the Fiddler's picture

[Website] Help with site theme redesign

Project:The Open Toolkit library
Version:all versions
Category:support request

Hello all,

I am looking for feedback for a new site theme.

If you have a few moments to spare, please select the "community2" theme in your account settings ("My account" -> "Edit"). Make sure to refresh your browser cache (just press F5) and simply browse the site for a while. You can revert to the previous theme at any time.

Once you have seen the new layout, post your impressions:

  1. How did you find the new layout and color theme? Did you prefer it to the previous one?
  2. Did you encounter any glitches, like misplaced or missing items?
  3. Is the site easy or hard to navigate?
  4. Thoughts on the new frontpage?
  5. Any other suggestions for improvement?

Please post your impressions and make suggestions for improvement. Don't forget to mention your browser and OS if you encounter any glitches!


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the Fiddler's picture



Can't reproduce on Firefox 3/3.5, Opera 10 or Chromium 4.

I am going to add a few hacks for IE6/7 but only once I am satisfied with the layout. I hope that IE8 works out of the box for a change...

Edit: can't reproduce with IE7/8 either. I'm pleasantly surprised, IE8 renders everything correctly! IE7 is having some issues, but nothing too serious or unfixable.

IE6 is completely broken, of course. I will patch the general layout but will not bother with the details (unless someone complains loudly enough or comes up with fixes).

Edit 2: ah, now I see what you mean! This is easy to fix, thanks for pointing it out.

kanato's picture


Yeah, the breadcrumbs look nice now :)
Before the menu were aligned to the bottom of the header, I liked the way that looked better than the way they are now, centered below the image or whatever.

the Fiddler's picture


No worries for the menu, I was trying to implement a better centering method but ran out of time before I could finish the job.

objarni's picture


How the new theme looks on Vista/Firefox 3.5.3:

the Fiddler's picture


Status:open» in progress

Thanks for the screenshot. The menu is now centered (the implementation is supposed to work on IE6/7, too, but it doesn't seem to be working correctly). I've also tweaked font sizes and heading underlines and fixed a host of minor CSS issues. Finally, I've added a glow-y hover effect to the menu, which looks pretty nice I think (need Firefox 3.5 / Opera 9.5 / Chromium 3 / Safari 3 to see this - older browsers degrade gracefully).

Remaining issues:

  1. Front page is not ready.
  2. The breadcrumb issue remains (haven't found a good fix yet).
  3. Still need a logo.
  4. The search field is missing in action.
Inertia's picture


Front page is not ready.

"The Open Toolkit library is an advanced, cross-platform wrapper for OpenGL, OpenAL and OpenCL. It is written in C#, runs on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X and can be used by every .Net language."

This information is repeated below, in the features list. I'd rather see something like this:

"The Open Toolkit library is designed to provide access to cross-platform APIs (such as OpenGL, OpenGL|ES, OpenAL and OpenCL) in managed .Net|Mono applications. Thus it provides a solid foundation for programming in a type-safe, garbage-collected & multi-threaded enviroment and allows users to focus more on implementing features, rather than spending most of their time debugging them.
OpenTK is free to use in commercial applications, using the permissive MIT license and Open Source. You may browse the SVN here."

I don't see how the list of supported APIs and frameworks can be dropped, but in general this description needs to describe OpenTK in a more abstract way.

Still need a logo.

Zero comments on my sketch so I believe it's not the way to go and I should probably not suggest any more designs. You barbarians wouldn't recognize art if someone hit you with it! :P

the Fiddler's picture


Major updates - the new theme is nearing completion and should be ready for general use.

  • Blocks moved to the right. Makes better use of screen estate (content comes first).
  • Tweaks to font size for improved readability and cross-browser consistency.
  • Tweaks to link colors (lighter) and font style (bold). They should be both easier to detect and more readable now.
  • Improved navigation menu (looks best on browsers supporting CSS text-shadow: Fx 3.5, Chrome 2+, Opera 9.5+, Safari 3+).
  • Improved breadcrumb position.
  • Improved frontpage layout (no scrolling in most monitors!)

What's missing:

  • Shiny download buttons for the new frontpage. Can anyone help here?
  • Obsolete browser support. IE6 is having problems with the frontpage and any page containing tables. Can someone please check for problems in IE7 (or IE8 in compatibility mode)?
  • Size optimization. The graphics and CSS can be reduced to save maybe 10KB per page. The frontpage can also be tweaked to reduce the number of HTTP requests.
  • A couple of tweaks to the new logo (better positioning, maybe add a gradient).
  • A few minor tweaks to html lists.

Feedback? Other ideas for improvement? Anyone knows how to make IE6 respect table widths? Anyone know how to design shiny buttons? :)

zahirtezcan's picture


for the download buttons issue, top menu white shadow (glow) looks great imho, why not use same for download area instead of images?

the Fiddler's picture


Well, you'd need a background anyway for the glow to be visible, so why not make the background shiny from the get go?

objarni's picture


I think the buttons look nice.

But the "demo" link is the same as the "OpenTK" link. What will the Demo package contain? The example runner?