12 replies [Last post]
pyrophone
Offline
newbie
Last seen: 14 years 26 weeks ago
Joined: 2005-06-08
Posts: 5
Points: 0

I am looking for critiques and browser checks on this site:
http://tuvalu.globat.com/~tender-beginnings.com

Please keep in mind the following when you critique:

1) A javascript IE hack is used to force IE to apply :hover properly - not my hack.
2) the main heading pictures are dummies - they will be exchanged before launch. Each page will have a unique photo.
3) there are a few small holes in the content population - still waiting on my client
4) if you are using IE for Mac, this menus will not work - please use Safari

I appreciate all genuine comments, good or bad. Please tell me what browser you are using.

Thanks! - Jon

thepineapplehead
thepineapplehead's picture
Offline
Guru
Last seen: 1 year 16 weeks ago
Timezone: GMT+1
Joined: 2004-06-30
Posts: 9668
Points: 801

Please check new midwife site

FireFox 1.0.4 - Nice, fully functional, nice design.

Good job.

Verschwindende wrote:
  • CSS doesn't make pies

roytheboy
roytheboy's picture
Offline
Guru
North Wales, UK
Last seen: 6 years 19 weeks ago
North Wales, UK
Timezone: GMT+1
Joined: 2004-09-18
Posts: 2233
Points: 41

Please check new midwife site

FF_Mac.

A very quick look shows a very nice site. It's different yet professional. But without styles I can see that you are not using any heading tags - particularly <h1> tags which are given extra weight by most search engines. Heading tags can be styled however you like, with the added bonus of being good for accessability and SEO.

Life's a b*tch and then you die!

pyrophone
Offline
newbie
Last seen: 14 years 26 weeks ago
Joined: 2005-06-08
Posts: 5
Points: 0

Please check new midwife site

Thanks to both of you. Thanks for the advice about <h1> tags - I hadn't thought of that.

- Jon

HellsBells
HellsBells's picture
Offline
Leader
Bedford, UK
Last seen: 11 years 31 weeks ago
Bedford, UK
Joined: 2004-04-07
Posts: 851
Points: 0

Please check new midwife site

Hi Jon

It's an absolutely lovely looking site!

Only things I can find to point out are that it's a bit on the slow side to download (34 seconds on a 56kbps modem) don't suppose you're able to optimise the images a bit?

Also - it's not immediately clear where the services are being offered - is it the US, the UK - anywhere else that's English speaking? Might be an idea to indicate where the services are available fairly high up on the services pages.

You also seem to have missed off the section about the huge quantities of drugs and C-section births option which was my preferred method of choice!!! Wink

My strategy is so simple an idiot could have devised it!

"Also, your CSS (no offence) makes me want to gouge my eyes out with a rusty spoon" - TPH

pyrophone
Offline
newbie
Last seen: 14 years 26 weeks ago
Joined: 2005-06-08
Posts: 5
Points: 0

Please check new midwife site

Thanks HellsBells - good point about the services content - I will mention this to the client.

The images download time has been an annoyance with this design - I have worked a lot with images, and may need to do some more work. The detailed textures make it hard to take the quality down very low without serious degradation to the image. At least once the initial download is finished, the rest of the pages load quickly with only one additional image. Thanks for the feedback on that - good to know the 56K download time.

Tisnew
Tisnew's picture
Offline
Enthusiast
MissOuri
Last seen: 14 years 27 weeks ago
MissOuri
Timezone: GMT-6
Joined: 2005-06-04
Posts: 200
Points: 0

Please check new midwife site

Two seconds off sbc dsl for the initial homepage.

I do get a couple of what I can only characterize as "snags" on intermediate page loads. Pictures speak

http//beta-154104.server1.dotnetsandbox.net/TenderBeginnings.gif

This took about a second to complete the full fill-in presentation.

But what I really didn't expect (and am not used to) was the experience when re-displaying a page I've already seen. Either a) something is causing my machine to not redisplay cache (which I doubt) or the host server is not caching these very static pages.
I feel your host isn't caching your stuff.

Esthetically, I like the red-flower contrast; and its continuing theme throughout the pages. A poppy?

The only oddity I find is the horizontal pop-out links "hide" under the category dropdown box on the feedback page.

It's clear from the contact info and references this service provider is in the Nashville (pronounced Nash-vull) area. But I agree, somehow Nashville ought to find it's way higher in the pecking order. Including meta.

Thanks again for quite a nice treat.

A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety --- Aesop

roytheboy
roytheboy's picture
Offline
Guru
North Wales, UK
Last seen: 6 years 19 weeks ago
North Wales, UK
Timezone: GMT+1
Joined: 2004-09-18
Posts: 2233
Points: 41

Please check new midwife site

Tisnew wrote:
Either a) something is causing my machine to not redisplay cache (which I doubt)

Tisnew - You're using IE so there's probably no need to look much further if you're having problems. Hugo solved a similar problem when checking one of my site's for me. Within his version of IE, 'Check for newer versions of stored pages' was set to 'Every visit' but IE does not follow these settings as it should. He changed it to 'automatic' and the problem cleared up. Does anyone else have any experience of this problem?

Life's a b*tch and then you die!

Tisnew
Tisnew's picture
Offline
Enthusiast
MissOuri
Last seen: 14 years 27 weeks ago
MissOuri
Timezone: GMT-6
Joined: 2005-06-04
Posts: 200
Points: 0

Please check new midwife site

Thank you. Twas automatic. I do Mosaic some too.

BUT! The allocated cache of 280Meg had been exhausted.

With bespoke cache, re-displaying Pyrophone's product is faster now.

But not completely fast on re-display. So, I looked at the newly-filed cache items.

Tender Beginnings has a Mainstyle.css that, when viewed in notepad, appears to have been filed-down in compressed format.

This contrasts with csscreator's modern.css, for example, which doesn't appear to be compressed when viewed with the same notepad editor.

Question is Mainstyle really compressed and does the client browser decompress it each time we invoke an action needing styling?

A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety --- Aesop

pyrophone
Offline
newbie
Last seen: 14 years 26 weeks ago
Joined: 2005-06-08
Posts: 5
Points: 0

Please check new midwife site

Tisnew: I'm not sure about the cache issues. The pages seem to reload fine for me on two different networks.

I have not intentionally compressed mainstyle.css. I am using Dreamweaver - not to code, just for easy ftp - and it may have done some kind of compression, though I doubt it.

Thanks for noticing the feedback page menu/dropdown list problem. The menu has a very high z-index, so I'm not sure why IE chooses to display it under the dropdown list. Oups I'll have to work that one out.

- Jon

EDIT: Sometimes the simple way is the best: I just changed the form around so that the dropdown list is below the flyout menu. In IE the dropdown menu is always on top, ignoring z-index. The hacks I found to counteract this are really messy. Sometimes you just have to bend around the bugs.

roytheboy
roytheboy's picture
Offline
Guru
North Wales, UK
Last seen: 6 years 19 weeks ago
North Wales, UK
Timezone: GMT+1
Joined: 2004-09-18
Posts: 2233
Points: 41

Please check new midwife site

The crazy (wrong) way that IE handles z-index is a complete nightmare to deal with but at least someone has been able to explain it : http://www.aplus.co.yu/css/z-pos/

Be warned: you might need to read it through a few times Wink

Life's a b*tch and then you die!

Tisnew
Tisnew's picture
Offline
Enthusiast
MissOuri
Last seen: 14 years 27 weeks ago
MissOuri
Timezone: GMT-6
Joined: 2005-06-04
Posts: 200
Points: 0

Please check new midwife site

Pyro - that's cool with dreamweaver. I'm using msft's free vs2005 beta and I have no idea (yet) what it's generating. But being a Scot (mostly) and the fact that it's free is good enough for me )

The client cache thing was my doing. Humble-pie.

I didn't realize microsoft's internet explorer just keeps filing stuff until it s-l-o-w-s down considerably. It keeps degrading until you end-up with 100's of millions of bytes of filed-cache.

However, there is at least one directive available for some web-pages to instruct their server to cache for a specified period of time. The directive looks like this

<%@ OutputCache Duration="60" VaryByParam="none"%>

And an easily-understandable explanation can be found at

http//www.dotnetjunkies.com/quickstart/aspplus/doc/outputcaching.aspx

Does it apply to non-ASP environments? I dunno.

I have a question.

Your graphics that you use for menu levels differ. Top-levels are unique and impressive. They skew. And are a form of italics(?) And add to the experience of your site.

The second-level strips of paper, however, appear to be a single image replicated throughout. It looks bland compared to the top-level. And I see the text is different between the two. Just a thought...if you rotated the second-level strip 180% and filed another image; could you then alernate the second level background image to offer some variety on that level? And then use the same font as level-one, promoting a "theme" there just like the flower throughout?

Thanks for indulging me on these questions.

A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety --- Aesop

pyrophone
Offline
newbie
Last seen: 14 years 26 weeks ago
Joined: 2005-06-08
Posts: 5
Points: 0

Please check new midwife site

Tisnew:

The menu styling is a compromise, difinitely, but one that I think balances simplicity of code with visual consideration pretty well. Varying the background image for inside menu items would, in my view, add too much complexity without enough visual result.

I want to make it as easy as possible to add "inside" menu items - as the code stands it is just a matter of adding one more list item. Uncomplicated and easy.

Good eye - thanks for the suggestion.

- Jon