Net Objects Fusion 4 - Website Update

  [DELETED] 08:01 22 Sep 2003

I'm in the process of updating my original website click here, which was created with NOF 2.02 using frames.

Tbh gave me a cover disk copy of NOF 4, which fortunately would not import my old NOD file so I had to start over from scratch. A great opportunity for a redesign.

The content won't change very much, and I shall be using the same style so that people don't think they turned up at the wrong place, but this is a good chance to streamline the site and make it easier to navigate and cleaner.

I took the hint to remove frames, which is what prevented me importing my site into later versions of NOF. I'm not sure whether I'm doing it right yet. Please take a look and see what you make of it. click here

It is just a trial version on my ISP webspace, not on my original domain, so my old site is still fully functional while I play around with this new edition.

  [DELETED] 13:06 22 Sep 2003

Your site never ceases to amaze me Pesala.

Its sheer scope and the amount of infrmation it contains is impressive enough on its own.

Having had a very brief look at your proposed redesign, about the only layout changes I would suggest would be to centre the navigation links on the bottom of your pages. Their left alignment is not really in keeping with the body text blocks.

Aside from that, one or two of the longer articles could do with being presented in columns or a divided table, as in your Buddha page click here

I like it.

It just takes me a while to go through it, it's so comprehensive. And that is obviously not a criticism.

Well done.



  [DELETED] 19:08 22 Sep 2003

I haven't started on adding the longer articles to the new site yet. Some of them need a substantial table of contents and lots of targets. I shall give it some thought as I get around to it.

I was wondering if I should divide the site up a bit by making a completely separate site for the books, with the current library page as the home page, and then linking that to the first level pages. Its a bit much to have all my eggs in one basket.

I was aware of the left alignment problem. I haven't moved it yet, as I might add one or two more pages to the first level.

I'm quite impressed with NOF4, it is a lot easier to use than the earlier version, and there is more to learn that I haven't even looked out yet, like rollover effects, forms, etc.

One thing that worries me is that a text frame got corrupted a couple of times and all the formatting was lost, so I had to redo all the formatting twice. Apart from that, it seems very good.

  Forum Editor 20:00 22 Sep 2003

the new look is far more attractive.

Like Taran, I think the text blocks would look much better if they were laid out in tables, with a smaller font size. We've been here before, to an extent, and I think I remember you saying that you preferred to stick to the present point size. So be it, but it does tend to lower the readability score somewhat. Try laying some out in a table at 8 point to see what it looks like.

Good progress anyway. More power to your keyboard.

  [DELETED] 02:42 23 Sep 2003

By 'longer articles' I was referring to anything that involves more than minimal scrolling. Page scrolling is one of my pet hates and I try to minimise or even entirely eliminate it wherever possible.

Using targets/bookmarks and a table of contents is one way of dealing with the problem of long documents. I rarely use or recommend frames, but one interesting and very useful feature of them is in displaying single page by page content of a long document, suitable broken down into manageable snippets. I sometimes use a single inline frame for this and works beautifully. I'd stick with the bookmark method initially though.

I can't comment on version 4 of NetObjects. It's ages since I used it and I am so used to the current version I can't remember most of the previous revisions.

Just out of curiosity, have you tried Tahoma or Verdana (my favourite web font) in different sizes to see what effect this has on your pages ?

I love Verdana - it is probably the most comfortable and attractive font to read online.

8 point looks great, as does 10. Much bigger than this and things can start to go a little awry, but that goes for most fonts and if eyesight issues are one of your concerns, there are better ways of addressing this than by using a consistently large font throughout your site.

You're certainly on the right track with your redesign concept though, and I am keen to see more.



  [DELETED] 08:20 23 Sep 2003

I used Verdana 10 point as the normal font size on my website. In internet Explorer with the font size set to "Medium" this looks too big. That is because Internet Explorer apparently does something wrong.

I tested my page in Opera and the font size was just as I designed it. To see the screenshot click here — on the left is a piece of my home page displayed in Internet Explorer with the "Medium" font size, in the middle is the same text in Notepad with the font size set to Verdana 10 point, and on the right is the same text as displayed in Opera.

So is IE out of step here, or is every other program out of step with Internet Explorer? To get the "right" size in IE one has to use the "Smallest" font setting.

  [DELETED] 08:44 23 Sep 2003

I used Verdana 12 point as the default font size, so it is Opera that is at fault here, not IE. I must have my font preferences set wrongly or something.

  [DELETED] 08:54 23 Sep 2003

I checked my setting in Opera and I had Verdana 9 point as my setting for the Normal style. I now remember that I changed this as a compromise to FE's suggestion of 8 point Verdana.

In Net Objects Fusion the default proportional font setting was Times New Roman 12 point, so my "Normal" style was Verdana 12 point, not 10 point.

So I have changed my browser default to Verdana 10 point in Opera and in NOF, which I hope is now right. Big enough for those of us who sit three feet away from the monitor, but not too big for "Normal" people.

  [DELETED] 12:07 23 Sep 2003

I sorted out the fonts, I hope, and tidied up a few tables. Still loads to be done though.

  Forum Editor 23:41 23 Sep 2003

As is always the case in web design, the process tends to be evolutionary, rather than revolutionary. Sometimes I look at the final design for one of my sites and wonder quite how I got there - it's so very different from where I started.

I wonder if you've tried removing the table borders? try adding a row between text blocks(merge the cells to create one that spans the table width). Make the row a few pixels in height and insert a suitably coloured horizontal line. This can be very pleasing, and improves readability even more.

Then, try making the text 8pt verdan bold.

I also prefer Verdana to any other 'web-friendly' font. It 'reads' better, and there's no tension in it. Your site defines the term 'content-rich' and it's that (the content) that should prevail - extraneous distractions like table borders and unrelieved text blocks should be dispensed my opinion. If it's at all possible to configure the pages so that the browser doesn't insert a scroll bar, then do it. There's nothing more relaxing than being able to call a page into the browser and then sit back - hands off mouse and keyboard - and read.

  [DELETED] 11:16 24 Sep 2003

Even after changing the normal font size to 10 point Verdana in Net Objects Fusion, the font is bigger in IE at the medium setting. To get the right size (10 point) in IE that corresponds to Verdana 10 point in Wordpad or other applications one must select the "Smaller" font size (not "smallest" as before). click here to see the problem. My Editor's Note fits neatly beside the graphic in Opera, where my normal font is set to Verdana 10 point, but in IE the text block is too long.

I presume that there is little one can do to control this if some users do not use the medium font size, but one should design it to look best at the medium setting.

So why does IE enlarge my 10 point Verdana to 12 point?

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