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Freshmeat II

CmdrTaco posted more than 13 years ago | from the congratulations-scoop dept.

News 147

linuxlover wrote in to note that Scoop has redesigned Freshmeat, so called Freshmeat II features a ridiculous number of new features, and a super clean design. Congrats scoop, and ignore the flamerz this time around. Those who can, create. Those who can't, bitch.

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Don't follow that link (2)

crisco (4669) | more than 13 years ago | (#468996)

you got me you rat bastard :)

Lucky I could kill off all those sorry little pop up windows before it takes down the machine.

That'll learn me.

Re:anyone have a gif of the old fm look? (1)

BurkeTheEldar (161775) | more than 13 years ago | (#469000)

That would be excellent. However I don't know if scoop etc would be at all interested in having an alternate-look fm around even if it was the old fm they created, as if it was a separate site it might divert some of the crowd and revenue base. It's not like the ODP, unfortunately. If I'm not mistaken the fm source is also unavailable, although it would be cool if it was.

Anyways it would be great to see a reproduction of the just passed fm look if you can get to it, or to hear from you if you find a site that has a similiar look and feel.

This is really a pita as I just recently started imaging sites I had marked as having excellent or interesting designs; I discovered that at least half of them were already altered enough that I didn't care anymore. I had no idea fm was going to poof on me too.

Re:some (hopefully) constructive criticism (1)

te (12575) | more than 13 years ago | (#469002)

Hey moderator person, why does this only deserve a '1'? Hulloo?

Anyway, since Freshmeat's 'new' commenting system totally screwed up my response and crashed netscape to this very same post, I repost the gist of it here:

On #2, I can't but agree enough -- I run a basic 1024 display (laptop), and the browser takes up 2/3 of the screen. That blue bar down the side kills my available realestate and should be removed to at least make the site usable again.


Re:New FM look (1)

Twilight1 (17879) | more than 13 years ago | (#469003)

Exactly! The new features may be nice (I haven't had time to explore them) but I find the front page horrible to attempt to read. The font is too big, too ugly, and the sections of each entry is only seperated by a blank line. Terrible!

Source code (1)

SnapperHead (178050) | more than 13 years ago | (#469005)

I am sure that the freshmeat code isn't that hard for anyone to write on there own ... But, will we EVER get to see the source ?

I get upset when all of these pro-open source sites don't release there own sites source code.

until (succeed) try { again(); }

Freshmeat announcements == downloads (1)

Tim Fraser (16824) | more than 13 years ago | (#469007)


I've had my LOMAC project on Freshmeat since June of 1999. I keep close track of LOMAC's FTP download logs, and they've shown me that nothing brings in the downloads like a release announcement on Freshmeat! Mailing list discussions, newsgroup posts, papers at conferences - none of these things seem to make a bump in the download rate. But every release announcements I've made on Freshmeat has immediately brought a nice sharp spike.

Thanks Freshmeat! You rule!

Another password... (1)

Carey (2195) | more than 13 years ago | (#469010)

I see that FII now right upfront would like a username and password. How long will it be before evey website I read requires me to log in or at a minimum consumes part of my screen with a login form?

I really despise this. I like personalization, but isn't there a better way?

Every now and then, my cookies get screwed up and then I have to consult a register of usernames and passwords to figure out how to log back in. This is insecure which ever way you look at it.

Why can't these cutting edge websites use something better. Couldn't you experiment with using digital certificates of some kind. Yes, at first it would be more work for you and for me, but in the long-term wouldn't that make more sense?

(PS - I am not trying to invite a discussion on the merits of PKI or X.509 certificates or the politics of encryption, I'm suggesting an alternative to me putting separate passwords into 100 different websites.)

Why couldn't Freshmeat and Slashdot share user information?

Does anyone else have some ideas to stop this insanity?

ok... no (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#469011)

i'm usually not a rob basher but this time you've really pissed me off.

you're obviously not much of a freshmeat reader because if you were, you wouldn't be against any of the constructive criticism (flame, huh?!) freshmeat's readers are providing.

you obviously just looked at the front page, said it was pretty, and went ahead and told the world that since they have a problem with it, it obviously means they're not an OSDN employee and therefore too dumb or something..

personally, i don't care what scoop did to freshmeat visually.. hell ive gotton used to navigating all kinds of websites in lynx over the years so that's not a problem. scoop also added many features, and asside from that and the fact that he's trying to turn freshmeat into a community portal, i really couldn't care less.

however, he did remove useful features, such as the lounge, which was really the only reason i chose freshmeat over any of the others all these years.. i was able to neglect checking up on updates for any amount of time i desired and come back to see everything i missed, and i never missed a software update. i might as well not have a registered account anymore since i am forced to browse updates as i always would have had to on the main page.

please scoop, add the lounge back, and taco, please dont assume everyone is a troll. even though you may be able to hate your users, scoop can't afford it

Re:Too much design, too feature laden. (1)

Digital_Fiend (41244) | more than 13 years ago | (#469012)

"fancy graphics"?! if you want fancy graphics, go to or or any other of the sites linked to by places like and freshmeat.

you are obviously very ignorant of web design if that webpage, which is mostly text, is too "fancy" for you. chill out.

oh, your webpage is a wonderful model of accessibility and usability, by the way. blue links on black = reaaaaaaal readable. everyone should make crappy webpages with bad use of color (and HTML) like yours!

why the hell did this message get moderated up?

also, what if the purpose can change to become a better one?

finally, lynx sucks.

I'm not to keen of it yet (1)

pauldy (100083) | more than 13 years ago | (#469013)

I don't really like the sites redesign all that much. This is of course all my opinion and people can shit on it if they want.

I think the search box was perfect where it was. It is a bit harder to read although it loads much faster than the previous version. Anouncements kind of run together with a single thin line parting them. You never realize how much the shading help till you scroll through the listings. Also the drop downs are kind of "lame". It is also a bit harder to read the search listings as well as program descriptions. I also think the sidebar should be an exact width rather than a percentage it kinda crowds the screen at larger resolutions with very little to offer.

K enough of what I don't like, what I do like.

I like the minimalistic aproach to bringing me the content I want. The page load a whole lot faster now. I like the color scheme the new buttons and the side bar login.

I think it is a great site and the redesign I think was needed it helps "keep it fresh" but I also think it needs a bit o tweeking cause it has some anoying areas introduced because of the change.

Anyway just my two cents.

/. has a good design - "Light" mode (2)

isaac (2852) | more than 13 years ago | (#469017)

Go to your homepage preferences in your user page and select "Light" mode. Set your preferred text/bg/link colors in your browser. Enjoy incredibly fast, clean slashdot.

Not a table in sight, just the text, the whole text, and nothing but the text.


Re:OT - Your Sig (2)

vsync64 (155958) | more than 13 years ago | (#469019)

Yes, she said it [] . However, this quote was taken out of context, because this sentence is included in the paragraph:

File sharing is misnamed. When I share something with you, I only have a portion of it left for me. File sharing is really file copying. This activity is not per se bad; it is how it is often used that is the problem.

I think everybody agrees with that. Now, yes, we all know she's insane and hungry for power, but if you read the rest of the quote in that interview, she almost sounds reasonable, and she makes a few interesting points.

C'mon, people, if we want to argue about something, let's not resort to posting vaguely inflammatory out-of-context quotes.


FM vs. SF (2)

autocracy (192714) | more than 13 years ago | (#469021)

From the standpoint of a developer, SourceForge is indeed better. But from the standpoint of Joe Enduser, if you want software then you're likely better off looking for it on FM first. Get it? Get it.

The problem with capped Karma is it only goes down...

i liked the original better (1)

Bigbambo (8887) | more than 13 years ago | (#469022)

The OLD black freshmeat was by far the best..before tigert fucked it up....

Re:some (hopefully) constructive criticism (1)

crivens (112213) | more than 13 years ago | (#469023)

I agree with 2, 4 and 5 in particular. The best part about the old design was that it was easy to distinguish between programs. Now the distinction isn't so obvious. Also, without the boxes I have to work harder to find the info I want. Sorry, I prefer the old design. The blue bar down the left wastes too much space and doesn't really have a purpose beyond entering login info, which shouldn't oocupy 15-20% (whatever) of the width.

Sweeeeeet! (1)

wdwoowoo (208105) | more than 13 years ago | (#469024)

for (;;) {

Clean Design - Like Kuro5hin's? (3)

Bonker (243350) | more than 13 years ago | (#469026)

I think our friends have discovered one of those 'perfect' designs in terms of layout and color combination. On a second glance, the new Freshmeat didn't look exactly like Kuro5hin, but close enough to make me think that they may have arrived at the same goal via different paths.

Great Stuff (3)

Angreallabeau (263172) | more than 13 years ago | (#469027)

"Here's baby-blue freshmeat II, codenamed 'Verdi'. "

Verdi - Verizon

Baby Blue - Big Blue

Freshmeat is going corporate! Watchout!

:-) -Angreal P.S. Great Site

Porn Flick (1)

dgb2n (85206) | more than 13 years ago | (#469028)

Did anyone else think the title of this was a porn flick ;-)

I may have seen FreshMeat I, III, and IV but I seem to have missed II

Re:So when is /. going to get a decent design? (1)

ethereal (13958) | more than 13 years ago | (#469029)

No kidding - if you make /. look like any of those sites, I'll have to hurl (once I'm done waiting for Netscape to load them, that is). One of those sites seemed to require Flash for every external link - talk about useless.

Oh wait, you weren't holding those up as cautionary examples? :)

Re:Too much design, too feature laden. (1)

Nodatadj (28279) | more than 13 years ago | (#469030)

Bit like, which went from a amazing way to search Usenet, to a really shit portal about buying stuff with their unique service relegated to a small "search usenet" link at the bottom, and now, it's back to being the usenet search engine because EBay bought out the shit part.

Yey Ebay

Irritated... (1)

daszig (311280) | more than 13 years ago | (#469031)

I've just taken a short look at the new design and my first impression isn't as positive as everbody else shouts oud loudly...
First of all, the wide white area at the top. Hum. What four?
The real big font's (using browser's default typo) waste a lot of space.
I'm missing the Old Appindex (i know it's still there). Why something completly new (Browse). It's not really useful yet and now i've walk through two different path's... gna.
Nope, i liked the old design more. Not much, just more.
But it's great to see that the basics of the CI are kept... :)

Re:Too much design, too feature laden. (1)

HaggiZ (68526) | more than 13 years ago | (#469032)

I'd have to say that I could not be any further opposed to this viewpoint

When I go looking for software for my red hat install, I dont wanna just be opening a page and getting the results of an ls. Could just use sunsite or a public ftp server for that.

No, instead I want a yahoo like thing. So I type in "ICQ" in the search box, and up comes a list of instant messaging programs. I can click on each one, have a decent read about what it does, features, bugs, latest release, how it compates, and chose the relevant package for myself. Dagnabbit, I can even click a link to go to a homepage and see some screen shots if I want.

And then when I'm bored and feel like using up some of my precious /usr/bin and other parts of my drive with something other that MP3 I can just go a browsing, read some reviews, and give what looks like some decent software a try.

If I want software for my windows machine I know the first place I always go is Tucows, and thats because of the reviews and editorials they have on almost every product. I dont wanna spend an hour and a half on my dial-up to install something that is a lemon and will be blown away quicker than it installed.



Oh for the love of.... (2)

Gen-GNU (36980) | more than 13 years ago | (#469033)

Freshmeat is not an FTP site. It is a portal site. It provides a search functionality, and provides links to locations which match the search pattern. It also provides info on what you can expect to find when you follow the link.

The links surround a common theme, software. Some of it is free, some Free, some both, some neither. A discussion area is provided to discuss the software at the end of the link.

If you want an FTP site, use sunsite. For those of us who like some info before we spend the dload time, freashmeat is wonderful.

(BTW, great new look!)

Create? (2)

dieman (4814) | more than 13 years ago | (#469034)

Of course, all CmdrTaco creates is spagetti-full perl code. :)

Why dont you redisign slashdot! I wanna see you follow your words :)

No borders? (1)

Donem (259965) | more than 13 years ago | (#469035)

Why not just get rid of all the color and just have black text on blinding white background with no borders.

That would be "clean" like everyone likes it.
Who cares about readability. Lets make it clean.

Re:Yay, even more pre-pre-pre-alpha software! (1)

AFCArchvile (221494) | more than 13 years ago | (#469036)

oh yeah.


//I wonder if they'll include this one, which is just like all Linux programs known to man:
printf("Segmentation Fault; Core Dumped.\n")

There, now are you happy? Thanks for helping me debug it!

Re:So when is /. going to get a decent design? (2)

toastmaster (311275) | more than 13 years ago | (#469037)

What do you mean? Slashdot matches so well with my default Win95 background!

check the lo-fi version. (1)

willis (84779) | more than 13 years ago | (#469038)

I almost always use the lo-fi version (Settable in your preferences) -- it's clean, simple, and loads a lot faster.
If you ask me, all of the green and black business is a bit much, and the BSD section looks crappy as all hell.

Haha (2)

Fervent (178271) | more than 13 years ago | (#469041)

Those who can, create. Those who can't, bitch.

That explains so much. Is that why you're constantly ragging on stupid issues, CmdrTaco? :)

Time to fire up the CVS! (2)

verbatim (18390) | more than 13 years ago | (#469043)

Hook up a project on Sourceforge [] and link it from freshmeat [] and get that CVS [] tree going.. this could be a goldmine project.

pfft. ;)

Very nice... (4)

Millennium (2451) | more than 13 years ago | (#469048)

I like the new layout. I very much like his increased standards support, though I could wish he'd gone all the way. A quick run through Tidy corrected all the errors (less than 50; a respectably low number) and had no effect on the layout other than to change the width of the columns slightly (the same situation in both Netscape and IE), so the amount of work to make the HTML fully valid would be minimal at best (mostly just inserting tags at certain places, and making the one quick tweak in the CSS to get the columns back to normal).

But the site is much improved, regardless. I could wish Slashcode would do the same with its standards support (a run through Tidy corrected some 450 errors, generated CSS that even Netscape interpreted beautifully, and the only change made in the layout was the indentation on the lists in Slashboxes, again easily changed in the CSS).

However, all the same, keep up the good work! The sites are looking better all the time, and the functionality is improving too. And for the record, I was one of the (apparently few) people who liked the old layout and wrote in a letter of support. But I like this layout too.

Re:some (hopefully) constructive criticism (1)

kstumpf (218897) | more than 13 years ago | (#469049)

I constructively agree with the points made above. I think its a definite improvement over the old design, though.

My biggest peeve is the left hand blue bar... its a bit much, especially at anything above 1024 pixels wide, since its a 20% width scaling cell. Maybe if the width of that column were fixed, or the login box was just a small floating blue box it would help out.

Maybe some very light horizontal rules between news items would help too, such as

<hr size=1 color="#C0C0C0">

Again, just some constructive criticism. Great job overall.

The customer is always right! (2)

Palisade (6391) | more than 13 years ago | (#469050)

I thought the whole point of running a site for the benefit of end-users was to make them happy and keep them coming back. Here's the problem with so-called "non-profit" (yeah right) websites, they don't give a rats ass for the end-users. Cmdrtaco's insult and berating of end-users who visit his site and freshmeat is similar to the way free software projects disregard end-user opinions and complaints.

Companies (monopolies are the exception here) have always kissed the customer's ass and held high the mantra, "The customer is always right". This is the way it should be, because they exist to serve us.

Yet from Cmdrtaco's, Scoop's, and thousands of other "non-profit" websites, non-profit (non-advertisement, such as #efnet radio) internet radio streams and non-profit free software projects' perspectives, the customer is an annoyance that can just go away. They shout, "Go jump in a lake, we don't need you anyways", and these sites really don't. Gone is the respect for customers and their opinions.

And yes we are customers. The day you placed that advertisement banner on your site you became a business, with customers paying with their time and attention.

Well I'm sick of the attitude and disrespect I am given. This is one reader who won't load up nor on a daily basis any longer. Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."

bitching wont stop... I hope scoop doesnt either (3)

rkt (9943) | more than 13 years ago | (#469051)

I remember the last time changes were made... scoop wrote back saying that he was close to loosing his control over freeks who couldn't stop bitching.

Just like Someone yesterday asked "Can linus kill linux"? The answer is Yes... but do you anyone would kill his own baby/creation ? NO
If someone does something to his own creation/baby, its because it means a great deal to him/her.

So comming back to this issue of Freshmeat, I think people should appretiate what scoop is doing rather than bitch about the changes. He is here to make your life easy not to give you reasons to bitch. If you can't handle it, just get the hell out of here. This is the Internet. Changes are supposed to happen. You would be in a stone age if it was not for some freeks who designed the first stone Tool

So grab a mug of coffee (or milk if u want) and enjoy the new look... and if you don't like it, dont even bother to logon the net. You are ancient.

Re:Clean Design - Like Kuro5hin's? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#469052)

it's just too bad it makes the page harder to use. i used to be able to load fm (quickly) and browse the current set of entries, and check out the past few days as well with ease. If I found something interesting, pop open the homepage url (in a seperate browser) keeping fm there for further perusal. Not so with this new design. Drop down lists and form buttons replace the functional icons of the past for d/l, homepage, etc.

the submissions run together and font size is hard coded at too big of a font

what's with the ][ next to each submission? why not a topic oriented icon like /. et al, or just nothing at all.

the blue column on the left autoadjusts to 5x the needed width when you try to make the browser wide enough to accommodate the too-large text.

the col on the right is crunched and has way too large text.

Even if this could all be changed with options, it's a poor choice for initial settings. All in all it seems rushed by a couple weeks. Of course who's to say that's not the reason it's being publicly updated now ( to iron out the bugs ), but it will definitely affect the user base.

Re:Too much design, too feature laden. (1)

cheeser (30863) | more than 13 years ago | (#469053)

wonk wonk wonk. go somewhere else then ( e.g., rpmfind [] ) The linux community may revolve around a few sites, but that's because their good. When they're not that way anymore, we'll move on ( e.g., [] and all its controversy ). I like having the histories, reviews, comments, and the like.

Complaining about a free service. sheesh!

Ironically... (2)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 13 years ago | (#469054)

I went over there and they were flying that "WTF" banner ad. Oddly ironic considering the immediate response most users have to a new layout.

I'll have to play with the site a bit and see if I like the new layout or not.

Re:Too much design, too feature laden. (1)

Moofie (22272) | more than 13 years ago | (#469055)

Damn, Taco is right. If you don't like Freshmeat's free of cost (to you) service, feel free to not use it. They're not responsible to you, they don't have to do what you want them to.

I think that they provide a fantastic service, at no cost to me. If they can do that, and make a buck or two in the bargain, more power to them. If you don't like it, build your own. They give you the bloody source code...

Freshmeat vs. Sourceforge, boxes on FMII (2)

autocracy (192714) | more than 13 years ago | (#469056)

Just to agree with somebody else in this thread, Freshmeat is indeed better than Sourceforge. This is not a flame, it's just my belief that Sourceforge needs to get more bandwidth...

If you're as annoyed as I am about those little drop-boxes for links, don't worry. They're going to remove them soon.

Considering that, my only caveat is the removal of the urgency info - it's been replaced by a "Focus of Release" thing. It's a nice addition, but I still would like the urgency tag - makes sifting through the stuff easier...

The problem with capped Karma is it only goes down...

Not to be one of the bitchers but... (1)

kisrael (134664) | more than 13 years ago | (#469057) qualms with the aesthetic qualities of the design, but on my IE 5.5, the main content section is a fixed width, wider than my wide open browser window, meaning I have to scroll left and right to read any given line.

I don't like it. (1)

drsoran (979) | more than 13 years ago | (#469058)

I think the new site is ugly and hard to navigate. What was wrong with the old layout? The boxes around each seperate application announcement made it easier to discern one from another. Now they just have a short line and it all flows together. I mean, what's with all the retro-ness of the site? It looks like someone's first HTML 2.0 project web site.

Re:No, really, it sucks (1)

skt (248449) | more than 13 years ago | (#469059)

I would have to agree. Is there any way of getting rid of that big, blue bar on the left side of the screen? It's starting to bug me.

/me goes back to nntp

Re:Yep, if it doesn't work under lynx, it's broken (1)

b0r1s_7h3_h4x0r (307790) | more than 13 years ago | (#469060)

Bullshit. The ADA does NOT mention web pages, or any other technology used by the Internet, and it would require some enterprising judge to interpret it as such. As of right now, there hasn't been any such judge, and any supposed compliance is only because they don't wanna have to pay their lawyers $100K to get a bullshit suit tossed out when it'd only cost $10K to make the changes.

A couple of companies I am familiar have been faced with ADA lawsuits.

One was sued back in 93-94 because their product, a hypertext based work-flow system for Sun, wasn't able to be operated via a screen reader or using a voice teletype. Some of the dynamic data was expressed only as an image, and no 'convert to text' option existed in the official 'release' version. What happened? Judge tossed it out on the grounds that other third party helper applications were available that did do the job. Subsequently they released a version that was managable through pure text, although for the purpose it could be wrapped or scripted.

The other ran a pre-buzzword b2b out of Chicago, finally went out of biz back in early 98. Traded grey-market components for Big Iron. Anyway, they used to publish a fancy-schmancy delay inventory to the web manually. Readers barfed. Someone bitched to the DOJ, DOJ shared the complaint, they told the DOJ to get stuffed, the information is available over the phone too. DOJ filed, counsel called the DOJ and one again told them to get stuffed, the information was available over the phone too. It finally sunk in, and the DOJ dropped it without further request.

So fscking what, you can't browse the Sony website? You can't browse the Sony brochures either. Wanna learn about the new Sony recievers? Do what you did before the internet, get your ass out to the news stand and spend four bucks on a Braille copy of Consumer Reports. Or pick up the damn phone, call Sony and ask to speak with a product drone. impossible with your reader? WTF are you doing at anyway? They call it GRAPHICS for a reason. Oh no, Big Bad AOL doesn't work with your reader? Sign up with fucking Compuserve. AOL owns them, they use all the same dialups, and they do work. Boo hoo, the world makes it tough for you, not all of the software products or web pages work on my reader. Well, fucknut, they don't all run on my SGI workstation either, nor render well in my three year old copy of Lynx, and I don't expect them to either. Being blind is no worse than being ugly and trust me, I'm familiar with ugly. I'm not screaming at the mother every time some small child points at me in Kmart and says 'Look at the ugly man in the '1337 h4x0r'' shirt, or running tio the DOJ every time some bitch ass personnel director refuses me a job because I look like I just got hit with a running lawnmower.

Life sucks, get a helmet.

3v1l_b0r1s at d4rkr0ck d0t c0 d0t uk

Re:Very nice... (1)

Lord Omlette (124579) | more than 13 years ago | (#469061)

What the fuck is this magical 'Tidy' that you refer to, and where can I pick one up?
Lord Omlette
ICQ# 77863057

Re:bitching wont stop... I hope scoop doesnt eithe (1)

Lord Omlette (124579) | more than 13 years ago | (#469062)

"but do you anyone would kill his own baby/creation ? NO"

I'm guessing you meant to say 'do you know anyone' and yes, I do. Me! I've aborted tons of projects just short of completion because I couldn't handle how crappily it had turned out compared to my vision of it. It's always painful. I'm always upset with the way it just didn't turn out the way I wanted it to. And then there are people who both criticize me and encourage me. The critics can go fuck themselves, if they want it, they can build it them-fucking-selves. The supporters suck, they want it, but they don't understand why I can't let them have it!

What's more painful than a child that doesn't live up to expectations because the parent was incompetent? I can see Linus going through extreme pains to kill his baby if he felt hurt enough to do it...

If scoop can't handle the criticism, he should go ahead and put it out of his misery. Why get hurt by people who can't appreciate your efforts?
Lord Omlette
ICQ# 77863057

Re:Too much design, too feature laden. (1)

herugaur (185997) | more than 13 years ago | (#469065)

I just finished looking at freshmeat with lynx, which is currently my primary browser. Looks a hell of a lot better to me. Everything is more organized and there is much less garbage at the top to deal with. I don't really see what the problem is.

Re:Too much design, too feature laden. (1)

Nodatadj (28279) | more than 13 years ago | (#469066)

It's hideous. There's far too much text squeezed into a small space, and it's a lot harder on the new site to seperate different items.

And what the hell does
"also, what if the purpose can change to become a better one?" mean?

Re:Font Size (1)

Karn (172441) | more than 13 years ago | (#469067)

I'm using Mozilla on Linux, and I too find the fonts a bit big...

Netscape's default fonts for Linux are about 1/2 the size of those in any other browser, so that probably explains why they look fine to you. :)

Re:Oh for the love of.... (2)

Nodatadj (28279) | more than 13 years ago | (#469069)

I think he was saying that all the extra shit that they have: The members area, the "features" etc... are all pointless. Freshmeat was just a place to find out about software, but like /., it's now trying to be a jack of all trades, master of none

Re:So when is /. going to get a decent design? (1)

CyberKnet (184349) | more than 13 years ago | (#469070)

Readers who know about Bender will notice that it is skinnable. If Taco wants to alleviate users such as the user who posted, he will make user definable skins. (yikes, talk about a way to open yourself up to HUGE storage problems though). Personally I like slashdot the way it is though. At least it doesnt use some huge font size that makes things quite difficult to read (Although I didnt look on fmII to see if that was customisable in the user preferences... which would rock)


Re:Font Size (1)

RelliK (4466) | more than 13 years ago | (#469071)

yes it is just you

Nostalgic for the freshmeat of the mid nineties (2)

Cardinal (311) | more than 13 years ago | (#469072)

Anyone else feeling nostalgic for the really old Freshmeat designs? Like the one with the screaming crowd in the freshmeat logo?

Ah, for the good old days.

Kudos to Scoop! (1)

Pablonius (3962) | more than 13 years ago | (#469073)

Kudos Scoop!!! You've taken one of the best sites on the net and made it better! Congrats!

Re:Clean Design - Like Kuro5hin's? (5)

alhaz (11039) | more than 13 years ago | (#469074)

This Is Not A Flame. That being said . . .

I don't like the new design. And it's not just the selection boxes.

The first time freshmeat was redesigned, there was a long "WTF?!" moment caused both by the unfamiliarity and by the way some things were in places that just didn't make sense.

But over all, it was clear that a lot of time and effort went into the visual design, and it worked out quite well once the functional problems were fixed. Even if it did take forever to render all those boxes.

This time, I can understand why he got rid of the boxes, but he seems to have forgotten what they were for. The last time it was re-worked, it was easier to browse than the original layout. This time, it's harder to browse than the original layout.

And for some very specific reasons.

The boxes were good because they visually grouped everything belonging to a particular item. There is no longer a visual grouping.

Try this - grab the scroll bar with your mouse, close your eyes, scroll up and down a few times until you're sure you're not where you used to be in the page, then glance at the page for a fraction of a second and close your eyes again - Can you remember how many items there were on the screen? Probably not. With the old design, you could have, because the boxes made it very clear, without having to pay attention to detail and repetition of a pattern, what belonged to what.

The black text in the titles right above the light blue text in the by-line is a big mistake. The blue text is more eye-catching, and takes your attention away from the important information: the project you were looking for.

The blue bar on the side is superfluous, but that's just a matter of personal preference.

The selection boxes are inexcusable, even if he's already apologized and promised to take them away. If you add more clicks to a process than there were before, you will invariably annoy your users. This should have been totally obvious, but clearly it wasn't.

The grey bar on the right isn't differentiated enough from the center, which makes the page harder to read. The text is far too close together, it's distracting.

It can be fixed. I understand that the big deal was the back-end. But I *really hope the front end does get fixed.

Still buggy. (1)

Mr. Piccolo (18045) | more than 13 years ago | (#469075)

./segfault.c:1: `#include' expects "FILENAME" or <FILENAME>
Besides, the message is wrong, and segfaulting programs won't always dump core depending on ulimit settings.

Try this for proper functionality:

#include <sys/time.h>
#include <sys/resource.h>
#include <unistd.h>

int getrlimit (int resource, struct rlimit *rlim);
int main(){
struct rlimit *limits;
getrlimit(RLIMIT_CORE, limits);
printf("Segmentation fault (core dumped)\n");
else printf("Segmentation fault\n");

Not sure it's perfect, but it's closer.

anyone have a gif of the old fm look? (1)

BurkeTheEldar (161775) | more than 13 years ago | (#469076)

Thanks for the pointer to the original fm lookalike. Does anyone have an image of the just retired fm look, or a pointer to a site with the same look? I don't want to forget it, it was one of the most livable layouts I'd run into.

troll alert! (1)

RelliK (4466) | more than 13 years ago | (#469084)

see subject

Looking good... (1)

Hiro Antagonist (310179) | more than 13 years ago | (#469085)

It was about time for a re-design, and I'm glad they kept the same minimalist design philosophy. The blue bar should be a bit smaller, though, and the gray bar on the right wider (and a bit easier to read would be nice...) Other then that, hey, it's a website. Not like this is the second coming of the Great Prophet Zarquin...


Re:Too much design, too feature laden. (2)

Karn (172441) | more than 13 years ago | (#469086)

WTF are you some kind of wuss?

Real men use telnet: It comes with everything, it's super lightweight, and I don't get all those stupid graphics and ads.. Sure, it takes some getting used to with having to parse HTML in your head, in real time, but it really does make browsing much better.

Should it not be Freshmeat III? (1)

claes (25551) | more than 13 years ago | (#469087)

Shortly after new years eve two years (?) ago, the former Freshmeat redesign was presented. It was so critized that Patrick took Freshmeat down and threathened not letting it back up. Fortunately, he changed his mind, and we have been enjoying Freshmeat since then.

But there was a Freshmeat before that, and to me, it was the best looking. I don't want to be hard, but the new Freshmeat design is worse than average. The former designs were both original and inventive. I always admired Freshmeat for making good looking pages with mostly inventive use of characters, making them both original and faster to load.

I think it would be great to see the old, black Freshmeat again. I can hardly be the only one that liked it? I just took a look at Patricks private page [] . It is quite similar to the first Freshmeat. I would love Freshmeat to go in that direction again!

I like my /.! (2)

autocracy (192714) | more than 13 years ago | (#469088)

Read the subject, 'nuf said!

The problem with capped Karma is it only goes down...

Parse error? (1)

jscott (11965) | more than 13 years ago | (#469089)

You still forgot the semicolon at the end of the printf line. And did you mean #include ?

..and (2)

update() (217397) | more than 13 years ago | (#469090)

Whenever a familiar site changes, it always seems clumsy and unintuitive, so I like to reserve my opinion until I've used it for a while. As long as we're critiquing VA-owned sites, though, made a major renovation of their site a couple of years ago and I still find it almost impossible to use.

It's an extreme case of featuritis run amok. I used to check the WindowMaker page almost daily and I contributed a bunch of themes. I've basically given up on the site because I find it impossible to browse comfortably.

Re:So when is /. going to get a decent design? (1)

HaggiZ (68526) | more than 13 years ago | (#469091)

Could we all take a leaf out of the book that sites like the following and the ones they link to use? [] []



All I've seen so far... (1)

wfaulk (135736) | more than 13 years ago | (#469092)

... are perl compilation errors.

ah... (1)

GameGuy (203355) | more than 13 years ago | (#469093)

so that would make you one that can't - at least when it comes to Microsoft

Now I understand.

Sorry, you asked for it.

Re:So when is /. going to get a decent design? (1)

Christopher Biggs (98469) | more than 13 years ago | (#469094)

Slashdot does have a deccent design. After you turn off the boxes, graphics, colours and other assorted rubbish.

some (hopefully) constructive criticism (5)

kellan1 (23372) | more than 13 years ago | (#469095)

So I'm sort of disappointed with the level of criticism that Freshmeat. I'm glad there are new features on Freshmeat, some of them sound exciting, (I but i'm totally turned off by the new design, and here is why:

1. the whole page is a table (minus the ad of course) this is very very noticeable slow, and unpleasant.

2. the blue bar on the left runs down the entire page, significantly impacting the amount of space to display content. and yet it adds VERY little to the page, just a few links, and a search box near the very top of the page. this is very poor use of space.

3. the gray bar on the right is hard to read, not hard to read if i sit there and look at it, but hard to read if i'm trying to skim a list of 100 newly added applications in 30 seconds, which is, in truth, what people do.

4. information is not clearly divided. its hard to visually breakup the new entries in the center column the yellow circle is supposed to help i assume (as it doesn't add any other functionality and is repeated over and over and over) and yet it also fails to convey any info. (its a meaningless icon)

5. similar problems in the right hand bar, no clear separation of days, if i'm scrolling down the page, Monday blurs into Sunday blurs into Saturday.

6. Some people have pointed out the similarity with k5. K5's interface is overwhelming, but I was willing to deal w/ that, adjust, spend the time learning it, because there is an amazing amount of interaction going on at k5. this is not the case w/ freshmeat. I know its fun to work on community features, but I really don't see how they improve freshmeat all that much. (Especially if they come at the expense of the old feature set was immensely popular)

7. doing another quick once other or the site, i can't emphasize enough how hard that center column is to use. what was wrong w/ the old boxes? they were cool and usable! ditto in the actual project detail, all the information because a jumbled mess. (and that damn meaningless icon shows up again)

8. don't do it. do we need another community site? if you want to work on a community site, work on the bender code, or scoop, or squishdot. instant messaging in scoop would be an awesome addition, especially if it could optionally get logged somewhere like your diary. that way we could take a lot of the more vitriol debates "offline".

9. i'm going to take a leap of faith and assume that when i click on the totally uninformative "Step 2" button, I'll be brought to a page where I can preview this comment?

thanks, kellan

Efficient, clean, easy on the eyes (2)

Wraithlyn (133796) | more than 13 years ago | (#469096)

Nice and spartan! They should make that blue login column on the left a fixed size, not a percentage though... it's already creating a lot of vertical white (blue?) space without being too wide also.

Slashdot (1)

matth (22742) | more than 13 years ago | (#469097)

Almost has a slashdot like look =) I kinda like it!

FontSize (1)

magnetx11 (152596) | more than 13 years ago | (#469098)

I think the new design is great! Good job Scoop!
But I find the font size too big for my taste. Is there a way I can shrink it? Without shrinking all the text on every web page I visit.

Sorry, troll post (2)

Tairan (167707) | more than 13 years ago | (#469101)

But, in case anyone didn't know,

Freshmeat > Sourceforge.

Sorry Andover / VA Linux, Sourceforge is too slow. I like Freshmeat

Re:Sorry, troll post (2)

vectro (54263) | more than 13 years ago | (#469102)

Erhm, you know that freshmeat is owned by VA too, right?

No, really, it sucks (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#469105)

You're losing 1/4 of the space to lefthand column. It's also far less readable for quick scanning of packages. All in all, I'd say it went downhill.

Flamerz? Why? (2)

HaggiZ (68526) | more than 13 years ago | (#469106)

I love it! Very clean, very easy to use, very obvious design/navigation.

I'll never forget the first time I used freshmeat, it took me a good month to work out how to simply just browse for something without doing a search first, because off the way "appindex" was written without any spacing I was reading it as part of the human anatomy and not an "Application Index".

My only criticism would be to switch the login and menu/news things to the opposite side of the screen. Having been a web developer for over 6 years now and having to put up with corporates doing usuability testing which often kills a damn sexy looking site (heheh, nobody wants to use it! They just want it to look cool!!), navigation and the like should be left based as it is where the human eye is naturally used to moving for index/content topics. And all those usuability testers would love those "hot links" that you permanently have across the top of the site for easy jumping to sections.

Good work


Re:FontSize (1)

raju1kabir (251972) | more than 13 years ago | (#469111)

I find the font size too big for my taste. Is there a way I can shrink it?

Sure, it's easy! Just create a rule for your proxy to pass pages from freshmeat off to a quick script that regexes down the font size.

I'm about to do it myself; the new Large Print Edition Freshmeat is giving me a headache. Methinks it was designed for Linux Netscape font sizes, which are absurdly small. What they should have done is make the font sizes the same as on everyone else's site, and just changed the setting in their local copy of Netscape to suit their personal preferences.

still like the really old black layout best. (1)

kielbasa (128196) | more than 13 years ago | (#469112)

It was striking.

Let me guess, you're using IE (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#469113)

I've checked the site in Konq, NS4/Linux and NS4/Windows, Mozilla 0.7/Linux and Windows, and IE. They look big in IE, and just fine everywhere else. Go figure.

Re:anyone have a gif of the old fm look? (1)

kellan1 (23372) | more than 13 years ago | (#469114)

you know I was thinking this as well. It was a really nice layout, in fact I noticed as I surfed around the geekweb that freshmeat served two purposes.

  1. Its stated purpose of listing the latest updates in open source software
  2. Giving design challenged geeks some easy html to steal as they through together a last minute webpage for their new os project.

But this is the modern age of SemanticWeb! Perhaps if I can find, or recreate the old looks html, we could convince scoop to do rdf dumps of freshmeat that could be skinned to something more like what we've come to know and love.

what do you think?


Re:Yep, if it doesn't work under lynx, it's broken (2)

technos (73414) | more than 13 years ago | (#469115)

Umm, all of the ADA lawsuit threats against web pages have amounted to hot air. DOJ won't even take your complaint. There is only speculation that it may even apply, under the vague parallel that a web page is a 'commercial service' for public offering. This assumtion is prolly bogus based on the fact that webpages in general do not charge for their services.

So far as telecom in general goes, the ADA only applies to common carriers, such as your ISP and telco. (This was the basis for the suit against AOL).

Perhaps you are confusing it with Section 508 of the Workforce Investment Act, which does mandate that all web pages have to be accessable to the blind, but which only applies to the Federal government.

Re:Yay, even more pre-pre-pre-alpha software! (1)

Karn (172441) | more than 13 years ago | (#469116)

No, no, you missed it again!

#include &lt stdio.h&gt

//I wonder if they'll include this one, which is just like all Linux programs known to man:
printf("Segmentation Fault; Core Dumped.\n"); // Don't forget to terminate your statements!!!


Appwatch (1)

Erebus (13033) | more than 13 years ago | (#469117)

Yes, appwatch []

Font Size (1)

_SIGKILL_ (170600) | more than 13 years ago | (#469118)

Is it just me or are the font sizes absolutely huge?

Too much design, too feature laden. (2)

Urban Existentialist (307726) | more than 13 years ago | (#469119)

Lets face it, Freshmeat is basically an FTP site. I don't want fancy graphics, editorials, members areas, hottubs and god knows what. I'me getting fed up of all that shit. I just want something easily viewable in lynx that will allow me to search for the files I want!

Freshmeat are becoming another yahoo, and losing site of their central purpose. The problem is, that the linux community revolves around a few sites such as freshmeat and /., and these sites appear to be losing thier identity. Identity is important - it defines who we are as a community. But I fear that the Linux cummunity will lose out and the whims of the marketing department at will win again. Its a damn shame.

You know exactly what to do-
Your kiss, your fingers on my thigh-

So when is /. going to get a decent design? (4)

flatpack (212454) | more than 13 years ago | (#469120)

Nothing personal, but as much as I'm sure that /. looked revolutionary back when it was first designed, it now manages to look clunky and outdated compared to modern sites like kuro5hin. There's just too much in the way of solid blocks of particularly tasteless colours, and the HTML needs to lose the way that everything sits within a single table, making the page so slow to load...

Come on Taco, when you change /. over to Bender are we going to see a site redesign to make it cleaner and more modern looking? It's a real change to give /. a much needed overhaul...

Critic Flamer. Pride of Man redux. (1)

BurkeTheEldar (161775) | more than 13 years ago | (#469125)

It's kind of amazed me, watching the responses to fmII, here and on fm. Why are there so many posts flaming those that don't like the changes? "Love it or leave it" type attitudes around OSS seem kind of weird.

Same with Taco's "Those who can, create. Those who can't, bitch." That's just lame, besides being untrue. It's more the other way around - if you're a creator, you have to expect to displease some. You and your pals don't have to herniate over a bit of criticism, or even screwing up once in a while. If we (those cursed criticizers) didn't appreciate what you're offering we wouldn't bother telling you what we think!

Bull (1)

CAIMLAS (41445) | more than 13 years ago | (#469127)

Pfft, you only said that to cheer him up because [fm]2 looks more like slashdot now, CmdrTaco! :)

Seriously, though. When I went to [fm] earlier today, I thought it had been vandolized by some kid. While K5 looks pretty decent in netscape, fm just looks nasty, and somewhat amateur. (If you don't believe me, I'll take a snapshot and let you be the judge. No, I am not a troll or a flamer.)


Re:Freshmeat vs. Sourceforge, boxes on FMII (1)

Erebus (13033) | more than 13 years ago | (#469128)

If you read skoop's comments, with regard to the appindex (now the trove software map), you'll see that FreshMeat IS SourceForge, internally. OSDN=BORG....

Re:Freshmeat vs. Sourceforge, boxes on FMII (1)

a_hofmann (253827) | more than 13 years ago | (#469130)

Just to agree with somebody else in this thread, Freshmeat is indeed better than Sourceforge. This is not a flame, it's just my belief that Sourceforge needs to get more bandwidth...

Comparing fm to sf is like apples to bananas. While you may be right that sf could use more bandwidth, it's scope is far beyond that of fm.

fm solely offers an application index while sf primary targets project hosting services, like CVS, HTTP, FTP, managment interfaces,...and all that for free!

I'm so cool! (1)

Johnny Starrock (227040) | more than 13 years ago | (#469132)

I can create and bitch! I'm multi-talented! =)

Re:So when is /. going to get a decent design? (2)

Julius X (14690) | more than 13 years ago | (#469134)

Not a bad idea....I have been wondering for a VERY long time when /. would get its first real design upgrade.

Not to say the current design looks bad....they never do while they're in place. But its definitely true that the design could use a nice (if subtle) overhaul.

It's really interesting when you look at older designs/designed pages from 96-97 and compare them to now....very noticable. Even nostalgic. But I would hate to feel that way about /., that saying that a site that thrives on the latest happenings of the geek community is "nostalgic" of a site designed in the "late 90's".

Oh well...whatever happens, I'll probably still read the site. :)

-Julius X

My Opinion (1)

perlyking (198166) | more than 13 years ago | (#469136)

Just what I think:
1 - Wasted space on the left hand side of the page, why do it?
2 - The drop down boxes take up as much space as the old icons but are slower to use (and no more quick fire right clicking and "open in new window") - OOOH, just checked again and it looks like its not just me who thought that, the old icons are back.
3 - The font, I dont like the font and it looks different in each browser I looked at (mozilla, IE5, Opera, Netscape). The old freshmeat looked consistent because it was more cross platform. Say hello to CSS and goodbye to cross platform consistency.

All in all I preferred the old site, but you can't improve things without change so i'd like to think they will ultimately rest on a better design.

Ugh (2)

nebby (11637) | more than 13 years ago | (#469137)

Scoop, don't let the flamers get you down. I hear it all the time from people complaining about my site. Sometimes they have good suggestions, but a lot of the time those who are nasty are just bitching about stupid stuff that anyone who didn't look at computing like a religion wouldn't care about.

Re:So when is /. going to get a decent design? (1)

IntlHarvester (11985) | more than 13 years ago | (#469138)

Actually if he really wanted to make people happy, he could have a Slashdot mode that spit out XML, and then folks could roll their own XSLT sheets to make it do whatever they damn wanted on the client-side (even kill file people).

Re:Efficient, clean, easy on the eyes (1)

giantsquidmarks (179758) | more than 13 years ago | (#469139)

Agree... it is wasting space... I'm for margins around text and all, but that is a little too much.

That area of the page becomes a design anomaly when you scroll down (and you will scroll down). It's just a big blue meaningless void.

Re:Clean Design - Like Kuro5hin's? (2)

newbienetwork (311095) | more than 13 years ago | (#469140)

Like Kuro5in's? No....not really. I mean, Kuro5in's design is not all together unique. It is composed of a layout that is as such: A top navigation (which is not anything new, and quite common, see A left and right border section with links and news snippets (see SlashDot, and practically every other site out there) A center column where the main articles are present (again, see every other quality site out there) Not to say the graphics are not nice, etc. However, in and of itself, the Design of the Layout is nothing new. The reason why it works so well is because it was designed for familiarity. People like things that are familiar. Hence the whole reason cars have brake pedals and gas pedals in certain places for certain countries. Imagine what would happen if one day in the US, Green = Stop and Red = Go? So I don't think its fair to imply that Freshmeat went out and did what Kuro5hin did. Freahmeat went out and did what a smart webmaster would do, opt for a good quality, popular design.

FreshMeat II : Electric Boogaloo (2)

Ether Trogg (17457) | more than 13 years ago | (#469141)

Very nice! I like it! Scoop, you've outdone yourself on this one.

Remember the last time changes were made to FM? You'd have thought that Scoop had blasphemed Allah while in Iran, the way that people reacted so harshly. Well, to those of you that don't appreciate the hard work, and spiffy new features, get bent!

Well done, nice job, pip pip cheerio.

New FM look (1)

JamesGreenhalgh (181365) | more than 13 years ago | (#469142)

I actually thought it was one of the worst site redesigns I've ever seen - making it actually uncomfortable to read.

The old FM was perfect, IMHO.

Are there any other sites that offer a similar service?
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