Author Topic: Website critique please!  (Read 1043 times)

Offline Deb

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Hi folks, a couple of years ago I re-designed the website for The Seth House. They felt the old site was disorganized and unprofessional looking. To me less is more, and so I designed for a clean, organized, easy to navigate site. User friendly. They loved it, and then wanted to take over site maintenance when I was done. They added a lot of things they felt would make the site more fun and friendly over the past two years—lots of memes and graphics (some of them being copyright infringements), loads more information and multiple new pages. The other day Oshara contacted me saying she regretted what they did to the site—and could I please straighten it out, they feel it's disorganized and unprofessional looking. Not just re-do the layout and graphics, but also editing all of their new copy. She thinks maybe her design contributions are scaring off potential donors, and wants the site to look more professional.

I know what I'd do differently, but thought it would be great to get input from you all here as to your impressions of the site as it is currently. I don't expect anyone to spend a lot of time on this, I was just hoping to get first impressions. I can deal with the copy re-write, I am interested in how other people react to the site, what's working, what's not working, something you feel is missing, some things you feel are overkill.

Oshara also wants to get new Seth quotes on the site, possibly placed on every page in pull-quote style, so I thought I'd ask you for your favorite Seth quotes as well.

https://www.thesethhouse.com/


Offline jbseth

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Hi Deb,

I have some idea's for you, but I probably won't be able to write them out in more detail until tomorrow.
These ideas involve the following topics.

- nested responses
- The Seth Search Engine
- The Seth Learning Center
- Daily Seth quotes
- The Yale Library
- TES1-9 and TECS 1-4 Indexes


-jbseth



Offline jbseth

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Hi Deb, Hi All,

First of all, let me say that I personally think that the forum site, is perfectly wonderful as it is. If no changes were made, I’ve be very much OK with that.  :)

That being said, all of the suggestions that I’m making below are just that, suggestions.



Nested Responses:

Sometimes forum members will nest a sequence of quotes and sometimes in doing so, it becomes kind of difficult to track or follow the issue and response. An example of what I’m talking about here is given in the link below in Reply #12 by Michael Sternbach, where he quoted me, quoting Sena and then responded to my quote.

https://speakingofseth.com/index.php?topic=2141.0

My thinking here is this. “Maybe”, there’s a different way to do this that might make it easier to follow these nested responses. Unfortunately, I don’t know of any better alternative and maybe there really isn’t one for this.




Other Links to the Forum:

There are several other links that might be helpful if they were added directly to the forum. For example, the Seth Search Engine, which I use fairly often. It would be awesome, if I could directly access this by just pushing button on the forum.

The same is true for some other links, like: 1) the Seth bookstore (SethCenter.com), where I went to purchase my copies of the TES books, 2) the index of the TES books, and 3) the Yale Library Reserch Project, 4) the Seth House, etc.




Seth Quotes:

It would be my preference that there wouldn’t be too many Seth quotes scattered all over the site. This could be distracting.

A daily Seth quote might be fun, something that we could think about each day.

As well as getting quotes from people here now, which is also good, we already have a major title here on this forum for Favorite Quotes. Perhaps you could look there for some of the favorite quotes that people have posted.



Enlarged Graphic Capability:

Whenever I go to attach a graphic image to a post, I have to take the graphic and convert it to a jpg file and then shrink it down so that it will fit. If there was any way to change this so that either the link would either do this automatically or just accept larger graphics, that would be a nice change (again, this isn’t really a problem for me, just a nice change if it could be easily done).



-jbseth


 







Offline Deb

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Hi jbseth, I started reading your critique and was instantly confused since The Seth House site is not a forum, it's a website. Then I realized you were talking about SoS and not The Seth House website... ah hah!

The link was in my first post: https://www.thesethhouse.com/

That being said, I'll take a closer look at your recommendations and let you know what's possible. The software for SoS is pretty basic, an upgrade has been in the works for 10 years and there may be more customization abilities with the new version. Since they work for free (shareware), progress is slow. They're in beta release 3 with still plenty of bugs to work out, but I've been tempted to upgrade anyway. Right now, for me to change things like the nested quotes or automatic graphic resizing would require some intense coding, and I'm not a coder. :)

I'll be back.
« Last Edit: November 28, 2020, 04:19:59 PM by Deb »

Offline Bora137

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Deb you do an amazing job with the forum and I didn't realise you where the original creator of this site too, so hats off to you. My thoughts: As it is getting on now my experience is that it's slightly untidy for a phone browser and I think most people will first search for Seth on their phones now, I know I did. The house image I would keep, the video intro is too soon in the hierarchy, I would put Seth's 'you create your own reality' strapline under the Seth house to link into the increasing popularity of LOA and kind of get people to realise all that started with Seth here in this house. I would then chuck some science at it, all the major things Seth was right about and scientists are only now realising and proving. Only after that would I put in he is a channeled entity because putting that before the science you will lose a lot of people, you are going to lose them anyway because we are moving outside accepted norms but the science preamble should keep a few of them at least. Then the video which might be better as a walk around of the house with a voice over. Thanks for asking opinions. Bora.
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Offline T.M.

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Hi Deb,

Mostly looked good to me. I was turned off by the 501-c-3 vid at the top of the home page. I know it's about Seth. If I didn't know it was about Seth, me personally, I would figure it's just some kind of church organization looking for donations.
Instant turn off and click  away from reading anything further.
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Offline Deb

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Thanks for the input T.M. and Bora! All valid points and that's exactly what I was looking for! There are a lot of things on their site now that I don't think are necessary and tend to clutter and confuse. I agree some people would be turned off by the channeling concept, but I also think most people that find The Seth House site will already be familiar with Seth and Jane. We have a board here about how science has finally been validating Seth's concepts and so I have a bit of that already gathered that would be useful—that would be a great new page for their site.

BTW I did the illustration of The Seth House too, it was a labor of love. They are one of my pro bono clients (I have a few, all are non-profits).
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Offline jbseth

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Quote from: Deb
Hi folks, a couple of years ago I re-designed the website for The Seth House. They felt the old site was disorganized and unprofessional looking. To me less is more, and so I designed for a clean, organized, easy to navigate site. User friendly. They loved it, and then wanted to take over site maintenance when I was done. They added a lot of things they felt would make the site more fun and friendly over the past two years—lots of memes and graphics (some of them being copyright infringements), loads more information and multiple new pages. The other day Oshara contacted me saying she regretted what they did to the site—and could I please straighten it out, they feel it's disorganized and unprofessional looking. Not just re-do the layout and graphics, but also editing all of their new copy. She thinks maybe her design contributions are scaring off potential donors, and wants the site to look more professional.

I know what I'd do differently, but thought it would be great to get input from you all here as to your impressions of the site as it is currently. I don't expect anyone to spend a lot of time on this, I was just hoping to get first impressions. I can deal with the copy re-write, I am interested in how other people react to the site, what's working, what's not working, something you feel is missing, some things you feel are overkill.


Hi Deb, Hi All,

I think that this was my mistake. In the second paragraph, when you started to talk about, "the site as it currently is," I thought that suddenly were talking about this "SOS" site.

I'm confused, the site that you wanted change recommendations on, was that the Seth House site or the SOS site?    :o   

-jbseth


Offline chasman

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Seth House site jbseth (and hello).

hey Deb,

   you did an awesome job. and its fine as is.

if you want me to nitpick, a couple quick thoughts:
increase the size of the words The Seth House on the home page.
increase the volume on Kate's video, at least a little.
maybe maybe add more pictures of Jane.
feature a link to Mary Dillman's Research Website, make it easier to find, more accessible and prominent.


also, Rick Stack's ongoing Seth study group is now open to anyone, you don't have to take his Intensive as a prerequisite anymore. and he wants more people to join, he's asked us to spread the word. he said Seth is definitely under-reported in today's world.   :)
soooooo, possibly put that all on the site.

peace, love and warm chocolate chip cookies,
Charlie
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Offline Deb

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Quote from: chasman
Seth House site jbseth (and hello).

Chasman is correct. I am just looking for some input, what people like or don't like, on The Seth House website BEFORE I start fixing it up.

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Offline Deb

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Hi jbseth, here are my responses to your recommendations for the SoS forum:

Quote from: jbseth
Sometimes forum members will nest a sequence of quotes and sometimes in doing so, it becomes kind of difficult to track or follow the issue and response. An example of what I’m talking about here is given in the link below in Reply #12 by Michael Sternbach, where he quoted me, quoting Sena and then responded to my quote.

Nested quotes occur when someone clicks "Quote Entire Post (or highlight some text for a PARTIAL quote)" on a post that already has a quote in it. That's pretty typical on discussion forums as far as I've seen so I've gotten used to it, but I can understand how it would be confusing sometimes. Some forums don't even offer the option of taking partial quotes, I had to install a plugin for that ability. Quoting is the choice of the person who is posting, not something I can control. I guess the easiest way to address something in the nested quote would be for you to go back to the original post by clicking on the author's name, and starting with a fresh quote.

Quote from: jbseth
There are several other links that might be helpful if they were added directly to the forum. For example, the Seth Search Engine, which I use fairly often. It would be awesome, if I could directly access this by just pushing button on the forum.

The same is true for some other links, like: 1) the Seth bookstore (SethCenter.com), where I went to purchase my copies of the TES books, 2) the index of the TES books, and 3) the Yale Library Reserch Project, 4) the Seth House, etc.

I can probably add those in that area right below the search box (News). Right now I have websites like that bookmarked in my browser. I'll give it a shot.

Quote from: Deb
It would be my preference that there wouldn’t be too many Seth quotes scattered all over the site. This could be distracting.

That's what the Seth House folks want on their website so N/A for SoS. We do have an entire Board titled Favorite Quotes, but I just figured I'd ask you guys for favorite quotes since there are new members who hadn't contributed to the old topics. I also thought it would be fun for others to be a part of the Seth House website. Not a big deal, with the Seth search engine it's easy enough to find quotes. And they'd have to be fairly short. Actually it would be a fun task for me to find quotes that are pertinent to the specific content of each page.

Quote from: jbseth
Whenever I go to attach a graphic image to a post, I have to take the graphic and convert it to a jpg file and then shrink it down so that it will fit. If there was any way to change this so that either the link would either do this automatically or just accept larger graphics, that would be a nice change (again, this isn’t really a problem for me, just a nice change if it could be easily done).

I did search for a plugin for this and there isn't one. It is a pain, I know, I have to do it too but I have Photoshop so it's not much of an issue for me. You can attach other formats besides jpgs, not sure if that's helpful. The forum will accept doc, gif, jpg, mpg, pdf, png, txt, zip, mp3.

Offline jbseth

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Hi Deb,

Thanks for your reply.

Like I said, in reply #2 above, I'm very happy with the SOS site as it is. I don't need you to make any changes to it, unless this is something that you want to do. I figure you have enough going on as it is.

Thanks for the clarification too on your request being about the Seth House website and not SOS.

- jbseth

Offline jbseth

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Quote from: chasman
peace, love and warm chocolate chip cookies,

Charlie
                        


Hey Charlie,

Those warm chocolate chip cookies sound great.
I'm glad to see that you're still here.  :)

-jbseth
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Offline Deb

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Quote from: jbseth
Like I said, in reply #2 above, I'm very happy with the SOS site as it is. I don't need you to make any changes to it, unless this is something that you want to do. I figure you have enough going on as it is.

No problem at all, I thought the links were a good idea and they were not hard to add to the header. There's not a lot of room up there, but I found a way to get them to fit. It doesn't look as good on my phone, but this old version of Simple Machines is not very hand-held friendly. I imagine the new version will be. Plus I doubt any of us spend much time on the forum on our phones considering the size of most of our posts.  ;D
« Last Edit: November 29, 2020, 05:03:58 PM by Deb »
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Offline leidl

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Deb, I agree with your less-is-more philosophy, and think The Seth House page looks very good.  The drawing of the house has a quiet simplicity which is lovely.  Are the gold windows the ones where the sessions were held? 

You may have seen this in the news this week, but there's a crowdfunding effort going on right now to buy Tolkien's house and turn it into a museum and literary center.  In case you want to drop in there for ideas: https://www.projectnorthmoor.org/

The Tolkien folks may have already dropped in on your page for inspiration--there are similarities!  :D  They've got a video in the same spot, for example.  But the face contained therein will be a little more familiar to most. 

I like the changes you made to SOS recently, btw...I'm already doing my part to wear out the link to findingseth.  Thank you for all your hard work!
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Offline Deb

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Quote from: leidl
The drawing of the house has a quiet simplicity which is lovely.  Are the gold windows the ones where the sessions were held?

Yes, the lit windows are the bay window that is the dining/living room area where all of the sessions took place.

Quote from: leidl
The Tolkien folks may have already dropped in on your page for inspiration--there are similarities! 

That wouldn't be a first for me. :) The Tolkien project is wonderful. It's so typically English, and I love England.

Most of my recommendations have been accepted by Kate and Oshara. The only thing we differ on is the Donor Wall—a page where every donor is named and star rated by the amount of their donation. I would prefer to be more discreet, but they are insistent that their donors want that page kept as is. The customer is always right.

If anyone is curious about the transformation, I have a staging site set here: https://staging2020.thesethhouse.com/ It's slow going, I am totally revamping the navigation and each page is being redesigned, both copy and graphics, one day at a time. And on Wednesday I am headed out for a one week vacation.

I was supposed to stay at the Seth House in October, was all set to drive out there, visit with Kate and Oshara, and also visit with Laurel Davies Butts and Mary Dillman in Connecticut, but my trip was waylaid by Covid. Twice. Originally I was going to drive out in May. Sometimes life just says NO. I suppose that's what Seth meant by accepting life on its own terms.
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Offline yphen

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Hi... I was able to stop by the house this last summer and was able to connect the house from the website. I like the website very much,.
I made a small donation recently through PayPal but I wish there was a way to donate with Bitcoin... Crypto currencies are on the way and the Seth house really should have a bitcoin address.

Offline Bora137

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Deb I really feel you have done a fantastic job looking at the staging site. It's so clean, I believe the content without having to read it and for me this is exactly the magic that needs manifesting if more people are to be drawn to Seth at this important time. Great work 🎅

Offline Deb

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Quote from: yphen
Crypto currencies are on the way and the Seth house really should have a bitcoin address.

Thank you, something I'd not thought about. Bitcoin has been a problem in the past with donations to charities due to its anonymity, but I think that has changed.

Quote from: Bora137
Deb I really feel you have done a fantastic job looking at the staging site.

Thank you! I was out of town for a week, but back now and spent a few hours today working on just two of the pages. It's slow going, but I always give 150% of myself to my work product, regardless of what I'm doing. I have to admit that working on the site again has renewed my determination to get out and visit Elmira and The Seth House. Having had to cancel two road trips out there was very disappointing, but as they say, the third time is the charm. That has always been a truism for me.
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Offline Deb

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I was, as usual, working diligently on the Seth House website today, and came across this antique postcard that was sent out in one of their old Newsletters. I just had to share. I'll find a good place for it on their website.
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Offline Deb

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OK peeps, I've made a lot of progress on the new site this week. As of today, I've pretty much remodeled the entire site. https://staging2020.thesethhouse.com/ I just need to proof read and add a bunch of Seth pull quotes. Merry Christmas to me, and Merry Christmas (or whatever you do or don't celebrate) to you. And we also passed a milestone this month—Speaking of Seth was born six years ago December 14. Wow.

A bonus for me today was watching the video Bob Terrio made (second video)—a tour of the Seth House by Oshara, music by Paul Helfrich. For those of you who have been here for a while, you'll remember I attempted to draw up a floor plan of at least the Seth/Jane/Rob parts of the house. There was some confusion about the entry way and staircase to the second floor. I had asked Rich Kendall, Laurel Davies, Kate and Oshara to review my drawing and NONE of them could help—they all told me they were directionally challenged and gave me information that was unuseable.

Well, thanks to Bob Terrio, I got a clearer idea of how the house is laid out. Now, keep in mind that the house was built in the late 1800s, and the second floor was bedrooms. So for me, a confusing amount of doors around the trip upstairs and room sizes that are strange unless you consider the original design. For instance, Jane and Rob's kitchen was originally a closet. Their living room was originally a bedroom. Their bedroom was most likely another closet. And Rob's studio was, I think, an add-on.

The third floor, I imagine, was quarters for live-in help, or at the least, an attic for storage.

Update: Noticed something wrong with the floor plan today, fixed it and reattached.

« Last Edit: December 24, 2020, 04:12:50 PM by Deb »
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Offline jbseth

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Hi Deb, Hi All,

Wow Deb, that's great. :)

I don't know how many times I've been reading one of the Seth sessions and somebody like Bill MacDonnal says that he saw an image of Seth in the hall by their bathroom or someone like Sue Watkins or Rich Kendall talks about ESP Class break, and says that Jane walked across the hall to their other room during break.

It's been difficult to figure out where and how this was all taking place. This drawing really helps a lot.

Thanks for doing that.   :)

-jbseth
 
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Offline LarryH

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Deb, your remodel is a vast improvement. Simple, professional, and easy to navigate.
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Offline Deb

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Wow, thanks Larry. I hope it stays that way, as they'll be maintaining the site after we go live with it.

Offline chasman

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I just took a quick look.
oh my God!
or
oh my All That Is!!!

it is utterly phenomenal.
this is a spectacular achievement Deb.
wow, very super wow!!!    :)
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Offline Deb

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Wow Charlie, thank you for your support and glowing review! I'll probably be able to finish up Monday with some quotes to add here and there.

BTW, since most of us are subscribed to this topic and so get notices of new posts, I'll add this here:

Mary Dillman had quite a collection of Seth books. Old, new, duplicates, some sets, some never even opened. Her friend Karen is mailing them out to whoever wants them, just for the cost of postage. Please email her at kisanders@sbcglobal.net and let her know if you are missing any books. She'll let you know if she has them and what the cost of postage is, which you can Pay Pal to her. Let her know you're from Speaking of Seth!


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Offline chasman

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fab Deb.  :)
thank you very much.
your awesomeness is exceeded only by your kindness and goodness.    :):)

 

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