HTML Logo by World Wide Web Consortium (www.w3.org). Click to learn more about our commitment to accessibility and standards.

Moving forward with Composr

ocPortal has been relaunched as Composr CMS, which is now in beta. ocPortal 9 will be superseded by Composr 10.

Head over to compo.sr for our new site, and to our migration roadmap. Existing ocPortal member accounts have been mirrored.


more effort for default theme

Login / Search

 [ Join | More ]
 Add topic 
Posted
Item has a rating of 5 (Liked by sholzy)  
Rating:
#82681 (In Topic #17244)
Avatar

Community saint

disappointment installing v8

Some thing you guys might want to consider is putting more effort into OCPortals default theme, I cannot tell you how disappointed I was when I installed v8 RC to find the default theme was a blocky square ugly looking thing. I was sort of hoping to see a theme much like the one here, which of course looks much nicer and doesn't have the squared of ugly corners every where!

When people hit this site they will most likely be quite impressed with the theme used here, in most other software's the default theme is the very one used on the site the software comes from. A great many people are going to be very disappointed with the nasty looking theme that OCPortal is 'still' being shipped out with, it's ugly and very off-putting. Just take a few minutes to peruse this site, look how nice every thing looks, especially the home page & forums, now take a good long look at the default theme OCPortal gets shipped out with! I shouldn't wonder that some people turn away from OCPortal when they feel this disappointment that I felt, yes of course there are other skins available but a great many sites stick with the default theme the software comes with.

I think that OCPortal needs to seriously re-consider the theme they ship this software out with, a great looking default theme makes a heck of an impact, maybe worth thinking about at the very least.

Metal IS Forever & We WILL Rock You 'til You Choke! Rock Babe
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82688
Avatar

This site makes loads of assumptions, and a lot of the design is done as part of (for) the content rather than the theme itself (apart from the forum, the nav, the boxes, and the background, this is actually pretty close to the default theme). This site also doesn't support ocPortal's minimum requirements (which still supports IE6 and IE7).

If you give the user the choice what bits to turn on, and they might have 3 things on, or 30, it's always going to have to be composed by lots of bits stuck together.

The default theme has to not impose any styles that are too personal, so it has to do the simplest thing. Otherwise anyone making a new theme has to first undo the extra styling we've added, before they can add their own.

The default theme might be used on a blog, on a gaming site, on a corporate site, etc – anything that looks very good is going to look styled according to a particular vision of a particular kind of site. That of course is what design is, solving a problem aesthetically, and that problem is defined by the kind of site being made. Things that look great usually do because subconsciously it resonates with some intrinsic understanding of what the site itself is.

It also needs to support the theme wizard, meaning a wide colour palette is problematic.

So in summary:
  • Has to support all browsers ocPortal supports [you can do some progressive enhancement in CSS3, so I do note that this isn't black and white]
  • Has to be modular
  • Has to support sites with very few features, as well as all the features turned on
  • Has to not impose additional styles that themers would commonly need to undo [we're a little guilty of this already]
  • Has to be basically suitable for all kinds of website [that rules out things like dark colours, some use of icons, all kinds of overt styling such as gaming or anime or grunge etc]
  • Has to support the theme wizard.

And then there's the issue of resources. As ocPortal is free, the resources to make it can't come from software sales, so either it needs to be sponsored, done within a project for a client, or someone would need to contribute some of the work. Sponsorship/client-work is how v8 has been produced. A combination of some people explicitly sponsoring some of the work, a lot done within client projects, and a few smaller things added by me as I've noticed them while working.

And another problem is fashion. Design is of course part functional form, but part trend. Take square boxes – most people including myself would agree curved looks nicer – but is that intrinsic to them actually being better, or is it more of a contemporary/cultural trend of aesthetics? Harsh lines have been promoted and popular in various architecture styles, for example. So the problem here I'm getting at, is investments don't last, because what looks good today, might be out of fashion tomorrow. That disincentives some people from investing there.

I don't mean to say things are stuck as they are. I know for sure the default theme can be improved, probably very significantly. But it's going to require some people to commit to it in some way, and those people will need to really step outside the normal kind of parameters designers work with.


Become a fan of ocPortal on Facebook or add me as a friend. Add me on on Twitter.
Was I helpful?
  • If not, please let us know how we can do better (please try and propose any bigger ideas in such a way that they are fundable and scalable).
  • If so, please let others know about ocPortal whenever you see the opportunity.
  • If my reply is too Vulcan or expressed too much in business-strategy terms, and not particularly personal, I apologise. As a company & project maintainer, time is very limited to me, so usually when I write a reply I try and make it generic advice to all readers. I'm also naturally a joined-up thinker, so I always express my thoughts in combined business and technical terms. I recognise not everyone likes that, don't let my Vulcan-thinking stop you enjoying ocPortal on fun personal projects.
  • If my response can inspire a community tutorial, that's a great way of giving back to the project as a user.
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82692
Avatar

Community saint

Most certainly some food for thought right there Chris, I hadn't taken a few of your points into account I must admit.

How do you mean "really step outside the normal kind of parameters designers work with". I am guessing that someone like myself who really enjoys the freedom of designing would not be suited to the task you suggest!

I don't mind of course, I would enjoy designing a new defualt skin for you myself but not under the conditions proposed, I would find them too suffocating and would rebel in every aspect I thought I could get away with. ;)

Metal IS Forever & We WILL Rock You 'til You Choke! Rock Babe
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82693
Avatar

That's it really. Most design comes from freedom and specificity. If you did want a go, that would be really amazing though :).


Become a fan of ocPortal on Facebook or add me as a friend. Add me on on Twitter.
Was I helpful?
  • If not, please let us know how we can do better (please try and propose any bigger ideas in such a way that they are fundable and scalable).
  • If so, please let others know about ocPortal whenever you see the opportunity.
  • If my reply is too Vulcan or expressed too much in business-strategy terms, and not particularly personal, I apologise. As a company & project maintainer, time is very limited to me, so usually when I write a reply I try and make it generic advice to all readers. I'm also naturally a joined-up thinker, so I always express my thoughts in combined business and technical terms. I recognise not everyone likes that, don't let my Vulcan-thinking stop you enjoying ocPortal on fun personal projects.
  • If my response can inspire a community tutorial, that's a great way of giving back to the project as a user.
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82700
Avatar

Community saint

I would love a go at it, what do I need to keep in mind so the theme works with the theme wizard, no new graphics is a given but what else?

Metal IS Forever & We WILL Rock You 'til You Choke! Rock Babe
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82701
Avatar

 :thumbs:  :cool:

I won't state any technical parameters, only design necessities. If something is technically possible, then chances are we can bend the Theme Wizard technology to make it happen.

So I'd just say that if it's to be re-colourable then colours need to be done in either:
  • shades of one colour
  • or, in some way that makes sense after the colour is shifted (i.e. if two colours are in the palette, it shouldn't look bizarre if you shift the seed from say blue to green)
  • or, if it's something like an icon where the colours aren't going to be changed at all, and it'll look good in the context of whatever the surrounding colours are

If I were you I'd work purely in Photoshop (or whatever you use), and see if you can engage the community here to give some feedback. Again, I'd rather stay out of it, I'm too close to the current design.

In terms of ocPortal, we are nearing a point where IE6 and IE7 support will be thrown out, and we will move to using a lot more CSS3 – i.e. a technology jump. That will be a managed process that will mean reviewing a lot of our existing CSS, and gutting some of the way things have worked up to this point. I can imagine I might be the one doing it at some point (although nothing is planned right now).


Become a fan of ocPortal on Facebook or add me as a friend. Add me on on Twitter.
Was I helpful?
  • If not, please let us know how we can do better (please try and propose any bigger ideas in such a way that they are fundable and scalable).
  • If so, please let others know about ocPortal whenever you see the opportunity.
  • If my reply is too Vulcan or expressed too much in business-strategy terms, and not particularly personal, I apologise. As a company & project maintainer, time is very limited to me, so usually when I write a reply I try and make it generic advice to all readers. I'm also naturally a joined-up thinker, so I always express my thoughts in combined business and technical terms. I recognise not everyone likes that, don't let my Vulcan-thinking stop you enjoying ocPortal on fun personal projects.
  • If my response can inspire a community tutorial, that's a great way of giving back to the project as a user.
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82703
Avatar

Community saint

Okay Chris, I am going out this evening so I shall be catching up with you on this in the morning. Toodaloo for now. ;)

Metal IS Forever & We WILL Rock You 'til You Choke! Rock Babe
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82707
Avatar

And ideally it should be designed with mobile devices in mind.

I'm really interested to see where you take things.


Like ocPortal on Facebook:
Back to the top
 
Posted
Item has a rating of 5 (Liked by sholzy)  
Rating:
#82708
O

Non-joined user

Whatever it looks like, I think that it should be simple, modern and understated.  Something like this:

http://jayj.dk/grim/

Back to the top
 
Posted
Item has a rating of 5 (Liked by sholzy)  
Rating:
#82710
Avatar

O said

Whatever it looks like, I think that it should be simple, modern and understated.  Something like this:

http://jayj.dk/grim/


Amazing! Let's sign him up.


Like ocPortal on Facebook:
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82714
Avatar

Community saint

:o

Take my advice. I'm not using it!

View my working ocPortal site (version 9.x.x) at Anglo-Indian Portal
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82719
Avatar

Community saint

O said

Whatever it looks like, I think that it should be simple, modern and understated.  Something like this:



What's wrong with that? It looks just like some of my best work!  :thumbs:  O_o  :lol:

Steve
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82723
Avatar

Community saint

I think Chris's post is a real eye-opener for a would-be skinner butI have a hunch that Petrikuhr is going to rise to the challenge and delight us with something special.

Bob
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82724
Avatar

Community saint

Robbie,

Yours, or mine?




Take my advice. I'm not using it!

View my working ocPortal site (version 9.x.x) at Anglo-Indian Portal
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82726
Avatar

Community saint

Fletch said

Robbie,

Yours, or mine?


It worked for me Fletch.

Steve
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82727
Avatar

Fletch said

Robbie,

Yours, or mine?




How peculiar. Are you running any ad-blocking extensions? The code in my signature is just an HTML iframe, so perhaps your browser thinks it's an advertisement.


Like ocPortal on Facebook:
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82732
Avatar

Community saint

sholzy said

It worked for me Fletch.

Robbie Goacher said

How peculiar.
Yeah, and Yeah!

Not consistent, so it is definitely MY browser throwing in a bit of 'aggro' just to make a boring Monday a bit more lively until the ManU game starts …

 :o

Take my advice. I'm not using it!

View my working ocPortal site (version 9.x.x) at Anglo-Indian Portal
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82735
Avatar

Community saint

Fletch said

sholzy said

It worked for me Fletch.

Robbie Goacher said

How peculiar.
Yeah, and Yeah!

Not consistent, so it is definitely MY browser throwing in a bit of 'aggro' just to make a boring Monday a bit more lively until the ManU game starts …

 :o

RC# released…..no longer boring.

Bob
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82847
Avatar

One thing worth discussing I think…

The idea of not have a 'default' theme, but instead having:
  • a 'base' theme
  • a bundled theme with some name, e.g. 'oceanic'

The base theme would work with the theme wizard 'equations' mode properly, would have simple code and no serious assumptions (even simpler than the current one).

The bundled theme would only work with the theme wizard 'HSV shift' mode. It would be developed independently to the main ocPortal, and added in at the end of beta testing a new ocPortal release. It would still need to be relatively neutral and modular, but some of the restraints could be thrown away - worrying about theme wizard equations, restricted colour palette, keeping code simple, supporting older browsers. It wouldn't be done by ocProducts, merely integrated, so it would be more of a hobby, done without the tough constraints we have to work to and without the need for a business model. Yet it would solve the initial problem stated in this topic and potentially could look amazing, using the latest generation of browser technology.


Become a fan of ocPortal on Facebook or add me as a friend. Add me on on Twitter.
Was I helpful?
  • If not, please let us know how we can do better (please try and propose any bigger ideas in such a way that they are fundable and scalable).
  • If so, please let others know about ocPortal whenever you see the opportunity.
  • If my reply is too Vulcan or expressed too much in business-strategy terms, and not particularly personal, I apologise. As a company & project maintainer, time is very limited to me, so usually when I write a reply I try and make it generic advice to all readers. I'm also naturally a joined-up thinker, so I always express my thoughts in combined business and technical terms. I recognise not everyone likes that, don't let my Vulcan-thinking stop you enjoying ocPortal on fun personal projects.
  • If my response can inspire a community tutorial, that's a great way of giving back to the project as a user.
Back to the top
 
Posted
Rating:
#82864
Avatar

Community saint

Oh my god, you read my very thoughts Chris, a bit like phpBB have proSilver and Subsilver, yes, I like that idea very much!

Metal IS Forever & We WILL Rock You 'til You Choke! Rock Babe
Back to the top
 
There are too many online users to list.
Control functions:

Quick reply   Expand