Hi guys, :-)
On Wed, Feb 2, 2011 at 17:29, Italo Vignoli <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
I didn't have the time to read the pages carefully myself, so I will add my
comments as well.
Well, I trust you're going to read the content carefully first! :-D
On Wed, Feb 2, 2011 at 17:56, Narayan Aras <email@example.com> wrote:
Well, I am surprised that no Graphic Designer is attached to the website project.
Well, we do have a design team... Ivan and Christoph are heading-up
that aspect right now.
I tried to bring in an excellent Graphic designer, but it seems external
graphic designers are not welcome until SC or some other team gives him a thorough cavity search.
So I dropped the idea.
Well, I only tried to warn you that you can't "attach" a graphic
designer to the website team as a separate contributor from the design
team... He/she would really have to introduce himself/herself to the
Design team, present ideas for discussion, and get approval that they
comply with the graphic charter, etc.
Narayan, you can't just short-circuit the Design team if you want the
work to be accepted... Whether it's a good thing or a bad thing, this
project just doesn't work like that... graphic design and page design
is something being carefully watched over by Christoph and the Design
At present, the website looks exactly like a wiki (and thence the remark "text text text...").
Apart from the LibO logo (which is a mixed up thing, as logos go), there are no graphics at all.
All pages look exactly the same (Home page, L1, L2...), with no visual differential (with color,
layout, fonts, breaks...)
The screen space is not divided according to graphic design principles.
The site has no tagline, search or site map (three basic things).
Well, I disagree that it looks like a wiki... it's just that only part
of the work is done: work is needed from the design aspect, as I
originally mentioned, in cooperation with the people working on
On the other hand, what you say about wikis suggests that you agree
that a wiki is a facility that is not organized or worked on as
promotional channel, it's a workplace where people store information
as a kind of memory pad. So it's not the place for marketing
LibreOffice. The website is where we fight the promotional battle.
It is assumed that the visitor would be interested enough to stay and soak up all that text (and
text and text and...)
He will look through all pages till he finds what he wants (no map, no search).
We do have a wiki for LibO. So the website should be devoted to main points,
and for details, the visitor should be taken to the Wiki.
No, I disagree with you, Narayan. I don't think the wiki is where the
main selling of the product will be done, it's on the libreoffice.org
site. Like I just said above, the current wiki is a haphazard
collection of pages - it's more of a big notepad or brainstorming
It's not designed or intended to be a marketing and promotional
resource. But libreoffice.org *is*.
Compare the site with http://www.openoffice.org/ and http://why.openoffice.org/
I am not saying that OOo site is ideal, but at least it has many visual elements to hold the
interest of the visitor.
Yes, like I said, we need graphics and work on page layouts. Those
things are supposed to showcase the content attractively. Now we have
content, we need to work on presenting it nicely. Ivan's already done
some work on CSS styles in that direction. Now I'd like to collaborate
with him (and Houbsi as well, if he's interested in doing some work on
it), and see how we can optimize the presentation inside the pages.
Websites are designed by Graphic Designers, not Engineers.
The text is written by copywriters, not manual-writers (the different is in slant: marketing vs
So which one am I? :-D
Therefore we need graphic designers to redesign the pages.
And copywriters to brush up (and snip away) what we have written.
Well, I've written copy. Now we need to work on *presentation*. ;-)
@Role of SEO in success of LibO:
Since LibO is a OpenOffice fork, we actually do not need much help from SEO.
I have already added the metatags to most pages, which should be sufficient to start with
I'd disagree about that... We can't afford to be lax in any area. IMO,
we need to focus very carefully on SEO, because we need to float on
top in organic search results. We are not investing large quantities
of money in sponsored results.
A major remaining step is registration with Google ASAP.
Then hits will ramp up within 2-3 months, with careful tuning of metadata.
Yes, work needs to be done with Google Webmaster Tools, as I mentioned
to you before. That goes hand in hand with SEO work on the content.
It's an indisassociable process. Tweak and watch, tweak and watch...
Now that SEO (machine reading/spidering) is out of the way, we must concentrate on HUMAN readers.
How can we hold THEIR interest??
We need to emphasize how LibO is different from the other versions.
That should explained prominently at the website, in terms of (a) philosophy and (b) features.
This is what we're working on now. The work is partly done from the
"philosophy" viewpoint, in the "Get Involved" section. More work needs
doing on that subject in the "About Us" section, where we can talk a
lot more imaginatively about the community aspects of the project, and
the difference in the development process.
For features, we have the Features section and - during the confcall -
I explained clearly that there is a lot more work to be done on that.
For example, Novell version of OpenOffice boasts of compatibility with MSO.
Oracle version of OOpenOffice boasts of low download costs because of patch-based updates.
We also should position the product in this cluster of "apparently same" products.
No, I don't really agree with you about that. We're not just another
"also-ran", we're not another "another": we need to stand apart as
On Wed, Feb 2, 2011 at 19:01, Mike Houben <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Every user (not depending on his history) doesn't read websites.
He scans. Even a IT-Guy for an Enterprise doesn't read on the web.
I'm reading for the moment some books and I'm gonna make
a little review for you all so you can see what you have to put in your
mind when you're writing for the web.
It will be more practically useful if you just help out with some
actual work. ;-) We've been intending to have a talk about ideas,
right? So let's see when we can get started with some actual work
Don't just criticize negatively, help put things right with an actual
contribution of work!
See you on Skype?
Google NEVER reads the whole website. It's scanning the whole.
But for the SEO only some bytes from the beginning are important!
No, that's an over-simplification. Google will find your search
phrases even when they're buried at the bottom of long documents.
Search engines index entire pages not just the first 150-250 words in
a page. So it's true that you have to work hard on the opening text.
But every single line is a marketing opportunity and a chance to
surface in the search results.
On Wed, Feb 2, 2011 at 19:10, Stefan Weigel
Also see: http://why.openoffice.org
OK, let's talk about that site. It contains some 10 or so pages that
vary between 260 to 430 words in length. There are graphics on the
pages, and there has been work on the presentation of the text.
But, IMHO, the content on those pages is not particularly
hard-hitting. One thing that none of you has said anything about is
the actual quality of the content that I wrote. I've tried to be
pertinent to the question posed in the title, and to put convincing
lines and strong arguments. I've given it what I *felt* was a
reasonable shot. :-D Are you sure you can write better? :-D
I'm proposing to pack similar coverage to why.OOo into 5 pages that,
after some post-editing, will probably end up at about 350 to 600
words each. Present that in a nice magazine-type page layout, and
things can look *totally* different.
Sorry, guys, but - personally - I don't agree that a product like
LibreOffice can be effectively marketed by 50 to 150 words per page
and a few nice graphics and screenshots.
It can't provide the information wanted by the diverse market segments
we're chasing. You guys seem to have a very restricted view of our
market. There are plenty of targets out there that want to read
convincing info and arguments. IMHO, that's very much the case with
government, business and other institutional adopters.
Plus, the community segment *also* wants to read information about the
project, which is why sections like "Get Help" and "Get Involved" do
also need to contain a certain amount of textual information, and why
"About Us" needs a whole lot of imaginative work. I've tried not to be
verbose, but I have tried to talk informatively about the facts and
policies of the project.
Once again, I remind you again that I've provided content, and that
now we would need to work on presentation. And we do *also* need
things like big, prominent download buttons, screenshot shufflers and
other multimedia content *in addition* to high-quality text, as well
as division of the text into different blocks.
Plus, in addition, we *also* need to provide downloadable PDFs as
technical data sheets for offllne consumption.
We still have a *great deal of work* that can be done on content.
You can't sell the product or cultivate a community with just a few
fancy Flash animations and a few words on each page!
My 2 cents. Read it all as said with a friendly smile. :-)
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