Do you think Cemetech needs a theme upgrade for 2016?
Yes, and this is it
 14%  [ 8 ]
Yes, and this is almost it
 28%  [ 16 ]
Yes, but this is not it
 17%  [ 10 ]
No, but this looks good
 14%  [ 8 ]
No, but this looks OK
 12%  [ 7 ]
No, and this does not look good.
 12%  [ 7 ]
Total Votes : 56

I have device rotation disabled, because it's a very annoying feature in some cases, since the screen will keep rotating back and forth by itself non-stop at certain angles. I guess I can always use Stylish, though.
Flat styling, at least with those...bold....color choices and uninspired typography, just makes it look like we're back in 1998. That said, our current theme uses almost no images at all, so if you really want to work on the design, no reason to fiddle with mockups, just put Firefox into Responsive Design Mode and use the style editor to load your own CSS.
I have made a quick redesign using that beautiful logo (credit to whoever posted it)



http://i.imgur.com/7NrTzLj.jpg
StrawberryFrostedPopTart wrote:
I have made a quick redesign using that beautiful logo (credit to whoever posted it)



http://i.imgur.com/7NrTzLj.jpg


Too much Calibri and gray, sorry. Also the logo reminds me of Walmart or Target for some reason.
I personally like the current setup, but if it had to change, I'd say at least keep the maroon and the logo at the top.
I'm aware it uses a lot of Calibri and grey. It was a quick thing I whipped up, and it was COMPLETELY grey when I first made it. I used the recolor tool on some of the text Razz

The logo wasn't made by me; it was made by someone earlier in this topic who I can't remmber the name of. Honestly, I think the logo is the best part; the entire design was based off of the logo.

I can edit that and make it more Cemetech-like, if you want.
I like how the new themes take more advantage of screen real estate. This can easily be implement with the current theme. Just replace all the hardcoded pixel values with percentages in CSS. There is lots of padding when I view Cemetech on a 1080p monitor. Currently I just zoom in a bit to eliminate said padding.

Although the proposed themes look decent I am left liking the current theme more and there is why.

What I do not understand about these new designs is the objective. How will replacing the theme with something that looks less modern make Cemetech look more modern?

The current Cemetech website looks very modern to me. It do not see any flashing text that says sign my guestbook or animated GIFs that say under construction or . The Cemetech theme looks like nothing of the sort nor does it look like websites that have such images. The reason I perceive the current theme as modern and the proposed designs as less modern is due to the flatness of the proposed themes.

The proposed designs all look very flat. They remind me of using the "Classic" theme of Windows except the themes feature a better color scheme than the default for older version of windows or the "Classic" option. Also I do not understand why the raster logo is being replaced with plain text.

For the new logo the lightning on the C is nice and headline below it is cool as well. What does not make sense to me is why is it flat? If it had the depth of the current logo and used more similar colors it would look better.

Now don't get me wrong. These concerns are minor. The people here are good designers. It is just that I believe the current theme is better than the mockups.
I like the current theme and agree with ProgrammerNerd that the mockups are too flat. There are a few things that do bother me with the current one such as the header not going all the way across the top of the page. I also think is would be kind of cool if the same general layout and gradients were applied throughout the site but with different colors for different areas (Home is red, Archives are green, or whatever).
ProgrammerNerd wrote:
Just replace all the hardcoded pixel values with percentages in CSS.


We use REMs in a vast majority of the site. I'm not familiar with them, elfprince13 was the proponent for them iirc, but if memory serves REM units are more flexible.

Quote:
Although the proposed themes look decent I am left liking the current theme more and there is why.

What I do not understand about these new designs is the objective. How will replacing the theme with something that looks less modern make Cemetech look more modern?

The current Cemetech website looks very modern to me. It do not see any flashing text that says sign my guestbook or animated GIFs that say under construction or . The Cemetech theme looks like nothing of the sort nor does it look like websites that have such images. The reason I perceive the current theme as modern and the proposed designs as less modern is due to the flatness of the proposed themes.

The proposed designs all look very flat. They remind me of using the "Classic" theme of Windows except the themes feature a better color scheme than the default for older version of windows or the "Classic" option. Also I do not understand why the raster logo is being replaced with plain text.

For the new logo the lightning on the C is nice and headline below it is cool as well. What does not make sense to me is why is it flat? If it had the depth of the current logo and used more similar colors it would look better.

Now don't get me wrong. These concerns are minor. The people here are good designers. It is just that I believe the current theme is better than the mockups.


Speaking personally, I really like the flat designs I've seen in this topic. I like flat designs because they look exceptionally clean and simple. I really like what Strawberry did with their concept. I'm not a huge fan of the really wide SAX on the right side but I agree that the left column is already extremely cluttered and unnecessarily long.

Strawberry has condensed the left column quite well. We don't need a list of all online users, perhaps there could do a mouse-over tool tip for that info or visitors can navigate to the forum index for that info since it's there already. I'm not sure where the RSS feeds have moved to but the social media links look modern; I'd even go as far as just using the social media icons and omitting the text to them. Asking users to follow or like a social media page seems dated to me. Conversely, adding the social media handles next to the icons seems redundant. Then you'd be able to move the social media links to one row and add another row or three for the RSS links. I did this on my website and I think the only icon most people won't know is Flickr - Facebook, Twitter and, Instagram are easily identifiable to almost everyone.

I'm also not excited of how cluttered the navigation has become over such a short period but I'm also not a fan of drop down menus... they just never seem to work right. I think the navigation should be split into sections. I think Tools, Projects, Learn and, Archives could easily be condensed to a page called "Explore." Where visitors can see what was have to offer in our archives such as newest uploads, popular uploads (both in ratings and downloads). They can see progress on projects, unfortunately these are largely Cemetech/Kerm projects and not those of the members but if Cemetech ever offers a portal for its members to maintain a projects page outside of the forum, such as Botboys Photolithographic 3D Printer build project. There'd of course be links to stuff like the Calculator Wiki/Info pages and stuff. We could probably even remove the "Home" navigation option since the Cemetech Logo could easily substitute for coming back to the main page. That'd leave navigation links for "Explore," "Forum," "Play" and, "About." Which I think cleans up really nicely and succinctly.

Strawberry: Did you happen to save the HTML for your design anywhere? I'd like to take a screen shot of it with my tweaks.
Main reason we use flat design today is because Microsoft used it for Metro, and then Apple adopted it to compete with Apple, and so since all the graphic designers use Macs, they just had a big design-gasm over the new changes and started adopting flat design too. And so now everyone uses the fad otherwise known as flat design, thanks to big business.

Same thing when Apple first launched the iPhone. We started seeing skeuomorphism everywhere and glossy bars and surfaces mimicking that of an iPhone, because everyone uses an iPhone and thus the interface automatically more familiar.

Tell me when CLI switches to flat design. Oh right, it already is.
Just an idea, if the website gets an update, you could click on the number under views (or downloads if it's in archives), and see which members viewed your topic and such. I don't know if other people will like this idea. But just to throw it out if people do...

Another idea would be to have a member page with all of the member's on it. Like just their usernames and post numbers and download's and authored projects etc. If there is this already, I haven't seen it.
Alex wrote:

Strawberry: Did you happen to save the HTML for your design anywhere? I'd like to take a screen shot of it with my tweaks.


Actually, that's just an image I threw together in Photoshop. If you want me to do it in HTML, I will gladly do so.
** Before typing up this post, I didn't remember that I had posted in this topic 8 months ago and I am now noticing that some of the things I said are coming up again**

Okay, time to contribute my grain of sand...
I think the site looks fine the way it is, however, there are a few things I think could use a redesign...
1) The bottom of the pages sometimes look messy, there is a whole bunch of redundant stuff that I think should not be there at all like...
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    New posts New posts No new posts No new posts Announcement Announcement
    New posts [ Popular ] New posts [ Popular ] No new posts [ Popular ] No new posts [ Popular ] Sticky Sticky
    New posts [ Locked ] New posts [ Locked ] No new posts [ Locked ] No new posts [ Locked ]

2) I really love strawberry's social media section and I feel like that might even add a dab of colors which are not maroon and gray (I like the maroon and gray but there is a lot of it...)
3) The latest uploads section... if I remember correctly, someone had said it was because Cemetech was not oriented towards downloads and publishing games (*cough* ticalc *cough*), but rather towards learning, but I really liked that section, because right now, I am not aware of people who upload projects without having a progress thread. In fact, a newer member mentioned wishing there was such a spot, and I took the liberty of informing him that there used to be one and that it had been wiped off when Cemetech6 came along. (well the info is still made accessible on the left had side but that's not very user friendly Razz
4) Why is "Go to the new posts" in bold?
5) In the archives, when clicking on a file, why does the text download it and the icon open it up? I don't know if I am the only one who does this, but I always have a look at the file's description and screenshots before hitting that download button... I think it should be the other way around, with the text redirecting to the page and a download icon to just download it blindly Wink
6) Why this...
7) What are the little balls under our rank? Are those remenants from the authorisation levels on the old ID cards?
I think I can answer 6 and 7:
6) They show the state of the topic, locked, sticky, read, unread, Announcement and so on.
7) The little balls represent what level you are, according to how many posts you have, I believe.
mr womp womp wrote:
5) In the archives, when clicking on a file, why does the text download it and the icon open it up? I don't know if I am the only one who does this, but I always have a look at the file's description and screenshots before hitting that download button... I think it should be the other way around, with the text redirecting to the page and a download icon to just download it blindly Wink


ticalc.org does it the same way, and it has always bothered me immensely. It may be good for the site and developers since there will be more downloads, but it seems very counterintuitive.
mr womp womp wrote:

I really love strawberry's social media section and I feel like that might even add a dab of colors which are not maroon and gray (I like the maroon and gray but there is a lot of it...)

Just to add something, I left out the RSS links because when I click on them, it gives me this error:
"This XML file does not appear to have any style information associated with it. The document tree is shown below."
along with the code for the page. I thought they weren't in use so I didn't include them in the mockup.

mr womp womp wrote:

The latest uploads section... if I remember correctly, someone had said it was because Cemetech was not oriented towards downloads and publishing games (*cough* ticalc *cough*), but rather towards learning, but I really liked that section, because right now, I am not aware of people who upload projects without having a progress thread. In fact, a newer member mentioned wishing there was such a spot, and I took the liberty of informing him that there used to be one and that it had been wiped off when Cemetech6 came along.
...
Why is "Go to the new posts" in bold?

Actually, I am that new member. And I agree, I would love a new projects section, maybe even in place of the new posts section which I never use.

I also was the one who mentioned to mr womp womp about the bold "Go to the new posts".
One thing I mentioned a while back is updating the forum to phpBB 3.1 or 3.2, and updating the forum theme to take advantage of 3.1's new features. I've raised some other ideas to administration a while back, I can find those later and reiterate them here for others to see and comment on.
Considering how heavily modified this installation of PhpBB2 is, I have to wonder if the database is even compatible with vanilla PhpBB2 anymore, let alone PhpBB3.x.
This thread is back? Wow...
To everyone who doesn't think flat = modern, or wondering why such a flat design, my reason is what has been standard since iOS 7 was released- everything is flat, and shading is almost nonexistent except for smooth gradients. It seems like flat is a more popular design lately.
I really like this answer from Quora, which explains what I'm thinking much better.
The reason why many people thinks that flat is not modern is because flat website designs were around back in the late 90's and early 2000's then got replaced with ones with gradients and fancy special effects afterwards.

IMHO I think flat designs only made a comeback because of widespread smartphone usage, on which such design is generally easier to use. However, certain people find such design either boring or too 90's.
  
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