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Other SQL web sites

From: Hal Snyder <hal(at)enteract(dot)com>
To: docs(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Other SQL web sites
Date: 1999-01-10 06:08:26
Message-ID: 87ogo7acdh.fsf@hippo.roxor.org (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-docs
I looked at four commercial SQL server sites: Informix, MS, Oracle,
and Sybase.

Recent postings to this list have considered other web sites, in an
attempt to define what we would like to see in the PostgreSQL site. 

A friend suggested looking at sites for other SQL servers, to look for
common elements. The idea is not to copy slavishly, but to see if
there might be something that a user would expect or find familiar.

1. All sites use a dual navigation-bar approach, using a bar on top
   for going about the corporation at large, and a bar at left for the
   immediate "children" of the current page. I don't think we need the
   top bar.

2. Only the Microsoft pages could expand when I widened my browser
   window. The others just grew a bigger blank area at right.

3. All but the Microsoft page seemed horribly cluttered to me, with
   Oracle the worst offender.

4. There *is* common content in the second tier (topics listed in the
   home page's left navigation bar). It goes something like this:
     Contact Us
     Development
     Downloads
     Partners
     Product Information
     Search
     Support
   
   For us, "partners" would be related open source projects, including
   Apache, Java, ODBC, Perl, PHP, Pike, Python, Roxen, Tcl/Tk.

   We don't have a point of contact for questions. Yes, we have
   mailing lists, live and archived, but no place where someone can
   direct a question - which is why Marc and I see non web-related
   questions on a regular basis coming to webmaster(at)postgresql(dot)org(dot)

   Our web site should have a search engine, but that's just a weekend
   with htdig once the content stabilizes.


Comments on the individual sites-

http://www.informix.com
  Slowest of the sites, when I checked.
  Putrescent mustard color for navbars.

http://www.microsoft.com/sql
  Good per-page information density.
  Good balance of graphics to text (minimal gratuitous imagery)
  Left navbar mostly constant from page to page (bad).

http://www.oracle.com
  Way too much stuff per page.
  Red-on-white color scheme makes me think of First Aid kits.
  Two-tier left navbar with second tier triggered by mouseovers
  (uses too much space).
  Children of home page have gratuitous color change mousevers in
  navbar.

http://www.sybase.com
  Explanatory mouseovers for left navbar (good).

---
Hal

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