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Um ... new website frontpage

From: Han-Wen Nienhuys
Subject: Um ... new website frontpage
Date: Mon, 18 Aug 2003 13:53:17 +0200

address@hidden writes:
> Once the moment of bliss the new, completely redone version of the
> web site has passed, I am left with a few doubts. I'll only focus on
> the front page for the moment.
> - "The name is Pond ... LilyPond" is cute. If you're trying to 'sell'
>   your product to a bunch of young teens. If you're trying to compete
>   with professionals such as Finale, this kind of humor is out.
>   Because to all the professional editors I know, typing your music in
>   a notepad program is scary enough without chasing them away with bad
>   humor.

I think you are wrong: humor gets a point across much better than

> - "Miss Manners of Music Printing" is note English. Whatever anybody
>   says, this sounds typically foreign. It's a bad pun, that similarly
>   to the Pond joke, will scare people away by a lack of
>   professionalism.

Miss Manners is Ms. Manners, a famous advisor for etiquette, see. eg.

> - Something which strikes me as horrendously ironic, is how -- while
>   joking with such titles -- the page manages to be so pompous
>   "beautiful music for everyone." Feeding a judgement to "customers"
>   (though admittedly you aren't really trying to sell anything here)
>   is a bad idea altogether, and I'd believe that something like
>   "LilyPond -- an alternate way of producing sheet music" or "LilyPond
>   -- artisanal-like sheet-music" (though this one sounds just as
>   pompous) without any quality judgements. The essay is good enough to
>   convince ANYBODY, or nearly, that LilyPond is superior to Finale &
>   co.
>   As a note, Coda Music's slogan is "Finale -- The World's
>   Best-Selling Music Notation Program" which passes no judgement at
>   all on the software itself. `American Pie: the Wedding' is
>   currently in second place on the USA Box Office, which says nothing
>   about the movie itself (thank God for small favors).
>   If you do keep this slogan, think of adding a space after the "..."

This website is trying to get more people hooked on Lily. Hence it is
promotion material.  Your own promotion material should always be
positive, and I think that readers know this convention, so they can
value our judgements.

Imagine that MS would advertise their XP product with "Almost stable,
reasonably-usable-but-still-not-as-good-as-Apple". That doesn't make
sense, does it?  

> - The two columns look ugly on wider displays. This also applies to
>   the "News" / "Quick Link" columns too. Too little text

So, what do you suggest? In one-column, they'll be wider still.

> -- is a News
>   column really necessary? I can't imagine you'd have anything else to
>   announce than new releases.

Yes - it definitely is, when the page regularly changes, it shows that
the project is alive, which makes it more attractive.

> - "Why did we revive the esthetics of traditionally engraved music?"
>   is just as arrogant as the Coda Music "Finale *elevates* the notation
>   experience". Perhaps "Why are we trying to revive the esthetics of
>   traditionally engraved music?", because as you say, it's not perfect
>   yet.

I could add the word "trying" to every sentence, but I won't. See

> - If, like on my browser, the page scrolls, people are ultimately
>   going to want to rip you apart for putting the search function at
>   the bottom. Why not place it at the right of the navigation bar?

Because it will make the page very wide. At what resolution does the
box fall of the page? 


Han-Wen Nienhuys   |   address@hidden   | 

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