[pydotorg-www] Feedback wanted: preview.python.org

anatoly techtonik techtonik at gmail.com
Tue Apr 9 15:08:19 CEST 2013

On Fri, Apr 5, 2013 at 2:16 AM, Jacob Kaplan-Moss <jacob at jacobian.org>wrote:

> Hi folks --

Hi jacobian,

> A couple weeks ago at PyCon we announced the "preview" of the new
> python.org: http://preview.python.org/. You'll recall that the PSF put
> out an RFP and had a bid process; our work has been the result of
> that.
> We'd announced it in a number of places, but as Aahz just pointed out,
> I forgot to ask for feedback on the site here. I'm really sorry --
> that's a major oversight.
> It's very much still a work-in-progress -- major sections are not
> done, and most of the content is still lipsum -- but I'm interested in
> any and all feedback anyone's got. There's a feedback form on every
> page which you can use, or feel free to email me directly.

My IMHO. Good sides like design choice, as always, are missing from these

1. Top menu.
  Are there any public stats about how many times every top link is clicked?
    Everyone is curious, and this also a starting point for usability study
      the design is fixed in stone.
  Education and Docs carry all the same meaning for me.
  Community deserves to be placed as a last item on that menu.
    With all respect to PSF that I have, PSF info is not that important for
      users as community stuff like planet. And everyone determined to know
      about who is Python "powered by", can look into the footer anyway.

2. Excessive navigation for items already present in top menu
  Docs and documentation takes five blocks on main page.
  Jobs takes two blocks.
  Downloads take three blocks.

3. No login/profiles

4. Site is not open source, which is strange and alienating for open source
folks. There is no better resource to learn than a working code.

5. Python -> Downloads as the most frequently visited should be bold and at
the right (easy to spot for returning visitors)
  "Frequently visited" should not a be a subjective judgement.

6. The blank space to the right of Python logo should contain a six words
phrase about what's what?
  This is for people who is not familiar with the site.

7. Success stories bearing thumbnail for each story are more interesting
than a raw text.

8. It is more intuitive for me to control top sections with background
color coding, not with the menu color coding.

9. No API

10. Horizontal scrollbar in Chrome.

I guess that design is all feedback that's possible to be provided for now.
Other questions are hard to discuss without something already working. For
example, the documentation needs an online edit / review system. It is not
even clear if this feature is planned, and how it should be added.

One major flaw is that there is absolutely no place for development. The
key point IMHO around which everything else should be based in open source
process. I understand that commercial companies are not used to customers
who aim to provide that kind of activities, but PSF as a product owner
should have prioritized this aspect unless it wants to make Python
development an inhouse process.

If anyone has specific concerns about specific parts of the site and
> want to talk in depth I'd be happy to set up a
> phone/skype/hangout/whatever chat. I'm more or less free all next
> week, so just let me know.

I'd be interested to know about the usability development strategy. Right
now it looks like just a catalog of links. If no usability study is planned
on this phase, I can propose some stuff. Also something about Jobs.

Thanks, and again sorry that I failed to announce this here.

The positioning of the whole process could be more public and community
centric. =) I am more than inclined that there are many people out there
who'd like to know the process of building such complicated site as *.
python.org from scratch to exchange the experiences. I am even sure that
people will fund the open development through kickstarter campaign to learn
about A/B testing, usability study techniques, role of statistics and arts.
I am also sure that people will be happy to help with development of
reusable components that may be required to build python.org

Also, Sprints and donation system for sprints, for sponsored development
and other initiatives. I'd like to see that platform. Not just a new web
2.0 design.

Take this with a grain of salt. It is good that somebody works on this.
Good luck with your quest, and feel free to contact me for details.
anatoly t.
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