Author Topic: New Homepage Suggestions  (Read 6839 times)

Offline Simon Hicks

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New Homepage Suggestions
« on: 2009 October 01 19:46:18 »
Hi all,

Carlos said we should start a new thread for homepage suggestions.....so its all his fault!  :D

Please take the following as just my suggestions....which are in no way meant to be criticisms. I'm just trying to get the ideas flowing.

I think the first thing to try to work out is what message the website is trying to convey. I think its supposed to be about PixInsight. But its not clear....it seems to be about Pleiades and a Spanish software development company. It doesn't seem to mention astrophotography processing anywhere prominant. I can remember the very first time I came across this site....I thought it was some university based organisation project. It was only when I went back to it for about the third time that I realised there was something I could download and was aimed at me. The upfront talk of "Open-Architecture Image Processing Platform" and "Advanced Development Framework" frankly scared me off!  :o

Don't get me wrong, the above is all very important and needs to be on the site....but its not the main message. So what is the main message?

I think the main message is something like "PixInsight - Cutting Edge Astronomical Image Processing Software". Then some major features / benefits....maybe just five. Then some words saying that this is more than just static software...its a dynamic collaboration between like minded astrophotographers (amateur and professional) who are pushing the bounds of astronomical image processing using the most powerful tools available, that new tools are being created continuously by an ever growing community and that if you download the software you can become part of this project (I hate the word 'project' but I can't think of a better one right now).

That might be all you need on the homepage. Then have links to other pages....Features / Benefits, The Core, How Can I Join In (PCL Framework), The Roadmap, Recent Developments (Recent Processes, New Scripts, etc), The WIKI, Pleiades Astrophoto, Downloads, etc.

The more I look at the site I think that most of the information is there, it just isn't clear on the Homepage. Its got too much cluttered info which detracts from the main message. If the homepage was revamped, and maybe the menu structure / order changed along the side, then this would help a lot.

That's my two pennies worth.

Cheers
          Simon

Offline mmirot

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #1 on: 2009 October 01 21:01:41 »
I like the way you think Simmon.
The web page looks nice and has some great stuff on it.

However, it does not read like PI is trying to sell software very hard.

I think PI needs to blow their own horn a bit harder

Max

Offline Harry page

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #2 on: 2009 October 01 21:28:41 »
Hi Simon

I like the way you think ;)

As you say the current wording , puts people of because of the almost over  techy word use and adds to the view
that only people who practice in the black arts can use PI.   >:D

I do not to dumb down PI , but up front it wants to show tools / results ( yes pretty pics) and once inside Juan can get more techy

Regards Trainee wizard   Harry
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Offline papaf

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #3 on: 2009 October 02 06:07:22 »
The approach used by other software, by showing a typical program screenshot, obviously with a stunning photo in it, usually works. I'm thinking DSS or Neb2.

Fabio

Offline Simon Hicks

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #4 on: 2009 October 02 08:24:31 »
Fabio, the good thing about the DSS homepage is that in one sentence and four bullet points it tells you exactly what it is and who its aimed at. One more sentence tells you how to use it. Job done, message conveyed.....now I'm hooked!

And the concise punchy message gives room, like you say, for a nice graphic.

Max, I agree that it doesn't look like PI is being pushed too hard on the homepage. My guess is that this is partly historical and partly because Juan is far too modest about how good the software really is and what he has achieved. I wonder if it would be easier if 'we' (i.e. a bunch of users) came up with the real unashamedly marketing hype.....and then test it by seeing if Juan can deny it.  :D If he can't deny it then its true and valid! (maybe)

I think the StarkLabs homepage does a good job of selling itself. Again a concise message at the top and a catchy one line description under the title that immediately tells you what you are looking at. The homepage is probably a bit cluttered after that.....the News Item could just be a 'Read More' button....but that's probably just personal taste.

Thanks for the response guys...after posting last night I was worried that the post might be taken the wrong way....maybe as moaning and interfering. I hope Juan does not take it that way because its really not meant that way.

Cheers
         Simon




Offline Carlos Milovic

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #5 on: 2009 October 02 16:36:07 »
I think that this thread is going really well :) thumbs up :D
Regards,

Carlos Milovic F.
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Offline Cheyenne

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #6 on: 2009 October 02 19:33:00 »
I think a couple of show case images displayed with a "before/after" shot (with the before using the STF so that base image can be seen), with a link that shows the individual steps used (no need to go into the full details).  I would include a couple of "quick amateur" images as well.  The "before" image would be right after integration.  The steps used page would simply show the names of the processes used with the results of of each individual process.  These would not be the processing examples or the tutorials, but simply "here is what PI can do with an image"

And since you are asking for some front page suggestions,  I would like to toss out a suggestion for a wiki to augment the forum.
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Offline Simon Hicks

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #7 on: 2009 October 02 20:52:58 »
Hi Cheyenne,

The Wiki idea is getting a lot of support on some of the other threads......e.g.

http://pixinsight.com/forum/index.php?topic=1452.0

And it sounds like Juan is up for it.

I agree....its a great idea.  8)

Offline Niall Saunders

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #8 on: 2009 October 05 13:03:37 »
I have to agree as well Simon - in fact, for a LONG time I never really 'got into' PixInsight (pre 'core', LE only) because the website would NOT LOAD on my version of Internet Explorer  >:(

That is pretty much unacceptable for a website - it really should be accessible on ALL types of browser. (I did eventually upgrade, simply because I just couldn't access the data that I knew was there, having seen it on my neighbour's PC. It seems that ALL of my recent PC upgrades are directly related to PI in one way or another !!)

However - how can Juan be expected to support a major revamp of the website as well as create all the stunning new developments we yearn for in PI itself  ???

Is there scope for some of 'us' (by which I mean 'you', because my abilities stop at 'plain old' HTML  :sad:) to support him?

Could those with the necessary experience help create a 'parallel website' that could be tested, by Juan and others, before it was released to the public?

The only problem I see is that resources are now being channeled in three directions: Software Development, the WebSite, and a possible Wiki. And, somehow, poor Juan has to oversee ALL of these (remember he has already cancelled Christmas this year, barely suceeding in convincing his family that Santa Claus got made redundant due to the Credit Crisis)

Cheers,
Cheers,

Niall Saunders
Clinterty Observatories
Aberdeen, SCOTLAND

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Offline Simon Hicks

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #9 on: 2009 October 05 13:29:39 »
Hi Niall,

Lucky for you that you have a fellow PI user and astronomer next door huh!

I agree....I want Juan to concentrate on PI development as well. I think there are others who have suggested that they have great experience with WIKI creation.....so maybe with Juan's overriding management maybe they could do that and ease the burden from him. Unfortunately I know nothing about WIKIs.....if only there was a website that you could look up information on such things....maybe some sort of WIKI would help?  :D

But I think lots of us can have a stab at a webpage layout / look / feel etc and help out on that front. Even if it just got the ideas straight then it would be a big time saver for Juan. And as I've said on one of the other threads I think that 90% of the material already exists on the site, it just needs a complete revamp of the structure / layout etc and a real focus on a concise hardhitting message that pushes PI.

So I think your idea of a parallel development by the users is a good idea. I would suggest it would be easiest if we just created minisites on our own webspaces and put links to them on the forum for comments etc. I think that a good percentage of the people here have their own websites so I guess we can all do the basics....at least enough to test ideas and layouts....rough and ready drafts.

Juan can bin all the ideas if he wishes....but hopefully it will give him some inspiration for a full site revamp and save him a lot of time trying out different ideas. Its his call though.....so we need to hear his views on this.....hint, hint.  ;)

Offline Carlos Milovic

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #10 on: 2009 October 05 17:03:35 »
If anybody wants to upload a "mirror" site, for evaluation, you may send it to me (carlos dot milovic at pixinsight dot you know what). I may create a folder under the pteam domain for it.


PS: Niall... why don't you use Firefox? ;)
Regards,

Carlos Milovic F.
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Offline Simon Hicks

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #11 on: 2009 October 05 17:41:33 »
Hi Carlos,

If you are offering to host all these for comparison then I'd like to have a go....I've already put my foot in my mouth by expressing an opinion....so the least I should do is follow through.  :D

But I would really want others to have a go as well. So please fire through ideas.

By the way....I'm up to my eyeballs in work at the moment....so I won't be able to supply anything till maybe the weekend at the earliest.

Cheers
         Simon

Offline Carlos Milovic

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #12 on: 2009 October 05 17:47:45 »
Yes, I'm offering host ;) at pixinsight's server :D but, as I said, under the pteam domain, in a special folder.

We'll be waiting yours ;) (I'll sunk again writing code).
Regards,

Carlos Milovic F.
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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #13 on: 2009 October 05 18:29:47 »
Hi Simon  (By the way im the guy next door to Niall , Alex ie Esraguin.)

             The first time i went to the site, I was thinking it was way over my head stuff ,but soon a bit of digging here and there started to get me interested in some of the processes involved,so i like to tell as many people as i can about the software ,The Main Page needs more of an impact to hold peoples attention ie.Image before and after processing. Maybe one of Harry's Video's to get you going.

Alex

Offline Niall Saunders

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Re: New Homepage Suggestions
« Reply #14 on: 2009 October 05 20:32:34 »
Quote
Niall... why don't you use Firefox?

Carlos,

For the same reason I don't / can't use Linux - my brain runs in a purely 32-bit mode, and can therefore only address 3.2ish EB of memory - of which 2.9EB is taken up with PI. There is simply no more space for further upgrades - so I am stuck with IE. However, when I retire (several years away, alas) I plan to delete all the rubbish I have learned and instigate a full reformat of all grey matter. That is the only way I can see of being able to 'learn something new'  :P
Cheers,

Niall Saunders
Clinterty Observatories
Aberdeen, SCOTLAND

LX90 Classic 8"SCT - Homebrew Wedge and Pier
Moonfish ED80 APO Piggybacked - Homebrew 3D Balance
QHY10 CCD + TS-OAG
Meade DSI IC AllSkyCam, IIC, IIPro+Outback TEC
Atik Filterwheel + Meade RGB Filters & Astronomik 13nm Ha