Fix My Site

Does your site suck? Do you need professional advice? Do you not want to pay for this advice? Send me an email, and I'll take a look at your site and provide you with some real suggestions. By real, I mean real.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Mrah, How Do You Like My Design, Mildred?

Hang (the proper noun, not the verb), banger outer of www.fastmoneyrally.com grovels:Fast Money Rally

I'm currently a college undergrad and I'm pretty much self/google taught in web/graphic design. I've no formal training and I'm really starting to think that it's catching up to me. I have only a working knowledge of HTML, as in I know what the tags mean and all, I just can't write a single line of it. Dreamweaver is my crutch. I still don't know what CSS and PHP and all that OMFG/LOL does. I feel like I've hit the ceiling in the stuff that I can create. I really need a nudge in the right direction to get to the next level in my work.

Well, Hang, if it's a nudge you want, you've come to the right place. Usually my methods include jabs, backhands, and fists to the heart, but if all you need is a nudge, I'm all for it. As for learning what all that OMFG/LOL is, I suggest you talk to my 10-year-old cousin. She knows all that OMFG/LOL better than anyone I know. She'll send me a message and it will be something like, "hi, yt? ok, ttyl! ly! haha lol," and I will sit there and ponder the direction America's youth is headed. Then I'll go to Taco Bell and eat ten tacos and immediately feel better about myself. I wonder if kids have started integrating acronyms into verbal conversation (assuming people still actually express themselves via oral interaction), like if someone thinks something is funny, they actually just blurt out, "L. O. L!" instead of actually lol-ing. Interestingly, this brings me to my next point.

I've got to say, Hanger, if this design is wholly your own, you're a talented designer. The graphics do an excellent job of conveying the connotive hoity-toitiness of this event, as the motif drips with snoot. I can just hear the participants' supercilious badinage: "Mrah, well my supercar is fueled by a delicate mixture of the finest caviar and Cristal champagne. Mrah!" This is perfect, since anyone who owns a car worth more than the Gross National Product of Estonia clearly talks like this and thus are the only people attending this event. So, great job on the design. My only gripe is on the "Why" page, where your links at the top blend too much with the background, making them very difficult to read. If I can't read it, I ain't clicking on it.

Okay, so wipe that goofy grin off your face, because now we're going to get into your coding. I was trying to come up with some terms that could describe it; "horrific" and "painful" were two that came to mind. However, I didn't feel that these terms fully expressed the disdain I felt for your coding, so I settled on the Yiddish term "challucious", since one of the language's strengths is the expression of disdain. Maybe that's a bit harsh, since you do keep your code somewhat organized and you haven't abused tables to the point of counseling, but that's about the extent of what's good code-wise. You use a lot of inline styling and tag attributes, which will make your page extremely difficult to update should the Baron of York and his French poodle Muffy decide they want you to fix the spacing on every page. You mentioned you lean on Dreamweaver a lot. Don't. Check out my tutorials to find helpful (not to mention witty and charming) examples of how to create an XHTML compliant site and image rollovers without using Javascript.

Scrolling text? Um...get rid of it. The reason why "tickers" exist is because of the dearth of space and surplus of information in the location where they're needed. Unfortunately for your site, this is not the case. It would be much more legible and far less annoying to just write down the information you want to say in a static way. It's like the advent of domestication: why chase your dinner all over the place when you can just capture it and breed it within a contained environment for multiple dinners for little effort? Clearly the same thing. Moral—get rid of scrolly text, or you may go hungry.

Your navigation is clear, but your titles don't accurately reflect the location the user is at. I clicked on "Why" and the title still said "How". I don't know, that's why I clicked "Why". If the how is the same as the why, then I think you have more of a problem on your hands than the Duke of Arlington taking a pitstop with a few of those models. Correct metadata is only slightly less important than the actual content itself, but only slightly. Remember that search engines store your titles, so what's a user supposed to think when two pages labeled "How" pop up when they're really looking for why? You know what they think? Lawsuit. It's the American way. Additionally, you need to add some keywords and a page description to fully sate the SEses hunger for meta-eats. And boy, are they hungry.

I suppose the last thing(s) I have for you are try to be less dependent on Javascript and figure out a way to tidy up those images on your "Why" ("How"?) page. In regards to the former, your image gallery, while it may appear cool at first, falls apart for someone who does not have Javascript enabled. Try to come up with some sort of alternative for those less fortunate than yourself, you self-serving chauvinist. Not everyone can afford your fancy schmancy Javascript. Oh, yeah, not all those buttons lead to pictures either (but one of them leads to blondes, so A+ on this page).

In summary: excellent work on the graphics, learn XHTML and CSS, rely less on Javascript (you selfish pig) and include more pictures of scantily clad models. Like I mentioned in my last post, be on the lookout for a CSS tutorial and maybe an aggregation of some other resources on how to learn this crap. Oh, and if you get the chance, go ahead and put in a good word for me to the Thane of Bismarck, or whoever you're working for. Mrah!

12 Comments:

At September 26, 2006 3:32 AM, Blogger Britt said...

"Mrah!" I couldn't have said it better myself!!

 
At September 27, 2006 7:12 AM, Anonymous Prithvi said...

nice blog!
that tutorial link helped me a lot
tuprithvi.seo.iitm.ac.in

 
At September 27, 2006 4:42 PM, Anonymous Olaf said...

Hi Jason,

just read your latest addition and must say you're right about the design and the interaction but I do not agree with the code...

I use Dreamweaver for coding too because the coding features are the best of all editors.

So my advice is to the owner of the reviewd site: use the excellent features of DW and start writing real code (forget the WYSIWYG features)

 
At September 27, 2006 4:48 PM, Blogger Edelman said...

Olaf -

I think you may have misinterpreted what I meant. I, too, use Dreamweaver, but I use it to write code, since it has some good autocompleting and colorizing functionality. He means (or so I think) that he uses the WYSIWYG and/or autogeneration/templating code instead of writing his own HTML. I have recommended DW as a coding editor in the past, just use it to write your own code.

-Jason

 
At September 27, 2006 11:54 PM, Anonymous hang said...

Mrah, my dear sir Edelman. Words can not begin to describe my heartfelt gratitude for what you have done for us imbeciles. Without you, CSS would only stand for Counter-Strike Source...

Vote Republican for the right to keep our fancy schmancy Javascript!

Now, to look up that word in a dictionary... Challucious, hm...

 
At October 15, 2006 12:30 PM, Anonymous milo317 said...

Interesting point about java, what about ajax?

 
At October 15, 2006 2:07 PM, Blogger Edelman said...

AJAX is some cool stuff...Personally I think more and more sites are going to be using AJAX in the very near future to the point where AJAX use will overtake Flash use, unless some other technology comes around that's even cooler than both of them. Like Smell-O-Vision. That's the wave of the future, my friends. Just remember where you heard it first.

 
At October 16, 2006 6:19 AM, Anonymous milo317 said...

"Smell-O-Vision" in blogs/web 2.0? With ajax/AJAX? Cool idea.

 
At October 16, 2006 8:12 AM, Blogger Edelman said...

I know, right? You should hear about some of my ideas for appeasing the final frontier of the senses: Taste-E-Blog.

Mmmm...

 
At October 17, 2006 2:51 AM, Anonymous milo317 said...

"Taste-E-Blog"? How should that do it?
I can imagine something like
"Minority Report" tech, where you push the sites through your board with hands, but "Taste"?

 
At October 17, 2006 8:14 AM, Blogger Edelman said...

Remember the discovery of electricity? Do you think anyone even knew that the possibility of such a force existed?

Taste-E-Blog: The Flavor of the Future. Copyright © 2006 Jason Edelman.

 
At October 18, 2006 2:56 AM, Anonymous milo317 said...

Aha...

 

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home