SITE REVIEW: MD Designs

  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hi All,

I'm pretty much a novice trying to learn the ropes. My original page at http://www.mddesigns.com.au was meant to be something unorthodox. Appeal to people to think outside the box. But have learnt that does no good in this area. I've sort of made a home page/design template.

Could you please have a look at:
http://www.mddesigns.com.au/new

Old ones ( http://www.mddesigns.com.au )

I appreciate your time

Thanks
Pougee
  • hostingspeeds
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I like your current version way more than the new one.
  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Really, the actual homepage that theres now is much better you reckon? Comming from a business point of view.
  • Rodd1s
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Post 3+ Months Ago

the new design looks a lot more professional and clean. I really like the new design, it would attract the big spenders.
  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Why the ambiguous question?

invading peoples privacy over the internet maybe a good start.

Thanks for the input
  • WhozWoody
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thumbs Up on the newer home page.. I seems to load quicker then the old one... Hang in there....
  • apsblackbelt2
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Post 3+ Months Ago

New version in my opinion is more professional looking and overall a much better look. I'd say go for it definatly. But the banner is missing from it right now, I'd like to see what you do with the banner.
  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

apsblackbelt2 - Its an *.swf you musn't have flash installed.

I made a *.gif which isn't as good
Image

Thanks for the reviews also.

Is there any ways i can improve it?
  • apsblackbelt2
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Post 3+ Months Ago

oh I have flash installed.....trust me on that one. But in FF 1.5 it is not showing for me. Anyone else getting this?
  • apsblackbelt2
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Ok I just checked it out in IE and it is interesting. I dont think the black background on it goes well with the lighter layout for the site you have.
  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Can i ask which browser it didn't work in?
  • xamix
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Firefox (the swf doesn´t show)

p.s: "
invading peoples privacy over the internet maybe a good start. " ->wrong answer,that´s a cracker (somy may call black hat hacker)

some highlights about the matter at wikipédia ;)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hacker
  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Could you tell me if it works now, if so is it a *.gif or *.swf
  • Mas Sehguh
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Many flaws (but that pretty much sums up every website, doesn't it?). Here are my scattered comments.

For one, it's very ugly.

Also, there are various inconsistencies that make the site seem misshapen. For example, link colors are different in different places. Why the inconsistency? The 'Contact Us' link should probably not be red, since the other links are blue, and the color red cries out "broken." (It is used for that purpose on the Web 'everywhere,' from missing fields in registration forms to Wikipedia links-to-nowhere.) Why is the section header, 'Links,' colored in gold? There seems to be no functional reason that makes the user feel like you're being helpful to him or her. I expected it to be clickable, since it was different, but it wasn't.

I don't see the point in the XHTML, CSS, and Opera banners. Using correct code is a form of competency, not excellence.

Aesthetically, I feel like your new design is a miserable failure. It feels like the designer was limited to the feature-set of some awful Web browser from 1996. This is a strange contrast, because your current design is now one of the best I've ever seen, and your portfolio looks good, too.
  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thankyou for the honest opinion.

Alot of the people that will be looking at my site aren't web designers. And they look at my current page and don't think much of it. For Business there needs to be some formality. I felt that new design had it

You had i think four questions:
1. Why the inconsistency
They may seem there are but there not. I have just uploaded the Web Design page, it will show that I have set a difference between the menu and clickable links in the content box's.

2. Why are there broken links
I said in the first page its just a template. I wanted to know if i should invest time into making it a full website.

3. Why is the section header, 'Links,' colored in gold
I felt the page need a different colour in the the break things up, Also gives the opportunity to have people ask me to put links in their and they'll know they have special attention.

4. Why the XHTML, CSS, Opera Links
I just think this makes the page look more professional. And supports any claims i make in the site
  • nameslot
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Really professional look. Best of luck for future.

Thanks.
  • bleepnik
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I like your 'ittle bitty footer, with the validator images lined up neatly. XHTML and CSS I understand, but... Opera? You say that it makes it look more professional, and supports any claim you make on the site. How so? Advertising a particular browser only shows a bias for it; given that Opera has like 1% of the web-surfin' pie, I'm not certain how this makes a good impression on prospective clients.

If you believe that "cookie-cutter" = "more professional," then yes, your new template looks more professional. Otherwise, it looks like... a template. Aesthetically, it's all over the place and needs to be more consistent. You have a massive black header followed by splotches of colour on a canvas of greys. You've got headers with drop shadows, and those without. You don't have enough content on that page to justify so much visual/stylistic variety; it's just distracting.

What's a chess piece got to do with MD Designs? Your logo says as much to me as the dragon says about Ozzu (but then again, I haven't searched the forum to see what Ozzu means, if anything, so for all I know there may be a correlation there).

Your header/banner should make more of an impact. I really have to agree with those who've stated that your initial (old) design is better, as it has unique elements that inspire confidence in your ability. Your new design would not encourage me to check out your portfolio to see what you can do for my company.

Finally, did you mean to use "simple" in your banner, rather than "simplistic," as you did? "Simplistic" means "overly simplified." It is often confused with "simple," but doesn't mean the same thing. Indeed, it frequently has the same not-so-nice connotation as "simpleton," and that's not an association I would want prospective clients to make with my name.

I understand your desire to appeal to the masses, your frustration with the reaction to trying to do something different. You're on the right track, but don't lose all the things that make your offering unique in the saturated web design market. Look at places like cssbeauty, oswd.org, etc. for inspiration and mix and match elements that will make the end result professional, but still *yours*.

Hth, and good luck.
  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I appreciate that, you have put forward some very valid points.

Regarding the Opera, I've been using it for awhile now and wanna try helping them. I've seen other people support firefox. I don't see this having an impact on my sites functionallity.

I have made an unorthadox decision and gone with a chess peice as my logo. In my opinion chess represents a higher class of quality.

If i was to change my header and drop those shadows would that make the site more fluent?

Thankyou regarding those links also.

Cheers
Pougee
  • bleepnik
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well, Pougee, I don't know if it'd make all the difference, but it certainly couldn't hurt, eh? Why not give it a shot and see how you like it? In the end, you have to be satisfied with your own work, and be confident that it reflects positively on your capabilities.

Thanks for being receptive to our constructive criticism!
  • Funny_Fuzz
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Yup, second one is way better
  • Pougee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I've made some minor adjustments.

I have colour coded the menus and banners. Theres only three pages up
Home at the moment.
Main Menu > Web Design
Portfolio > Web Designs

Does this improve the site.

Also apart from the design. Is it developed properly? Anyway of improving code efficiency

Cheers
Pougee
  • bleepnik
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hi Pougee,

This is purely subjective of course, but I like the revision much better!

Some more nitpicks for you:

- The green and blue banner you have doesn't look like it's a standard size (468x60, if I remember correctly?)

- Horizontally, the top of the banner does not align with the top of your menu.

- If you're planning to add more content to the page, I don't think it'll make much of a difference, but you have such little content now that the varying lengths of your content compartments is a little distracting; I'would suggest letting all three just run to the bottom of your main content area.

- There is a space to the left of "Links" that doesn't exist to the left of "Main Menu" and "Portfolio."

- I would make "Contact Us" the same colour as my other links, or at least not red.

As for your code, I did a search on minimising the syntax for empty elements whose content model is not empty, and found this in the xhtml 1.0 spec:

"C.3. Element Minimization and Empty Element Content

Given an empty instance of an element whose content model is not EMPTY (for example, an empty title or paragraph) do not use the minimized form (e.g. use <p> </p> and not <p />)."

You use the latter, but somehow still validate xhtml 1.1. Perhaps the rules for 1.1 are different, I don't know.

Hth.

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