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TuneTrack.net Redesign

go1dfish
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permalink   Mon, Sep 13, 2010 @ 1:46 AM
http://tunetrack.net is an independent music site created by ArtisTech Media (operators of ccMixter).

Our long awaited redesign is now live.

The overall visual design and html markup was done by http://nvzion.com/ and I did the individual artist site styling (with help from each artist when available).

Uncommon features: Playback continues while you browse and comment. Playback should work on iPhone(OS)4 and the iPad.

Known issue: IE6 users are out of luck, but things will kinda sorta work. IE6 was relased on August 27, 2001. Time to upgrade/switch folks.

Would love to hear any feedback you guys have.
Admiral Bob
admin
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permalink   Mon, Sep 13, 2010 @ 8:02 AM
I always liked the black look of Tunetrack, personally, but just about every readability guideline I’ve ever seen says go with a white BG look: so you’ve probably taken a step up in readability.

One critical comment, meant in the best spirit: I would definitely take the player/album icon off of the top banner. The banner should probably stay clean, and not interfered with.

One suggestion as to where you could put it would be to have the player be a pop-over dhtml effect that comes up more or less at the coordinates of the first song that plays or is clicked on. Or at the base of the browser window, like dig.ccmixter does, or Indaba.

I like it though. Clean and readable.
 
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permalink   go1dfish Mon, Sep 13, 2010 @ 9:21 AM
Thanks for the feedback.

The player already is a pop over dhtml effect (it’s persistent, and expands on playback). Moving it to the bottom may be a good idea, but this has it’s disadvantages to.

One advantage of having the player float in the upper right, is that the TuneTrack header provides a convenient place for the player to end up without obscuring content if you scroll all the way up.

With a persistent player at the bottom, it seems to always end up obscuring more content.
 
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permalink   Admiral Bob Mon, Sep 13, 2010 @ 10:31 AM
I hear ya. I’m in the same business as you, and always having to balance aesthetics and functionality. Upper right is certainly a more functionally useful place to do it for the reasons you mentioned, but in terms of keeping a clean design layout and where a user’s eyeballs are likely to be drawn to from experience when they click a play link, the bottom would be it.

If I may then modify my suggestion: play it upper right, but when there’s no tune playing, hide the album icon (when the page first loads, an album icon is up there.)

Without a player the album icon is confusing (is it a logo, or…?) and dilutes slightly the TuneTrack mark on the upper right. Branding is important, so that space should probably only be imposed on when a tune is going.
spinmeister
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permalink   Mon, Sep 13, 2010 @ 12:20 PM
Looks very nice. And music player works well across the pages on my current platform (latest FF/OSX).

I didn’t seem to see any SEO stuff though (even basic meta tags like TITLE, DESCRIPTION or ALT for images) so the big G. and the others move your artist pages into a bit more favorable position. Especially in light of some of the artist names being not entirely unique.

p.s. Surprised though, that you didn’t use one of the open source content management platforms (WordPress et al) to do most of the routine lifting and then create some custom plugins/widgets as needed.