Top ten things you like/hate about pep - Kudos or brickbats?

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Postby 110-1079111554 » Fri Apr 23, 2004 12:32 pm

I love the entire forum.
My only addition to the debate would be to suggest the addition of an open topic, ie not driven by the headers that you have set up.
There are a number of things that I would love to open lines of discussion on, but they do not seem to suit the headings that you have given us.
Any chance of starting an "open topic"?
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Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Fri Apr 23, 2004 1:28 pm

Yes, nic88fiddle, it's possible to set up a more general forum, but what are you looking to talk about? General musical issues? General piano? General life? If you can give me some guidance where you want to go with another forum, I'll do my best to make it happen. :;):
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Postby Mins Music » Fri Apr 23, 2004 5:12 pm

Hey nic! Congrats on becoming a SUPER member! :cool:

I like that members get a chance to be called SUPER! :laugh:




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Postby 80-1091265929 » Sun Aug 15, 2004 3:34 am

Hello, I've recently been on this site and I think it is a great site. But before I spit anything about what I hate about this site, I think suggestions are some of the most important elements for improvement rather than flagrant loathing. So here it goes...

You have alloted many categories for the different aspects of the piano, and the message boards are pretty well organized to cover the vast range. But so far as the new suggestion for the category, how about one like Cafe, or just general discussion, or just some place to hang and say hi and say stuff without having to ask questions(other parts are well suited for questions). That's as for as the board suggestions, and maybe condensing some of the subcategories, but not essential.

The front page design elements are pretty good, and you don't have to jazz it up with "fancy" images or anything. Personally from web design experience I prefer black on white text(easiest to read) but the current theme works just fine.

Maybe some of your top stories(what would be interesting to people coming in) on the front page, with small snippets to get the reader to read it, have it outlined as News, and then have a more tag for all the other articles at the bottom of the news cell.

If you have news articles or items on specific composers organised or specific categories of information, have that on the front page also(in a small box), and have your information organized in a self-explanative manner so that people may be able to quickly find or quickly find something that may interest them, a quick cell of maybe 20-30 small text links would be good, and with CCS have this small box present on every page, in order to increase appearance in terms of search engines.

like some of the gist of the articles i saw were parents having to deal with the aspects of piano with their children, this might be one the links called "Parent's House" or "Parents Corner" or "Parents and children" or a link the would accurately reflect the content that would catch the attention of a parent. And like wise for 'Piano' techniques, 'Piano' anatonomy, and just basically covering the articles of your site and allowing the visitors to quickly access the information that interests them.

And Definitely(!!) put a search box on the front page(visible), for those who are trying to find something specific in your comprehensive site!

Ok, that's all my suggestions.. have fun!! I know it's hard to revamp a whole web site(oh boy do i know!) but that's not necessary, maybe just a brief web page that those small text links link to explain the various parts of that section(links to other parts on the site,this is all just organization and making it easier for the visitor to find what he/she needs or interests him/her). Hey, have you considered doing partner articles in order to vamp up the visitor count? Like offering interesting columns on other relative sites in order to direct people to your site?

I've also been wondering, where is the revenue that runs this site? I've just been wondering, because I've haven't seen any ads or any type of commercialism. Thanks!

:)
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Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Sun Aug 15, 2004 11:50 am

Pianoloverinwashington wrote:You have alloted many categories for the different aspects of the piano, and the message boards are pretty well organized to cover the vast range. But so far as the new suggestion for the category, how about one like Cafe, or just general discussion, or just some place to hang and say hi and say stuff without having to ask questions(other parts are well suited for questions).

Maybe some of your top stories(what would be interesting to people coming in) on the front page, with small snippets to get the reader to read it, have it outlined as News, and then have a more tag for all the other articles at the bottom of the news cell.

If you have news articles or items on specific composers organised or specific categories of information, have that on the front page also(in a small box), and have your information organized in a self-explanative manner so that people may be able to quickly find or quickly find something that may interest them, a quick cell of maybe 20-30 small text links would be good, and with CCS have this small box present on every page, in order to increase appearance in terms of search engines.

like some of the gist of the articles i saw were parents having to deal with the aspects of piano with their children, this might be one the links called "Parent's House" or "Parents Corner" or "Parents and children" or a link the would accurately reflect the content that would catch the attention of a parent. And like wise for 'Piano' techniques, 'Piano' anatonomy, and just basically covering the articles of your site and allowing the visitors to quickly access the information that interests them.

And Definitely(!!) put a search box on the front page(visible), for those who are trying to find something specific in your comprehensive site!

Ok, that's all my suggestions.. have fun!! I know it's hard to revamp a whole web site(oh boy do i know!) but that's not necessary, maybe just a brief web page that those small text links link to explain the various parts of that section(links to other parts on the site,this is all just organization and making it easier for the visitor to find what he/she needs or interests him/her). Hey, have you considered doing partner articles in order to vamp up the visitor count? Like offering interesting columns on other relative sites in order to direct people to your site?

I've also been wondering, where is the revenue that runs this site? I've just been wondering, because I've haven't seen any ads or any type of commercialism. Thanks!

:)

Thanks for your perceptive comments, Pianoloverinwashington. Let me answer some of these. First, the easiest regarding income. The site has NO income, no ads and no commercialism because it is entirely non-profit in nature. All articles and my time to run the site are donated. The server space is donated by a public-minded visitor. To the extent that there are costs, I have paid them out of my own pocket. I started PEP 9 years ago when sites were still largely educational. The web has changed but I have kept PEP non-profit. We have avoided "partnering" with other sites precisely to avoid conflict-of-interest situations that don't really concerrn a commercial site much, but which, we as a non-rofit, have to be cognizant of.

Others have suggested a "general" sort of forum like the one you have suggested. I'm not opposed to it, but, by nature such a forum would become extremely "disorganized" and hard to search, since almost any topic could be found there. Such a forum would also need to be moderated. I've thought about some sort of "general piano" forum, just to try to limit the forum a little. Anyway, the problem is one of proper organization rather than unwillingness to have such a forum. I just have to give it some thought about how to do it in such a way as to keep it form getting completely unwieldy. I'm open to suggestions, either in this thread or in the new Suggestions forum.

The idea of having small snippets from top (for us, "new") articles is a good one. I've thought about this, but wanted to clean up the home page as much as possible in the last site re-write in March. If I can figure out a way to do this without cluttering up the home page, I'll implement it. We try to let people know what's new both on the home page and on our Premiering page, but I provide only titles, not article summaries.

Siimilarly, we have exactly the kind of division of articles on the site into various groups of readers (parents, teachers,etc.) on our Getting the Most from The Piano Education Page article. I think it's a good idea to do something like that on the home page now, especially since the home page is so much more streamlined now than it used to be.

I used to have a "Quick Search" link on the home page; I took it off because almost nobody used it! In fact, very few people use our Search, Table of Contents, or Site Map pages, either. I don't know why this is true. However, I think your suggestion is definitely a good one.

Thanks again for taking the time to write about your perceptions. I hope others will give me theirs as well. :D
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Postby 98-1091274403 » Mon Aug 23, 2004 8:03 am

Congratulation to all of you who have provided this website. I find myself taking way too much time away from my family just to read and absorb everything written here! Keep up the terrfic job and THANK YOU so very much for a website that is invaluable to me as a piano instructor!! My students LOVE the Just for Kids site. I have received positive feedback from students and parents. My five year old is just starting to get interested as well....although he would still rather play games on PBS website :)
I love the site and have made you my FAVORITE page!!!
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Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Tue Aug 24, 2004 4:56 pm

Thanks, bobmarbj,

We always appreciate positive comments, since that's a part of what motivates all the many people who give of their time and talents to inform others on PEP. PEP is truly the piano site by and for pianists and piano lovers. I am always amazed that so many talented and knowledgeable people are willing to donate their efforts to the site. :D
All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man's life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom. - Albert Einstein
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Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Tue Oct 12, 2004 8:04 am

Pianoloverinwashington wrote:You have alloted many categories for the different aspects of the piano, and the message boards are pretty well organized to cover the vast range. But so far as the new suggestion for the category, how about one like Cafe, or just general discussion, or just some place to hang and say hi and say stuff without having to ask questions(other parts are well suited for questions). That's as for as the board suggestions, and maybe condensing some of the subcategories, but not essential. ...


And Definitely(!!) put a search box on the front page(visible), for those who are trying to find something specific in your comprehensive site! ....

Thanks for your suggestions, pianoloverinwashington! Just to show you that we do listen to and, where posssible and appropriate, act upon suggestions, I thought I'd update you about some changes/additions I've made.

Regarding searching from the home page, I've added a new set of direct links on the home page to all the various search tools we provide for the site. I've re-written the keyword search page and the search results page to give better and better formatted output. I've also provided an entirely new search tool, the Score. This breaks down the over 250 separate documents (over 800 pages) on the site into both subject types (reviews, interviews, etc.) and user groups (parents, teachers, kids, starting points and many more). This addresses directly several of your other, very good suggestions. The Score is also linked prominently on the home page, both as such and in a new section of the home page comprising links to the Starting Points sections of the Score.

Regarding a "general" forum, I've added a new "Music Talk" forum for people who want to discuss anything musical at all, not necessarily related to piano, per se. I'm hoping this will provide sufficient latitude for people to talk, but still keep it focused enough to be worth reading.

If others have something in mind that they'd like to see on PEP, let me know. I'll be happy to hear and will act upon suggestions, where possible and appropriate. :cool:




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Postby Tranquillo » Thu Oct 04, 2007 6:31 am

I know this post goes back years ... I think PEP is great! This page is really a resourceful page with no doubt many many interesting pages piano related and music related. I love this site in particular the message board. I visit almost the site everyday.
I know this will take very very long but I thought that the site would benefit from a new look. Not that it looks in anyway attrocious or bad. It is done very proffessionally but a new sort of 'refreshed' look would be a nice change.
Just a thought ...
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Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Thu Oct 04, 2007 7:26 am

Becibu wrote:I know this will take very very long but I thought that the site would benefit from a new look. Not that it looks in anyway attrocious or bad. It is done very proffessionally but a new sort of 'refreshed' look would be a nice change.
Just a thought ...

I agree! I usually completely update the appearance of the site about every 18 months or so (that's what the "opus numbers" at the bottom of each page refer to). However, you're right that it's VERY time consuming. It takes about two weeks of full-time work to do it for all of PEP's over 350 documents, even though I've simplified as much of the process as possible with CSS and include pages. I just haven't been able to find that kind of time recently, given that I've been battling almost everyday against spamming of the site from Russia, China and Korea, mostly. I hope to get to a rewrite in the next month or, failing that, before the first of the year. Volunteers to help with that have been in short supply! :D

By the way, this is a good time for any suggestions about the site's new look that you or others may have. There are some things I know how to do, but can't do because we run in donated space and have basically no control of the server. Aside from things which require more control over the server than I have, anything is possible! :)
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Postby Tranquillo » Thu Oct 04, 2007 9:14 pm

Right then were up for a new look!
I think a bit of colour would be nice ... I am into graphic design ... not a graphic designer but I like to photoshop and can spend hours using photoshop in my spare time ...
I gave it some thought jsut wondering if you wouldnt mind ideas in the form of images attached ... ?
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Postby Tranquillo » Thu Oct 04, 2007 10:07 pm

Just another thought but might sound corny since nobody else suggested.
I listen to the radio frequently on a classical station and there are facts about composers really interesting ones. I thought if we had a forum on composers and just dicuss out findings that would be fun ... I suppose i'd go unde general music talk.
Its just an idea ...
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Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Fri Oct 05, 2007 7:20 am

Becibu wrote:I gave it some thought jsut wondering if you wouldnt mind ideas in the form of images attached ... ?

I thought if we had a forum on composers and just dicuss out findings that would be fun ... I suppose i'd go unde general music talk.

I got the image you were good enough to prepare in Photoshop (I envy you! Photoshop is so pricey here that I haven't sprung for it.). I really appreciate your input and help. Generally, I try to keep colors light on backgrounds for maximum contrast and readability. No matter what the new version looks like, one or two people will complain about it being hard to read. Considering that the site gets several million unique visits a year, that's not bad. :D

A thread on composers is a good idea. Let's start one in Music Talk for now, and, if there is sufficient interest, I'll create a new forum for that general topic.
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Postby Stretto » Mon Oct 08, 2007 6:55 am

As far as a new look, rather than changing all of PEP's pages - perhaps just a new look for the home page would suffice as in change in coloring of the backround, for example, something different rather than the blue "scratchy" stuff and a new design for the square or symbol for the "Piano Education Page".



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Postby Tranquillo » Mon Oct 08, 2007 7:27 am

As far as a new look, rather than changing all of PEP's pages - perhaps just a new look for the home page would suffice as in change in coloring of the backround, for example, something different rather than the blue "scratchy" stuff and a new design for the square or symbol for the "Piano Education Page".


I agree ... just changing the graphics and the symbol and backgrounfs wiould refresh the look ...



:laugh:




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