UPDATE - We've pushed this live for everyone now. Thanks to those who took the time to give feedback. Please do know, being live doesn't mean we can't address further changes for you! Write an answer if you find anything that needs addressing.


As part of implementing the new unified themes across the network, we're gradually rolling out updated site themes for each site. As of today, we have enabled your updated site theme for testing.

If you can't see it right now, that's by design! We're hoping to get feedback from you before rolling it out to everyone permanently. If you'd like to review it, here's how:

How do I enable it?

Click here and check the "Beta test new themes" option. This will turn on the new theme for all sites that have one in testing, including this one. Here's more info on how to opt in. You can uncheck the box to revert to the older theme until the site is live for everyone (note, it will take a few minutes to go into effect).

What type of feedback do we need?

On this post: Bugs related to this site's design elements

Please help us look for issues/bugs related to the theme design and how we have mapped the old theme to the new. This needs to be done within the limits of the new unified theme.

We specifically need help from the Mi Yodeya community regarding your site's logo. Because of the banner height, we're not able to put the site name under the tree and keep it legible, which removes the dot from the bottom of the question mark in the tree. If you didn't realize the tree was a question mark, I didn't either! There's more information about this in the original design post here. If you have any suggestions in this regard, we'd appreciate it!

On Meta Stack Exchange: General concerns about left nav or theming

If you have concerns or issues regarding the left nav or the overall approach we are taking to theming, then this Meta Stack Exchange post is the right place for feedback.

As you may notice, there are some unique design elements like voting arrows and tags that are being standardized in this process. Keeping these custom elements makes our ability to maintain the sites too complex and, while we're very sad to see them go, we're in a difficult position of needing to make the site designs work together so that we can continue to address feature requests and bugs that will make your Q&A experience better. This is addressed in a Meta Stack Exchange post if you want more detail.

What new themes?

If you're like, "What the heck are you talking about?", then you should read the Meta Stack Exchange post entitled Rollout of new network site themes (and maybe the posts it links to for the full background).

Thanks so much for your constructive feedback!

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    Catija, welcome to Mi Yodeya Meta, and thanks for bringing your design change notice here! You might be interested in some of our other design content. I hope to see you around! (Sorry; I've already developed a knee-jerk reaction to the "new contributor" symbol.) – Isaac Moses Aug 31 at 17:52
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    Was the removal of the "Badges" tab deliberate? – Alex Aug 31 at 18:55
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    I just want to acknowledge how amazing you all are on this community. Your feedback is all constructive and considerate of the hard work the team has done to make these needed changes. I know that not all of our decisions serve your interests, but you are so nice in communicating what you desire. You're very pragmatic as well. I can't tell you how much that means to our team. Makes this formerly Southern Baptist preacher's son want to convert. ;) – Joe Friend Aug 31 at 20:36
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    @JoeFriend Thanks for your responsiveness to the issues we've raised. The present design looks much better than the previous iteration did. – Isaac Moses Sep 12 at 18:51
  • @IsaacMoses Thanks. We know that this transition is painful for some sites and feels like you're only losing things. I'm confident it will pay off in the end, but your encouragement is really appreciated. – Joe Friend Sep 13 at 17:58

12 Answers 12

Visited links are really hard to distinguish from unvisited ones on the front page.

Look at the screen shot in this answer. Can you tell which question I'd visited? With a lot of squinting I can, but compare it to the difference here:

old design with better contrast

Can we increase the difference between the two link colors? I understand if the two colors need to change between the old and new designs; this request is about the delta, not about the specific hue family.

The pop-up Hebrew Keyboard looks worse now, with the labels for the buttons hanging off of the buttons:

Pop-up Hebrew Keyboard, with labels hanging off of the buttons.

Compare with how it looked when this feature was launched:

Older picture of Hebrew Keyboard in context, with labels inside buttons

I see that the new look for the keyboard applies whether I have "Beta test new themes" turned on or not. I don't know how long it's been around for. Maybe it's related to this underlying font issue.

  • On closer inspection, it's not that the text moved; it's that the keys lost their bottom parts and some width. The amount of whitespace in the new layout looks weird, but adjusting the gray (key) background size would resolve it, I think. – Monica Cellio Sep 27 at 22:44

I'm finding links really hard to see. Look at this:

screenshot

"Gemara" in the first line is a link, which I can only tell by underlining -- the font color looks the same to me. This is true for both visited and unvisited links. A bigger problem comes in comments -- Al Berko's name there looks just like comments from deleted users look. That's disconcerting; Al is right here.

Compare that to the older style:

screenshot

The links stand out. I can spot the links in the answer at a glance -- very helpful when scanning for linked sources! -- and the user names and "edited" text clearly say "if you click me you'll get something out of it". I think the "edited" line is particularly important there for teaching new users how the site works -- community-curated, not your own blog, etc.

This issue came up before on meta and the answer was to underline the links, like you're doing now in the new style. That was never really satisfying to me, but I figured hey, it's meta and most people don't come here; it'll be fine. But I still miss links on meta sometimes, and I'd really rather that not spread to main.

Please please please make links more visible, in addition to improving the contrast between followed and non-followed ones in places where you distinguish.

Links are very visible on Meta.SE, which also has the new design, so I'm hoping this is a per-site configuration bug and not a deeper issue. If we can customize link colors as it appears we can, could we have the old colors back? We know those worked.

I am now using a user style on both main and meta to fix the worst offenders (posts and comments), but I'd much rather not have to tune this sort of thing myself. Link colors need to be clearly differentiated from non-link text and, ideally, between visited and unvisited. Please fix!

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    I assume that as on Christianity, links on pointed Hebrew will make it much harder to read. I'll go look for an example now. The Hebrew is also a little small for me to comfortably read, but y'all might be better at it. – curiousdannii Sep 1 at 0:40
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  • @Catija (and Aaron) thanks for addressing the link colors -- much better!! (A few days ago I was noticing that the link colors were also making some mod tools harder to use, but hadn't gotten around to writing it up for a public audience. Now I don't have to. :-) ) – Monica Cellio Sep 12 at 19:31

Is tag color fixed across the network? Maybe it's just the shock of a change and I'll get used to it in a week, but the bright blue tags seem a little out of place on our background. Compare the tags to the more muted -- but still visible -- highlighting of the "active" tab:

screenshot of front page

Update: Apparently the tag color is not fixed; here's what they look like on English Language & Usage (with the new design):

EL&U

Underlining pointed Hebrew in links is not good (example from here):

Example of underlined Hebrew links

One solution could be to have a different colour underline, as shown here on lifehacker.com, see MSE proposal.

  • Have you ever seen a clear looking implementation of underlined pointed Hebrew? – WAF Sep 2 at 17:45

- Comments are now rendered in Serif font. ~Catija

I like the fact that question and answer posts got their serif font back, however, the rest of the screen retains its sans-serif font, which makes it a little dizzying for me to read. Also, comments use Hebrew too, so I think it would make sense for them to also have the serif font.

Example image1:

example][1]


1 I know this one doesn't have a lot of Hebrew in the comments, but there are some questions that do.

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    The disconnect between serif and sans is super-distracing on all sites afflicted by this. The problem is that they need to plug in the site theme’s serif face into more than merely the main Q&A bodies, back the way it was. Since they’ve already relented to allow some sites to have a serif face, they need to complete the fixes and restore the site font to the rest of the places they’ve stripped it from. Otherwise it is, as you say, dizzying and distracting. – tchrist Sep 2 at 16:22
  • @tchrist welcome to Mi Yodeya Meta. Nice to see you here. – msh210 Sep 6 at 5:26
  • Comments have serif fonts now. The rest of the site will retain the sans-serif font style. Jon wrote up an explanation for it on MSE. – Catija Sep 24 at 19:48
  • @Catija Thank you for that, and I know this may be a little picky, but can we please get the serif font in the comment editing box too (like we had before)? It just seems a little jarring to me to write in sans-serif (and looking "ugly") and when I'm done it turns into the "nice" serif font. – Ploni Oct 11 at 3:24

Watched tags were slightly difficult to notice with the old theme, but now it's almost impossible for me to notice unless I tilt my screen or look at it at an angle:

new theme doesn't show watched tags very well

  • We're working on accessibility in the upcoming months and we will be revisiting how we decorate watched tags to make them more apparent without relying on color alone. – Catija Oct 10 at 5:15

The Hebrew keyboard is currently overlapping with the sidebar:

Image showing the Hebrew keyboard

  • This is a z-axis problem. As a note, it is possible to move the keyboard's position by clicking and dragging when you see the four-pointed arrow after hovering in the upper part of the pop-up. – Catija Sep 13 at 22:09

This is by design. These are absolutely lovely touches that really do make the sites unique but, sadly, they also add to the complexity of the sites and have been removed. ~Catija

The new design lost the "decorations" in the header and on question titles. Was that intentional? I mean these:

screenshot

This decoration added character evocative of some of our source texts, and it's a design element we've used in our publications. I understand if it doesn't fit with the new scheme, but I'm asking in case it's instead just that somebody thought it was superfluous.

We're testing out a change to the logo that includes the dot under the tree. Any feedback on this is welcome! ~ Catija

Brain-storming a possible solution to the missing question-mark:

To restore the question-mark and also tie the right side of the header to the left, create a pruned version of the Mi Yodeya tree consisting of just the central question mark and spiral, including the bottom dot, but removing all other branches and leaves, and place that to the left of the Hebrew text on the top-right, effectively punctuating it. ("מי יודע?‏" = "Who knows?")1 Here's a rough mock-up of what this would look like:

מי יודע?‏

Make sure that the letters and punctuation are the same color.

To further tie the header together and make the right side more attractive, consider also adding some yellow and red leaves around the Hebrew letters on the right, maybe scattered around the bottoms of the letters, reinforcing the autumnal colors with fallen leaves.


1. By pulling out the question mark and making it more explicit, the right side of the header would then be offering commentary on the left side. This function fits thematically with the font on the right side, Rashi Script, which is named after the father of Rabbinic commentary.

  • Along with this, I'd like to see the dot also return under the tree on the left, so we have question marks on both sides, one with lots of foliage and one not. – Monica Cellio Aug 31 at 18:48
  • @MonicaCellio I proposed that previously, but maybe that would make the reset of the logo too small or top-heavy. – Isaac Moses Aug 31 at 18:50
  • Right, I just wanted to bring up that aspect of your earlier suggestion again for further review. You might be right about that forcing shrinkage that wouldn't serve us well. – Monica Cellio Aug 31 at 18:58
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    @Catija I like the way you worked out the tree problem. – Isaac Moses Sep 12 at 18:48
  • Aaron gets credit, I just get to announce it. I'll let him know @IsaacMoses :) – Catija Sep 12 at 18:49
  • @Catija I was using the corporate sense of "you" :) – Isaac Moses Sep 12 at 18:50
  • No offense, but I think this looks really awkward. -1 – ezra Oct 3 at 1:50

It used to be that when viewing the site in desktop view on a mobile device, the page would be in proper proportions, and you’d have to scroll left and right or zoom out to see the entire page. I kinda preferred that to whatever this is:

In this version, everything is so scrunched together, and it just overall doesn’t look very pretty.

I would much rather leave the desktop version the way it is, and a mobile viewer would have to scroll left and right to see the whole thing. If that annoys them, well, that’s why there’s a mobile site. But adapting the desktop site to a mobile device just doesn’t work.

  • The mobile view update isn't completed at this point but will be enhanced over time. When you are using mobile, you can use the "disable responsiveness" link in the footer to turn off the responsive design and that should address most of your concerns for the time being. As a note, it looks like your mobile browser behaves quite differently than mine. Your header is lacking the logo and the font and many of the elements are bigger. – Catija Sep 5 at 20:00
  • @Catija Some of that might be my ad blocker - sometimes it blocks images. I’ll see if I turn that off if the page looks more normal. – DonielF Sep 5 at 20:04
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    Oh, it won't look anything like normal, even without the adblocker... but disabling the responsive design will pretty much make it look like you're used to, plus the left navigation sidebar. – Catija Sep 5 at 20:05

I think the Hebrew words "מי יודע" on the right side of the header in the new site theme looks awkward. It's too big, and the contrast between the color of the words and the background is really sharp.

I understand it's somewhat of a "tradition" to have the words מי יודע in Rashi script, but to me it looks strange when blown up so large. Maybe we should go to a different font instead? I think that would look a lot better.

Some suggestions, for if we were going to change the font of the logo (which I highly doubt), would be either a Vilna font of some sort or maybe Narkisim. Maybe we could add nikkud to the words to: מִי יוֹדֵעַ

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