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Full Version: Missing: compact description what to download
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I just looked at the new ldraw.org site and put myself into the position of a new visitor.
I missed a compact and small page which describes how and what to download.
This still is too unclear IMHO.
The thing that adds to the confusion here is that the main menu for downloading directly jumps
to the download pages where you already can get things.
IMHO, the first entry in that menu should be a link to a page _explaining_ how and what to download,
in a very simple and compact form.
For example, the main question that I think currently remains unclear is to a new user whether
he has to download _all_ updates and apply them one after another, or just the most recent one.
And if the latter, to what he would apply it to.

The page could be very simple and compact, for example like this:

For downloading, you have these options:

Using the all-in-one-installer. This will give you all most-frequently-used applications,
plus all officially released parts. Later, you'll be applying parts updates incrementally to this.
The most recent parts update contained in it currently is 2012-XX.

Download the programs individually, plus the parts library.
For the parts library, you need do download all officially released files here (link).
This will give you all officially released parts up to and including update 2012-XX.
After that, you'll be incrementally applying parts updates to that.
I thought the large "Get Started" link on the front page would be good. Apparently not since if you're confused, then you're probably not the only one.
The problem with the existing Get Started link is twofold:

  1. It's not all actually all that big, and it's overwhelmed by its graphic
  2. It is directly underneath, and overshadowed by, an unrelated header in bold print

It would be easier to see if "Get Started: Download LDraw" were its own section, using the same font as the "What is LDraw" header.

Make the graphic bigger, too. It's cute, but really hard to see at that size.


I have thought about this problem while transferring staff from the old site and looking out where things could be improved. My proposal would be divide the homepage in four panes with two text-only quarters arranged diagonally:

"What is LDraw" and "News"

and two graphics with a bit of explanation:

"Get started" and "Parts updates".

An alternative could be some sort of jquery sideshow I used for the my redesigned personal homepage:


I to be perfectly honest I prefer the first approce.

Allen Smith Wrote:Make the graphic bigger, too. It's cute, but really hard to see at that size.

Hmm ... bigger!? If you're brave enough get this hires version (1.1 MB):


Cheers :-D

yes, this doesn't help.
the reason is that a reader reads the page from top to bottom.
so the first things that get to your eye are "DOWNLOAD", and if that's what you want to do, you click there.
then there no introduction WHAT to download can be found.
at that point of time it's too late.

The solution is probably easy:
just add a "What do download?" link at the beginning of the "download" menu,
and let it point to where the "Get Started" image at the start page points to.
I just looked at the "Get Started" page.
It currently points to Willys [external] introduction.
That's fine, but what I think is missing is a very SMALL page,
just describing the downloading OPTIONS briefly.
Such a page should be the first menu entry in the "download" menu.
So a "seeker" for parts will find it and see what options he has.
We should _not_ let that link point to the basic "What is MLCad" etc. pp. introduction.
Just a brief description what you can take.
I've now set up Downloads->Get Started to point to Help->Get Started (same place the image goes)

I think it's an improvement but probably not ideal so more ideas are welcome.