New site design

James Frazer james.frazer at
Fri Jun 13 14:39:02 PDT 2008

They especially need a clear link hierarchy that
is intuitive, which needs planning by someone who knows that kind of
stuff, together with someone that knows DragonFly. My girlfriend Danwei,
who's finishing her Master's in Interaction Design, has said that she'd
very much like to spend a good amount of time on getting the "web
front-end" of DragonFly good looking.
The mainpage doesn't need a link hierarchy -- it just needs plain 
uncluttered content, IMO.  You are correct though (that more can be 
done), I wasn't trying to overhaul content (although I would have liked 
to do some), I just shuffled it together better, and reduced the 112 
links we have on the other site.  It's common sense that for each extra 
link you add the harder it will be to find the one you want.

The wiki on the other hand -- I agree -- the wiki... I can't even begin 
to start... except that I tried using it for 30 mins (to add content) 
and it was so counterintuitive that I gave up in disgust.

I think it would be useful to use a CMS like Drupal to combine the site,
wiki, blog and more into a single front-end, with support for fake "user
accounts" and fine-grained permissions. This would greatly simplify
management imho, and can be quite good looking.
CMS, Drupal... I must say I think that's overkill.  If you go through 
the content on the Dragonfly website (wiki not counted), you will find 
that there's enough for a basic single tier navigated website.  I think 
this is just about right -- as the main site should give a general 
impression and no more.

But it's already cumbersome enough to update the website -- having it in 
CVS at all...  For such a basic site I don't see the need... and trying 
to sort everything out in CVS, seems to have an awfully high learning 
curve for just a website.  Even using CVSweb it was difficult to find 
what I wanted -- I think it had every file since 1942 listed in there.

. ..

And CMS, I don't even want to think of the unnecessary complexity.  For 
a small simple site it just isn't worth it... trying to customize the 
config of a CMS is usually a nightmare.

Management would be simplified if we didn't have to deal with CVS... 
maybe someone thinks that's important, but not I.  I've built a number 
of websites, versioned them in folders, and never felt the need for 
anything more complex.

More information about the Users mailing list