Comment on Introduction To Skins

  1. For margins and typeface, you can create a new skin using the wizard instead of writing the CSS - just go to http://archiveofourown.org/skins/new?wizard=true and that should do the trick.

    Sorry for the brief response, and thank you for your feedback. I'd like to look at ways to make the wizard more intuitive and prominent, and there will also be more tutorials appearing over the next few days. In the meantime, please do keep asking questions, and we will do our best to help you create something that suits you.

    Jenny
    AD&T committee member

    Last Edited Sat 12 Nov 2011 03:28AM EST

    Comment Actions
    1. Please don't feel you need to apologize -- this looks like it's going to be very helpful, and I did mean it when I said I'd rather fix things than whine about them. Especially since I know enough to realize that you folks are working very hard on this, and that the wailing and gnashing of teeth from users who probably have minor problems they could take care of very easily if they knew what they were doing cannot be fun to have to deal with.

      Thank you for the pointer to the wizard; I'll try that, and see whether I can't make it work. And thank you for the amazing fast response, too!

      Comment Actions
    2. And okay, quick feedback: I'm looking at the wizard page right now, and there are helpful explanations for margin width and font family. The color fields don't have explanatory buttons, but they don't really need them -- I may not know the hex codes for desired colors, but I can look them up without too much trouble, and I know what the wizard is asking me for and why.

      I don't know what to do about "percentage of base font size," though -- I'm not even sure what I'm being asked to specify there. And while I do know what "vertical gap between paragraphs" is, I don't have the first clue how that should be specified. I've tried looking at the code for the public skins, but nothing in those commands jumps out at me as the thing I'm looking for. I might be the only one who's really this clueless (which is to say, more clueless than AD&T would have dreamed was even possible), but if I'm not, help buttons for those fields would be, well, helpful.

      Comment Actions
      1. icon

        The default font size is 100%. To get a font size half as big, use 50 (meaning 50% of the default font size), to get a font size twice as big, use 200 etc.

        The paragraph gap is given in the measure 'em' which depends on the font size: 1em = the width of the letter m in your font.

        But I agree, this needs to be documented.

        Comment Actions
      2. You're certainly not the only one who doesn't understand what the terms mean, and thank you for pointing it out. Rebecca's now logged a bug to add help boxes to the rest of the options, so that should get fixed at some point soon. This kind of feedback is really helpful - it reminds and helps us to step back and see how it looks from someone else's point of view.

        Comment Actions
    3. . . . and finally, no, it's not intuitive enough for somebody who really doesn't know what she's doing. I have now tried six or so separate times, and while I'd probably manage something usable if I tried another twelve times or so, having to preview, delete when something doesn't work, and start again from the beginning rather than run through variables and preview as I go makes it more cumbersome than I really want to mess with. Really, again, I suspect the issue is that the wizard assumes users will know things that non-coders do not know. And the inability to make changes on the fly -- when you try to edit, the system dumps you into the main write-a-skin system, and doesn't even show you the CSS it's generated for you -- makes this a little much for somebody who just wanted a fast and simple fix.

      I'm sorry to keep dumping this negativity on you; but I suppose that looking on the bright side, I'm pretty much your test case for 'Does this work for somebody who really knows nothing?'

      Comment Actions