Jump to content
  • Advertisement
Sign in to follow this  
Extrarius

[web] [WebDesign] Simple Forum Layout/'Theme'

This topic is 5173 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

I'm creating my own forum software and I need some ideas for how to lay it out. It will have a theme system, but I need a default theme that is extremely plain and simple. I want to keep it EXTREMELY simple, which means no images at all if possible and just enough CSS/javascript/etc to avoid deprecated tags without looking like complete crap. At the very least, it needs to work on all version of major browsers from the last 2 years or so, so I'm thinking absolute minimum complexity. I have no artistic design talent at all, but I put up a barebones idea at Forum Example. The green bars divide 'pages'. It doesn't look TOO bad in my opinion, but I'm sure that anybody with any design talent at all could improve upon it a billionfold. I also made Forum Example 2 based on other's suggestions and it looks much better but the color don't work for me. This version seems to have many extra line breaks 'automagically' inserted by the H? tags(somebody said H? works better than font size for search engines or something like that). Any suggestions/examples/etc would be greatly appreciated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Advertisement
It'd be really cool (and wise) if your forum layout was completely CSS. According to various creative professionals like Adobe's Mark Asher, CSS is quickly becoming the Next Big Standard for Web design. Even better than that are CSS templates.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yeah, CSS layouts are really nice, if you can get it to work on every browser.

I too would encourage you to go straight CSS, it would be quite lightweight, though, with what you're doing now you won't notice too much size difference.

I'm working on a color scheme now, but I'm automatically doing it all with CSS... heh. Habit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
In most cases, the requirement for standards-compliance subsumes the need for browsers-compliance. You have to consider your target market though. My corporate site is XHTML Transitional because my clients and prospects are people within big corporations where Internet Explorer is the standard browser; thus, we unfortunatley have to opt for browsers-compliance while remaining standards-compliant.

If Extrarius's forum software will be open source, standards-compliance is the way to go.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
CSS is actually the only way to go. As time goes by, tags of html are becoming deprecated, and later may not even be supported in future browsers (although I deem this highly unlikely), being replaced by usage of classes and id elements via CSS. CSS let's you do so many things that you would be without going straight HTML alone. Provided there are some quriks but I, myself, have figured out hacks and tricks for most problems and when you get CSS working with every browser (basically Mozilla and IE), it's a great feeling. Also, css allows portablity and easier management of the actual meat of the page, and allows you to change themes in a snap. I advise you 100% to go with CSS, you won't regret it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Actually, Charles Hwang, there are quite a few features of CSS that Internet Explorer doesn't support--properly or at all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Extarius, I hacked together a basic three-tone style here. I would do more, but I'm tired, and was working on three different things at the same time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I don't care at all about standards compliance because the point is not to make a proper website but to make a universally usable one. I'd like it to work well even in text-based browsers (and thus no images if possible, etc) if possible.

If it can be standards compliant and still look nearly the same in all browsers (and look bad in none of them) then that is fine with me.

I don't care which technology needs to be used (HTML/XHTML/CSS/etc), I just want it to Work(TM) well across all platforms.

In addition to suggestions on which technology to use, I'd also like some suggestions on the artistic aspects of the layout itself. Like I said, I lack any artistic taste so I'm not sure what could be considered 'functional but not hideous'

Katta: Thanks! That looks very nice and is a big improvement on my two attempts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Heh, standards-compliance is inherent to universal useability. Non-standards-compliant browsers like Internet Explorer create problems which force Web designers to create non-standards-compliant workarounds to non-standards-compliant browser problems which then make standards-compliance nonexistent.

If you want examples of functional layouts, the best examples are probably the bulletin board systems of GameDev.net, Bioware, vBulletin, and phpBB. I don't know of any groundbreaking and functional BBS layouts. Although, I really like Packet Storm's BBS layout. It's too bad they're currently offline until September 1, 2004.

http://www.packetstormsecurity.com/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Advertisement
×

Important Information

By using GameDev.net, you agree to our community Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.

We are the game development community.

Whether you are an indie, hobbyist, AAA developer, or just trying to learn, GameDev.net is the place for you to learn, share, and connect with the games industry. Learn more About Us or sign up!

Sign me up!