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HTML Help me improve the quality of my battle system pages

Discussion in 'Technical Projects' started by poccil, Apr 3, 2012.

  1. poccil

    poccil
    is a Researcher Alumnus

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2007
    Messages:
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    Hello, I'm the owner of The Ultimate Pokemon Center. On my site I maintain the following pages on the battle system for all generations of Pokemon, where I try to describe the battle system as accurately and completely as possible:

    Generation 1: Moves, Attack Notes.

    Generation 2: Moves, Attack Notes, Held Items, Timing Notes.

    Generation 3: Moves, Attack Notes, Held Items, Abilities, Timing Notes.

    Generation 4: Moves, Attack Notes, Held Items, Abilities, Timing Notes.

    Generation 5: Moves, Attack Notes, Held Items, Abilities, Timing Notes.

    All Generations: Glossary.

    I'm looking for ways to make those pages more user-friendly, so users are better able to find the information they're looking for. For example, I recently moved the damage formula pages for each generation to their respective timing pages. In addition, there is a table of contents to each timing page and explanation page. As it is, though, the pages can include long "blocks" of text, which many people would not appreciate having to read. Would adding frequently asked questions, summaries, or other quick-access techniques be helpful here?

    Another concern is that to many users, some parts of the text may be vague or ambiguous or use poor word choice, since I use some terminology hardly found anywhere else. Can you suggest places where the explanations are unclear, particularly in the timing and attack notes pages?

    Suggestions about the correctness of the information on my battle system pages are also accepted, but are not a concern for me at the moment.
  2. Boltaway

    Boltaway

    Joined:
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    I don't usually post on here, but dude, you need some serious help with this website.
    First of all, I did not see any css in your source code? Did you use some random program to create this? I mean, do you understand how to code? Your lack of contrast makes text unreadable, your text shadows are distracting, the color scheme is bland, the menus need to be lined up better, your link hovers are bad, you need images to really get people's attention. The information isn't bad, but you need visuals to make it clearer to people.

    Second of all, please get rid of that donation screen. The flashing lights are obnoxious. It's okay to place some sort of donation button, but when you have that kind of thing, it does the exact opposite: people won't want to donate. Place the like button in a conspicuous place. The fact you have social media is good and really useful.

    Although I never post, I do go on here frequently. You can PM and hopefully, I can help you. I have some experience with web design (and to a lesser extent, development).
  3. poccil

    poccil
    is a Researcher Alumnus

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Boltaway:

    I am addressing your points on the site itself. I do know how to code, in PHP as well as HTML and Javascript. Some of the CSS is generated by a script I wrote myself and consists of the color scheme which changes according to the time of day and the day of the month.

    However, I am looking more for suggestions on the content itself, not the website where the content is hosted.

    Besides using visuals (which I would appreciate more specific suggestions on), where else is the text of the pages vague, ambiguous, or using poor word choice? Be specific.
  4. Boltaway

    Boltaway

    Joined:
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    That's the problem. Text is unclear because it's so difficult to read. Content and presentation are different things, I get that. But it becomes problematic when poor presentation interferes with content.

    By visuals I mean adding pictures of the pokemon of particular gym leaders (so that readers know them for sure if they can't recognize names), pictures of locations, things like that.
    Last time I saw, your content was fine, but I'm quite sure I recall seeing a couple grammar errors here and there...I can't point out anything specifically since there's a server error on your website right now.
  5. poccil

    poccil
    is a Researcher Alumnus

    Joined:
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    Sorry, by "unclear" I meant only "vague, ambiguous, or using poor word choice", and sometimes "ungrammatical". What I had in mind was thinking of ways to simplify and correct the text in these aspects. This is much like having others proofread the text and find errors in the text.

    Images of Gym Leaders, locations, and the like may be relevant for the rest of the site, but not for these battle system pages, which are my only concern for now. I will deal more with presentation after the content, the actual text, is improved.
  6. Zarel

    Zarel Not a Yuyuko fan
    is a member of the Site Staffis a Battle Server Administratoris a Programmeris a Pokemon Researcheris an Administrator
    Creator of PS

    Joined:
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    We at Pokemon Showdown do appreciate UPC - we tend to use it over any other reference site because unlike others, it's rarely outright wrong. (Our in-house testers still find mistakes every once in a while - you might want to talk to Marty about those.)

    That said, the donation stuff is pretty horrible. I get that you have student loans, but I think this is entirely the wrong way to do it. At first, I thought it was going to be a week-long thing, but it's been half a year now. Are you really earning enough money from it to justify putting the rest of us through this pain? There could be people who might otherwise donate won't just because of how annoying the pop-up is.

    It's 2012, we all have student loans; we're sympathetic to your plight because we experience it too, but we're not sympathetic to the way you've chosen to deal with it because we haven't done the same thing.
  7. poccil

    poccil
    is a Researcher Alumnus

    Joined:
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    Due to your concern, I have taken steps to make the need for donations less conspicuous, including not using "popup" boxes anymore. (You may need to clear the browser cache to see the changes.)

    Again, though, this is not about the Web site itself, this is about improving the style (that is, word choice, grammar, and lack of vagueness); the organization (that is, how sections and paragraphs are organized); and to a lesser degree, the correctness, of the battle system pages on my site.

    By the way, who is "Marty"? Maybe this is someone who can discuss with me which information in my battle system pages is wrong.
  8. Jukain

    Jukain .leaf
    is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Media Contributor
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    Content-wise, I'm going to say ability>Ability, was all I saw;
  9. Zarel

    Zarel Not a Yuyuko fan
    is a member of the Site Staffis a Battle Server Administratoris a Programmeris a Pokemon Researcheris an Administrator
    Creator of PS

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    Well, I was going to point out that the annoyingness of your donation stuff makes all of us less inclined to help out on those other parts.

    But then you went and fixed it, so, I guess... thanks.

    I think your site has pretty bad search engine optimization. Like, when I search "imposter", the Imposter ability is nowhere to be found. When I search a move, it's usually pretty far down the list after a bunch of "Can <X> learn <move>" pages, which should really be removed entirely or at least blocked with robots.txt.

    Layout... you could use more columns. Modern browsers are wide enough that making text span the whole page is often a bad thing. And images. Images are relatively small, you can put them to the left of text and move text over. Also, formatting. Ditch the weird font.

    Marty is PS's lead tester. You can find him on #showdown on SynIRC.

    UPC is much more accurate than Veekun and Bulbapedia, to say nothing about the other sites we reference on occasion. We were pretty surprised when we found mistakes in it, but I guess nothing's perfect.

    I'd really tell you about the errors if I remember, but I suck at remembering that sort of thing. Talk to Marty on IRC; he probably does.
  10. RainbowCrash

    RainbowCrash

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    this may be nit picking but put the description under the moves

    it just doesn't seem good.Another this how about when you click a move it displays additional info or when you hover over it

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