Sunday, April 12, 2009

YOUR NEW WEBSITE COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS NEEDED!

From the Web team:
Here is the beta of the new WNSR site: http://wnsr.parsons.edu
There are a few recent posts per category.
A PDF of instructions on how to update the site will be delivered by the end of next week.

We hope you guys like it,
The WNSR Web Team


Please examine and provide your comments in this Blog post. This is your chance to voice your opinion to your class Web design and architecture teams -- both on what site needs remain, and what you like about the most recent work.

Best,
Jim

21 comments:

camdiggidy said...

I like the feature to scroll forward or back in the rotating content window. Are the images there just for the beta phase? I would like if we kept everyone's original photo submissions.

It's so clean and refreshing compared to the current design!

Jenna D said...

Hey, I am really stoked about the added functionalities on the new player (as I think a lot of people will be).

Just wondering, since it is nice to have a visual accompanying the pieces, just so Web users can see the faces and attitudes of the makers and subjects for our shows -- is there going to be a place where graphic elements and photos can be added alongside the pieces? Or has this been phased out?

Ryan Blum-Kryzstal said...

I dig the new player. I think it is a lot more intuitive to navigate overall. I can find things easier than before, but I still think that the design is too sparse. All the elements blur together since tehre is no differentiation between elements. The visual thing on the upper right that provides some eye candy seems too alone and imbalanced. It is where my eye goes first. I think WNSR could use a more robust masthead that draws the eye more...
As it is now, Font color does not create enough distinction for my eye. Visit this website below for a sense of what I mean - http://www.giantstep.net/
Perhaps more visuals that draw the eye to particular elements. Creating more quadrants for specific forms of content.

Nick H said...

I'm viewing the site using Google Chrome 1.0.154.53 and I'm hoping that in the final when you launch the pop-up player there will be WNSR graphics to accompany the stream. At least the logo.

Great job guys!

News Time said...

Thanks very much for the efforts.
Nice clean look. However in the news category I would prefer to see some kind of design or signature that describes NEWS. And as some others have noted, I would like to see pictures of the news subjects, when appropriate, such as President Bob Kerrey. Thanks again for the web work. Jeff Weiser

George said...

I like:

... how the color scheme makes text easier to read than the old site.

... that you can pause now

... the monthly archive feature

... did I mention we can finally pause now?!?!?!!!!!

.. that my interview with Cary Fukunaga is included. I loved that piece.

... the use of subscribable podcasts. I think people will REALLY get into that. nobody wants to sit at their computer and listen to a long show, but everyone gets on the subway.

I dislike

... that categories are listed vertically rather than horizontally. The old site had them horizontally which is both more aesthetically pleasing and easier to navigate

... that you have to click "about" to get to the "join us on facebook" link. people that are going to join us on facebook are unlikely to click the about section since they already know about us.

Jeremy said...

This is an excellent site. The improvements are incredible and the general accessibility and interactivity is great. Yet, I do like having images attached to each show, and believe that would be a good element to incorporate, somehow.

Andrea said...

I agree with everyone who has said it before--I think that there should be images to go with the pieces. I feel that those are an important part of a pieces's identity and will make it easier for the user to identify and differentiate the various pieces.

Martin said...

I think the site looks great. I agree that the images that were placed alongside the shows on the old website should be retained because they give each producer/show it's personality and help to distinguish between them on the feed.

New player is great, the option to pause and move forwards will probably increase our listeners from 37 to 3,700 (maybe not three thousand, but...it certainly makes it easier to listen). Thumbs up for podcasts as well.

It really is too plain/sterile on the show pages (I'm looking at the DJ sets feed and the News feed, and it's very difficult to tell where one playlist ends and another begins). Adding images for each show, as we had on the old website, and perhaps bolding the show titles AND the programmer/programmers names or email address, which I think should be placed at the bottom, would help.

I have to say again that I think the site looks a lot better, I appreciate the work you guys have done. It's very much cleaned up and nicer looking.

I do think the first paragraph on the about page "New School radio is a student-run..." should be on the home page and perhaps even on each of the individual programming pages.

And I would appreciate some more shtuff on each of the programming pages - maybe some unusual pictures on the features or dj sets pages that reflect the sort of pieces or music we are playing. Or, some photographs of our dj's in action. Even a photograph of the school, as long as it wasn't a boring stock picture, would add something.

Thank you again for your hard work, I truly mean it when I say I think we will say a significant increase in our listeners when the site becomes more visually pleasurable.

-Martin

evintext said...

First off, thanks to the design team for all your work. Generally, I like the direction that you have taken with the new site. It is a great improvement from our previous one, and already a much better design then what most college radio stations have. For that, thank you.
On specifics...
I like the color template. It's clean, and unique. I like the player, it's functional (!!!) and practical, and I like that the user has "play in pop-up" and "download" options. A question, however, have we worked out the legality behind being able to podcast copyrighted material?
Having said these things, I must say that I feel the site is not quite there yet. It is close, but I think it needs more distinction. As of now, the site looks like a "stripped down" version of something. Frankly, it is boring.
This has been mentioned a lot, but I do agree that pictures need to accompany the radio material. This alone will give the site a much more dynamic aesthetic.
I also agree that the category list should be spread across the top and not along the side. And if kept along the side, then within some kind of border to visually distinguish each section.
Along the top, I do not feel that much is happening. The WNSR pattern feels slapped on and unnecessarily redundant.
As I said in the beginning, I do like the direction that the design team has taken in terms of color and the overall clean approach. My suggestion would be to beef up the foundations that you've put in place in order to create a more distinct and better framed interface.
Here is a site design I really like. Granted, the site serves a different purpose but in terms of ideas, I hope that it could be of some help: pitchfork.com

hethre said...

I like the color coding of the different programming streams. clever.

Of course I love all the social networky link things... I'm not sure how much I, personally, will use them, but I'm glad that they are there because they make it look more professional, and the people that do link will be instrumental in getting us noticed.

I don't care about the photos... Personally, I hate having to remember to find a photo to add to my production, but I know a lot of people like them... so I guess they should stay...

I do, however, really like the pictures that are there now... the headphones, microphone, mixing board etc. Did y'all make those or are they stock photos?

My only suggestion about the functionality is this: When you click on the pop-up player, all that you get in the box is a play button... It should have a little more information and/or instruction. My very first instinct upon seeing the pop-up w/ a play button was, "yea, what am i supposed to do now?" After about a millisecond, i figured it out, but, hey, i'm good w/ computers... Anyway, that part felt like a blip in y'all's seamless navigation.

Erin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Erin said...

I like the clean and neat look of the site, but like everyone else, I really do agree that pictures or graphics should accompany each show/podcast to not only enhance the personality of the host or hosts, but to make the site more visually appealing.

I do think the site is a bit plain looking, but I think that's because there's just so much white. Maybe if there were background images, or perhaps if the background itself was a color other than white?

I like how the media player allows someone to pause, but I also agree that it would be better if it had an actual forward or reverse function on it. Or perhaps if there were arrows to click on instead of the actual segment while it's playing.

Also, what happened to the display for the amount of hits/plays a show got or the ratings system? I always thought that feature was interesting and helpful.

I think pictures of djs/hosts in action or around the studio are good ideas. Another thing that could be interesting could be to include an "about the host" section for each feature/dj set/podcast etc.

I think that the contact information/information about getting involved should be separate from the "About" section and maybe a "Contact" section could be created.

As mentioned earlier, if the categories are going to be on the side, they should stand out more by being bigger or in bold or something.

I'm looking forward to seeing the completed version!

Siri Larkins said...

As far as the functionality - everything seems to work very well and it is easy to use. The pop-out player is great!

The categories get easily lost on the page and seem like an aside when I think they should be as equal importance of the latest broadcasts. I don't mind them being vertical but maybe that block could be bigger?

I don't mean to nitpick but in the ABOUT section I don't think subscribable is a word (but maybe that doesn't matter) and I don't even think it is necessary to mention something that is not available yet - it doesn't really serve any purpose.

Also, are we no longer having a forum or an upcoming events/calendar section on the homepage?

Josh said...

I think that in terms of functionality, this new design shows infinite improvement. In terms of design, I think the use of white space is great, although too extreme. There are too few visual distinctions. Nothing really pops out, so you are sort of forced to read through everything. I think that the categories need to be more pronounced. Awesome job though. The player is great - clean and functional!

Elise said...

I agree that the site looks "stripped down." Unfortunately, if I didn't know that it was a radio station, I would not have known from the look. This could be a content page, but the homepage should stand out.

Otherwise, the site looks good. The pastels are nice,very spring-like. Shows pause, which is a plus. It is defiantly getting there.

Jim Briggs said...

Siri, for the record, 'subscribable' is indeed a word (though not an oft-used one). Also, from what Tyler and Davon shared with us the first time, RSS subscription-podcasts can actually be implemented pretty quickly once this new site is running.

Joseph Baruch said...

Way pretty site. I LOVE the personal network posting functions more than I can possibly say. It looks good, works better than ever.
Did I mention how much I like the networking functions and how much it will increase usage?
Also, long term, will there be options to listen to archives of individual shows? Like, will each show have its own page?
Finally, I had a BIT of a problem viewing it in Explorer (I know, it's new school and nobody here uses explorer, but, you know, thinking of the others.)
It was WAY wide. I don't know if it was a problem with my browser or something else. Also, I haven't read the other comments so I don't know if this has already been mentioned.
http://picasaweb.google.com/notatyrant/WNSRMoreSoon#5325717308028009810

rboggs said...

First....GREAT JOB guys. Your work has done more to change the look and feel and REALITY of WNSR than probably most can attest to.

My observations:

1) I'm confused of the functionality of the picture box to the right. It works as a sort of visual advertisement for different shows. But beyond linking to the shows, what is it's purpose? I seem to remember a little more versatility in your demonstration a few weeks back.

2) The pop-out player needs some sort of WNSR logo. The small green one should be just fine.

3) If I click on one show and then another, they play at the same time, prompting the listener to end one. Could clicking on one show pause another?

4) I'm still a heavy advocate for a singular front page which is clean and simply has our logo which can click through to this page. It will help with branding as well as establishing our logo in the minds of listeners.

Hope this helps. I must reiterate how good this thing looks, though.
Again, great job.

rb

jellicleloon said...

I like the dots at the top but I think they moved before and now they don't. I rather liked that feature. Also, I would agree with others that it doesn't quite look like a homepage. The WNSR logo should be larger at the top.

Will Bradford said...

I think the new website looks too plain. I like the flash feature in the right corner of the page but the site needs more imagery, such as some pictures to coincide with the postings. Also, the color choice of purple, red and white is questionable. I liked the colors of the original website better because it had more of a unique look and feel.

I like the Web 2.0 sharing features that were added, but the postings have to have more of a clear formatting; they look sort of jumbled together. Maybe something that creates a visual break between one post and the next would help? Overall, I think the new design needs some visual interest added.