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Another Skin for GameDev.net

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khawk

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Indeed. Another skin.

What you're really witnessing is an iteration toward a better, future version of GameDev.net. We've made improvements to the front-end, and next is a back-end upgrade that sets us up with better infrastructure to do some of the things we've been wanting to do for a long time.

This UI upgrade isn't perfect - plenty of areas that need tweaks over the next few weeks - but it's a solid incremental step toward making it easier to connect with others, share content, and learn.

What's changed?


  • Content editors (like the one I'm typing in now) better match the content they produce. NOTE: If you continue to see mismatches between content in the editor vs what's displayed on the site, then you might need to clear your browser cache. Our site tells your browser to expire javascript and other files after 30 days - so if you don't clear the cache then it might be a while before you notice the change.
  • More consistent colors, fonts, and styles across the site.
  • Tags are now predefined. We will review our current predefines to better match our future taxonomy, but users can no longer add their own tags. We did this because we started seeing 20 variations of "android" tags, among others.
  • Renamed Developer Journals to Blogs (or Developer Blogs). Developer Journals is a name we've used since we started in 1999. It's time to use the common word "blog".
  • Mobile and responsiveness - UI designed to better accomodate mobile (needs work in a few areas)
  • Header

    • New profile menu (top right) - condensed multiple functions into one menu
    • Simplified search
    • Header menu makeover - Amazing to us how few people knew we had a thriving game development blog community. We decided to let them stand on their own. Also brought direct menus for our GDNet Store and GameDev Marketplace, our asset exchange for developers.

    • Front page redesign - major layout change to highlight important content and improve mobile/responsiveness.
    • News - when we started GameDev.net and for many years we curated the news for the games industry and community. At one point we stopped, messed around with some automated news, and eventually dropped it altogether - this was a mistake. While you can get plenty of news from all your current favorite sources, we believe we can bring a special curation of the latest events, releases, and other happenings in the games industry and hope you'll start to include us as a reputable and interesting news source as we ramp up our news efforts.
    • Layout/style changes throughout. Article categories, article pages, Blogs and blog listings, Job listings, forums, and more have been updated to new styles. Some of them will continue to be tweaked in the coming weeks.


      More to come in the next few months. Let us know what you like, dislike, or would like to see in the future from our community platform.

      Also, the Game Developers Conference is coming up. If you haven't seen our previous post, we're soliciting special requests for GDC coverage.

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Looks great. Nice work. My only minor whinge is that I can't seem to find Latest Content link on my mobile. That's my preferred way to browse the forums. It is there on Desktop but can't see it anywhere on my phone.

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  • Renamed Developer Journals to Blogs (or Developer Blogs). Developer Journals is a name we've used since we started in 1999. It's time to use the common word "blog".

 

I liked the title Developer Journals - Felt some how better than a blog.

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Also the "Edit" button here does not seem to work.

The content feels super crushed inward with tons of wasted space and a much heavier ad designed layout. I understand Ads are required to maintain the site, but the new design along with more than a few problems to things actually working has placed this new skin in a rough hole to climb out of. :(

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Would also like it if there was a way to see a longer "Latest Forum Topics" list like before.

- Side note my comments have lost their text editing controls

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I really like the changes. It is looking much cleaner and professional so far. My only disagreement is minor: the change from developer's journal to developer's blog does not gain anything while loosing a 18 years old characteristic of the site, so there is just not gains and at least a cost. Besides that, pretty exciting to see the site evolve!

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Where is the "hottest" forum topics. is there a way to make the "latest forum topics" thing longer (a mean like 10 times longer)?

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Where is the "hottest" forum topics. is there a way to make the "latest forum topics" thing longer (a mean like 10 times longer)?

 

Hottest forum topics didn't actually work right. They weren't "hottest". We'll look at bringing back a working implementation.

In the meantime I'd recommend "Latest Content" link in the top right.

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a much heavier ad designed layout

Ad placement is exactly the same as before for most pages. The side bar is more consistent from page to page, which may give the impression that the layout is designed more for ads.

The only big change is with the leaderboard on article pages, but the ad is used to break up the article header from the article content, much like the blog pages.

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Looks great. Nice work. My only minor whinge is that I can't seem to find Latest Content link on my mobile. That's my preferred way to browse the forums. It is there on Desktop but can't see it anywhere on my phone.

 

Mentioned this above, but in case you don't see it - added it back for mobile.

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[quote name="Khawk" timestamp="1487541857"][quote name="Aardvajk" timestamp="1487504158"] Looks great. Nice work. My only minor whinge is that I can't seem to find Latest Content link on my mobile. That's my preferred way to browse the forums. It is there on Desktop but can't see it anywhere on my phone. [/quote]   Mentioned this above, but in case you don't see it - added it back for mobile.[/quote] Excellent. Got it. How about "My Content"? Used to be when I clicked my avatar icon. Not sure about Desktop but can't see it on phone and have to go to Profile, Posts now. Thanks.

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Looks great. Nice work. My only minor whinge is that I can't seem to find Latest Content link on my mobile. That's my preferred way to browse the forums. It is there on Desktop but can't see it anywhere on my phone.

 
Mentioned this above, but in case you don't see it - added it back for mobile.

 


Excellent. Got it. How about "My Content"? Used to be when I clicked my avatar icon. Not sure about Desktop but can't see it on phone and have to go to Profile, Posts now. Thanks.

 

I don't remember a "My Content", but I'll think about that. The "Followed Content" link does similar since you automatically follow anything you post along with anything you manually follow.

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Followed Content isn't doing that for me. Only lists two very old topics that perhaps I manually set to follow.

As of this moment, without going into My Profile, Posts, I don't seem to have any way to find a list of topics I've replied in.

My Content used to be in the menu when I clicked on my avatar in the top bar, and provided a list of all the forum topics I had started or had posted in.

It isn't a massive deal. The only thing is that My Content just gave a list of topics, where as Profile -> Posts lists the actual posts I made, so is a lot more scrolling to see all of the topics.

[EDIT] It also seems in Profile -> Posts that there is nothing to tell me whether there have been any additional replies in the topic since I posted, which was functional in My Content.

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My comment boxes are still missing the text options. Is this something wrong with my setup or with the new skin?

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Additionally, I just noticed that there is 2 

Reputation 

tabs while viewing profile.

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...
 

Comment boxes and text options.. can you clarify?

Both reputation tabs have always been there. One shows the content that you either gave or received reputation, the other shows reputation history. No changes to the profile page, actually.

Not saying I like or that there should be two tabs either.. but it's unrelated to the theme change.

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The only thing is that My Content just gave a list of topics

I think you might be looking for "activity"? 

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I think that the new feed on the front pages should not dwarf the user content on the site. I will be building my own style sheet for this site as it is currently way less functional compared to the pervious build. Allowing for the old skin as an option would be great.

 

Additionally, Please return the journals it is something that had me posting here verse other places first and more often. The name makes it standout in a time that too many things are being streamlined. 

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I liked the name Developer Journals too, but they've actually been getting quite a bit more traffic and a slight increase in comments since being renamed to the more common blogs and made a top-level menu item, along with being better featured on the new homepage. We were getting some feedback that some people didn't realise we had them because they didn't realise what ' developer journals' we're and didn't click through, and a few people mentioned not wanting to post certain things here because they felt the title suggested a certain type of content. It's a work in progress, but it's unlikely we'll revert that particular change, as overall the impact seems to have been very positive. What do you feel makes the new homepage less functional than the old one. The only thing I can really see missing is the 'interesting topics', which didn't actually work correctly and we're planning to bring back somehow when we can get a proper implementation.

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made a top-level menu item

What part of the traffic is due mainly to this, ease of access? 

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We're not sure of that, it's likely a mix of reasons with ease of access being a major one, but as also mentioned we have had feedback that the "blogs" name feels more inclusive than "developer journals". Of course if everyone was screaming for the old name back it would be considered, but based on the feedback a very small number of people prefer the older name, a larger number of people prefer or have expressed support for the new name, and the overwhelming majority are indifferent or do not feel strongly enough to leave feedback.

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