[ubuntu-web] feedback on new wiki theme

Matthew Nuzum matthew.nuzum at canonical.com
Mon Sep 8 22:45:42 UTC 2008

On Sat, Sep 6, 2008 at 1:08 PM, Dougie Richardson
<ddrichardson at btinternet.com> wrote:
> Hi,
>> I think it's appropriate to go with a fixed-width theme for the
>> documentation site because content here is meant to be read as a page.

> I disagree - the problem with fixed width is that at some point we have to
> make assumptions as to the screen size used to access as well as how the
> reader wants to read the information. I feel that these both should be left
> to the reader not pre-defined by the writer.
> I'm finding that I use devices such as web books a lot more now and find I
> am much more aware of how information is presented.

> there is frequently a tendency amongst
> web designers to put aesthetics over usability (something I am sure you are
> not guilty of) and the use of fixed width pages fits these criteria whole
> heartedly.

Hi Dougie, you make some excellent points.

First of all, what I love most about the theme is the typography. I
feel the line height, font size and face lend to great readability. I
also like the contrast between the content area and the background. It
draws your attention to the foreground content.

Sometimes I see a fixed-width page and I just feel like it looks so
lonely sitting there in the middle of such wide margins to either
side. Especially on a single column site like this one. But when I
stop looking at the design of the site and just start using it I like
it much better. The narrow column width really pulls you into the
site's content. (and seriously, its not that narrow with a content
width of 820px and a column width of 875px)

I've used this theme for a bit now and browsed many different pages
and feel that the it works very nicely on a content-heavy page. I've
maximized my browser window (1280x800) to hopefully get a taste of the
pain experienced by people who use their browser this way typically
and honestly I think that overall its an improvement.

So I wonder if there's anything we can do to make the thick margins on
wider browser windows less distracting - less empty. Something to draw
your eyes away from the blank space and into the content without at
the same time creating a distraction in itself.

Matt, regarding the edit bar at the bottom, we should set it up so
that the links are either centered under the content area or are left
aligned below the left side of the content of the page.

Matthew Nuzum
newz2000 on freenode

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