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Forum: The Situation Room > Navigation to Seasons


Hi all,

I've been away for a while. Now that I'm back the first thing that attracted my attention was something that I've always found uncomfortable about using this wiki: the navigation doesn't provide an opportunity to directly browse to a specific season. If e.g. I want to go to season 2 which I'm currently watching I have to browse through the submenus under "Main Page" and see if the season I'm looking for does by chance appear under any of the four submenus. If it doesn't I have to click on a link to an actor who appears on that season e.g. Jack Bauer, or on a link to another season and then manually edit the address in the browser's address bar. Which is both very uncomfortable.

Generally speaking I think it's not a good solution on this wiki that all submenus under "Main page" are generated dynamically based on permanently changing statistic data - that means everytime you're looking for a season or episode you'll have to find a new way because the navigation keeps permanently changing.

Wouldn't it be good to have a fifth menu under "Main Page" which is "Seasons" and has a submenu listing the seasons? I think technically it should be possible without any problems, I've already seen it on other wikis.

bye, B. harder 01:11, 16 April 2009 (UTC)

Sounds like a good idea, but the risk of sounding obnoxious, how come you don't just type in "Day 1" or "Season 1" into the search box? It takes you right quick. I can add that Seasons Menu into the Main Page menu if you like (for the record it's in the Mediawiki namespace and only sysops can edit there, which is why you're probably not finding it). Blue Rook  talk  contribs 01:00, 17 April 2009 (UTC)
Hi Blue Rook, well, honestly I never even once had the idea... I would have expected a list of approx. 250 search results containing the words "day" and/or "1". Since I've been working as a web developer myself for almost ten years I think if I didn't get that I'm probably not the only one...
but apart of that I think in terms of usability it would be nice to have at least one stable navigation menu to make navigation easier for newbies and people like me ;) B. harder 19:39, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, the search feature doesn't work like a regular internet search engine. If you type in a title, it takes you directly there. It even has an auto-complete feature if you're unsure about the spelling. I didn't realize some people didn't realize that. I use the search box to navigate all of the site. It must be next to impossible to get around Wiki 24's articles going from link to link! --proudhug 20:38, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
I'm going to add what B. harder mentioned to the Mediawiki message, he's demonstrated a need for it even among experienced web users. It's troubling to hear this though... I thought typing in the search menu was by far the most common method of getting from page to page! Blue Rook  talk  contribs 20:51, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Hi, thx, I think it's better like that. Maybe if people are accustomed to using the search function as navigation tool depends on how often they use wikis. I relatively rarely use wikis, that's why for me using the search function on a web page is only the last resort if everything else fails. You guys are spending what? 10-20 hrs here every week? You just can't assume that everybody else is as accustomed to this software's technology and feats like you *shrug* B. harder 00:02, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
Seriously, though. If you wanted to get to the Chloe O'Brian page right now, how would you do it, B. harder? Would you go to the main page and navigate through the subsections or something? --proudhug 21:15, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Well, Chloe O'Brian is not a problem, cause she would normally appear under the "most popular" menu, like now for instance she's #4 there. But yeah, if you're looking for a less popular character without using the search function this wiki's navigation gets pretty uncomfortable again... On westwing.wikia.com they have a nice solution for navigating to the actors. They have a menu entry for the actors, with a submenu listing the 7 main actors, plus a link "more..." that sends you to the category:actors page, listing every single actor on the show in alphabetical order. This might be done for the characters as well, and with a little bit of restructuring it might easily fit in the navigation without overloading it.
Dunno how far you guys are willing to restructure the navigation, though. If browsing to actors and characters should be made easier, too, then my suggestion would be to have one main navigation entry to subsume the static navigation categories - like e.g. "Mainpage" subsuming "Seasons", "Actors", "Characters" - and one main entry for all the dynamically generated stuff, like e.g. "Top Content" subsuming "Most Popular", Most Visited" etc. B. harder 00:02, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
oh yes, and one more - since I've already dropped my pants involuntarily outing myself as being to stupid to use the search function - I might as well add this confession: I never really understood the difference between "Most Popular" and "Most Visited".... B. harder 00:17, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
This would've never occurred to me. It's the most normal thing to simply type what I'm looking for in the "search box". I see no need for this whatsoever. Thief12 00:36, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

Yikes! I would very quickly have given up on wikis ages ago if there wasn't a search box like there is. Sometimes if my keyboard isn't as accessible as my mouse or only one of my hands is free, I'll navigate to a specific page without the search box and it's a pain in the ass. Do you do the same thing with Wikipedia, too? I couldn't imagine how that would even be possible.

No, I'm never really browsing through Wikipedia, I only read the articles when listed in an external search engine. If I were regularly contributing to and reading in wiki wiki webs, I maybe would have found out about the advantages of the search function... B. harder 23:33, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

But, I'll one-up you in stupidity department, B. harder. I'm co-founder of Wiki 24 and have been here for over three and a half years, yet I've never once used (or even noticed!) the Most Popular or Most Visited sections until you pointed them out. I don't know what the difference is, either. Maybe one has to do with most viewed and one has to do with most edited? The only sidebar features I ever use are Search box (obviously), Latest intel, The Situation Room and the logo link to the Main Page. Everything else I get to through the Search box. --proudhug 02:04, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

Oops... but that only proves that people with a certain expertise in using wikis do not even get the idea to use the "traditional" navigation menu... Nevertheless I think it was a good decision to add the seasons-menu, for newbies and people like me... ;) B. harder 23:33, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
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