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DigiRev
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I finally finished the design for my site. All HTML/CSS is validated. I was wondering if you could think of any improvements I could make in the design/layout?

I tested it in FireFox, IE 7, Opera and Netscape. But since I upgraded to IE 7 I can no longer see how it looks in IE 6. If any of you who have IE 6 can tell me, I'd (really) appreciate it.

http://www.DannyDotGuitar.com/MyIM/

Thanks in advance. Smile

Ed Seedhouse
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I find the color scheme too

I find the color scheme too "blue" and a bit too bright. If you are going to use a monochrome type color scheme like this I think the blues should be lighter and a bit grayer.

The color gradient effect tends to hide the content because it starts off too dark and is therefore distracting to me.

Why set your base font to .8em? Do you want every visitor to see a font size smaller than their natural preference? I've taken the trouble to set 1em on my system to a value I like, why do you want to over-ride my judgement about what works for me? To the site's credit it takes resizes well, but why should I have to go to an extra effort to read it?

None of your links work so this isn't a finished site and if you wanted comments you should have used another forum since "site checks" is intended for basically complete sites. What you have here is a page stub that isn't actually a site yet, so we can't check on important things, such as how your navigation works. Basically it doesn't work now at all. Make it into a real site and come back then.

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DigiRev
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Hm, I thought I'd post it

Hm, I thought I'd post it here since the design is finished and that's what I wanted opinions on. Tried to post it in the right forum but I guess this isn't the one?

I couldn't think of a good font color to use for the text that went well over the BG gradient. I will take your advice and make the start of the BG gradient lighter so the text shows up better.

About the font size, yes I think it looks best at .8em. 1em looked too big. I guess 1em would be more user-friendly for a lot of people who take the time to customize their browser display settings. Then again, I don't see how it's much different than most sites that set their font sizes in pixels/pt. Except it's relative to the user's display settings. Wording it the way you did as "why do you want to override my judgement of what works best for me?" seems a bit harsh! Obviously that wasn't my intention. With that said, most people don't customize their settings and leave them as defaults. What would you recommend? Doing it the way I think it looks best, or keeping it relative to user's display settings to conform to the low % of people that take the time to do that?

Resizing was the major issue for me and also gave me a lot of problems. I wanted it to look good for all, or at least, most resolutions.

Anyway, thanks for the feedback, it helps a lot. Smile

P.S. Any suggestions for which blue/gray colors to use and where to use them? Maybe the top navigation menu? Or the left one? I suck when it comes to colors.

Ed Seedhouse
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DigiRev wrote:Hm, I thought

DigiRev wrote:
Hm, I thought I'd post it here since the design is finished and that's what I wanted opinions on. Tried to post it in the right forum but I guess this isn't the one?

Well, as long as the moderators don't mind it's probably OK. It's just that this particular forum is meant for sites that are nearly ready to roll out live.

Quote:

About the font size, yes I think it looks best at .8em. 1em looked too big.

Just because it looks "right" on your screen doesn't mean it will look "right" on anyone else's screen, and who are designing your site for? Yourself, or those who will use it?

If the default font size looks wrong then I suggest that's a sign that something is wrong with your chosen layout, and you should fix that, not the font size.

Have a read through the "Truth and Consequences of Web Site Design" site.

Quote:
Then again, I don't see how it's much different than most sites that set their font sizes in pixels/pt.

Well most web sites are crappy - is that a reason for you to put out your own crap?

Quote:
most people don't customize their settings and leave them as defaults. What would you recommend? Doing it the way I think it looks best, or keeping it relative to user's display settings to conform to the low % of people that take the time to do that?

Presumably, people who don't resize their default fonts don't resize them because they find the built in defaults acceptable. If they found them unacceptable they'd find some way to change them. Why would you want to override their judgment in that regard?

Quote:
P.S. Any suggestions for which blue/gray colors to use and where to use them? Maybe the top navigation menu? Or the left one? I suck when it comes to colors.

I suck when it comes to colours too. I use this page to browse for various shades, then adjust to where it looks reasonably right. Also the color combinations site I often find helpful. There are probably better resources out there if you do a bit of google searching.

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DigiRev
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Ed Seedhouse wrote:Well, as

Ed Seedhouse wrote:
Well, as long as the moderators don't mind it's probably OK. It's just that this particular forum is meant for sites that are nearly ready to roll out live.

Oh ok, my mistake. Smile

Ed Seedhouse wrote:
Just because it looks "right" on your screen doesn't mean it will look "right" on anyone else's screen, and who are designing your site for? Yourself, or those who will use it?

Well, obviously I'm not designing it for myself. Smile I want it to look right for everyone so I may go back to 1em. It doesn't look 'wrong' to me with 1em just slightly too big but it's not a big deal I guess.

Ed Seedhouse wrote:
Have a read through the "Truth and Consequences of Web Site Design" site.

That looks like a very simple and straightforward article, thanks. I'll be sure to read it.

Ed Seedhouse wrote:
Well most web sites are crappy - is that a reason for you to put out your own crap?

Well, I've seen quite a few nice looking sites with fixed font sizes. Tongue And probably just as many crappy ones. I'm trying (real hard) to make this site look nice and being new to CSS/not a very good web designer doesn't make things any easier!

Ed Seedhouse wrote:
Presumably, people who don't resize their default fonts don't resize them because they find the built in defaults acceptable. If they found them unacceptable they'd find some way to change them. Why would you want to override their judgment in that regard?

Well, most people who aren't too computer-savvy either figure the website just wasn't designed well, or don't have a clue/wouldn't bother changing their browser settings. There will probably be just as many people like that visiting the site as there will be people who know what they're doing.

Ed Seedhouse wrote:
I suck when it comes to colours too. I use this page to browse for various shades, then adjust to where it looks reasonably right. Also the color combinations site I often find helpful. There are probably better resources out there if you do a bit of google searching.

Thanks, the ColorCombos site looks good. I've used this site in the past but I suck with colors so I could never get a good color scheme going.

Anyway, thanks for all the criticism. It helps a lot. Smile

I'll make the changes to the site and post back to see what you think.

Ed Seedhouse
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DigiRev wrote:Thanks, the

DigiRev wrote:
Thanks, the ColorCombos site looks good. I've used this site in the past but I suck with colors so I could never get a good color scheme going.

I think your basic idea for the color scheme is perfectly fine, but it should use a lower contrast between the darkest part of the gradient and the lightest to avoid distraction. The main thing is you don't want your colors to distract attention from the content, and you want to maintain good contrast between the background and the text at any point.

I find colors the hardest part of any sight to get right. It doesn't help that my skills with graphics editors are basically nonexistent.

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philbert25
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On IE6

I am looking at this on IE6 and the main text goes from the blue gradient area into a solid light blue/grey area. I don't know if this is on purpose, but it comes across to the eye as a design mistake. Also it looks like you are using multiple line breaks below your second paragraph instead of padding or margin, which I think is frowned upon. Pretting appealing and consistant design elements though.

I got nuthin'