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Re: Site facelift?

by moritz (Cardinal)
on Nov 18, 2010 at 08:07 UTC ( #872152=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Site facelift?

I'd welcome a cleaner looking design any time -- as long as it doesn't sacrifice any usabilty.

Despite it's old-fashioned look, the perlmonks interface is very usable, once you know your way around. I don't want that to change.

People sometimes think the perlmonks UI suck, and want to improve it. Those people often aren't here long enough to have learned which parts matter, and many of their proposals would lead to a nicer looking design with decreased functionality. (That's not always the case, I just want to make you aware of that trap).

Others are longer here, and recognize the value of the current UI. Those often implement small, incremental improvements, for which I'm very grateful.

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Re^2: Site facelift?
by tinita (Parson) on Nov 18, 2010 at 10:07 UTC
    I have been reading perlmonks for more than 7 years, and IMO the OP is right. It's slow and I can think of some (optional!) javascript functions that help following the threads (I can think of it because I implemented it in my own software. You know the software, is it more complicated to use than perlmonks?)
    The problem is that the software here seems unmaintainable and that the server has some problems that have to do with a combination of OS and database. And of course with a lack of time that people have. But why do people here react almost offended when somebody tells the truth? At least the slowness is a fact, although it seems impossible at the moment to do something about it.
      But why do people here react almost offended when somebody tells the truth?

      A newcomer stops by, and tells the old guard they're old, ugly, and they are doing it wrong, and they're in need of plastic surgery, and they're almost offended? Maybe its because

      • they're not robots
      • its not the truth
      • its at best a quasi truth
      • its already known
      • it was expressed in a rude manner
      • it makes assumptions and implications, and jumps to conclusions
      • all of the above in the name of buzzwords
      • didn't even search for previous suggestions
        Let me tell you a more relevant reason - The old guards don't want to change.
Re^2: Site facelift?
by wazoox (Prior) on Nov 18, 2010 at 12:33 UTC

    I've been here for quite a long time, and frankly, I never thought that perlmonks usability was that great; it's slow, the default theme is a pain for the eye; then it misses things that people consider a given now, like a real time preview of your posts, support for MarkDown-style formatting... it looks like it isn't even properly indexed by search engines, and OK, SuperSearch was pretty cool the year before google went out, but nowadays it feels really painfully complex, and did I mention it's slow as molasses swimming in syrup? Ah yeah. perldoc, and many other perl sites were nicely rehauled recently. I think it's largely past time for perlmonks too. perldoc, and many other perl sites were nicely rehauled recently.

      IMHO looks better than before, but I still haven't figured out what that annoying, fixed toolbar on top of the perldoc site is supposed to do for me. I can't remember using it a single time, and yet it eats up a sizable portion of my screen, and is annoying by not behaving like the rest of the site.

      Which is exactly what I meant with not sacrificing usabilty for a new UI.

      Yes, perlmonks is slow. I've never denied it, and it sucks. If somebody changes that substantially and with long lasting effort, I'll buy them a beer at the next YAPC we both attend. Every effort on performance is very welcome.

      Yes, a modern UI would be nice. If it doesn't introduce annoying stuff just to be modern.

        How to make resizable too!

        Stylish CSS overrides: It mangles some of the graphics since the last tweaks changed things, but still makes the site usable (more horizontal room, more vertical room, dynamic width, less pointless pictures) and with no floaty bar covering things.

        I'll take functional over pretty any day, but it is still sad that perldoc has gone from "functional and nice" to "functional or pretty".

        OT, but there is a preference on to make the moving toolbar fixed (I use it that way). perldoc, and many other perl sites were nicely rehauled recently
      If I go to, I see Last updated on 13 August 2009. Not a sign of being "recently rehauled". Furthermore, the homepage also says The code generating this web site is based on the code that was generating as it was released by Jon Allen on 24th December 2008. An indication it was worked on for half a year, then abandoned.

      On top of that, perldoc proundly presents "Perl version 5.8.8 documentation". 5.8.8 was released January 2006. Perl has seen 6 releases, of which 2 major, since.

      But hey, if that works, great! All we need to do overhaul perlmonks, delete the last 4 years of articles, remove the ability to post new content, and Perl will eat PHP before Christmas. uses some old version. Anyway, even the current 2008/2009 look of is better than the 1996 default theme of perlmonks. I don't blame anyone; I'm happy with perlmonks as is, but I want my favorite website to attract new fans, and right now it's nigh to impossible.

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