Camen Design

Camen Design Feedback Survey

“Survey Says:”

Surveys are not all that effective! I got 21 replies, although which I do appreciate, it barely scratches the surface of opinion out there.

However, that said, I will share the results as it does show some practical results which I will discuss in full here.

When asked what people liked about, the general tone was that people liked the overall purity: The total lack of superfluous information, the beautification of simple content, the clean thinking, Succinct code is inspirational, code is arty, concise posts, Bold and uncompromising, Purity in work approach and sincerity in implementation.

When asked what people didn’t like about, the results were much more varied:

Whoareyou/whatdoyoudo itches not satisfied

I don’t share much about myself online; I don’t use the ’Web for socialising, purely for consuming and creating. That said, I am 24, have totally immersed myself in computers since the age of 7, work as a computer doctor fixing people’s computers every day and do my personal web-design and programming on the side. That’s all you’re going to get I’m afraid.

the blinking crocodile eye is annoying

That was my sense-goes-out-of-the-window idea to make the website not totally sterile. AdBlock it if you don’t like it :). It could do with a long wait time perhaps (10 seconds a.t.m.). It’s there because it’s a) an APNG and it’s fun to try out new technologies—it boggles most people’s minds that it’s not a GIF, and yet there’s no Javascript powering it—and b) making the eye blink is what completes the logo and gives it its personal (to me) meaning.

small text

Always been a problem with this site, and will be fixed in the next redesign.

Images in the RSS feed frequently do not work

Probably my hotlinking htaccess commands blocking the images from web-based RSS aggregators. I have lightened up these rules a bit now so that you should be able to see preview images in the RSS feed now. Any specific problems, please mail me a more detailed demonstration of the fault.

There are occasional grammar and syntax errors on the site

I have mild dyslexia, matched with an obsessive attention to detail. I spot most errors, but like to be very expressive with my grammar. I abuse the comma far too much. I would always welcome any corrections from users as regards grammar, spelling, and writing form.

Strive for regular updates; one blog entry a week would be excellent.

This I hope to improve upon with the redesign of the site. At the moment, I can only publish from my laptop at home. I am just starting the designing stage of creating a new site that will allow me to publish from anywhere and keep drafts online. This should let me nail down thoughts quickly, and let me work on content throughout the day, rather than just at home.

How about explaining your CSS3-specific rules one by one in subsequent posts?

Nothing I’m doing is undocumented; and I generally hint more at the ‘why’ in my code comments than explaining CSS rules, as the skill level of the readership may vary and documenting what is already documented clouds what people are more interested in: the how and why I chose to do any particular thing in my code.

However, indeed I have not written enough about CSS3 thus far.

I appreciate your use of HTML5, although I disagree with your interpretation of some of the elements

Enlighten me, email me—if I’m wrong, I’d be happy to be corrected, because I am trying to reach a very high level of polish with this website. Some of my choices in elements are down to the fact I don’t have any <div>s or classes to work with.

The Question of Comments:

It gets said a lot, but here’s one such instance:

Your content is great, but I think the site would be much better if there was more of a community aspect to it. I know you only really want to hear from people if they care enough to e-mail, but I think everyone would benefit from people able to be involved in discussion on the site.

In my blog entry stating the design principles of the site, I said:

E-mail has also been around for longer than I’ve been alive, therefore there are no public comment threads on this website. If people truly have something to say to me about what’s on this site, they will want to e-mail me. Public comment threads just encourage people to write a lot of words, and say nothing.

This is the Internet in 2008; if you must reply to me publicly, anybody can get a free blog on any street corner of the Internet. Having no comments is the perfect lazy-filter I so desire.

Kroc Camen: “Hello”

My biggest concern is that according to design principle № II, dealing with masses of pingback and comment spam is not my problem to solve. The more time I have to spend managing comments and hate rallies when I go on the troll, the less time I have for perfecting my site’s content. Emails from users are sometimes the basis for good content, comment threads just get me a lot of hate from ignorant people (and that’s just scraping the surface of the amount of abuse hurled at me).

My website is my private property. It is my garden that I nurture and tend to. I do not want other people’s litter spread about because of some ill-conceived notion of ‘freedom of speech’.

That said, it’s now the Internet in 2009, and we have many new ideas about outsourcing comments and discussion, which perfectly suits my design principle № IIILet everybody else do their job. My website is statically published, I couldn’t add comments if I wanted to without a rewrite and going back to an online db or some other system.

Certainly, a lot of nice things have been said about the site, but of all the incoming links I have seen, people have only mentioned Camen Design in passing, nothing has been written about this site; people admire it and move on. It’s only through emails that I get any meaningful interpersonal conversation.

Public comment threads are wistful poems to the wind—there are only so many “Ur site is gr8!” comments I want to see. I want to see emotion, thought, personal beliefs and skills expressed. The noise-to-quality ratio is not adequate enough. Quite simply, the web-browser does not lend itself to a thoughtful writing environment where people can have the time to start a response, and save it to finish later. Comment threads are about a constant rush to be first, or to get your idea down before the browser crashes, or before you feel like you’ve lingered around too long and have to dash off to the next site in your RSS feed.

If you really want comments that badly, email me. If you readers are willing to expend enough effort to make it worthwhile to me (give me good reasons and examples), then I’ll assure that I’ll expend the effort to add comments to Camen Design. It’s a lot of work to do it in the most elegant way (remember, no <div>s, no classes), and I’m not going to just add comments for people who say they want them but haven’t really thought it through. I have thought it through my end, which is why you’re reading this great long rant!

Kind regards,