Richard

Parkz 2014

66 posts in this topic

After two years in development, we’re pleased to announce an all-new Parkz. It’s been about eight years since Parkz launched, and in that time a lot has changed and the site has grown hugely. There’s now more than 7,000 photos in our gallery, 1,500 rides in our database and each month we serve more than 100,000 page views to mobile devices alone.

As such, the primary goal with this relaunch is accessibility. The new Parkz is about putting this content at your fingertips.

http://www.parkz.com.au/

Mobile Design
We’re fully mobile friendly.

Search
Find content easily and intuitively with a new site-wide search engine located in the header of every page. Easily the best new feature of the new site!

Browse
Browse, sort and filter all the content on Parkz in every imaginable way to effortlessly find what you’re looking for -- or kill some time.

Check-Ins
Keep tabs on rides you’ve been on and parks you’ve been to.

Submit (coming soon!)
The whole submissions system has been completely rethought. Drag and drop photos onto a ride page for instant upload and tagging. Edit or add to our park and ride database quickly and intuitively. This functionality will be enabled in the next week or so -- for now we just want to get the new site working smoothly!

Behind the scenes, this is probably the biggest leap ever in the Total Thrills / Roller-Coaster.com.au / Parkz continuum. The site is built from scratch using entirely new technologies and every aspect offers a faster, smoother and overall better experience.

As always, feedback/comments/thoughts/suggestions are greatly appreciated.

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So excited to see the launch of the new site and I'm happy to have helped in the development of the new site... there's more coming soon! Who's been to the most theme parks and on the most rides? I've checked into some of the rides and parks I've been on.


Is there a way to quickly see the most recent posts in forums now? I noticed a blank white part at the bottom of the new homepage... is this where this is going?

Thanks for the feedback :) Would you want to see the most recent posts on the home page or on every page (in the footer or something?)

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Still no favicon?!

What exactly is our membership money paying you for then?!

Feedback:

- I don't know why, but the main banner (blurred buzzsaw) just seems a little too plain for my liking. That's just my opinion, others probably love it.

- Dreamworld - Big brother should be considered 'seasonal' rather than closed, unless you're going to update it each season. Personally I'd list is as "Open:Seasonal"

- Dreamworld - clicking on Little Puff results in a PHP error

- Movieworld - HWSD 2 should be "Operating", not "Announced"

- SFMM - Logo seems to be a broken jpg

- SFMM - Green Lantern shouldn't still be "Announced"

- SFMM - Road Runner Express - as above

- Legoland USA doesn't seem to exist

- KBF also has a broken logo

- USH as above

That's what I've stumbled across so far but I've got other things to do. Looks good overall so far though.

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Favicon is there now for the site... forums are still generic though.

Good point with Big Brother... though I wouldn't be surprised if it's remained as "closed" for the most recent run of the show. We'll hold off on new parks/rides and edits until this system is in place because it's going to make the process very painless.

All good feedback... thanks for the comments guys!

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Any plan on an update to the forums themselves?

Personally I hope not as it wasn't that long ago it was done and the current layout seems quite good.

Suggestion: The current forum banner is buzzsaw and has been for a long time. As is the actual website banner itself. Maybe change them up every once in a while. Maybe every season.

Summer: Wet'N'Wild/WWW/Random waterpark

Autumn: Something like this where there is a lot of different colours

Winter: A snow covered themepark, or even MW's White Christmas

Spring: Generic vibrant shot of a park around the world.

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On the 'new posts' I find the 'View New Content' is pretty much the only thing I use to navigate the forums... then I open each thread in a new tab.

Depending on how often I visit, a static 'recent posts' widget is potentially showing me threads or posts i've already read. The view new content is better, because it will only show me stuff since the last time I checked in.

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On the 'new posts' I find the 'View New Content' is pretty much the only thing I use to navigate the forums... then I open each thread in a new tab.

I'm with you on this one. It's pretty much the only part of the site I visit daily. I only browse the rest if I'm looking for something.

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Yep, I think it's actually really interesting how everyone has their own way of attacking forums. It'd be impossible to have a one-size-fits-all solution unless the Forums becomes nothing but sidebars/blocks/widgets. I personally never do anything but browse into each individual forum based on the "new posts" icon.

There's possibly a place for "latest posts" on the main homepage, though we'll probably look at the stats closely to see if it is commonly used enough to warrant this prime real estate.

I'd see the forum sidebar being used for main site activities rather than forum-related. I can't imagine anyone actually uses that "Recent Topics" block tucked down on the right of the page?

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There's a recent topic section?

I don't think the forums are live enough to warrant a large amount of real estate. Maybe a "Discuss this park on our forums" or something like that. The most I've ever seen on the new posts page was about 9 threads one day. It's not like we have 10000 active users or anything. Sure each person's different but the new posts button does well IMO. I don't know if it's possible but it would be kind of cool for the "View New Posts" button to be red or something when there's new stuff there.

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Good news -- you can now check off parks and rides pretty much wherever you are on the site. The check in feeds and search results pages (e.g. http://www.parkz.com.au/search/rides/location/country-AU) all have"Been Here?" or "Ridden This?" buttons. Now you don't have to go to each individual park or ride page to say that you've experienced that park/attraction.

More improvements are coming soon.

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Site looks absolutely gorgeous, congratulations Richard/Nick.

One suggestion I'd have is in our "About" page, have a numbered "Flat Rides Ridden", "Coasters Ridden", "Parks Visited" section. Nice to have a list of rides & parks but I'd love to have numbers to show off our overall dorkness.

Edited by Flea

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If the forum thing had a place on the old homepage, and there is space for it, unless you have something better to put there (which I'm sure you probably do) why wouldn't you just keep it.

This is something we can definitely trial on the homepage -- we can test the percentage of people who visit the home page and use that feature. We want to be able to provide the best experience for all people and that means including features that are useful for the most people.

Since you've made the effort to request it, we'll definitely be willing to try!

Site looks absolutely gorgeous, congratulations Richard/Nick.

One suggestion I'd have is in our "About" page, have a numbered "Flat Rides Ridden", "Coasters Ridden", "Parks Visited" section. Nice to have a list of rides & parks but I'd love to have numbers to show off our overall dorkness.

Thanks, Flea! That's a great suggestion and definitely doable. We will look at that sort of functionality once we get the core features of the site up and running again (such as adding/editing rides, parks and photos).

But keep the suggestions coming, this is all really useful feedback.

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