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Slashdot Launches Re-Design 2254

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the lookit-all-that-shiny dept.
Today we are pleased to announce the launch of the third major re-design in our 13.5 year history, and I don't think it looks half bad. The new theme represents a serious gutting of the underlying HTML and CSS, as well as all-new graphics. There will be many design wiggles, bug squashes, and compatibility glitches that survived testing, so bear with us for a bit. Please direct your bug reports and feedback (good and bad!) to Garrett Woodworth who is currently in charge of such things. Thanks to him, Wes, Vlad, Dean, Phil and Tim, who have each worked hard to get this out the door. Juggling the needs of users, editors, and various business functions is a hard job, and you guys did good.
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Slashdot Launches Re-Design

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:49PM (#35003164)
    I was sure there'd be ponies in the new design.
  • Horrible. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Adambomb (118938) * on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:49PM (#35003166) Journal

    wayyyyy too much white space and low-contrast text on white.

    • Re:Horrible. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by phizi0n (1237812) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:52PM (#35003242)

      I agree, I like the shadows but there's way too much white!

    • Re:Horrible. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by zach_the_lizard (1317619) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:55PM (#35003324)
      This. Plus still no Unicode support.
    • Re:Horrible. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:05AM (#35003490)

      I agree. /. now hurts my eyes to look at it. I had to increase the light in this room to read the comments.

      What's with the borders? I don't need another border. On my right I've got the /. border, the scroll bar, and the window border. Stop stealing my pixels please. Two of those borders are useful, the /. one isn't.

      I don't like top borders as well. Those are just fake toolbar plug-ins. When I read /., I open the main page then any articles in other tabs. If I want to search for something else I go back to the main page's tab a go from there. When I'm reading an article/comments, all I care about is the article/comments. If you want a few things at the top of the page, such as Log In that's great, but I don't need to see it while reading comments. All I want to see is more comments. You're just taking up more of my screen space and making me scroll more. Please stop.

    • Re:Horrible. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Imagix (695350) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:10AM (#35003574)
      I wouldn't go so far as to call it horrible, but I do agree that there's too much white space around everything. Example, there's a large blank white space under the summary and before the comments, to the left of the Share links and such. The Share links, the "This story has XXX Comments", "Read similar Stories" and "You may also like to read" could probably be collected into 1 horizontal line. to eliminate the gaping hole in the page.
    • Re:Horrible. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by topham (32406) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:17AM (#35003688) Homepage

      ++;
      ++;
      ++;
      ++;

      Seriously way too much white space.

    • Re:Horrible. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by ronocdh (906309) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:22AM (#35003756)
      I know it's been said, but you asked for feedback! Way too much white. Very unpleasant on the eyes, especially on a large monitor in a dark room (like the average Slashdot user). Also, the padding around various elements seems excessive. We're tech-friendly people, so remember that we don't mind cluttered interfaces! =)
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:29AM (#35003854)

      I love it.

      Steve.

      Sent from my iPhone.

    • by morethanapapercert (749527) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:31AM (#35003882)
      I second the comment of too much white space, not enough contrast. In addition: Overall the whole place now looks "flat" for lack of a better word. I don't like the fact that the side pane doesn't scroll with the rest of the page. I prefer the single page that moves as a whole model rather than the current layout, which just reminds me WAY too much of bad sites in iFrames. Finally, here's the weird one. Everything appears right until I log in. The the main pane is shifted about four character spaces to the left, sending the text at the beginning of every line "under" the side pane and out of view.
    • Re:Horrible. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by elashish14 (1302231) <profcalc4@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @01:28AM (#35004566)

      Yeah, total waste of space. I'll never be able to read /. on my netbook. I can barely even see the entire left panel on my 15" laptop. Also, what was wrong with the high contrast buttons?

      And what's this obsession with panels that impose a minimum size on your screen real estate? Do web developers not realize that the scrollbar was made for elements that don't fit on the whole screen? Do they no longer realize that some people like being able to view more in a smaller space? That not everyone runs their browser in full screen? That sometimes it's nice to have 2, or maybe even 3 windows visible at a time?

      Fuck this. Does /. have a mobile version? I'll have to start using that on my computer. I'm so angry, I'm not even gonna use the Preview button when I submit this (edit: nevermind).

    • Re:Horrible. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Graff (532189) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @01:50AM (#35004778)

      I think pretty much every update Slashdot gets more unusable. All I want out of this site is a clean way to browse stories and read and write comments. I don't want "web 2.0", tags, autoupdating pages, and all that other clutter.

      Can we please at least get a versioning system that allows us to freeze our interface at a certain point?

      I guess the next step is we'll just have to scrape the RSS feed or whatever and build our own interface. Not that I really want to re-invent the wheel or anything.

  • Not bad (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sandman1971 (516283) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:49PM (#35003172) Homepage Journal

    It'll take some getting used to, but I don't mind the new design. Change != bad

    • Re:Not bad (Score:5, Interesting)

      by snl2587 (1177409) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:29AM (#35003846)
      While I agree with that for the most part, one of the things I've always liked about threaded discussions on Slashdot is that, because of the moderation system, really great discussions could be seen and take place nested 4 or 5 threads under the original post. Since 3rd-level comments and above aren't visible in the redesign without clicking through, it's now much less likely that discussions beyond 1st or 2nd level will even be seen.
      • Re:Not bad (Score:5, Insightful)

        by CCarrot (1562079) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @11:28AM (#35009016)

        Since 3rd-level comments and above aren't visible in the redesign without clicking through, it's now much less likely that discussions beyond 1st or 2nd level will even be seen.

        Yes, this is definitely a loss of utility for the site. I wish I could mod you higher than 5, to bring this to the developers attentions...hello? Anyone paying attention out there?

        I know when I get a fistful of mod points to spend, I enjoy looking through some of the 'low-level' discussions (or, I guess it would be 'high-level' if it's 4th level or above, whatever) for particularly insightful or informative posts, and often that's where I find some hidden gems.

        Unless Slashdot is trying to get people to start a new thread every time they want to reply to someone else's post? That could get real old, real fast...we already have quite enough redundancy when people fail to scan the comment history before posting their 'unique' insights on the topic at hand...

        btw, could someone please post a quick 'hello world' response to this, so I can see how notifications have changed? 'k thanks!

        (oh, wait, I'm in the dreaded third level! oh well, maybe I'll go re-post this as a new thread...;)

    • Re:Not bad (Score:5, Insightful)

      by derGoldstein (1494129) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:54AM (#35004194) Homepage
      Have you seen where the "Show X More Comments" button is? I hope there's some way to just get all the comments without having to scroll all the way down again and again (if there is, I haven't found it yet).
      • Re:Not bad (Score:5, Interesting)

        by macshit (157376) <[gro.ung] [ta] [selim]> on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @01:44AM (#35004720) Homepage

        Have you seen where the "Show X More Comments" button is? I hope there's some way to just get all the comments without having to scroll all the way down again and again (if there is, I haven't found it yet).

        It's especially silly because there are now two non-scrolling fixed panes (sidebar and topbar), but they're filled with relatively useless and redundant links (and lots of empty space), whereas the two controls that would actually be pretty useful if always available -- the "show more comments" button and the "minimum score" slider -- are relegated to inconvenient positions at the end/beginning of the scrolling page!

        My impression is that the person who did the redesign is not so bad at graphical design (it's fairly clean and polished looking), but isn't very experienced with UI / usability issues...

  • Why is it so much smaller now than before? Are you hoping we'll think we are reading a different site?
  • Unicode? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by thenickdude (1481249) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:50PM (#35003180)
    How about Unicode, do you support that yet?
  • by Osty (16825) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:51PM (#35003206)

    And Slashdot has now gotten on the "waste your screen space with bullshit" fixed-position bandwagon. Luckily this is easily solved. Install Stylish and add the following to a new user style:

    @-moz-document domain("slashdot.org")
    {

    div.col_1
    {
    position: absolute !important;
    }

    header.h
    {
    position: absolute !important;
    }

    }

    Now the sidebar/header scroll with the page, rather than remaining fixed in place.

  • by Gothmolly (148874) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:52PM (#35003224)

    No new content.. More whitespace than before. Lame.

  • by Bin_jammin (684517) <Binjammin@gmail.com> on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:52PM (#35003228)
    My already overtaxed old Powerbook can't handle the new site's layout, and it looks like I'll have to either avoid Slashdot, one of my daily religious reads for over a decade, or buy a new piece of equipment just to read a text format site. Seriously? It's text, wtf was so important that it's got to be redone to look fancy? Why not some flash animation while you're at it? Can we switch to an html view? I'm glad you felt the need to flash the place up, but this is pretty stupid.
  • by dangthill (944791) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:53PM (#35003272)
    What is the obsession with obnoxious floating headers that always stay at the top of the screen? Whatever utility they provide is outweighed by the fact that it screws up the paging behavior when you hit the spacebar to scroll. It's annoying to have the bottom two lines of text scroll behind the floating bar--not everyone reads to the absolute very, very bottom before hitting space.
    • by pz (113803) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:57AM (#35004236) Journal

      I agree. It's like another toolbar on my browser, effectively reducing the available screen area. Same for the excessive (and visually distracting) excessive whitespace. Now if I ever managed to USE the icons / links at the top of the Slashdot page (and now on the Slashdot toolbar) more than once every 3 months, it might be good to have them handy. But that really almost never happens, so it's wasted area.

      It's a symptom of developers who have big monitors: they forget that many people don't have a huge amount of screen real estate, and actually like to look at content.

      Thumbs down on the new look.

  • Impressed (Score:5, Funny)

    by Admiral Lazzurs (96382) <rob@[ ]zurs.net ['laz' in gap]> on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:55PM (#35003328) Homepage

    I have to say I have always generally been impressed with the /. redesigns and this is no exception. Well done team, thanks again not just for a great site but for continuing to make it look and work better for all the users.

  • by damn_registrars (1103043) <damn.registrars@gmail.com> on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:56PM (#35003336) Homepage Journal
    Could we get a search function for slashdot that actually works, too? I would have been happy to keep the old design but have a search function here that was at least as good as infoseek was back in 1998. Some of us recall a short period a while ago when you actually allowed us to just use google to search slashdot, which was a huge improvement over the slashdot search function that came before and after that.
  • by John Hasler (414242) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:57PM (#35003356) Homepage

    Is shaving off the left edge of every article part of the plan, or just a bonus?

  • by unity100 (970058) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:57PM (#35003360) Homepage Journal
    after getting bitchslapped by sudden release of the new interface, i can say that it causes us to have to one by one click and open all comments in a thread when we attempt to go to a post someone replied to our post, through the message facility.

    ie you go to your m essages -> click on the Y at the link that says user x postedm message y in response to your post, you end up at the initial post of that particular thread (yours o r others) and you have to open all the comments through the last post the user made in reply to

    also, i think you are not able to reply to a last post in a long thread too. i keep replying to some reply who someone put in response to mine, but my reply goes to the parent post - my post.
  • First impression (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jasno (124830) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:57PM (#35003364) Journal

    - Too much whitespace.
    - Posts and comments need better separation(green line or something)
    - Noticeably slower in Firefox 3.6.13 on my Core 2 Duo 1.667GHz laptop w/ 3GB RAM(minecraft is running in the background though).
    - Comment text box is way too small.

    I think the overall direction is good though - I hated the last layout and had turned a lot of the fancy stuff off.

  • by Edmund Blackadder (559735) on Tuesday January 25, 2011 @11:58PM (#35003374)

    The menu on the top left side cuts off half an inch of text of articles and comments. I am on Ubuntu and Firefox, the latest released versions of both. I am shocked that Slashdot of all websites did not test Ubuntu and Firefox.

    Otherwise, it looks pretty good, I have to admit.

  • Finally! (Score:5, Funny)

    by stox (131684) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:00AM (#35003396) Homepage

    I can get a tan while sitting in front of my monitor.

  • by linebackn (131821) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:05AM (#35003504)

    I need to use SeaMonkey 1.1.19 because the particular oddball OS I primarily use does not have a newer version of Firefox or SeaMonkey available for it.

    Looking at Slashdot now, it looks like the entire page has been sent through a blender. Whatever happened to HTML degrading gracefully for older browsers? Slashdot being home to all kinds of people with oddball OSes and gadgets, one would think compatibility would be a higher priority. Is this what we have to look forward to every 5 years if we don't purchase the latest "standard" desktop hardware with the latest Microsoft Windows(TM)?

    Heck I remember reading Slashdot in Netscape 3.0 ages ago, and it worked for a very long time too.

  • by pancake_lover (310091) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:06AM (#35003516)

    Overall I like it. But it wouldn't hurt to throw in a few ponies around the page. And maybe a little bit of pink wouldn't hurt.

  • Links to replies (Score:5, Informative)

    by MichaelSmith (789609) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:10AM (#35003566) Homepage Journal

    When I get an email from slashdot telling me that somebody has posted a reply I follow the link to the new post. But I don't actually see the reply. I have to click on a top level post and follow the tree downwards, clicking to open each post, to find the reply I want to read. So why can't slashdot directly show me the new message?

  • by dysfunct (940221) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:10AM (#35003568)
    Why can't I select the classic discussion system (D1) any more? Please don't say this has been discontinued :(
  • Thumbs down (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Compaqt (1758360) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:16AM (#35003664) Homepage

    Actually, I could get used to just the look of it.

    But make the fixed "taskbar" on top go away. Just let it scroll up with the rest of the page.

  • by Dahamma (304068) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:19AM (#35003712)

    The basic look is pretty nice - but I'm surprised you didn't think about your users, who are one of the last bastion of Internet folks who still believe in function > form!

    Ie. the style seemed to come with a big decrease in density of useful data in the given space. For most random sites that may be a good thing as to keep from overwhelming the users, but on /. it's a big step backwards - these are people who are still using VT emulation and have memorized the most obscure vi or emacs commands to be more efficient, and you are trying to tell them they need 12-14 point fonts and an extra 5 points of whitespace between each line??

    Oh well... it's just CSS, you still improve it, right? ;)

    • by B1ackDragon (543470) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @01:12AM (#35004398)
      Agreed. The biggest usability change for me so far, aside from the overgenerous whitespace, are the folded preview-comments. I noticed that Re: subjects are missing the original subject (probably a plus, since it's redundant information), and (Score: X) information seems to be missing from them unless they are top-level posts. That's a shame, since I routinely use that as a filter for whether a post is likely to be interesting enough to fold out and read.
  • by Anonymous Cowar (1608865) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:27AM (#35003822)
    So, is slashdot moving away from the reply and focusing on highly rated OP's only, or is there a good way to expand out threads without moving to a new page?
    Windows 7 x64 and FF 3.6.13
  • by clyde_cadiddlehopper (1052112) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:28AM (#35003828)
    .

    rome browser (8.0.552.237) running on Win7 Ultimate.

    e menu on the left side is too wide and cuts off the main panel.

    rhaps my username has more characters than you expected?

  • by Tumbleweed (3706) * on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:39AM (#35003970)

    Validate -> "94 Errors, 14 warning(s)"

    Some things never change. :/

  • Re-purpose left bar (Score:5, Interesting)

    by T Murphy (1054674) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:40AM (#35003988) Journal
    I browse slashdot by going to the main page, scrolling down the list of stories, and opening any interesting ones in new tabs. I never browse by category, so I never expect to use those links on the left that sit there wherever I am on the site.

    How about giving me the option of using that space to notify me of stuff? Stuff like new stories being posted, replies to my comments, my comments being moderated and comments being posted with split infinitives (so I can mod them into oblivion) . Being optional, people opting for a low-overhead (and poorly grammared) site don't have to worry about it.

    I'm aware the most popular suggestion for changing that left bar is "remove it", but I'm on a wide screen so that would just give me more white space and nothing useful- I expect I'm not the only one. So, anyone else have ideas for something useful to put over there?
  • Seems very fragile (Score:5, Informative)

    by thetoastman (747937) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:41AM (#35004010)

    First of all, as many people have commented the text is small and the whitespace is huge.

    Second of all, even in Chrome it eats CPU and memory. Why is it necessary for an idle page to consume so many resources? I can no longer have anything else running besides Slashdot. While I don't visit as often as I used to, this will make Slashdot much more difficult to visit.

    In order to fix the font size, I tried Shift-Ctrl-+. That did increase the font size, but it broke the fixed left sidebar. The left sidebar then scrolled with the rest of the page. Resetting the page back to my default font sizes with Ctrl - fixed the scrolling problem.

    I'm curious. What user interface / site requirements were you trying to address with this new design? A quick look at the generated HTML makes me cringe. Hopefully the back end Perl code is much cleaner.

    In short, it seems that there has been a lot of effort spent for very little end user enhancement.

    Preview also seems to be slower.

  • by gatodecat (822540) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @12:58AM (#35004250)
    I feel like I am being stalked. Also, too much white. Overall, re-design looks and works great.
  • Fuck this shit! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by internewt (640704) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @01:00AM (#35004270) Journal

    Well, I've been looking for an excuse to stop using slashdot.... it's the same bullshit over and over, and the few gems that do crop up have gotten so rare that trawling through the shit spewed by consumer-capitalist apologists is just too much.

    I do not use javascript, and will not spend any effort on making this site work without it. I discovered with D2 that if you have D2 on in you prefs, set the threshold to -1, and use /. without JS enabled in the browser, you get a better experience than D1 in one way - all the comments load on 1 page. But without JS you couldn't mod, nor look at mod histories, without opening the comment in another tab and allowing JS temporarily.

    What I got on the /. homepage just was a huge white position:fixed box thing floating over the content, blocking most of it. Presumably that box is hidden when JS is on, but I am not going to fight with another site that is trying to be a "web application" just for.... fuck knows why. Bandwagon jumping, I'd say. Perhaps /. think they can get 500mill out of Goldman too, if only they appeared "trendier"?

    I've got 1 mod point, I'm gonna go mod taco a troll or something, and that's it.

  • Needs threading (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Your.Master (1088569) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @01:23AM (#35004524)

    Using a browser's find-in-page feature (Ctrl+F) still breaks the layout. I recommend making the entire grey area a hit target for expanding a comment.

    Otherwise, I'm mostly fine with it, but have two more minor criticisms:

    1. I couldn't find "More Comments" at first -- I'd consider putting them in the same place as all the other comment controls, below the story but above the comments. Or give logged in users the option to always load all comments. I know the performance sucks but I don't like dealing with truncated comments.

    2. I can't see the full expanded threads unless I lower my abbreviation threshold to 0. That's something I liked about the previous one. I get that it sucked in that it was difficult to figure out when you didn't have all comments loaded if you had thresholds hiding comments or there were more than 250 loaded, but I could otherwise understand up until the thread got so long that it did the flat listing. Part of what makes me look at a comment is not just the moderation but the number of comments it attracted.

  • by Theovon (109752) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @01:55AM (#35004818)

    Looks like I'm not the only one who noticed this, but due to various other UI bugs, I can't read people's full comments. Anyhow, using slashdot is making my browser (Safari) burn massive CPU cycles. Probably some timed event that fires off WAY too often.

  • History (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jwdb (526327) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @05:07AM (#35006054)

    Oy, what happened to "yesterday's news"? I can't filter by date any more?

    • Re:History (Score:5, Insightful)

      by dragor42 (567609) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @02:49PM (#35011604)
      This was my first question too. I get behind in reading slashdot and like to go back. Now I have to keep loading stories until I get back to where I was. When I get months behind, that's just crazy. PLEASE create a way to easily read old stories!
  • Past dates (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tvarsa (1187589) on Wednesday January 26, 2011 @05:54AM (#35006312)
    Today I was reading the news of 2010-12-10 (yeah, I have a lot to catch up with). When I clicked to get the news from 2010-12-11 I was redirected to today's news and for the life of me I cannot see how I can get back to that date using some on-screen control. I hope I have missed something because if this option is not available then I'm outta here. The "Many more" button link at the bottom of the page shows how you can get articles from a specific date but you have to type this yourself. And from there you can't move to the previous or next date without retyping the url. That's not right surely...
  • by mestar (121800) on Friday January 28, 2011 @08:26AM (#35030492)

    The main page no longer lists the number of comments.

    No 'yesterday' news?

    Comments spilling way right off the monitor on the 1600x1200 resolution? WTF?

    Slashdot going backwards in functionality.

  • Visit an article like this and see for yourselves:
    http://slashdot.org/articles/00/11/14/1533230.shtml [slashdot.org]

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