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  1. #1
    stormpetrel's Avatar
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    Website feedback needed

    Hi guys

    I have just launched my website (www.stormpetrel.com) however not being an experienced web designer I'm not confident it will work properly on all the OS/browsers combinations.
    I used Flex (flash technology) to program the website and the guestbook is in PHP.
    The website looked fine with Firefox but when I tried it with IE and opera everything was upside down (PC/windows).
    Those problems have been fixed and the rendering is consistent now however I would like to have some feedback from you (especially from apple and linux users).

    The point to check are:
    * are the sound records played properly
    * is it possible to access the guestbook page and are the pages displayed consistently across the website?

    Any general critics are welcome too!

    By the way, can ipad users visit flash website? I read few months ago that flash was no more supported by Apple but I'm not sure if it was concerning the ipad, the iphone or both?

    Cheers, Dom

  2. #2

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    Just a blank page on my Linux machine (Iceweasel browser, Debian testing distribution).

  3. #3
    stormpetrel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 131802 View Post
    Just a blank page on my Linux machine (Iceweasel browser, Debian testing distribution).
    Thank you! I was uploading some main files during the last 2 hours. Sorry, you might have try to visit the webpage at the wrong moment.

  4. #4
    Worker 11811's Avatar
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    Get rid of the Flash. There is nothing that Flash can do which HTML-5 and/or Javascript can't do as well or better.

    No, iOS devices can't use Flash and probably never will. Regardless of what you think about Flash, requiring it in order to access your website cuts out that part of your potential market.

    Even if you argue in favor of Flash, it has a high overhead for your users. It slows them down, uses more resources and, even though it provides a "flashier" look, the overall user experience is worse, especially for mobile devices. (Apple's compatibility with Flash notwithstanding.)

    If you want to track your visitors' progress through your site, which pictures or pages they view and how they access different parts of your site, Flash will make that more difficult. It can also be a dead end for search engines so, if you want to get your website ranked in Google's or Yahoo's search results, Flash will make it harder.

    Flash is also a good way for users to get a virus. There are many XSS (cross-site scripting) attacks which make Flash vulnerable. In order for Adobe to patch all these holes, they would have to make all previous versions of Flash player/plugin unusable. Consequently, I and many other users set up their browsers to automatically block Flash content, rendering your site invisible. I believe this is why 131802's computer came up with a blank page. His Linux machine either blocks or does not recognize Flash.

    I can get by when they visit a website that has some Flash content scattered throughout but, I really don't recommend building a whole website out of Flash.
    Randy S.

    In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni.

    -----

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/randystankey/

  5. #5
    StoneNYC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Worker 11811 View Post
    Get rid of the Flash. There is nothing that Flash can do which HTML-5 and/or Javascript can't do as well or better.

    No, iOS devices can't use Flash and probably never will. Regardless of what you think about Flash, requiring it in order to access your website cuts out that part of your potential market.

    Even if you argue in favor of Flash, it has a high overhead for your users. It slows them down, uses more resources and, even though it provides a "flashier" look, the overall user experience is worse, especially for mobile devices. (Apple's compatibility with Flash notwithstanding.)

    If you want to track your visitors' progress through your site, which pictures or pages they view and how they access different parts of your site, Flash will make that more difficult. It can also be a dead end for search engines so, if you want to get your website ranked in Google's or Yahoo's search results, Flash will make it harder.

    Flash is also a good way for users to get a virus. There are many XSS (cross-site scripting) attacks which make Flash vulnerable. In order for Adobe to patch all these holes, they would have to make all previous versions of Flash player/plugin unusable. Consequently, I and many other users set up their browsers to automatically block Flash content, rendering your site invisible. I believe this is why 131802's computer came up with a blank page. His Linux machine either blocks or does not recognize Flash.

    I can get by when they visit a website that has some Flash content scattered throughout but, I really don't recommend building a whole website out of Flash.

    I've tried so hard to get away from flash, Adobe won't let me, I use Lightroom for my website image galleries and they told me LR4 would come with HTML 5 as an image gallery option but it didn't... it's so frustrating I don't understand why they are so dumb about it... it's such a terrible protocol/software/whatever ... ugh... sorry random bitch, done now...

    your site looks nice though, I like the image galleries as long as they run...

  6. #6
    stormpetrel's Avatar
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    Thank you for feedback! I made the website with flex for two main reasons: efficiency (it took me 5 days to make the website) and the flex capabilities to play audio content (to play my audio records which is an important feature of my website). I used also flex because it is far to be a dead language as it is now an open source framework supported by Apache (Flex Apache).
    I might add an HTML5 gallery when lightroom will be able to export HTML5 or redo the whole site in HTML5 once a great and simple HTML5 IDE with proper libraries will be on the market... or I could start learning PHP or java. But frankly, I prefer to shoot pictures during my free time than learning hardcore HTML5/java/PHP programming. Remember, I'm not a web developer. Regarding the security, I agree with you flash is not a great option but neither php, perl, asp or anything else (especially when poorly implemented). Anyway, my flash module is not linked to any database and there is no user input, this reduce the option of injecting code.... we will see how it goes before rewriting all the website in another script language.

  7. #7

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    I like the images very much, I'd love to see them bigger.

  8. #8

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    I tried it on chrome and the rendering of the images looked great. I will have to try it on my mac and see that it still works. I have to agree with worker that you should consider moving from flash to HTML 5. For example, I iPads don't support flash and a lot of folks like viewing images on their iPad. If you're programming oriented you could do the slideshow with jQuery and html (I just watched a tutorial that demonstrated that.) jQuery/html is browser neutral although HTML 5 is considered the new/modern way to doing these things.

    After I wrote this I saw why you used flex...again, the only issue there is it might not work on apple devices.

    Oh, while I only took a quick look, your images that I did get to see are lovely!

  9. #9
    Derek Lofgreen's Avatar
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    The first thing I notices was you had a "splash page" as your first page. Splash pages were cool 10 years ago and used to hide the fact data is loading in the background. I would ditch the splash page. Flash is no longer the king of animated websites. Apple mobile devieces will not see any flash content. Add to that, this is the year for adaptive design. Meaning, desingers are changing web pages so they will render for mobile devices first then for what ever screen size is viewing them. If you want to use html5 and css3 with adobe tools go here and register for a free Edge Tools account. For an example of adaptive design see wiki.

    I love your photographs, they are wonderfull. Great work and good luck with the new site.

    D.
    My Photography Site www.lofgreenimages.com and My Blog

  10. #10
    Worker 11811's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StoneNYC View Post
    ... it's so frustrating I don't understand why they are so dumb about it... it's such a terrible protocol/software/whatever ... ugh... sorry random bitch, done now...
    Adobe spent a lot of time developing and marketing Flash. Like many companies, they give away the browser plugin and the viewer for free in order to drive website developers into buying their authoring software. Flash is a cash cow for them. Dumping or totally revamping Flash would turn all their work and expense into a sunk cost. Then they run into the problem of incompatibility between newer and legacy products. Making significant changes means that websites which already use Flash would stop working unless they update to the newer version. All the people who have Flash plugins installed on their computers would have to update in order to see the new content, plus they risk losing the ability to see websites created with the older version. Adobe really has gotten themselves over a barrel on this one. Their only option is to use marketing spin to keep pushing the product, no matter how broken it is, at least until they can get a new product to market which will replace it.

    BTW: I like the pictures. Especially the one in front of the giant clock face in the Musee d'Orsay.
    Sorry I got wrapped up in a minor detail. Me too... rant over.
    Randy S.

    In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni.

    -----

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/randystankey/

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