W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > November 2007

Re: W3C CSS Home Redesign RFC

From: Bert Bos <bert@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 20 Nov 2007 19:46:45 +0100
To: Jason CranfordTeague <jason@brighteyemedia.com>
Cc: www-style@w3.org
Message-Id: <200711201946.45825.bert@w3.org>

On Tuesday 20 November 2007 16:31, Jason CranfordTeague wrote:
> I'm collecting the feedback and working on wireframes that I hope to
> have ready to show next week. I'll work up three different concepts
> for the information structure to be considered. These will NOT be the
> visual designs, though, only the page structure and IA.
>
> As for making it "pretty" a low priority over making it "usable", in
> my a opinion usable has to be "pretty".

The best design is one that you don't notice. On the other hand, given 
that these are pages about a style sheet language, I don't mind 
including some gimmick that people *do* notice.

>
> I do like the idea that we may want to consider making our home page
> new CSS Zen garden for designers to play with. Any other votes for
> that?

There are some rules for W3C pages, a few on the style and some others 
on the content. The rules on the style are basically that the W3C logo 
must be in the top left corner and must be linked to the W3C home page 
and that the page must be accessible. There may be more fixed style 
elements later... if the W3C team can agree on them :-) (For example, 
our communications team is working on a common set of colors.)

The content must include, apart from the link to the home page, also the 
name of the page's owner at the bottom and an indication of the age of 
the page. The main page must link to a page about the WG, which in turn 
must link to the WG's charter.

Of course, all pages must be valid. And they should conform reasonably 
well to the guidelines for the mobile Web.

There are also translations of the page into various languages that must 
be linked. (I've set up language negotiation for some pages, but not 
for the CSS overview page yet.)


Traditionally, the style for the CSS pages has included something that 
most browsers didn't yet render correctly, as a kind of challenge to 
the browsers. Of course, in the browsers that render the style 
incorrectly, the page must still be readable. We don't want to lose 
readers.

The CSS overview page and some other nearby pages are quite popular, so 
we shouldn't make them dynamic (no PHP, JSP or similar). Otherwise we 
will have to set up a caching proxy system and that means extra work, 
more maintenance and higher risk of failure. Some pages could be 
created by cron jobs, but that also means more maintenance work and 
more difficulties if somebody else than me has to edit the pages 
occasionally.

Also, I'm the one editing the pages and there is little chance in the 
short or medium term that I will get any help with that. I'm quite 
happy to add news and other links, but that should not take more time 
than the time to type those links and save the file. (The Atom feed of 
the news items is automatically generated from the HTML. I will 
probably have to rewrite the script that does that, and that is OK, but 
the mark-up of the news items has to be such that it is *possible* to 
write such a script.)


Making the pages into a Zen garden-like laboratory will, I expect, lead 
to many designs that are not good enough, that I will have to review, 
reject and send e-mail about, so I'd rather not do that.


Still on the topic of maintenance: I don't know when we will find time 
and people again to redesign the pages, so the pages should be able to 
last for a couple of years at least. Better not to use the latest 
fashion, because it risks becoming oldfashioned in a short time.


The semi-official font of W3C is Gill Sans. We use it on paper 
publications and business cards. It is not required to use it on Web 
pages (because not everybody has the font and embedded fonts don't work 
yet), but I like to do so anyway. W3C *does* use sans-serif on all 
pages.

(I actually have a second reason for using Gill Sans and that is that it 
is also the font used in Håkon's and my book. So it is the CSS font in 
a way. And I like Gill's designs in general.)



Bert
-- 
  Bert Bos                                ( W 3 C ) http://www.w3.org/
  http://www.w3.org/people/bos                               W3C/ERCIM
  bert@w3.org                             2004 Rt des Lucioles / BP 93
  +33 (0)4 92 38 76 92            06902 Sophia Antipolis Cedex, France
Received on Tuesday, 20 November 2007 18:47:05 GMT

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