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Masterpiece of Ugliness

OK, I was cool with the new drop downs, sleek, modern, but not well loved by the .01%. The "new" Map to show you where you are inside of CH, is meaningless, as you can only be one level down, no matter where you go.
But it IS ugly. The colors clash like nails on a chalkboard, the font is too small to match the level of importance it is supposed to have, and it is clunky. I move it out of sight to read the post.

But today you dove straight into the ugly pool. What you did with the "related discussions" which looked VERY good before, is now so neon ugly, it needs eye bleach. Why move the "New Thread" to that location?

What is with the ghosting of the text? It should be solid. And All of CH is in a san serif style, and suddenly you now throw in, not just italics, but a font with serifs??

This is FAIL.

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    1. I don't understand why so many different fonts and sizes are being used. The site looks less professional, more amateur, with the many fonts, sizes, colors. The blue is an especially bad choice for a font color anywhere anytime, but on a grey background?

      1. I don't see any ghosting, but I do agree on the font color choices.

        You guys should consolidate the "blues" to the darker color that User Names and other links use.

        1 Reply
        1. re: drewskiSF

          The density of the colors use, make them appear as almost a ghost, not the solid black of all other text.
          Chow has been using the red/grey/black color scale for years now, with only the usernames in blue. Even the standard avatar is red. Hypelinks are the same blue across all sites.

          To suddenly come up with this clashing weird blue, is bizarre. The bookmark star looks like it was lifted from Yahoo and Facebook emoticons, not professional at all. And the heading sizes are all wrong.

          The old (as in last week's version) fit the style and taste of the site. If Chow is suddenly swinging into My Little Pony colors, it's time to start using other sites that at least still have some decorum.

        2. I really don't get what all the fuss is about but the one thing that I loved to see a one single fairly large button at the top that takes you to the most recent posts on CH. After the last modification it took me a few minutes to figure it out. I'd also like to see a "My Chow" button beside it. Those two represent the most often used by myself and I feel they should be more prominent.


          1. Another issue with the new Related Discussions design is that it seems to be limited to just three posts, presumably the numbers were added to indicate some kind of ranking relevance. However, it also seems that every thread now will have three related discussions listed, even when the three threads listed are not related in any way. For example I just looked at at thread re: KFC pot pies on the Chains board, and the three "Related Discussions" were all Trader Joe's topics. How are those related to KFC?

            One more comment on the numbers, if the numbers are to indicate a ranking or degree of relevance, just displaying the topics in the order in which they are listed would indicate rank, rendering the numbers unnecessary. But if every thread will always have three "related" threads displayed whether related or not, the entire section is rendered useless.

            1. That's pretty funny, I was completely ignoring that 1,2,3 box that you showed thinking it was some car insurance banner ad or something.

              Yeah....that could definitely use some rethinking.

              1. Oh Vey!

                OK, nice the color changed for the 1-2-3 box, but why not for the "Site Map" thing?

                Also, "Trending Now" for the latest threads lost some functionality. It used to show the "New" flag so you could see if it was worth clicking on. Now it's the "almost standard" font color and Serifed, Bold, Italic?!?

                I didn't realize it was the most recent posts until squinting at the fine print.

                Please stick with a consistent font and format. It'll be much easier on the eyes.


                24 Replies
                1. re: drewskiSF

                  Hi drewskiSF,

                  The "Trending Now" still has the same functionality. If you're logged in, the titles of new threads will appear bold, while those you've already read will not.

                  Dave MP

                  1. re: Dave MP

                    This sadly doesn't address the issues of the nasty colors, the mis-sized use of fonts, and the breaking of the Golden rule of mixing serif fonts with sans serif, which is what the whole rest of the site used.

                    I sure hope that ALL caps headers in A Gothic Font in green is not next in what in these unneeded changes.

                    1. re: Quine

                      Also Trending Now is sort of a misnomer. The threads in that section are there because they have a new post. Trending suggests that topics will have the most posts, most viewed subjects, or some other data volume besides n=1.

                      1. re: Melanie Wong

                        Re: Trending Now
                        I just discovered that there is a line that says:

                        Front-burner talk about food and restaurants

                        under the list of "trending."
                        The colour is so... weak... that I hadn't noticed it until I was reading this and was prompted to investigate closer.

                        1. re: Kris in Beijing

                          maybe a browser thing?

                          for me (Win 7 / Chrome) it's a red banner with white letters and clearly readable.

                          Melanie also commented that she sees it as white on grey a couple posts down. i know she's on a Mac. not sure on browser.

                          1. re: drewskiSF

                            HP Laptop running Vista. Chrome.

                            Here's my screenshot.

                            1. re: drewskiSF

                              and where I've highlighted the area where the line is:

                              1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                i think we should blame this on Microsoft!

                                1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                  Two words Ad Block, free in the Google play.

                                  1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                    Hi Kris,

                                    It appears to me that you must have some older artwork cached on your computer. Can you please try deleting your browser cache and see if this clears up. I've posted a sticky at the top of the Site Talk forum if you need instructions for cache busting. Let us know.

                                    - Shane

                                    1. re: meshane

                                      MS-- can you clarify why it appears that I have older artwork cached??

                                      1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                        Sure. I'm not always great at explaining technical issues but I'll try my best. The red banner is saved in the same file as some other images on the page such as the "new thread" button. Your computer probably saved a copy of that image when you visited the site recently before the red banner was added. Now when you load the page, instead of getting a new copy of the image that includes the red banner, it's using an old copy in your cache that doesn't have the red banner. If you clear your cache, it will fetch a fresh copy of the image from our servers and you should see the red banner. I believe that will clear up the problem you're seeing.

                                        - Shane

                                        1. re: meshane

                                          I think you wanted to explain to

                                          as I'm not having a red-banner issue but the

                                          Front-burner talk about food and restaurants

                                          "too light to read" problem.

                                          1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                            Hey Kris,

                                            The reason that it's too light to read is that the red banner is not showing up underneath the white text for you. It should be, as seen in the screen shot posted by drewskiSF. The red banner that is supposed to be there, making the text readable on red, should show up if you clear your cache.

                                            - Shane

                                      2. re: meshane

                                        Oddly enough, that silly red banner has always been present since you changed it. ANd yet Today, it is GONE. After much hold my laptop to my face , I do now see what Kris described. The white on the also white background. So seeing as how, my cache should be holding the "old and New" (since it was there yesterday) The cause must be something else.

                                        Did we need this change, NO, is it done to help anyone, NO, is it and eye sore, YES. Does it work, NO does it add to functionality, NO does it add to user experience, NO.

                                        What criteria did you TPTB use, to this this was needed? And needed in strange fonts that do not reflect, the "look" of Chow?

                                        1. re: Quine

                                          The banner is still there for me.

                                          I don't mind the banner, but the Font Mixing and the Clashing Neon Blue for the "Map" is definitely rough.

                                          1. re: drewskiSF

                                            Back again for me, *without* any changes on my part, so clearly a Chow issue.

                                            True and that twinkle twinkle glowing star for a bookmark, straight out of child's story book.

                                    2. re: drewskiSF

                                      And this morning, the red ribbon banner with white letters and yellow highlighting over the number of new posts as in your screen shot has appeared in my view on Mac OS/Firefox.

                              2. re: Dave MP

                                Note that clicking on a bold title with new posts does not function in the same way as selecting the same thread from the message board. Under Trending Now, clicking on a bold or unbolded title takes you to the top of that thread's page. On the message board, clicking on a thread marked with new posts will start off further down the page, skipping some of the collapsed already read post territory and thus reducing scrolling.

                                Would it be possible for the Trending Now functionality to behave the same? Otherwise, it's not really a navigation timesaver.

                                1. re: Melanie Wong

                                  I don't see the distinction you're making, Melanie. Whether I open a thread I've read before from the "Trending Now" menu or from a message board, it opens on the same view, showing the starting post and as much what follows as fits in the window (depending on the screen size I'm using). I've never opened a previously read thread with new posts from a board and not had it open to the top of the page, whether on desktop, laptop, or iPod touch, PC or Mac, on any browser.

                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                    I wasn't specific enough.

                                    When I click on the number of replies, it will take me to the new post (or close to it), skipping the collapsed ones. And now I've looked more at the Trending Now section and see that next to the time stamp under the title of the thread there is a number that functions in the same way. However, it is too small of font to click on reliably without having to concentrate in fine motion so hard and precisely that my hand is bound to break from repetitive stress.

                                    Edited to add: and also noticed that there is white type on gray background under the group of thread titles that completely washes out unless I tilt my macbook air screen to maximum angle backwards. And of course I would never use my screen in that position, so the message is lost on me.

                                    1. re: Melanie Wong

                                      Thanks for explaining. It never occurred to me to click on the number, so I hadn't tried and wasn't aware of that generating a different response.

                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                        It saves a lot of time getting to the right place in long threads. The absence of this feature in mobile view continues to be one of my peeves, and the reason that I avoid threads with more than ~20 posts when reading on my iPhone.

                                        As noted above, in full site view, Trending Now has yellow highlighting over the number of replies, making it easier to position and click.

                                      2. re: Melanie Wong

                                        odd. that text under the group of threads is white on red background for me.

                              3. Fwiw, Sticky Topics pinned at the top of the message board indices do not show up in Trending Now when there's a new post.