Layout: Please review my site!

started by Valerie on Feb 24, 2005 — RSS Feed

Valerie Valerie
Posts: 3

Alright well I am new, but I guess I will just jump right in...

What do you think of my web site? www.ridgeviewdesigns.com

Joe Gillespie Joe Gillespie
Posts: 528

Hi Valerie,

Your site is a good example of 'by the book' web design. It is flexible and has a good semantic structure and validates - except in one small area, see below.

Just a few points of detail that would improve it.

Ridgeview Designs logo.

Why have you used a JPEG for what should clearly be a GIF or PNG-8? The arrows are anti-aliased but the letters are jagged. The word 'Designs' has compression artefacts which you wouldn't get with a GIF or PNG. JPEGs are for pictures, not graphics. The shadow under 'It's All About Usability' isn't as smooth as it could be. Again, a GIF would solve this problem. Look at how smooth the logo at the top of this page is. It's a 3.6K GIF with a transparent background.

On usability.

I find it very odd that you have stuck 'Home' out on it's own like that. Surely it should be the first item on your menu? You have managed to handle the rest of the menu items well, putting an arrow against the current page choice, your should have 'Home' with an arrow at the top to be consistent and not confuse the readers. Consistency of interface behaviour is a major factor in usability. You are changing the rules for just one instance.

On my system (Mozilla 1.7.5), the type size gets bigger on rollover, which makes the box around it expand slightly so the whole menu system jumps. I would prefer to see a change of text or background colour to a change of typesize.

Finally, W3C HTML validator is complaining that you have used the id "navigation" twice, once for a UL and once for a div. If you reuse a name like that, it should be a class not an ID. You might want to check that out. The rest of the HTML and CSS seems fine.

Valerie Valerie
Posts: 3

Thanks for having a look at my site! You gave lots of good advice!

I will look at changing my image from a jpg to a gif.  I guess I don't really understand when you use the different types of images.  But I bought a book about web graphics that should be arriving today, so hopefully that will explain it to me a little more!


Interesting what you pointed out about the Home menu item sticking out.  I guess I thought it was more of a standard to have it in the upper right hand corner.  Will consider moving it to the left.  

Your not the only one that said the menu looks a little jumpy, so I guess I should change that too.  

And that stupid validation error... I will try to work it out.  

Thanks!!!

Joe Gillespie Joe Gillespie
Posts: 528

I have written a graphics primer for Macromedia which explains all this including your jaggy edges and inappropriate use of JPEGs. You can find it here...

http://www.macromedia.com/devnet/contribute/articles/convert_images.html

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