Website Developments

I have tried a new add-on for my slideshow galleries. it works well on my computer but if someone on Windoze or Linux could check and let me know that would be good. It’s flash based (sorry) but much nicer than my previous setups. I would also be interested to know about speeds- my connection is stupidly fast and I worry it might be bloated (always a risk with art sites).

yes I know it’s bad that I use something like iWeb, especially when i can code my own, but frankly this is easier and it turns out nice code, integrates with my software well and needs less work. it means I spend less time updating and tweaking and more time painting. If something works for you -you do it. I find if I have raw code I play with it too much (shiny!).

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8 thoughts on “Website Developments

  1. Hmm, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, and when it does work it turns off the scrollbars for good in that window (so that going to a bookmark doesn’t bring them back).

    When it doesn’t work it gets stuck on “Loading” in a small rectangle.

    Debian Linux, Galeon, Flash 9 – not that it would seem to be using any flash!
    My browser is also set to open pop-up windows as new tabs behind the current tab (which means that any size requests and similar get ignored).

    It’s curious that it won’t use the full window – it’ll take the smaller of the height and width and then limit both dimensions to that. That makes landscape paintings (like Reclining) unnecessarily small.

    The images don’t adjust themselves to changing window size, for instance going into full-screen mode.

    The label is partly off-screen for square / portrait paintings (which looks bad) and when I increase the font size it goes off-screen altogether. Normally that would be a minor annoyance, but since you’ve turned off my scrollbars, it’s a problem.

    The individual paintings are non-bookmarkable, since the URLs don’t contain image ID (they do contain a language code, though it’s my second preference; not that there’d be anything to localise). Similarly, they can’t be e-mailed, blogged or otherwise publicised by others. They don’t have a link back to the site (nor to the other gallery) even though there’s plenty of blank space on the left and right.

    Getting to the gallery from your blog is several clicks, one of them unintuitive (or else I haven’t found the direct route) – “artwork”, “website”, “gallery”, thumbnail. Two of them open a pop-up window, one is a javascript-only link.

    In the thumbnail view, there’s no explanation what the red dots mean; also, while each is a different file, they look quite identical to me.

    Umm, sorry to be so negative, but, well, you asked for feedback… and there’s not much to comment on the parts that do work, they just work!


  2. I can fix the window and scrollbar issues easily, I will keep it auto sizing but have put in auto scrollbars and a resize option (it should always be an option in sites)

    I will raise hanging issues with the creators but it is beyond my ability to code. (it is JS not flash, I was thinking of a different one I didn’t end up using)

    The rest of the issues, well, I know limiting direct access to images is less SEO friendly but it is also less theft friendly- and that is a huge issue with art sites. The low res files can be grabbed or someone can send a link to the gallery if necessary.

    Reaching my gallery from here is surprisingly easy – you see the bit under my photo that says visit my website 😉 ? I am going to remaster my front page to add links to both galleries I think, I may be changing how they work at any rate.. The artwork Page here on my blog is a brief gallery (that needs updating :roll:) that also links to my sale info on Sculptr. it’s made to more or less stand alone.

    The red dots were a test – I am a bit ambivalent, they are the same file – I don’t know why iWeb has copied it more than once. I am still working on the concept, I like the red dots, but not necessarily those ones… I thought it would be a bit redundant to explain what they mean.

    I have been shopping around for other things like iWeb, the problem is I really like it. it is very good at what it does but it is limited if it isn’t published on .mac servers. I am trying to get around the limitations, hence the plugin which is the nicest and less cludgy out there. others involve having the right type of server software and access or require files which no longer seem to exist!. There is a tolerable variation on iWeb called Sandvox but it crashes all the time. I like the compliant code but I am still working out the kinks in it’s rather odd system. iWeb 07 will be coming out soon apparently and will possibly fix some of it’s more glaring problems. I have my fingers crossed. until then, I am working in a quite odd environment.

    Has anyone seen it in IE? I have tested several browsers here but IE for the Mac is broken and no longer available.

  3. I will raise hanging issues with the creators

    I think it happens when I hit “reload” or similar. The script doesn’t know which image to show and doesn’t have enough error-handling to stop the “Loading…” image and display a meaningful error message. It’s not actually hanging as such – it’s just that the animated gif fakes a moving progress wheel even though the javascript has long given up.

    The error message on the JavaScript console is: [JavaScript Error: “opener has no properties” {file: “” line: 16}]
    Line 16, Column 0, File “slideshow.js” in “”

    Suggested solution: put the slide index in the URL (as per next point).

    someone can send a link to the gallery if necessary

    Well, that’s the thing – they can link to Gallery.html, but not to a particular image. If they try, they’ll get a SlideShow.html link that doesn’t work at all (let alone showing that particular image). The solution would be to put the slide index in the URL instead of the language selection – preferably a permanent ID that will persist through gallery reorganisations (an “opus number” or the name of the painting).

    eaching my gallery from here is surprisingly easy – you see the bit under my photo that says visit my website 😉

    Ah, one less click; still, I was going for the “artwork” link on the theory that it will lead to your artwork… perhaps the artwork page should be unified with the gallery 🙂

    I thought it would be a bit redundant to explain what they mean.

    Well, I wasn’t paying much attention, but… new? sold? top-10? (the dots are gone now, so I can’t go back and try to figure it out).


  4. I’ll give the updated error details to the creators thanks for that.

    Well, that’s the thing – they can link to Gallery.html, but not to a particular image.

    Um, but I don’t want individual linking to images. it may seem silly but it is a very real issue (I have had problems with it before). thumbs can be linked to and the gallery page – it isn’t a feature that I want on my site. Being based in Ajax also limits the functionality. Soon I will be upgrading hosts – when that is done I will probably start using a more industry standard iweb gallery workaround using litebox. it won’t be individual linking either but I think it will end up working better. it is a complicated addon and may take a while to implement but I think it will be better in the long run.

    I don’t want my artwork on this site to link with my site gallery because I want it to link to my online representation and sales. Eventually I will link to print sales as well. I don’t want sales information on my site for different reasons I won’t go into here. The artwork here links to the piece on Sculptr. (must update…).

    I took the dots off until I create one that I like.. It’s just a little ancillary thing, low priority.

    There are different Design, PR and Marketing decisions that go into these sites. Everything is carefully thought out and researched – The only thing I am missing is a kickass testing setup!

  5. I’m viewing your gallery per Windows XP home/firefox 5.0 on a 512 DSL connection. It’s all shiny. Everything I’ve asked it to do “just works”. Loading images takes a few seconds, but not long enough that it would deter me. Viewers of graphic art online are likely to be prepared for it to take at least as long to load as your site takes. From my perspective, it’s all good.

  6. Of course, I have no idea of your reasons; I’m just commenting on the usability side… if you have reasons for doing it the way you do it, that’s cool!

    (For instance, the complaint about too many clicks from here to there basically boils down to having two almost-separate sites; if there’s a reason for that, no problem!)

    BTW, for the linking, while I can’t link to an individual page in the gallery (with its next and forward links and where you could put a link to your homepage), I can link to the image itself, to the Gallery_files/Pxxxxxxx.jpg file. Galeon shows the link in the Properties / Images tab and offers to “Open in New Tab/Window” or “Copy Address”… You may want to close that off too (either send the image via AJAX as well, or restrict the Pxxxxxxx.jpg files by Referer).

    I’m also still not getting the scrollbars, so I miss the captions when I have a big font or when I have more than one tab in the window – the tab bar takes up space and pushes the bottom of the image below the fold. No idea why – you did change that…


  7. PS: Supposedly people who pay for professional usability reviews tend to only fix half the problems – the other half are either too difficult or conflict with other business considerations. That’s people who paid a 5-digit sum for the review – so don’t feel guilty about picking and choosing which of my suggestions you implement; if you implement half of them, I’m doing well 🙂


  8. Thankyou both, sorry if I’ve been snicky, I’m sick again and cranky.. Hopefully my ISP issues will be fixed soon (I joined 3 days ago and still haven’t received a resonse) and then I can do more work on it.

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