New and Improved Design on SparkPages

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Hi, everyone!

We wanted to let you know about a new and improved SparkPage design that we launched today. SparkPages hold so much information that we wanted to make it easier to navigate a person's SparkPage and find exactly what you're looking for. The overall design is the same, but we've cleaned up the look of SparkPages and added some great new functionality, too. Here are some of the highlights of this redesign:

  1. Tabs across the top of each Page, which allow you to easily view a member's photos, friend feed, blog posts, and more. For example, if you're looking at someone's photos, you can quickly get to their SparkTeams, too.

  2. NEW Photo Pagination. When viewing a photo in someone's gallery, you'll now see links below it that say "Previous Image" and "Next Image" that allow you to scroll through the photos as if viewing them in a slideshow.

  3. NEW Comments on Photos. Members can now comment directly on each other's photos. When someone comments on your photo, you will receive an email letting you know.

  4. NEW Awards Page. Everyone has a tab at the top of their page called "Awards." This is where you'll find a member's SparkGoodies, SparkStreaks and SparkPoints trophies. We plan to add more options for special icons and awards to this section soon.

  5. More SparkFavorites. You'll find favorites under the "More" tab at the top of each Page. Now, your Favorites section includes SparkRecipes you're rated and saved as favorites in addition to your favorite articles, message boards and shared recipes.

  6. NEW Alert on Updated Intros. To clean up the page, we've shortened the amount of introductory text that shows, but you can still type as much as you'd like. Visitors can click on the "Read More" link to see your entire introduction. If you have updated your introductory text within the past 30 days, a note will show up there, letting visitors to your page know that they should "Read More" to see what's new.

    At first glance, SparkPages look pretty much the same as before, but there are lots of improvements that came with this new design. We realize that our members take great ownership of their SparkPages, and we hope you'll discover that these changes give you even more control and functionality than before. Like any change, it might take some time getting used to, but we hope that you'll love the new design as much as we do!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Hi All,
    I do like the new layout and I know it is a lot of work to design and test so I know that you have all worked very diligently to provide this new look to all of us. So I hate to bring this up. . . . . .I am having trouble adding or changing things on my page. I wanted to add a "Quote" from Sparks Quotes and when I added the link, which I copied and pasted, and then tried to save the change I got an "error" message. So I took that link out and went back and re-copied and pasted again, same problem, so I removed the link. Then I tried changing the text format. When I "saved" that change I received the same "error" message as though the link was still there. Am I doing something wrong here? This may not be where I should be addressing this problem but it was the only place I was able to find pertaining to the new design. Thanks for any help you have to offer. CATHINNERNOW
    3257 days ago
    loving the changes!
    3257 days ago
  • CARLIN5007
    I swear, no one is satisfied with anything. Wah Wah Wah. No one realizes how hard it is just to create and design a WebSite. Yeah, It is nice to have SparkGoodies back. But everything is right in front of you if you just look. I think it all looks pretty cool. The formatting, the deep colors, and the over all order of things laid out. Change is what it is all about. It is called a Leap of Faith. It is also about time and adjustment. If you are afraid of those things, than it can be a scary place in this world. So I give you a High Five Nicole Nichols and Mr. SparkGuy. Keep up the amazing work. We definitely need you. As for myself. I speak my mind. Therefore, I hope I did not make any enemies by doing so. Because each and every friend I have made on here are extemely a wonderful and inspirational part of my life. So thanks and kudos to all of them too. Carlin5007 emoticon emoticon
    3260 days ago
    Thank you so much for giving us back our Goodies on the main page! I'm so happy to have them there again and I thank you very much for bringing them back for us! emoticon
    3260 days ago
    Thank you SPARKGUY!! Appreciate getting the goodies back on the main page.
    3260 days ago
    Hi everyone,

    As some of you may have seen, we added Goodies back to the main page. Thanks for the feedback!
    3260 days ago
    I want to say THANK-YOU for listening to the problems with the friend fed and fixing them fast!! I want to THANK-YOU for listening to the spark people and giving back their spark goodies!! The goodies are a great boost in motivation!!!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3260 days ago
    Thanks to you and the Sparks Team that designed the new and improved version.
    3260 days ago
    Love it despit some glitches with the new IE8 edition & for some reason? Yahoo Buzz doesn't work with it! *sigh. Tech never stops! emoticon
    3261 days ago
  • CYNDY77297
    Thanks Coach Nichol!! The new pages look wonderful. I really like the new format!! Please, tell all the other coaches and the techies that I said thanks and keep up the great work that all of you do for us!!

    3261 days ago
    I, too, would love to see our "goodies" back in a prominent position...and I hate that I can't read all of the information about a member without clicking the link. Can't we have those two things back?
    3261 days ago
    Please give us our Goodies back on our page! Those Goodies were a HUGE motivator...they reminded me that I have friends here who care about and encourage and support me! Those goodies make me smile when I'm feeling low. Its not the same with them being on a separate page now. It makes them less valuable somehow! Please let us have our 6 most recent Goodies right there on our pages again!

    I agree with REDROCKR below when she said "The outreach of support is the best feeling and now it is hidden away." Please lets take them out of hiding! Thank you!
    3261 days ago

    CAN YOU PLEASE CHANGE THIS BACK!! I have heard this from so many sparkers!!

    I Enjoyed seeing the 6 spark goodies that people gave me for encouragement and motivation to see them there when I logged on to my page! I can careless if I log onto it any more!!

    3261 days ago
    I like it ok, but I really liked having the spark goodies as goodies, not awards, and I liked seeing them first thing on my page. It takes more time to give a "goodie" too, but I still LOVE SPARK!!

    3261 days ago
    Thank you! emoticon
    3261 days ago
    Thank you! emoticon
    3261 days ago
  • FRUMPY55
    Like it...... emoticon
    3261 days ago
  • BEEJAY49
    I like it! I don't know how you all keep coming up with such good ideas! Thank you!
    3261 days ago
    I like the photo improvement,.
    But I dont like being unable to see the messages with the goodies...once the email advising you of the goodie has gone...you cant see the message.
    I also dont like to have to click to see the rest of a profile.
    Perhaps it would have been better to take a POLL on who wanted change and who didnt.
    3261 days ago

    Comment edited on: 5/21/2009 4:43:22 PM
  • MOCNVW23
    I actually like it, it seems easier to move around in. I agree with some of the other members, on one thing. I like my goodies showing, they are a good motivator. Other than that I like all the other changes.
    3261 days ago
    Love it, Thanks.... emoticon emoticon

    Much Love,
    Diane emoticon emoticon
    3261 days ago
    I haven't been on here more than two months so I can appreciate the comments made by the long time SPARKERS concerning the recent Home Page alterations. I am okay with the change except I do agree it is wonderful to view the spark goodies directly on our homepages. The outreach of support is the best feeling and now it is hidden away. It is bad enough that we have been hiding our weaknesses without this wonderful program. Now that we are acknowledging our both our successes and more often our failures, the support and well wishes can't be flaunted??....BOOOOO!

    Other than this gripe, thanks for giving us a forum to make comments. I appreciate the Blog which explained the reason behind the newest Home Page changes...

    3261 days ago
    I think ideally it would be nice if you could give us the option on options, which ones we want and which way. This way it would still stay personal and the way we would like it, our choice. Also I think in the future instead of a shock an announcement and informing folks may also be a way of getting feedback prior to any change. We take this all as very personal as we do our weight loss. In this world we have little control over much in our lives so having the respect of the 'higher' ups here would be greatly appreciated as so much of what SP is about is appreciated. Diplomacy is really important. Just my two cents, Em
    3261 days ago
    I do not like the new Spark Page at all. I liked having my Spark Goodies right there where they could motivate me when I went to my page. I don't like not having more of my friends on the main page.

    It was much more convenient for me to have all my teams showing on my Spark Page than it is now. This is especially true when I want to huddle with a lot of them or check out what is happening on that particular team.

    I don't care if the Status or Feedback is readily available. Even though I use it, I think that is something that could go on a tab.

    You tried to fix something that wasn't broken.

    The pages all look the generic. Doesn't seem to be any individuality.
    3261 days ago

    Comment edited on: 5/21/2009 1:24:15 PM
    I hate to complain...but need to be honest!! I love the candles and had six of them. as part of my OWN PAGE style and design...which I assumed was mine to KEEP...LOL...think again!!! My GOODIES now are a thing of the past as far as I am concerned, because I am not allowed to use them as part of my OWN UNIQUE page!! Also the feed, it hits back to your page everytime you delete something, I can't believe that!!! These two things alone just ruin the whole idea of something new being good...as I won't get used to those two changes...it isn't a matter of not liking change, I do like change when it is NEEDED change and an improvement, not just for the sake of change!! I wish it had stayed as it was. I do appreciate SPARKPEOPLE and the fact that it is free, but I also know, that if we were paying for the use of our pages, no one would go in and change it without our permission...does that make sense??? Think about it!! RESPECTFULLY, LaceEjo11
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3261 days ago
    I am back again with another explanation of how I am feeling about the changes to every ones spark pages.

    When we joined sparks we were encouraged to set up our own pages to be uniquely ours choosing how much or how little we wanted to share about ourselves, the colors for our page, the text font color and style, what pics we wanted to decorate our page with etc.

    Because of my creative and artistic side I looked at the spark page as my blank canvas so i began painting who I was and what I was all about and what I believed it etc. When I was done the page was mine and did not look exactly like anyone elses. I enjoyed my painting for the last 2.5 years.

    Then I went to work and came home to find someone had picked up the paint brush and painted over my painting and it was no longer about me or looked like me but now it looks like everyother reproduction making it just a generic canvas......oh yes I can still choose the 3 pics I want seen and the colors for my page but that's it.......everything about me and what encouraged me is now hidden behind a "read more" link or hidden behind big tabs on the top......hidden maybe never to be seen or read by a passer by.

    For the non-artist think of spending a great deal of time rearranging your living room to be just who you are and fit for your life. You go to work and come home to find that everything that was there has been moved, not just moved in that room but you find the couch in the bedroom now and the tv in the bathroom etc.....your space is no longer functional to you. someone broke into your space and decided for you where things should be now.

    No we will never make everyone happy as that is impossible but when this change effected something so personal as my own page I feel violated and disregarded as to who and what I wanted my space to be.
    3261 days ago
    Love the new lay out! Thanks
    3261 days ago
    I suppose you can't please everyone all the time! I love it, especially being able to scroll through the photos, at least the whole page is not taken up with the 'feed'.
    3261 days ago
  • STE11UNA
    NO!!!!! I don't like having to click 'read more' to see everything on my intro/about me section. I liked having it right there when I clicked on my page. My Internet's so slow, having to click on more links is just a hassle.

    Having those round tabs at the top of the pages just make them seem ugly to me. I don't like the look of it, and I think that things were easy enough to find before.

    And I agree with the whole 'having all my gifts visible right away motivated me' thing.

    The ONLY thing I like about this change is the new blog set-up. Other than that? Major bummer all around.
    3261 days ago
    Wow. Soooooooooooooooooooo much better. I HATED the way the old spark pages looked and pretty much refused to use them. In my day job I'm a professional web developer and the old pages violated absolutely every element of good design, ease of use and decent aesthetics. The redesigned pages are perfect. It's easy to find things, the pages don't look cluttered, and they actually look professional (not that most people are using their SparkPages in a professional manner, but I can't stand things that look unprofessional and like someone who can't even find the power button on a computer designed them). This is perfect. Keep the improvements coming!
    3261 days ago
  • HOTMOMA970
    sound great to me. i get confused easily, story of my life huh. i am also not real good with computers either so whatever makes it easier 4 me i am all for it.
    3262 days ago
  • _MAOMAO_
    They're bootiful! I feel like such a silly adult, though. I couldn't find the goodies! Wow, it sure helps to read the instructions. I've been told I'm sort of like a guy that way.
    Thx for the announcement - and clear instructions - Nicole! emoticon
    3262 days ago
    Finally you guys did something that I can not stand!!!!! You made every page practally look identical...... so much for our individual look of OUR home page. Yesterday I spent a good 45 mins working on my page in the intro section to have it all taken away because inorder for me to go to my page and be motivated and reminded of what I put there I have to now click a "read more" tab????? not very inspiring to me at all. Just now I just took and moved all that info I worked on yesterday to other sections of the page that were unchanged. and so much for going to my page and glancing at my goodies quickly.

    Needless to say I am not impressed at all. I thought we got to creat our own page to look the way we wanted it to look according to our personalities. but now you have taken that away from us by making them all look really generic.

    Very sad moment for me emoticon emoticon
    3262 days ago

    Comment edited on: 5/21/2009 2:20:35 AM
    Does this mean they will load faster?
    3262 days ago
    All "improvement is not GOOD!! come on why are you fixing something that was not broke!!

    OK PLEASE fix this I can not stand how it kicks me back to my page after deleting 1 thing off my friend feed!!! I liked having my top friends more visible why so few now??? I hate that! I do not like having to click "READ MORE ABOUT" why can I just not read it Boy it gets old! I also Enjoyed seeing the spark goodies that people gave me for encouragement and motivation to see them there when I logged on to my page! I can careless if I log onto it any more!!
    I do like the way you did the photos and the tabs are OK. The lay out looks neat in appearance.

    3262 days ago
    abSOLutely love it. So much easier! emoticon
    3262 days ago
    I seem to be in the minority here, but I don't care for the changes. I liked my page the way it was. Too bad I can't keep mine how it was and those who like it, change it.

    3262 days ago

    I think the update is wonderful... looks great and easier to manuver... thanks, for the innovative and bright ideas.... Luv you guys!!!!
    3262 days ago
  • CHEROKEE1946
    I sent Nicole two questions back in the beginning of April and mid to end of April about exercise and have never heard anything back from her. Is there a different way this should be done? I figured if I went to her email it would go through and I would get an answer, but I never did. I kept a copy of the message I sent if you can direct me as to where I can resend the message and maybe get an answer.

    Thanks for the site.
    3262 days ago
    I like some of the changes but not most of them...the pages look 'generic' now...I liked having when people joined ie 'how long they had been a member since' right on the page...I don't like having fewer of my friends available at a glance on my page and I don't need all that room for my 'status'...I understand that some people's intros were long but that was ok...now there are odd word breaks...*sigh*....ah well...no more changes for awhile please...one more thing...I liked having my goodies arranged the way they were before...I love SP...but the pages were a really nice personal touch...now we have very little control over how they look...everything is packaged so tightly...we don't need to look like 'Facebook' or any other text oriented set up...we're SparkPeople...thanks for listening
    3262 days ago
    Spark Guy this is a delight. All the new features just make Sparkpeople the number one weight loss help sight in America.

    God Bless You.
    3262 days ago
    It is just so amazing how you can continue to improve on such an already perfect concept! Thank you for making this the most exciting site around. I am so grateful for the help it has given me on this 42 lb. loss journey! Keep up the wonderful work.

    3262 days ago
    This is great! Much easier to locate what you are looking for using the tabs.
    Thank you very much for thinking of us all. emoticon
    3262 days ago
    Definitely easier to navigate. I like it :)
    3262 days ago
  • KAREN24712
    GREAT JOB! Love the new design. Thanks for keeping things updated and always working to keep things easy yet comprehensive!
    emoticon emoticon
    3262 days ago
  • SATURN2002
    Notice right away, thanks for making our live easier.
    3262 days ago
  • NANCW1
    I noticed it right away and yes I like it and it is easier! Yahoo!!!!! Thanks for all the hard work on this site to all involved. Nanc
    3262 days ago
    Like it. Easier to navigate. Easier to skip the stuff that does not interest me.
    3262 days ago
    Love the changes! Thanks!
    3262 days ago
  • CYNDY_55
    emoticon *********** emoticon ********** emoticon ~~~~~~~~~ emoticon
    ~~~~~~~~~~~I Like It~~~~~Clean & Neat... emoticon emoticon emoticon ~~~~~~
    3262 days ago
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