[Haskell-cafe] The Haskell theme

Mark Lentczner markl at glyphic.com
Tue Oct 12 23:49:45 EDT 2010

On Oct 6, 2010, at 12:10 PM, Don Stewart wrote:
> * haskell visual design group?
>        + consistent color themes across haskell.org sites.
>        + consistent haskell branding.

On Oct 12, 2010, at 2:17 PM, Christopher Done wrote:

> To kick off discussion about Haskell's general theme, as discussed
> recently, here's some random ideas.

I was there for the BoF discussion, and this was one of the topics I was there to discuss. I spent some time beforehand looking at what other successful language communities do w.r.t. visual design. I found that none of the communities had a single theme; most had two or three. but these themes were visually harmonious. Furthermore, I found that they were used consistently, and that the various themes were generally at the same level of "polish".

For Haskell I think this means that while it isn't essential that we have a single common theme on all properties, it is important that various site designers think of the "whole look" of Haskell when designing their projects. This means leaning toward consistent colors, and logo form, rather than exact layout. Further, it seems more important that our projects get designers who will do a thorough job, and less important that it be a single "central design group".

It is no accident that the new Haddock backend looks like the new wiki design: Thomas Schilling (nominolo) supplied the initial style sheet that the Haddock team used to build the "Ocean" theme. I think this exemplifies what we should strive for: The two projects look well together, look like they have a relationship, and both are full treatments of their subjects. It isn't so important that they have identical layouts or details.

Since parts of the Hackage site integrate so closely with the Haddock output, I've been asked if I would take a stab at styling the new Hackage (or at least the package pages). I'll be aiming to make that fit, but without being 100% rigid about conformance to the Ocean output.

> http://img840.imageshack.us/img840/3577/ideasv.png

Lovely ideas there and I think a Haskell project built on those lines would continue to look well with the wiki and Haddock.

> I don't know what I was thinking here but it seemed like fun:
> http://img412.imageshack.us/img412/1827/rect5935.png

For some projects, I could imagine this feel would be more appropriate - yet still, there is enough tie-in to make it part of the family.

> Maybe we should do a theme poll like the logo poll. I don't know.
> Regardless, I think we do need to decide on something and stick with
> it. Should this discussion be taken to the web devel mailing list? Is
> that appropriate?

I'd lean toward us putting these thoughts down in the wiki, and developing a set of "guide posts" for styling Haskell, rather than a strict set of policies.

	- Mark

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