New Site Design


#21

This is what I see, and I don’t see how to mark all forums read. (Using an android tablet.)

I can’t find the thread my previous complaint was, so here it is.


#22

The forum doesn’t load and render correctly in Chrome 43.0.2357.81 or Chromium 41.0.2272.76 on Ubantu Linux 14.10 but works in Firefox.

[ATTACH]4249[/ATTACH]


#23

[QUOTE=renoun;163256]The forum doesn’t load and render correctly in Chrome 43.0.2357.81 or Chromium 41.0.2272.76 on Ubantu Linux 14.10 but works in Firefox.

[ATTACH]4249[/ATTACH][/QUOTE]

I tried the new forum on my iPhone this morning. It really sucked. Navigation was very difficult. I won’t be posting much with my iPhone.

The quantity and quality of posts has been way off lately. This new forum design screw up is only going to make things worse.


#24

[QUOTE=OttoAuto;162705]Looks good.

Is the ability to comment on stories gone for good in lieu of advertising links?[/QUOTE]

[QUOTE=OttoAuto;162705]Looks good.

Is the ability to comment on stories gone for good in lieu of advertising links?[/QUOTE]

It’s gone for now because of spam but also because the conversations are fragmented between the news section and the forum. Until we find a way to sync the comments, it doesn’t really make sense.

We haven’t added any new advertising links. The boxes now below the post only link to related articles in the archives and, when the system can’t make a match, to books we like.


#25

[QUOTE=cola coca;162713]As mentioned by txwooley, it is a bit too busy. What bothers me most is the break between news items for showing job ads and forum posts. I visit mostly for the news and I think it is the same for most visitors. It would look less cluttered if you put jobs and forum posts on the sidebar in place of duplicate lists of news items. I think tags cloud and site search are more efficient for people to look for past posts on certain subjects. Hope that helps. I visit daily, so this site is pretty important to me. Thank you for your hard work, gcaptain.

Oh, one more thing. The newsletter signup. People generally hate pop ups, ok?:o[/QUOTE]

Ok we disabled the pop-up and the rest is under consideration.


#26

[QUOTE=Tugs;162720]New lay looks good but as others have noticed it is a little slow on loading depending on the type of connection being used.

One question, now that you have the New Layout done, is there and chance to get the Android App working again?[/QUOTE]

I’ve spent countless hours working on that android app both by myself and with $$/hr coders… it’s broken for good. The reason it’s broken is there are countless versions of android and the coding get’s complicated. We’ll need to rebuild it from scratch but that’s a major project.


#27

[QUOTE=cola coca;162713]As mentioned by txwooley, it is a bit too busy. What bothers me most is the break between news items for showing job ads and forum posts. I visit mostly for the news and I think it is the same for most visitors. It would look less cluttered if you put jobs and forum posts on the sidebar in place of duplicate lists of news items. I think tags cloud and site search are more efficient for people to look for past posts on certain subjects. Hope that helps. I visit daily, so this site is pretty important to me. Thank you for your hard work, gcaptain.

Oh, one more thing. The newsletter signup. People generally hate pop ups, ok?:o[/QUOTE]

Tag clouds work great if people know how to use them (most don’t) and site search works even better (but few use that either). Right now we have three completely separate sites; the news, the forum and jobs. These changes are the first step in moving to a single site.


#28

The latest jobs and forum posts are embedded in the content stream because most readers ignore the sidebar (The new system get’s 5 times more clicks)… which is what I’m guessing you guys plan to do if we move them back. We do realize this is less than optimal which is why we only included the 4 latest links to each section.

The short answer is when you all start clicking on the sidebar and using the site search most of the new features will be phased out. But it’s going to take some time.


#29

[QUOTE=Rain Wizard;162802]I can’t even get the new site to load on my iPhone, I get an error message about 5 times before Safari gives up. On the app now.[/QUOTE]

What does the error message say?


#30

[QUOTE=c.captain;163230]I cannot agree more. When any criticism of gCaptain’s management results in it being expunged smacks of a totalitarian regime in power. Hear our words gentlemen and allow us to express them! Fixing the problems would be nice as well.

btw, I am taking back my earlier praise for the changes until the problems to the forum are corrected. I will accept that there will not be a rollback but at least make the new forum work as it is supposed to. That can’t be too much to ask…can it?

.[/QUOTE]

Nobody’s deleting anything. We did install a new spam filter which, among other things, scans old posts. It keeps flagging your posts but only yours… we are looking into it but we are sailing short handed this week so stby.


#31

[QUOTE=tugsailor;163231]I do not like the look or feel of the new site. Too gray. It has become more difficult to compose and post. This is not good considering that the volume and quality of posts has been way off lately.[/QUOTE]

Some people are loving the new gray, some hate it. The same would happen regardless of which color we pick. The reason for the color change is to make it more congruous with the homepage.

How has it become difficult to post? What specifically is the trouble?


#32

[QUOTE=Rich Bogad;162812]I think the homepage is too light on news.

I assume that most readers are most interested in news.[/QUOTE]

The news hasn’t changed… just the way it looks.

[QUOTE=Rich Bogad;162812]If they don’t see that much, they might visit less. That means fewer eyeballs and lowers your ability to sell ads. You gotta make money.[/QUOTE]

The metrics tell a different story… people are returning more and clicking on more articles. Our bounce rate (the number of people who visit, read just one article, and bounce) is down by 40%. Personally I don’t like a couple things about the new site and I was the chief designer… but I can’t ignore the statistics.

If the new site flopped we were prepared to switch back to the old design quickly… but the data and feedback (for some reason, the good feedback always comes in private messages and the negative feedback usually is posted publicly) suggest otherwise.


#33

[QUOTE=tugsailor;163288]I tried the new forum on my iPhone this morning. It really sucked. Navigation was very difficult. I won’t be posting much with my iPhone.

The quantity and quality of posts has been way off lately. This new forum design screw up is only going to make things worse.[/QUOTE]

Again the data suggests otherwise but we are looking for ways to improve and do value your comments and suggests but… but… this feedback isn’t helpful… we need specifics not blanket statements.


#34

Good day, I thought I would add my 2 cents worth here. I have been reading GCaptain for the past couple of years now. I have found the site to be the go to site for all my Maritime news.
But recently since you have redesigned the site, I am not liking it. I feel like that I’m using a site that is designed for teenage girls instead of a professional site for professional mariners. What’s with the big numbers indicating number of shares? Who cares? And now I have to deal with the intrusive social icons plastered all over the page!
I use to read GCaptain everyday to keep up with current events in the Maritime world. But now I dread opening up the site on my Smartphone and trying to just find the news. Now I only check in a few times a week. Soon I might find myself not using the site at all. This is my first post into the forum and hopefully this is not my last.

Just as a side note about myself. I was a Master in the U.S. Merchant Marines and now currently a Pilot on the Chesapeake Bay.


#35

That’s the funniest thing I’ve heard on here in a long time! It’s flagging c.captains posts as spam, even AI can figure him out. Lol


#36

[QUOTE=professional Mariner;163472]Good day, I thought I would add my 2 cents worth here. I have been reading GCaptain for the past couple of years now. I have found the site to be the go to site for all my Maritime news.

But recently since you have redesigned the site, I am not liking it. I feel like that I’m using a site that is designed for teenage girls instead of a professional site for professional mariners. What’s with the big numbers indicating number of shares? Who cares? And now I have to deal with the intrusive social icons plastered all over the page!

I use to read GCaptain everyday to keep up with current events in the Maritime world. But now I dread opening up the site on my Smartphone and trying to just find the news. Now I only check in a few times a week. Soon I might find myself not using the site at all. This is my first post into the forum and hopefully this is not my last.

Just as a side note about myself. I was a Master in the U.S. Merchant Marines and now currently a Pilot on the Chesapeake Bay.[/QUOTE]

Ok, sounds like a legitimate concern but the homepage is just the default way to get news… there are dozens of other ways. Here are some alternate choices:

[I][B]NEWSLETTER[/B][/I]

Have you tried our newsletter? 30,000 subscribers prefer it to our homepage and it’s low-bandwidth friendly because It strips all the fancy graphics and sends just the news (plus a few ads) to you via email.

Here’s the link to sign up: [I][U][B]gCaptain Newsletter Subscription[/B][/U][/I]

Really, with the newsletter, the only reason to visit the news section is to watch videos.

Pros:
Free
Easy to subscribe

Cons:
We all get too much email anyway
Some company computers flag it as spam and you have to "whitelist it"
No Video

[I][B]RSS READER[/B][/I]

Here is a link to our official RSS page:
http://feeds.feedburner.com/gcaptain

We don’t like to publicize it too much because RSS takes the homepage and strips out everything, including most of the ads. If you visit our RSS page in Safari (and, possibly chrome) then you can read the full articles, just bookmark that page and visit it directly. Some browsers (e.g. firefox) condense the RSS content… so if you don’t see the full articles you’ll have to use a feedreader.

Our favorite RSS apps are:
Reader for iOS
Feedwrangler for Android

There are also RSS readers for kindle, amazon nook, windows mobile, ect… just put “RSS reader” into the search at your favorite app store.

Pros:
Fastest low-bandwidth option

Cons:
The best RSS apps costs money (but their are may free alternatives)

[I][B]AMAZON KINDLE Subscription[/B][/I]

This option costs money but, since your a pilot you can probably afford our exorbitant pricing scheme of $0.99 /month. This is the way I personally read gCaptain when I’m out at sea because Amazon strips all the ads so it’s the lowest bandwidth option and, I love reading on the kindle. Here’s the link to subscribe: http://amzn.to/1MbUP69

Pros:
Totally Free
Lightening fast
Simple to subscribe

Cons:
costs $0.99

Twitter
The absolute fastest way to catch the headlines is by visiting our twitter page:
https://twitter.com/gCaptain

Pros:
Fastest way to view headlines
Cons:
You can only read the article titles

-John


#37

P.S. With an RSS reader you can also subscribe just t the sections you want to see.

News (Homepage) RSS Link:
http://feeds.feedburner.com/Gcaptain

Job Board RSS:
http://feeds.feedburner.com/ShipJobs

Forum RSS:

P.S. You each section of the site have their own RSS feed… so if you just want Professional Mariner news and don’t care about the engineering or other news, you can grab just that RSS link. Right click on the RSS logo (see screenshot below), select “Copy Link” and past it into your favorite RSS reader.


#38

HOW To Subscribe Via Kindle

Again… Kindle is what I use to read gCaptain offshore because it’s the best option for LOW-BANDWIDTH internet. Subscribe by clicking on the image below.

Text Link: http://amzn.to/1APsDWk


#39

Thanks John. Sorry to compare your site as a site for teenage girls. Just was a little frustrated with the look. But anyway, thanks for your response. I am trying out the homepage RSS link now and so far I am liking it. Will try it out for awhile. Thank again.


#40

ok, I disabled the mobile theme while we work on these issues… standby.