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2011 Redesign In The Works

Posted in: Forum Home >> Bugs Reports, Suggestions, and Feedback >> 2011 Redesign In The Works

Displaying 21 posts
Displaying 21 posts
Aug 16, 2011 8:33 AM ET #1 (permalink)

Hello loyal readers. I have some ideas for a minor redesign in the coming months and wanted to get your feedback on a few items. I don't intend for the changes to be drastic, but there are a few more drastic things I'm considering. The main goal is the rearrange the header a little and make the overall design more flexible for different devices (mobile).

One thing I'd like feedback on is how easily you find the text to read. It's been blue-ish text on a black background since the beginning, although I've lightened it several times over the years to be more readable. Would any of you prefer the standard dark text on a light background for easier reading? It's been on my mind for a while if I can make it fit the overall design.

Also, if you use Metalunderground.com on any devices like your phone, tablets, etc, I'd appreciate it if you would let me know which one and grade the experience. Thanks in advance for your feedback.

Aug 16, 2011 12:01 PM ET #2 (permalink)

I've got no complaints about the layout. Everything seems well organized and easy to navigate.
The light blue text on black background works well for me. I like the black background better than a white one purely for aesthetic reasons. I don't know if that combo can be really improved upon. Red text might be more 'metal', but by the time you lighten it up to contrast against black, it might be almost pink - 'not metal' :)

As far as mobile devices, I've surfed MU on my wife's Blackberry Torch with no issues. It just like using the PC - only on a smaller screen. I've also looked at it with my Pantech Matrix, but it's not a smart phone. So navigation is a little slower with the Pantech as only so much information is shown per page. But MU is still easier than most other websites for my non-smart phone.
Blackberry Torch grade: A
Pantech grade: B+ (more due to the phone than the site.)

My only recommendation is to not kill it with extra crap like Myspace did to theirs. Of course, I don't think you plan on turning this into a social networking site. Between the news coverage and these forums, it's perfect. No complaints!

(This post was last edited on August 16, 2011 at 12:04 PM ET.)

Aug 16, 2011 6:40 PM ET #3 (permalink)

I've got that thing where I've been staring at MU for so long I can't think of it another way haha.

Aug 16, 2011 7:44 PM ET #4 (permalink)
R10's avatar


Actually site looks great as is on my only source of internet; HTC android. Blue/black background looos and reads perfect. Alot better than when i was browsing with the Blackberry Pearl.

Aug 16, 2011 11:02 PM ET #5 (permalink)
ZMA's avatar


Yea DB I've been coming here soo long I'm used to how everything is. Posts are easy to read and well sized. But hey it's your site dude. Do what you think is best.
Although I do like the dark tone this site has. Aesthetically pleasing.

Aug 17, 2011 4:38 AM ET #6 (permalink)

I would take it as a personal affront if the colour scheme were changed. In all seriousness, I think the blue on black works perfectly for this site, and is not in the least bit difficult to read. I have a Samsung Omnia 7 (Windows phone) and have encountered no problems with the site layout whatsoever. In fact, MU is probably one of the best and easiest sites in terms of viewing that I use on my phone.

...I still think implementing a 'horns up' button akin to the facebook 'like' would be awesome, tho.

Aug 17, 2011 9:52 AM ET #7 (permalink)

Thanks for the feedback, guys. I'm glad you like the color scheme. I like it as well, but have honestly wondered in the back of my mind if it's not making things difficult for some people. If I do change anything color-wise, I'll be sure to have a "classic" option then as well :-)

The other changes aimed at mobile devices should impact anyone negatively and only make things a little better. I have viewed the site on my ipod and kindle and know it could be a little better.

Aug 17, 2011 6:35 PM ET #8 (permalink)
ZMA's avatar


The classic butten sounds like a great idea DB. Definitely do that if you change stuff up. Also I really liked psythe's idea about a horns up butten.

Aug 17, 2011 7:15 PM ET #9 (permalink)

^if there were a horns up \m/ button, psythe's comment about implementing a horns up \m/ button would get a horns up \m/.

I see nothing wrong with the layout of the site, but if you want to change it, I cant see too much going wrong, or that we wont get used to. Like they always say "If it aint broke, charge that fucker as much money as possible". I'm not sure if that applies, but it felt right.

Aug 18, 2011 2:22 PM ET #10 (permalink)
ZMA's avatar



Aug 22, 2011 10:17 PM ET #11 (permalink)

the site works good on my BB Bold when i need a fix and what Psythe said. I ve seen those little yellow dudes that headbang and throw the horns . thought that was kinda cool

Aug 22, 2011 11:42 PM ET #12 (permalink)

Keep everything the same except one thing:

Turn the whole site 90 degrees clockwise.

The only thing missing is the \m/ button

(This post was last edited on August 22, 2011 at 11:43 PM ET.)

Aug 23, 2011 9:42 PM ET #13 (permalink)

Just thought of two possible improvements.
1. What about a thin fixed header at the top with the primary navigation links embedded?
2. What about putting the news calendar on the home page.

I'm not sure how either affects the viewing on phones, but its just a thought.

What does everyone else think? Give a horns up if you agree... (Oh wait, DB hasn't done that yet.)

Jan 15, 2012 2:25 PM ET #14 (permalink)

I think that on the home page it would be great if there was a choice of languages. Put a few flags up there for Spanish, Russian, German, Norwegian, etc....wherever all the main traffic comes from. While translator programs are far from perfect, at least it might give a non-English speaker the gist of what's going on.

Jan 16, 2012 10:08 PM ET #15 (permalink)

I considered this some time back. I'd seen a few widgets that looked decent. I'll have to look around again. But the whole flag=language thing isn't really a good model.

Jan 16, 2012 10:10 PM ET #16 (permalink)

And sorry, DJ - I must have missed your post here originally. Both are things I'd like to do at some point and have on my list. Thanks.

Jan 17, 2012 10:30 AM ET #17 (permalink)

No worries and your welcome. ;)

Being a car nut also, I've been recently interacting on GMauthority.com.

Their article posts and forum posts have an autosave feature along with an attachment option. You probably don't want the hassle of all that comes with the attachment crap, but the autosave is a cool feature for douchebags like me who leave long ass posts for people to skip over. The forums also include the smiley options, but that's kinda cheesy, unless you can offer 'metal' smileys.

Feb 16, 2012 10:42 AM ET #18 (permalink)

Hey DB, I thought of another possible upgrade.

How difficult would it be to have a section/page listing the touring schedules all in one place.
What I'm thinking about is to create a database of bands currently on tour.
It could be searchable by country, state, city, and/or band.
I don't know how much of a headache that would be to program and maintain, but it seems you have a good start with the album release calendar on the right column of the main page. You also have articles searchable by band and a keyword search here in the forums.

Would a concert calendar page be too difficult to keep up with? (serious question - not rhetorical)

Feb 20, 2012 1:02 AM ET #19 (permalink)

^I actually like the concert calendar idea, but it sounds like an entire fuckbum of work to set up and maintain haha

Feb 20, 2012 8:44 PM ET #20 (permalink)

Yeah, this comes up a lot, but it really isn't easy to do. The formatting of the dates we get are so scattered, that it would be really hard to parse that and put each listing into a separate event and calendar format. I keep revisiting it in my mind, but there's just no easy way to go about it.

And yeah, tour dates change all the time and it's near impossible for us to keep up with them all. There are a few services out there that focus on aggregating dates like bandsintown (we use their script in the sidebar), so I might be able to leverage something like that. the problem with those is that they show all sorts of music - not just metal.

Jan 16, 2013 1:50 PM ET #21 (permalink)

In a different forum thread, I just posted a link to a guest column on another metal site. That got me thinking...

DB, would you have any interest in trying to start a 'guest column' here on this site?
I'm not sure who you would/could get or if there is any reader interest here.
Maybe some of the different contributors could work their magic and see if any of the artists they've interviewed would be interested.

Just a thought...

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