[racket-dev] Revising Racket's home page

From: Greg Hendershott (greghendershott at gmail.com)
Date: Tue Aug 20 11:14:17 EDT 2013

I _really_ like the idea of giving it a fresh redesign and including
more information on the home page.

(comment (for-meta 1 #<<EOF

In a previous life I've participated in some web site redesigns. In my
experience people have many opinions with great reasoning, as well as
style preferences. It can be difficult to get a plurality much less

One I encourage us to use was Google Web Optimizer (free). This makes
it easier to run A/B or multivariate experiments by assigning visitors
different versions of a web site page. You measure "goals" such as
reaching some other page, a download, or a purchase.

How this can help:

- You're forced to define the goals -- what do you want to happen.
This includes who the audience(s) are. (Although there can be debate
about this, too, it's usually easier to resolve, or can be stipulated
as strategy by leadership.)

- You can resolve some questions/debates with data -- one variation
performs better.

- You may discover some variations don't matter. On the one hand it's
disappointing you don't get a clear "winner". On the other hand it
shows you don't need to sweat that part of it, and should probably
flip a coin to pick one and move on to other stuff.

Obviously there are certain big things, like overall style or "tone"
or "values", that can't be driven by data. But like goals, they can be
stipulated by leadership.


On Mon, Aug 19, 2013 at 5:39 PM, Sam Tobin-Hochstadt
<samth at cs.indiana.edu> wrote:
> Recently I (with assistance from Asumu) have spent some time drafting
> a revised home page for Racket. A revised web page will nicely
> complement the big upcoming release, I hope.  You can see the draft
> here, which is ready for people to try out:
>   http://homes.soic.indiana.edu/samth/new-web/
> Some things to try out out: clicking the right and left arrows,
> clicking the "?" box, visiting the RacketCon page.
> The new page addresses a few problems that I see with our current page:
> 1. It works well on small devices, which our current page doesn't.
> Try it out on a phone or a tablet.
> 2. It reduces the size of the top header, which will lighten the
> burden on the documentation pages, for example, or the pkg index if we
> add the header there.
> 3. It puts more info on the first page.  This means that people are
> more likely to see information about how to contribute to Racket or
> approaches to learning programming using our tools.
> 4. The font size is larger, which I think makes it much more readable.
> Perhaps more controversially, I adapted some prose about Racket from
> Matthias' "Racket is ..." post, and added a tag line at the top.
> Lots of work is still needed if we want to use this as the basis for
> Racket's web page (it's written in raw HTML, other pages would need
> work, etc), but I hope that people like it enough to continue pursuing
> this.
> Sam
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>   Racket Developers list:
>   http://lists.racket-lang.org/dev

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