We Are About To Release Another Graphical Upgrade

Hi everyone,

In the upcoming days we are about to release another graphical upgrade to our sites. The goal of this upgrade is to make the sites cleaner, more attractive and more efficient. Learning from previous experience, we decided to announce this upgrade a few days in advance as well as point about some key changes to the screens, to save you the time adapting to those changes. Before actually releasing the upgrade we will reply to this topic.

As always, the upgrade is released as an a/b test only to a selected number of sites (MAC, DYI, RT, GVB and AC). During the test some of you are going to get the older version while others the new version. At the end of the test we will compare the usage statistics between the two versions (e.g. number of shares, signups, answers, etc.) to see which of the versions is more attractive to most of you.

While this methodology is great to gather your overall preference, it does not allow us to find specific issues or annoyances we might have introduced with this new version. If you find something that annoys you or otherwise you believe should be changed, please let us know about it and we will either fix it on the spot or issue a follow up test for the fix.

A preview MAC blog on a mobile

A preview MAC blog on a tablet

A preview MAC blog on a PC

For those of you who can't wait, you can see any page as seen on the new version by adding ?tstyle=rt to the page url, for example https://www.myaquariumclub.com/how-can-i-anchor-plants-to-the-bottom-of-the-aquarium-can-i-use-lead-weights-to-anchor-the-plants-18188.html?tstyle=rt

So what did we do?


We removed the right column from pages focused on other actions, such as sign-in or asking questions. In addition, we completely removed the Ask Box even on pages including the right column.

We changed the colors of the top bar as well as of the links. New links appear in light blue and visited links appear in dark grayish blue.

Top bar

We moved the functions of the top bar to the left on PCs, gathered them under a humburger icon on mobiles and tablets.

In addition on mobile and tablets we added a "pen" button appearing at the bottom right at all times, allowing you to use all the "new" options that were available at the top bar.

Home page

We removed the right column, added more space to the featured blogs and divided the Latest Activity section into three columns, still having the newer messages at the top.

Topic pages

We changed the action icons (e.g. send a private message, etc) as well as the icons marking the user ranks. In addition we changed the voting functions to +1 (vote up) and -1 (vote down) and moved them to the bottom of the message.

We removed the "quick reply" function, added more share options to share messages and gathered all the infrequent message functions (e.g. quote, edit, moderation functions, etc.) under one "more" link.

Blog pages

We added the voting functions to the top bar.

Your feedback is not just welcomed, but required

As mentioned earlier we would very much like to hear your feedback! If you have something to say, please do not hesitate to reply to this topic!

If you really don't like the new version, we advise to give 4 days of trial, and if after that you still feel it is unbearable use this link to go back to the old version.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

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Posted on Site Feedback
admin avatar
2 months ago #2
Gold Member
Blogs: 2
Forum: 215
Votes: 0

If you didn't yet test drive the new version, we strongly encourage you to do it and send over your feedback. We worked hard and made it possible for you to test it before it is even released, so we can gather your feedback pre-releasing and fix any show stoppers if you find anything disturbing.

To use this option, on any of the sites, just add "?tstyle=rt" at the end of any page address and see how it looks. Below you can see an image that shows you how to do it.

I would strongly advise to check out at least a blog page, a forum page and the homepage. Of course you can test any other page as well.

Take care and have fun 😊

admin avatar
2 months ago #3
Gold Member
Blogs: 2
Forum: 215
Votes: 0

Hi everyone and many thanks for your insightful feedback! We have already made changes resulting out of it, and added many others for future followup tests.

As some of you likely noticed, we released the test of the new version on MAC, DYI, RT, GVB and AC. It is now starting to collect usage data and compare it between the new and older versions.

In addition, you can compare how a specific page looks on the different versions on all sites. It is a very interesting experience and I encourage you to give it a try. To do it, open the page on a new tab and add tstyle=normal to see the page on the older version or tstyle=rt to see it on the new version.

Looking forward to hear what you think,

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