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ATS "Dark Matter" Revisited... Revised... Rethunk...

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posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:12 PM
That's it you have it. The "plasma" is perfect. The "Dark Matter" is too dark and does my head in so hopefully ye will change it. Nice one SkepticOverlord

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:14 PM

Originally posted by Desert Dawg
Are you sure you're not just being a "Computer Guy/Gal" here and worrying too much?

No... I've stepped into the role of usability and heuristics analysis. This potential change was inspired by showing the dark/light versions to 9 people who have never previously been on ATS. While ensuring that members have a positive experience is important, the reality is that over 60% of our daily traffic is from people who have never previously been to ATS.

As ATS members and regulars, we have a familiarity with its' features and structure such that we could almost use the site with barely contrasting text.

The important thing to remember here is how our complex website is presented to new users, and if we can improve that first perception and keep them coming back.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:16 PM
I really like the Prototype for the New Plasma system! The big thing for me is that it is very eye-friendly for those of us on ATS with visual problems. In addition the Plasma design gives ATS a new, more open feel that goes along with our ideas of bringing the truth out in the open for everyone to see.

This is a Great concept! I can't wait to see it applied.

B.T.W. When can we Officially Vote for it?


posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:25 PM

Originally posted by SkepticOverlord

This is a home-page-only mock-up, and it also lacks some key elements such as header-links and footer elements.

What does everyone think?

I myself would like the mock up much better then the Dark Side as you like to call. That is speakig as senior citizen mind you it is much easier on the eyes and for me easier to read.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:25 PM

Originally posted by whaaa
Whatever you decide on is fine with me as long as the content stays the same.

My sentiments exactly.

Whatever you think works the best. Personally, I can read every version fine. I've gotten used to the dark mode, and now that I have I think it's pretty cool. But if you think a different version would help overall, go for it.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:25 PM
I realize this wont be a popular position, but since opinions are being explicitly requested…

I prefer something that looks…well, less juvenile. And, of course, easier to read.

Please don’t be offended.

I can’t help but wonder if the preference for the whole Dark Matter thing is generational. Does it look cool? Sure. But the way the site is being branded, it says to me a lot more “mysterious”, and a lot less “and/or controversial”. It feels hyped, and if I were a new visitor to this site, I’d assume this site has much more to do with UFOs and the paranormal, than the “other” conspiracies I have come to so enjoy reading here. Without my prior experience on ATS, I’d probably pass on it…

Yeah, I get it. This site *IS* largely about those “mysterious” things. But I think you lose something when the “look and feel” fails to balance that interest with a more serious and mainstream tone for the other subject matter. In short, I think the new “look and feel” robs credibility from those topics…and as someone only marginally interested in the UFO and Paranormal line, there too.

But hey, that’s just me.

Can I live with it? Yes. The “light” version isn’t so bad… And frankly, better even than the newest one you are asking about.

My $0.02.

[edit on 3-2-2007 by loam]

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:28 PM
Plasma really dazzled me. Its far too bright for me...

My personal opinion is that Dark Matter is the best. The dark bakcground and light letters are so much easier on my eye.

ISn't there a way you could allow users to switch between them as they wish?

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:30 PM
Dark Matter is highly effective I think. Offers good contrast, clear icons, and text is clean against the dark background.

The "light" feature: it's been said that it looks like crap...this I agree with
Too choppy looking.

Personally I think Dark Matters appeals to a wider audience as it looks "polished".

I compared it to some other conspiracy forums and well, Skeptic...I um don't think ATS has much competition in the aesthetics department LOL. (or content if one looks around a bit on "other sites")

While I did come across a nice looking site ( the pastels are a bit too...serendipity for me (and a little too froo froo). They do have good contrast though.

There are others...GLP which looks like it was tossed together by a two year old. (german) which also has gone for a dark theme and looks more defined and refined.

Honestly I like the "home" page as well. Although I never really use it, opting to use the recent posts icon instead.

The mouse over comments on each icon(on the home page section) are great and give the board that interactive feel. Also very good feature for those new to the site and just scrolling around.

The former ATS scheme was good, but this is much better.

Admittedly I have never been much of a fan of "black" backgrounds, but the gradient grays, contrasting icons and all works nicely together.

The ATS logo in the top left though looks a bit washed out. The glossy effect you had going there was nice and really made it "pop".

I think you've managed a design, features, and function that will please a much larger reach of people, in one or another, there's something for everyone in this theme.

I also like the active threads being linked atop the page in contrasting colors.

In the old ATS I had a slough of page loading issues, with new servers that's been rectified (as I'm sure most noticed the marked improvement). Images load fast (although I have never tried to access in dial-up).

The only thing I find a bit irksome is the anonymous post thingy...overkill, waste of space, impossible to sort through...and should anything of value get posted it's likely lost in the muddle of crap postings.

You've really done a great job and made short work of this massive overhaul. Take a breather and accept a pat on the back or two, or three, or four... and let the site stand for a bit. It really does come across as a well polished site and while there may be little issues to fidget with here and there, I think you found a winning CSS style.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:38 PM

Originally posted by justgeneric
The only thing I find a bit irksome is the anonymous post thingy...overkill, waste of space, impossible to sort through...and should anything of value get posted it's likely lost in the muddle of crap postings.

I'll also 2nd that!

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:54 PM
Me likey.


posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:55 PM
I love the way it is now.. If it were up to me.. I wouldn't change a thing.

Why not have the plasma theme as an option to anyone who is not comfortable with the dark matter?

Either way its still ATS.. that is what ultimately matters most to me.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:57 PM
I don't really care what you do with the colors(like I explained in another thread, if you don't like the colors on a site, use FireFox's custom CSS :p), but keep the autocentering ScepticOverlord!! On alot of sites its hard to overrule the alignment of a website because the outer most div or table doesn't wrap around everything on a site, or because certain divs have an offset defined from browser edge instead of from the master container.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:59 PM
I actually like the lighter background, it's cleaner.

I never understood why "Dark Matter" was chosen, it's not at all neutral, the same goes for "Light Matter". Why not "Grey Matter"? To me is a little more inviting and a bit less biased....

Anyways, the lighter was easier to read.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 01:59 PM
The "ATS PLASMA" looks great. I like the colors. But the dark format is good too.

I think the plasma design is easier to read.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 02:02 PM
Whatever changes are made to the colours i will always visit this site...

Love it

I do personally prefer darker backgrounds... but... I will go with the majority vote and still be happy

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 02:09 PM
IMHO, I think the 'Dark Matter' look is very smart looking, and it looks more professional. The grey to me looks cheap. I do sympathize with those members with visual impairments that see the dark print better.
I don't know squat about web design, I only know what I like, so that is a consideration for my opinion. Any chance we could have a choice between the two? That would be great! I love the new dark look, I'd hate to see it go. The bottom line is that the content of ATS is what brings me back again and again, and a format change wouldn't affect my loyalty to this site in the long run. Thanks for asking for our opinion, I appreciate that.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 02:14 PM
I like the "home-page-only mock-up" - generally, I do not even visit sites that are dark-colored. I wouldn't be even reading your site if it were dark (black) first time I visited it.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 02:15 PM
We have the gray center table with the text we are reading. On each side we have black. It is a small strain on the eye. If the entire window was either all black or all gray I personally think it would easier on the eyes.

I switched from dark matter to the new demo page and it was a shock on the eyes so I got up and walked away for a few minutes to do the dishes, came back and YES the lighter theme was a lot easier on my eyes.

Another point I would like to make is that my eyes see the brighter colors around the darker background and light text. This causes my eyes to not fully focus on the text all the time. That could just be me.

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 02:17 PM
I think it's a good idea to have plasma. I'm sure like me, most members had to adjust to backgrounds of dark matter. After awhile of getting used to it, I very much enjoyed it more than the previous layout. I think plasma will have the same effect on us, so I say go for it.

Also, one more issue I've seen some members worry about since my time on here is the "Custom mini-profile background image" option we can buy at the ATS store. Would it be possible to implement a "preview" page, where members can first test their new background image before buying, so they won't end up having to spend even more points correcting the background image that they did not like?

posted on Feb, 3 2007 @ 02:17 PM

Originally posted by promomag
I never understood why "Dark Matter" was chosen, it's not at all neutral, the same goes for "Light Matter". Why not "Grey Matter"? To me is a little more inviting and a bit less biased....

In astrophysics and cosmology, dark matter is matter, not directly observed and of unknown composition, that do not emit or reflect enough electromagnetic radiation to be detected directly, but whose presence can be inferred from gravitational effects on visible matter

I always assumed it was to do with the whole mise en scène of ATS. We are in the background, unseen, unheard, but affecting everything else.

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