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BS01's new skin/layout

BS01 skin layout BIONICLE BIONICLEsector01

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29 replies to this topic

#1 Offline Lukas Exemplar

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Posted Feb 26 2015 - 11:15 AM

The BIONICLEsector01 has finally fully implemented their new skin/layout that they have been working on. What do you guys think?

Link: http://biosector01.c...x.php/Main_Page

 

Note: The few broken features, white links and invisible text in the Table of Contexts are being fixed as of what I've heard.

 

Example screenshots of the Main Page:

 

uzVnvS4l.png?1

 

tka3pSQl.png?1


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#2 Offline TheSkeletonMan939

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Posted Feb 26 2015 - 11:23 AM

Neat! A much-needed upgrade for BS01. It'll definitely breathe more life into the site.


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#3 Offline The 1st Shadow

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Posted Feb 26 2015 - 12:34 PM

I don't know. A lot of wikis I know have generally dark color schemes. BS01 always stood out to me for being brighter. The new one looks okay, but I do prefer the original.


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#4 Offline Zeb

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Posted Feb 26 2015 - 12:57 PM

Neat! I like the new look, though I hope the little bugs everywhere get fixed soon. It's nice that now the Lego sets are getting their own articles. :)


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#5 Offline Dorek

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Posted Feb 26 2015 - 01:22 PM

I don't know. A lot of wikis I know have generally dark color schemes. BS01 always stood out to me for being brighter. The new one looks okay, but I do prefer the original.

Appreciate the feedback! I thought a darker color would be appropriate, since the lighter colors seemed really dull to me lately. But it's always good to hear what people like and don't like.

Also apparently more glitches randomly appeared overnight and the twitter feed stopped working. Coding, neh?

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#6 Offline Mr. Cup of Fail

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Posted Feb 26 2015 - 01:36 PM

Should this topic be on BS01/HS01 instead of General Discussion?
Anyway, I'm really not a fan of this new skin/layout, it mostly look like they just did a color change and change the logo to the Mask of Creation and moved small things around. I think it would be good to have a Logo that let people think it is BioSeator and I think changing the backgound to something else would be great IMO.


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#7 Offline Windseeker

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Posted Feb 26 2015 - 06:23 PM

Moving to BS01/HS01.


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#8 Offline Toa Smoke Monster

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Posted Feb 26 2015 - 11:04 PM

I really like the new look. The fact that it is a shade of green, my favorite color, might have something to do it. :P


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#9 Offline Prowl Nightwolf

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 01:38 AM

I really like the new look. The fact that it is a shade of green, my favorite color, might have something to do it. :P

Bias much? lol.

I do like the new look, though not sure if more so then the prior incarnation.

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#10 Offline Meiko

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 01:48 AM

Meh, it could be better. Dark layouts are hard to make work on an interface that was designed with a light interface in mind. Another problem is the "layering" of the skin. It's light text on a dark background on a light background on a dark background. This is not a great design concept, as it's hard to control what pops off of the page first when a visitor first looks at the site. For me, the first thing that pops off the page is the boxes, but not really the text inside them. That could be overlooked on some parts of the site, but for the front page, it's really important to make sure the text is what the reader sees first. Another thing that bothers me with it is the contrast—it's just a bit too much.

 

As far as the main page itself and not the design in general... it's still basically the same old, boring look. It's all boxy and not unique. Bionicle 2015 has some interesting designs and geometry in many things you see related to it. Wouldn't now be a good time to move past this whole boxy, table-cell looking layout? Besides the uninterestingly-placed graphics and background image that doesn't fill nearly the whole screen on my resolution and is haphazardly positioned, there's really nothing that makes this feel like it's about Bionicle. When I visit the Bionicle website or look at packaging for Bionicle sets, or really any other Bionicle-related thing out there right now, I get a certain feel from all of those. I see rocky textures and interesting patterns in stone architecture. I see text with an interesting blue glow that gives the same feel as the "energy" around the Mask of Creation in the logo. I see bright colored characters. Now I look at BS01, and I see none of that. I see a dark layout with not many colors that "pop", I see plain boxes, and I see a background image that I feel doesn't match anything else on the page.


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#11 Offline Lukas Exemplar

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 06:08 AM

I was not able to post it in the BS01/HS01 thread for some reason. Maybe it's because I have to be invited into that board or something?


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#12 Offline Sophia

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 02:23 PM

xYShK7A.png

 

Consider fixing this.

 

As far as the main page itself and not the design in general... it's still basically the same old, boring look. It's all boxy and not unique. Bionicle 2015 has some interesting designs and geometry in many things you see related to it. Wouldn't now be a good time to move past this whole boxy, table-cell looking layout? Besides the uninterestingly-placed graphics and background image that doesn't fill nearly the whole screen on my resolution and is haphazardly positioned, there's really nothing that makes this feel like it's about Bionicle. When I visit the Bionicle website or look at packaging for Bionicle sets, or really any other Bionicle-related thing out there right now, I get a certain feel from all of those. I see rocky textures and interesting patterns in stone architecture. I see text with an interesting blue glow that gives the same feel as the "energy" around the Mask of Creation in the logo. I see bright colored characters. Now I look at BS01, and I see none of that. I see a dark layout with not many colors that "pop", I see plain boxes, and I see a background image that I feel doesn't match anything else on the page.

 

Honestly? It's a wiki. It's an online encyclopedia, a database of knowledge. I might even say it's already trying too much to be visually exciting. (The background image, besides not filling the screen all the way, feels busy and distracting with all that Matoran.)

 

The Bionicle website has all that cool aesthetic because it's to grab a kid's attention. A kid is supposed to see that site and think, "Whoa, this site is so cool! Now I'm gonna spend all my money on these toys because that site is so cool!" The text glows, the image flickers, all to draw you in.

 

BS01 isn't selling toys. It isn't begging you to stay or trying to capture that perfect aesthetic. As a wiki, its purpose is to present its information as clearly and neatly as possible. There's a reason why Wikipedia has kept to a greyscale color scheme for most things. It's not the beauty of the site that matters; it's exceedingly simplistic. It's the content that drives the site. Its simple style ensures nothing gets in the way of its most important function: conveying information.

 

(Which is why I feel the need to point out the error in the table of contents block. Even if not everyone uses them because pages are usually manageable, it's still a barrier to conveying information.)


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#13 Offline Dorek

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 02:37 PM

The Table of contents (and certain other things like metadata boxes) is a result of the links turning white. Yeah, it's a problem =P. Would love some help fixing it~
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#14 Offline Meiko

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 02:49 PM

 

As far as the main page itself and not the design in general... it's still basically the same old, boring look. It's all boxy and not unique. Bionicle 2015 has some interesting designs and geometry in many things you see related to it. Wouldn't now be a good time to move past this whole boxy, table-cell looking layout? Besides the uninterestingly-placed graphics and background image that doesn't fill nearly the whole screen on my resolution and is haphazardly positioned, there's really nothing that makes this feel like it's about Bionicle. When I visit the Bionicle website or look at packaging for Bionicle sets, or really any other Bionicle-related thing out there right now, I get a certain feel from all of those. I see rocky textures and interesting patterns in stone architecture. I see text with an interesting blue glow that gives the same feel as the "energy" around the Mask of Creation in the logo. I see bright colored characters. Now I look at BS01, and I see none of that. I see a dark layout with not many colors that "pop", I see plain boxes, and I see a background image that I feel doesn't match anything else on the page.

 
Honestly? It's a wiki. It's an online encyclopedia, a database of knowledge. I might even say it's already trying too much to be visually exciting. (The background image, besides not filling the screen all the way, feels busy and distracting with all that Matoran.)
 
The Bionicle website has all that cool aesthetic because it's to grab a kid's attention. A kid is supposed to see that site and think, "Whoa, this site is so cool! Now I'm gonna spend all my money on these toys because that site is so cool!" The text glows, the image flickers, all to draw you in.
 
BS01 isn't selling toys. It isn't begging you to stay or trying to capture that perfect aesthetic. As a wiki, its purpose is to present its information as clearly and neatly as possible. There's a reason why Wikipedia has kept to a greyscale color scheme for most things. It's not the beauty of the site that matters; it's exceedingly simplistic. It's the content that drives the site. Its simple style ensures nothing gets in the way of its most important function: conveying information.
 
(Which is why I feel the need to point out the error in the table of contents block. Even if not everyone uses them because pages are usually manageable, it's still a barrier to conveying information.)

 

The type of site it is hardly excuses how it's content should be displayed. As I pointed out in my response, there are flaws with how content is delivered in this interface. As a wiki, it's even more important to make sure the text is the first thing that pops off the screen to the reader. People come to the site to find Bionicle reference information, not be bombarded by dark boxes and high contrast and a terrible background. Wikipedia does this in the simplest of all ways. Black text on an entirely white and light grey interface. Wikipedia just recently even made more changes to improve content readability even more, outlined here. Here, we have light on dark on light on dark. That just doesn't work. And there's no reason for an interface on a wiki not to follow design cues from the topic. I'm more than familiar with both UI and UX design for wikis, having designed several new interfaces for LEGO-related (and other) wikis, and being involved in MediaWiki's design team. You look around various wikis hosted anywhere—Gamepedia, Wikia, etc—and most of them, the most successful ones at least, have a visual identity that follows the same theme as their topic. I go on Planetside Wiki and it looks like something Planetside-related. I go on TF2 Wiki, and it looks like something TF2-related. Heck, even the most recent skin I designed on a Wikia wiki of all places looks like it's related to its topic.


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#15 Offline Sophia

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 03:01 PM

Do you know what they pull in from their source materials? Colors, images, and font. BS01 has colors and images from Bionicle aplenty, albeit not used entirely effectively for conveying information. The things you mentioned the Bionicle website having that you want BS01 to have, however, are things like glowing text, rock textures, and the patterns on stone architecture. The patterns you might be able to put in the sidebars or something, but the rock textures and glowing text are just asking to be misapplied and distracting. I don't mind a wiki trying to pull in some visual cues from its source material, but honestly, if anything, taking colors from Bionicle 2015 has decreased accessibility for the wiki. Heck, besides the use of fonts, I don't see how the TF2 wiki is considerably more TF2 themed than classic BS01 was Bionicle themed; in both, it seems to come down to images, with TF2 having notable TF2 images visible, and BS01 having masks everywhere. I am all for BS01 feeling like a Bionicle site, but your suggestions of things that contribute to a Bionicle aesthetic just seem terrible for a wiki design.


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#16 Offline Ballom Nom Nom

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 03:21 PM

People come to the site to find Bionicle reference information, not be bombarded by dark boxes and high contrast and a terrible background.

It's somewhat difficult to tell if this is a serious argument or sarcasm. Colors on a wiki hardly represent an assault on the reader.

Also, you mention that successful wikis have a visual identity. That's great, but do we have any indication that is why they are successful? I'd imagine the content is the reason for success, given its the whole point of wikis in the first place. Crediting it to the visuals only sounds like cum hoc ergo propter hoc reasoning.

Incidentally, speaking of fallacies, your experience designing interfaces appears to have little relevance other than to dismiss counter arguments using an argument from authority.

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#17 Offline fishers64

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 07:20 PM

The Table of contents (and certain other things like metadata boxes) is a result of the links turning white. Yeah, it's a problem =P. Would love some help fixing it~

CSS: a{color: black;}

 

Unless it's a megacomplex XML thing. Then I still have no idea. 


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#18 Offline Meiko

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Posted Feb 27 2015 - 08:08 PM

 

The Table of contents (and certain other things like metadata boxes) is a result of the links turning white. Yeah, it's a problem =P. Would love some help fixing it~

CSS: a{color: black;}

 

Unless it's a megacomplex XML thing. Then I still have no idea. 

 

No XML, that CSS code would more or less do it. But that's not a great solution to it. That would make links nearly indistinguishable from the content. I don't know why they were changed from the default blue anyways, but removing the a{color:#fff;} wherever it is in the code currently would fix it.


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#19 Offline Zox Tomana

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Posted Feb 28 2015 - 12:53 AM

Why don't we just return to the Monobook skin that has served BS01 so very well so far? It's iconic to us, and does the job we need it to (still want VS01 back!). From there, just move towards updating the actual front page, and cleaning up some of the issues with the skin: namely the pixelation and other bg image issues that have arisen as the average screen resolution has shot up.
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#20 Offline Infrared

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Posted Feb 28 2015 - 05:56 PM

I think an issue BS01's had for a while is that it doesn't have one visual identity. I've put a lot of effort into giving it some consistency--some of it can be subtle, but I like to think it makes a difference.
 
It's fine if we decide to change, but if we do that we need to figure out where we want to be and we need to make a concerted effort to get there. If we want to go with bevels that's cool; if we want to go for a dark skin that's cool. But we have to consider how each of those changes will mesh with everything else before we full steam ahead. For example, a dark background is fine, but with a transparent white foreground above it the site feels inconsistent and makes a lot of the content hard to see. Meanwhile, a transparent dark foreground on a dark background is better I think, but it still requires a lot of colors to be changed so content can be legible/not painful to read. And so on.

Anyway, that's my spiel. And we should totally use Refreshed. :D


Edited by Infrared, Feb 28 2015 - 05:57 PM.

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#21 Offline Zox Tomana

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Posted Mar 01 2015 - 07:33 PM

And we should totally use Refreshed. :D

Ewww. :P

I think part of the problem here is that there was a jump from "update/freshen" the main page to "reskin the wiki and new visuals all over the place." Leaves us with something that, while it looks cool, doesn't mesh as well overall as the original design. Besides, there's apparently CSS problems with using refreshed (blegh) that are supposedly beyond the powers of either Meiko or Dorek to directly fix.

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#22 Offline Prowl Nightwolf

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Posted Mar 01 2015 - 08:14 PM

So would this be a good topic to ask about the cool tab options on the character pages? I wanted to do that on our Wiki page for my characters but don't know how to do that. Being that it is a layout and hopefully Biosector staff see/post here. maybe they could help... if it is allowed and not some trade secret...


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#23 Offline Dorek

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Posted Mar 02 2015 - 02:38 AM

And we should totally use Refreshed. :D

Ewww. :P

I think part of the problem here is that there was a jump from "update/freshen" the main page to "reskin the wiki and new visuals all over the place." Leaves us with something that, while it looks cool, doesn't mesh as well overall as the original design. Besides, there's apparently CSS problems with using refreshed (blegh) that are supposedly beyond the powers of either Meiko or Dorek to directly fix.

You just don't like anything that isn't Monobook =P. Refreshed is fine with me. Not that I would know how to do anything with it.
 

So would this be a good topic to ask about the cool tab options on the character pages? I wanted to do that on our Wiki page for my characters but don't know how to do that. Being that it is a layout and hopefully Biosector staff see/post here. maybe they could help... if it is allowed and not some trade secret...

That would be a more appropriate question for our main discussion topic, but it's no particular secret. Our versions were coded by Morris (Infrared, here, because he's a weirdo) and Akihabara (formerly Metax, because usernames!) using assorted Javascript nonsense, though Mediawiki itself has a number of extensions that can actually be installed in order to achieve a similar effect. You'd have to ask them if you want to know more!

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#24 Offline Meiko

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Posted Mar 02 2015 - 01:54 PM

 

And we should totally use Refreshed. :D

Ewww. :P

I think part of the problem here is that there was a jump from "update/freshen" the main page to "reskin the wiki and new visuals all over the place." Leaves us with something that, while it looks cool, doesn't mesh as well overall as the original design. Besides, there's apparently CSS problems with using refreshed (blegh) that are supposedly beyond the powers of either Meiko or Dorek to directly fix.

 

I could fix it however I don't have time to debug what the problem is. :P Something the wiki really does need to do to open up for more options is upgrade the server. The server currently can't run a MediaWiki version higher than 1.22, as there isn't access to upgrade the server's PHP version. The server also doesn't have enough resources to run HS01 alongside BS01. Upgrading the server will open up more options as far as MediaWiki versions and available skins go.


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#25 Offline Bfahome

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Posted Mar 05 2015 - 07:27 PM

When did the Karda Nui skin stop existing?  I liked that one.

 

Also, the link color is still definitely a major problem.  The table of Kanohi is basically unreadable.


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#26 Offline Zox Tomana

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Posted Mar 06 2015 - 01:48 AM

When did the Karda Nui skin stop existing?  I liked that one.
 
Also, the link color is still definitely a major problem.  The table of Kanohi is basically unreadable.

All the fancy skins stopped existing in the last dataloss/transition. They never got re-uploaded.

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#27 Offline Swert

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Posted Mar 06 2015 - 08:58 PM

I think I'll take time in the near future to just remake them using screenshots we may have. They'll most likely be updated for higher-res screens.
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#28 Offline Dorek

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Posted Mar 06 2015 - 10:56 PM

I think I'll take time in the near future to just remake them using screenshots we may have. They'll most likely be updated for higher-res screens.

If you could take the time to change the link colors, that'd be swell.

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#29 Offline Nidhiki of the Shadows

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Posted Mar 08 2015 - 04:03 PM

Really nice. I do like how it's pretty much an inverted version of the previous colour scheme. Also dig the 2015 masks on the main page. It's a good, consistent palette. Can't see any links though, I assume because the text is the same colour as the box it is located in. And while I do like this, I also really dug the previous scheme. Perhaps you could have skins for the site?

 

And I dig that Toa personality quiz. :)

 

-NotS


Edited by Nidhiki of the Shadows, Mar 08 2015 - 04:03 PM.

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#30 Offline Dorek

Dorek
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Toa of Light Rising

  • 30-January 06
  • 6,173 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Mar 08 2015 - 09:19 PM

Really nice. I do like how it's pretty much an inverted version of the previous colour scheme. Also dig the 2015 masks on the main page. It's a good, consistent palette. Can't see any links though, I assume because the text is the same colour as the box it is located in. And while I do like this, I also really dug the previous scheme. Perhaps you could have skins for the site?
 
And I dig that Toa personality quiz. :)
 
-NotS

I'll see if we can make the old color scheme we had before available at some point, since it wasn't bad; the new colors just went with the new skin, is all.

And the link colors are FINALLY fixed, thanks for being patient (to those of you who were patient ;)).

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