feedback on new wiki theme

Neal McBurnett neal at
Fri Sep 5 23:38:31 UTC 2008

On Fri, Sep 05, 2008 at 06:07:49PM -0400, Connor Imes wrote:
> Jordan Mantha wrote:
> > On Fri, Sep 5, 2008 at 1:56 PM, Matthew East <mdke at> wrote:
> >> Recently I've been developing a new theme which is intended to replace
> >> the existing themes on the documentation wiki
> >> ( The intention of the theme is to
> >> make reading the wiki easier for a user (so the interface should be
> >> cleaner) and for an editor (so there is an editbar at the bottom of
> >> the screen which follows the window as you scroll).

My top priority for editing would be to put "save changes" next to the
comment on the edit, at end of edit box.  This would help folks add
comments which I find very helpful (and almost mandatory on

The most problematic dimension on my screen is vertical.  The floating
footer takes yet more vertical space away from the viewing and edit
window, and that makes it much harder to have enough context when I
read or edit.  So I'd leave those at the top, or put them at the
bottom of the whole page if you prefer.

It would also help to tighten up or move the help examples in the edit
window.  When I preview an edit, I hate scrolling past the edit window
to get to the preview.

I find that my name at the bottom overlaps text while editing.

More comments below....

> > This is a very nice theme and looks more professional and usable to
> > me. My only complaint is that it's rather narrow on all my computers
> > (widescreen laptop and LCD displays). It looks like we're losing an
> > awful lot of screen real estate. Is it possible to make it a fluid
> > rather than fixed width theme? has the same
> > issue. It ends up looking rather cramped on all my computers and more
> > like a blog site (perhaps because of the ubiquity of some of
> > Wordpresses past default themes :-) ).

I agree with the desire to have a fluid view.  When I want a narrow
one I'll make my window narrow.  I know there are different
preferences on that, but that is my preference, both for this wiki and
for  But I don't see why we would need to preserve the
lack of fluidity of - we could keep the same branding and
just change the fluidity.  I figure a wiki has a different mission and
much simpler layout than more complicated custom professional pages.

> I like the new theme as well, and agree that the page should not be 
> statically sized.  If we want to implement the static size somewhere, it 
> may be more appropriate for the official docs, not the community 
> documentation (then it's more like reading a book or a manual).


> -I also noticed that the Tabs in the upper right are gone, so it feels a 
> bit empty on that part of the page.  Will these be re-added?

Right.  It seems to me that the tabs are pretty important.

> -I think the Page History link at the end of a page should be in the 
> non-moving footer.

I use page history more than edit or subscribe, so I'd like it there also.

> -The "copyright" part of the footer seems a little awkward.  I think we 
> can condense it so that there isn't whitespace between the two lines.  

Yes - tighter would be my preference.

Beyond that - I definitely appreciate attention to updating the theme.
I like the smaller text.  Thanks!

Neal McBurnett       

> Ideas for improvement aside, I really like this theme - it doesn't 
> really take any getting used to (which is good), and looks much more 
> clean and professional than the older theme.  I really hope we can have 
> this ready in advance of Intrepid.  Thanks for making this happen!
> -Connor

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