2019/2020 Improvement Mission

With the SWDb software update comes new motivation to finally (after years of neglect) give the database some overdue cleanup, optimization and improvement. We want to fix up old pages, make articles look better, ensure visitors can find what they’re looking for, and we want to add pages, links, images and other information or tweaks that will make the SWDb better than ever before.

This topic is a wiki topic itself, meaning anyone can add to it, or cross off items that are done.

  • Main Page was modernized (:white_check_mark: ), still to do: bottom right corner explore link cloud.
  • Sebastian needs to overhaul the main menu: what is missing in there, what can be deleted, do we need an additional menu item? in progress
  • Sebastian needs to update all the disclaimer texts (privacy, about, copyright, etc.)
  • :white_check_mark: Sebastian needs to put some essential info into the footer of the website (e.g. where the MediaWiki logos is), link essential links, contact info, maybe sponsors…
  • Overhaul this page, or deleted it and forward to Introduction
  • Use bigger pictures on the Introduction page, and ensure responsiveness
  • For each movie, create a “censorship and versions” section reporting all information related to versions, censorship, cut scenes, etc., with references.
  • Add IMDb-type keywords to film pages (for instance Dynamite, Machine gun, Whipping, Duel, Bank robbery, Bridge, Civil War, Native American, Hanging, Drinking Milk, Beating, Parasol, Revenge, Surprise ending, Mexican Revolution), but be rigid and specific list to avoid an uncontrolled proliferation of uninteresting or repetitive entries
  • Uncredited actors marked with an asterisk or other graphic sign.
  • Overhaul plot synopsis for all films to be spoiler-free but at the same time informative.
  • :white_check_mark: Sebastian needs to remove that donations banner and replace it with something better (what could grace the bottom of all pages?). Done, now with a few helpful buttons
  • Sebastian needs to update the newsletter page and newsletter archive
  • :white_check_mark: Put social media links/icons into the header and footer (Twitter and Facebook)
2 Likes

Hi Admin Sebastian, how does one become a member of the SWDb Staff? I’d certainly like to make the occasional contribution to the site.

Hi. Quite simple: you have something to contribute - we’ll make it possible. Being an active fella here in the forums is already a great first step, the next would be to start editing the SWDb on your own. For that I can create an account for you, and going about it works just like the Wikipedia does (if you ever edited something there); because we use the same software.

Here’s a quick tour of what’s new on the Main Page and the header/footer areas of the SWDb:

First, the top half of the screen

  • I removed the background from the navigation bar, because it was close to impossible to see what it really was, it made everything very noisy and distracts from what’s important: the content of the page.
  • the menu is not quite finished yet, but as you can see there’s an additional item there, plus two social media icons
  • I removed any banners and graphics that came before the content (for now) - less that stands in the way of content. On the Main Page I also de-cluttered, made items stand out more and simplified it quite a bit under the hood. Those of you you have previously added info to the main page should still find your way around, it hasn’t changed much.
  • Gave the book highlight it’s own full box. All these boxes have little icons also, subtle but easy to recognize
  • The Main Page also looks really good on mobile devices now, all content is moved underneath each other then. Try it.

Now for the bottom half of the screen

  • I still need to update the “explore” box with some more and better links, ideas are welcome. I just want to give as many entry points to great stuff on the main page as possible
  • I moved some of the banners and buttons to the bottom of the screen (newsletter, read more books, etc). I think it gives the site a nice finish at the bottom
  • the disclaimer links were updated (a new one for copyright) and I added social media links there as well. The texts in those disclaimer pages still need to be updated

That’s it for now, as you can see, no revolutionary changes but a series of minor tweaks that make the first page on the SWDb that most people see, look better and work better. Now off for the rest of the work, who’s with me? :wink:

1 Like

Not on Wikipedia, but on my WordPress Blog multiple times :grin:I’d certainly be interested in the staff account, I’ve got some material I hope would benefit the site.

How do I create a staff account? I’m definitely interested.

finally got around to replying to your mails.

Any ideas for what else should be moved prominently into the main menu - or what should disappear from it?

Personally I feel the main menu is very clean and tidy. I can easily navigate around the different columns and sections and figure out what to look for. Looks great!

1 Like

Ditto - ‘if it ain’t broken it don’t need fixin’ :wink:

I looked at the menu bar and it is fine. I can however see some innovations:

  • “Menu” drops down to the SW items. Is menu the right word here as the whole bar is a menu?
  • Should books be entered to the “Menu” (as DVD, Blurays and music is part of that menu)
  • Both “Community” and “news” lead to the same social media page. Maybe remove it from the “news” drop down menu and add this to the “main Page”.
  • At the “contribute Page” there could be a description about the “Amazon” contribution by clicking on a link from the forum and then place an order. All bits will help I guess.

Just some thoughts from me

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I do not write on the Forum that often, but am an avid user of both the website and the Forum.

Here’s some observations about the design of the website:

  • I feel the “Hall of Fame” coukd have a direct link on the starting page, maybe between “Pictures” and “Forum”; on a Laptop-screen there is easily enough space available to the right. I just never liked the Hall of Fame to be “hidden” inside of the Top 20, I do not find it self-explanatory and I also find it nice to have it more prominently placed (especially for newcomers to the genre and website, but also for honouring all those people)

  • The yellow writing on the sheriff-stars of the HoF-categories is hardly readable and rather unpleasant for the eyes.

I have some more ideas, but they are more content-based (Alternative Top 20, categories in the Hall of Fame), not design-based. Where can I post those? Or just send an email to you, Sebastian?

Cheers!

2 Likes

Feel free to empty your mind in here, I think your first idea regarding the HoF I can immediately apply.

Having a hard look at https://www.spaghetti-western.net/index.php/SWDB_Hall_of_Fame
and its sub-pages, I think these can do a major do-over, starting indeed as you rightly point out, with the graphics

So we need someone who can come up with better ones, like a consistent design thruout the entire hall of fame, graphics that are legible, hi-res and can be used in different contexts. Anyone up for it?

Sorry for my slow answers, I do not write much on boards. :slight_smile:

I know near to nothing about graphics, so I can’t help there. I think the graphics for Directors, Lead Actors and Actresses are not perfect, but at readable; the others are hard to read because of the contrast and small writing. Hope somebody with graphic skills turns up!

P.S.: May post my more content-based ideas for the site at some point, but do not have the time these days.