Getting Started. Why not, although it's less "standard" than Download, which users might look for at first.
That's user-centric. We can have a second developer-oriented menu underneath, but it should be visually different (less emphasis) to clearly show the separation:
- Dev Corner (a dev page containing a small section for each of:)
- Design page (summary of the design, links to pages of all components)
- Git (link to Help, gitweb and merge)
- Mailing List (address, subscription, link to archives)
- IRC (server, link to meetings)
- Links to Roadmap, Bug Tracker, Documentation (repeated)
- Roadmap (link to roadmap page)
- Bug Tracker (link to mantis)
- Documentation (link to doxygen)
- Git repository (link to git.xmms2.org)
Note: The second level in Dev Corner does not appear in the menu!
--Theefer 15:54, 5 June 2007 (CEST) Do we need a Status page? It hasn't been used much and was usually outdated. Do we need a Screenshots page? Better make it very clear that the clients are where it's at.
--ZeeGeek 16:31, 5 June 2007 (CEST) What about keep a short description of the project on the homepage as the About page and keep "Feature" in the menu instead of "About"? And roadmap could be put into developer section. I agree with theefer on Screenshot page, people like screenshots.
--Theefer 17:31, 5 June 2007 (CEST) I suppose we could rename the menu item to Features, yes. It should still contain pointers to the project history and general idea. Roadmap is in the dev section, I was just trying to think what users would want to know about XMMS2 (present, but also future). That's a detail.
The homepage has too much information right now: a complex multi-level menu, a temporary announcement, a small boasting list of concepts, a detailed list of features, a Get Started block, news and Planet news.
What we want to display on the Homepage is:
- What is XMMS2 (and why it kicks' the Swedish reindeers' ass)
- How to get XMMS2
- What's that client thing, are they cool
- How to learn more about XMMS2 (user, dev)
- What's up with XMMS2, is it alive?
Apparently it's super trendy to put a large screenshot on the homepage to show all the features. However this does not really apply to XMMS2, so let's stick to showing all the features. One way to do that would be to have a visual summary of the main features (mlib, multiplatform, client/server, formats, collections), as icons or with other graphical artifacts so it's both attractive and quickly understandable. It could like to a more detailed list of features (as done on Amarok homepage). A large version of the logo would also help too emphasize XMMS2 trademark.
It should be obvious and easy to download XMMS2 from there (see Songbird or Firefox homepage).
In addition, the Homepage could have a block to feature one random client, with a screenshot and a very short summary of features.
Another small flash block could display a temporary info, such as the winner of the Logo Contest, SoC2007 or the Wiki Design Contest.
At the bottom, we can keep the main project news and maybe find a better way to integrate the Planet.