A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

This is where you'll find information about updates to the site -- new features we've introduced, bugs we've fixed, and anything else which might be of interest to the community!
mpowell
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A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by mpowell »

Hey everyone,

As you might have seen, we've just published changes which implement a full-width layout on Criticker, across the site! This was a massive undertaking, which touches every single page on Criticker, and we're really excited about the results.

We've also taken the chance to make a lot of updates to the Title Information page, addressing concerns like the need to load separate pages to find information. We've added a search box for ratings, and greatly enhanced the ability to find titles on streaming platforms.

You can find full details in our article here: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!. We're very aware that there will be some issues and problems with this huge new change ... it wouldn't feel like "us", if everything worked perfectly right out of the gate (it's just one of our cute little traits).

But if or when you do find issues, please let us know! Submit bugs to support@criticker.com, or let us know here in the forums. And also let us know what you think! A big change like this is sure to be jarring, but we're interested in hearing your feedback, whether it's positive or not.

And thanks again for being part of this incredible community!!

mynameisdoug
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by mynameisdoug »

You have to click so much more to get the information you want in this version compared to the old one. The old version was so much more functional and informationally dense than this garbage.
Seems like you addressed none of the issues people brought up last year when you first tried to foist this shoddy layout on us.
If letterboxd supported tv series I would switch to it immediately, since this site's layout is now just a worse version of theirs

mpowell
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by mpowell »

mynameisdoug wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2024 6:24 am
You have to click so much more to get the information you want in this version compared to the old one. The old version was so much more functional and informationally dense than this garbage.
Seems like you addressed none of the issues people brought up last year when you first tried to foist this shoddy layout on us.
If letterboxd supported tv series I would switch to it immediately, since this site's layout is now just a worse version of theirs
Sorry you feel this way! We did address a lot of the issues people mentioned, such as the ability to see many reviews on a single page, loading various subpages to get to information, and bringing some info up toward the top.

I'm aware that we're not going to make everyone happy -- I think the people who had been using the new Title Information page will see this newer version as a nice step forward. But it will be a shock to anyone who had been using the legacy version, and require some getting used to. There really is a massive difference to the way it used to look. We think it's an improvement (as does a nearly unanimous majority of people who had never seen either page), but understand that it doesn't feel that way to some of our longest-term users.

Anyway, we do appreciate hearing your thoughts, even though they are not positive. Again, we really hope the new page grows on you; we're definitely not done working on it, and are willing to look into improvements to make it even better.

djross
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by djross »

Old version: You can immediately see all the directors and writers and actors.
New version: You have to click "more" to see them all.

Old version: You can immediately see the country and genre categories.
New version: You have to click to see these.

Old version: When you want to scroll through the reviews for a film, the information about the film remains static and visible as you scroll down through the box, then click over to the next page of reviews.
New version: "Infinite scrolling" means that the film information moves up and off the screen as you scroll down. Note that some films have 700 or 800 reviews (The Dark Knight has 985). You have to scroll all the way back up to see the film information again.

I'm at a loss to understand how these are improvements. I'm at a loss to understand why you would liberate all this extra space, and then make less information about the film immediately available to the user.

I understand that we are supposed to feel that infinite scrolling of reviews is a big step forward. I just can't understand why it's better.

I had resolved to myself not to enter into these discussions any further, because I had lost faith in the process. But now that the day has come, I feel compelled to point out that if the three aspects listed above were addressed, so that they no longer made the page worse than the old version, then it would be much easier to adjust to this new version.

djross
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by djross »

Colors are no longer as they were set using the "colors and quips manual tool". For example, my manual setting has red used for all scores below 50, but this is not how they are currently displaying.

djross
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by djross »

Looking at the page for 2001: A Space Odyssey, and at the Collections tab, it currently states that the collection entitled "Big-time Hollywood science fiction" was last updated on "01 Jan 1970". This is false.

Also, if I go to that collection and then click on "moderate", it takes me to an error page.

Moribunny
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by Moribunny »

I noticed today I've been forced out of using the classic version and the button allowing me to revert no longer appears. I am quite devastated by this, but I must also come to your defense and grant you that the new version has been improved compared to how it (the new version) was.

You've inserted more complete crew information, you've allowed a compact view of the ratings to exist on the same page as the title information, in a more condensed presentation, and you've reduced the white spaces in between rows. You've also reduced the emphasis of lists that was previously an overly intrusive feature of the title page. It does take less clicks and less navigation now to see everything I want to see, as compared to previous iterations of the new layout.

These were all concerns that I raised on the first thread, and you listened and addressed them, and I respect and thank you for that. I cannot speak for other disgruntled old-timers, but I feel you deserve the credit for making such a real and noticeable effort. I don't take it for granted that you care and respond to old users' complaints.

All that being said, and while I'm not resistant to change for resistance's sake, I still feel like the classic version was vastly superior and I truly hope I can get used to the new one - it will be a struggle. I truly wish I could keep using the classic version, which managed to be more condensed still, while also using larger fonts. The new version still affords so much space to visual elements, that the information itself has shrunk to minuscule dimensions.

Another major advantage of the classic version was its display of the ratings and reviews pane side-by-side with the title info, rather than beneath it.

Most glaring of all right now, is the fact that I cannot see my own review of the movie unless I click on the rating edit button. That's highly inconvenient, because having seen over 5000 titles I often don't remember what my thoughts were about something I watched, and so I very often go to criticker to remind myself. I want my review to be smack dab in front of me when I enter the title page, just like it was in the classic version, but as in all things - the new version forces me to do extra work to get to what I once had instant access to.
Last edited by Moribunny on Mon Mar 04, 2024 9:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

MacSwell
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by MacSwell »

Also not a fan.

Not sure why full-width is preferable to the previous narrower layout - did anybody actually want this? What's supposed to make this more appealing to the eye? There's just a load more empty white space to blind the user now.

I hate having to click "more" to get information that was previously readily available - what is the point of this? Why not just have it all there when you go to a film's page? Once you've clicked "more", the information shown barely takes up any more space than was taken up beforehand.

The new people icons on a film's page (showing faces where they've been submitted) makes the page look messy due to the inconsistency of which cast members have faces submitted, and they're so small that what's the point? A user can't see the teeny-tiny faces anyway.

Couple of other bugs:
- Predicted scores in similar titles are wrong and do not go above 35 for me (I use the full 0-100 scale). The Top Recommendation on the Home Page is always set at 35 also.
- "Show More" on the profile page doesn't work.
- Currently unable to edit "Language" on a film's page.

It's sadly all just worse now, and that's really disappointing having adored the website for the past decade.
Last edited by MacSwell on Mon Mar 04, 2024 8:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

mpowell
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by mpowell »

djross wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2024 7:25 am
Colors are no longer as they were set using the "colors and quips manual tool". For example, my manual setting has red used for all scores below 50, but this is not how they are currently displaying.
This one should be fixed now! Sorry about the issue, but thank you as always for reporting it!

djross
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Re: A Full-Width Layout for Criticker, and More!

Post by djross »

mpowell wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2024 8:15 am
djross wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2024 7:25 am
Colors are no longer as they were set using the "colors and quips manual tool". For example, my manual setting has red used for all scores below 50, but this is not how they are currently displaying.
This one should be fixed now! Sorry about the issue, but thank you as always for reporting it!
Yes, fixed now. Thanks.

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