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This thread was archived on 1 April 2008 by Skill.

I want to use this discussion to talk about how we can bring the wiki to all varieties of user situations. I'm going to break it up into subsections as this is more of an umbrella topic. Feel free to add more subsections.Endasil (Talk) @ 21:32, 2 March 2008 (UTC)

Screen Resolution

I think it's acceptable to assume that users should have a resolution of 1024x768 or more (800x600 would be too narrow of a target to shoot for, in my opinion). I keep my resolution at 1280x1024, and don't notice many issues with pages being too cramped at that resolution. I want other users to comment on their experience with the site. Is anyone using 1024x768? List your resolution and your experience on this site. Make note of any articles which have overlapping images/sections or are generally too cramped at your resolution.

To check/change your resolution in Windows: Right-click on the desktop, select Properties. Click on the "Settings" tab. The resolution is set under the heading "Screen Resolution" Endasil (Talk) @ 21:32, 2 March 2008 (UTC)

I have 1280x800. Everything's fine for me. Dragon helmChiafriend12Granite body (old)Loon is best buttlord 22:46, 2 March 2008 (UTC)
At 1400x900 I don't notice anything, either. My old monitor was 1024x768, though, and I think there was an occasional problem or two, nothing major. (Can't remember much, had this one since two months ago.) The other computer uses the old monitor still, guess I could check on there if there's anything now. Skill 23:56, 2 March 2008 (UTC)

Internet Bandwidth

Wikia, as great as they are, have a history of having notoriously slow hosting. We shouldn't be compounding the issue with large pages, if we can help it.

One of the things that makes pages larger are animated GIF images. Let me say right now that I am not against using animations where appropriate. I think in cases such as Special Attacks and weapon pages, these animations greatly enrich the user experience.

I think, however, that there are situations where animations aren't appropriate or necessary. Items is an example. This page contains 3MB of images, with only a KB or two of text. Something to ponder:

  • Load time of 3MB on the fastest dial-up connection: 75 seconds
  • Load time of 3MB on the slowest broadband connections: 34 seconds

Therefore, users with basic dial-up connection are waiting at least 75 seconds for a page to load whose text would take a quarter of a second to load. Further, these images don't really seem to add anything to the actual content of the page.

Now, if this was an isolated case I would just edit the page, but I wanted to get more into the philosophy of how we use animations, and images in general. I would suggest that

  1. Non-animated, uncompressed png images can be used (in moderation) on any article simply to enhance the viewing experience of the user. While not having to be directly related to the article, it should have relevance and if indirectly relevant, should at least have a caption that is directly relevant
  2. Animated GIF files that are non-trivial in size (>100KB, which is most of them) should only be used on pages where they are directly relevant, such as a special attack animation on a weapon page, or a skillcape animation on a skillcape page.

References

Endasil (Talk) @ 21:32, 2 March 2008 (UTC)

I agree. There are way too many large file gif images that really don't have anything special to show regarding the item or whatever they are they for. So is this like a formal proposal to redo pics that are too large?--Degenret01 00:57, 11 March 2008 (UTC)

Default Skin

This is something I only think about every once and a while when I am logged out of the site. The default skin for the wiki, in my opinion, is a mess of random text and is generally hard to find anything. Users are familiar with the Monobook skin through Wikipedia's layout and other major wiki projects. This makes Monobook a much more accessible skin to have for people visiting for the first time (even if it weren't inherently more accessible, which I believe it is). In my opinion, we should revert to using it as our default, and let users change their skin once they sign up.

What are some other opinions on the default skin? Am I the only one who finds it much more bloated and confusing than the simplistic monobook? Endasil (Talk) @ 21:32, 2 March 2008 (UTC)

I also prefer Monobook. Quartz seems awkward to me, and that new skin Halopedia has is really awkward for me. Monobook forever!Dragon helmChiafriend12Granite body (old)Loon is best buttlord 22:46, 2 March 2008 (UTC)
This new skin (Monaco) is an improvement over Quartz, at least with the default themes, mainly because the sidebar and search bar are on the left side again. On the topic of changing the default skin, though, the admin panel in Special:Preferences won't let us change to Monobook. ("Default" was Quartz smoke last I checked.) So unless there's another way to change the skin, we have to pick either a Monaco or Quartz one for now. Skill 23:56, 2 March 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, I remember you saying something about that. I'm guessing there's somehow a way, though, since wikis like the 24 Wiki use a monobook variant. You're also right in saying that left-handed navigation goes a long way, but personally I find even the colouring and positioning of the basic monobook cleaner and easier to look at. Endasil (Talk) @ 03:09, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
Might have set it to monobook now. Logged out, cleared cookies and cache, and it came up as monobook when I restarted my browser. Can anyone check? Skill 04:38, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
I'm logged off and It's monobook. I think you got it Skill. 121.219.52.76 05:02, 3 March 2008 (UTC) (Chicken7)
Heya!
I'm joining this discussion a little late, but I was curious: is there any specific reason that you don't want to use Monaco as the default skin? We released a bunch of new features with Monaco like the dynamic menus and the ability for users to create their own custom navigation and toolboxes. Check out what FFXIclopedia has done with Monaco. If you'd like, we can even have our staff designer work with you to create you your own custom Monaco skin.
Let me know what you think. --KyleH@fandom (talk) 00:10, 6 March 2008 (UTC)
To be honest, I'm personally not against the way FFXI has their skin. My main concern is that a non-monobook skin goes a long way to hiding the fact that this site is, in fact, a wiki. A secondary concern (which was more with Quartz) is the amount of real estate that is taken up by the top and side bars, but that could be put to good use. Monaco definitely brings a lot to the table. Were someone willing to take the time to develop a suitable skin, I wouldn't be against using Monaco (and could certainly see a use for expanding menus). However, until we have done so, I would rather not be using one of the default monaco themes. Endasil (Talk) @ 20:15, 6 March 2008 (UTC)
Erm.. I've been working on a skin if anyone wants to see it... I think it's actually pretty good, though I'm biased. The only real issue is the links in the nav box, and I'm asking around for help with that. ChristineTalkFlickr 00:24, 8 March 2008 (UTC)
Some new images: normal page, and editing a page. ChristineTalkFlickr 00:46, 8 March 2008 (UTC)
I agree with endasil. But I don't like monaco still. A wiki should have the Monobook skin always I think. It's tidier, cleaner, easy to use. there are extra features with Monaco but new users (like really new new users) will not understand how to use these features. When wikia turned to Monaco i thought it was a virus. I wouldn't want to be using Monaco at the current time (and I think a lot of other wikis would agree). Cheers, [[Image:Kandarincrest.gif|25px]]Chicken7 >talk>sign 00:15, 8 March 2008 (UTC)
Christine's monaco looks good. But I'll wait to see it when it's finished. :) Cheers, [[Image:Kandarincrest.gif|25px]]Chicken7 >talk>sign 00:44, 8 March 2008 (UTC)

New image, with help from BladeBronson (apparently I wasn't far off, I had the code in there, but didn't know it was really there, so I set it to the same color as the background). Take a look =]. I've listed a few other minor bugs which hopefully can be fixed. =] ChristineTalkFlickr 03:41, 8 March 2008 (UTC)

Wow, that looks really nice. I really look forward to seeing the finished product. Are you still having difficulty with the Monaco sidebar? If so, what kind of trouble are you having? --KyleH@fandom (talk) 16:42, 10 March 2008 (UTC)
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