Hi. I don't really have a specific suggestion or a list of pros/cons (about the suggestion), yet. What I would like to do is just use this page as an open sandbox for thinking about how to improve skill and QR presentation/tables. Each person please feel free to add your own feelings/ideas for the skill presentations here — it should be a brainstorming area.
On the other hand, if you want to talk about someone's idea, do it on the Talk page. This way, nothing feels too constrained at the present time, but it still provides a clean collection of ideas for sorting through when the time comes to round them up and solidify them. -- AudreyChandler 00:16, 5 April 2009 (UTC)
AudreyChandler's thoughts on the current skill presentations
Like Melee attack skills quick reference. <br\> Positive aspects
- Grouping skills by attribute (such as on Melee attack skills quick reference) makes the presentation very clean and easy to skim through.
- The compact skill boxes are more attractive to look at and get the information processed visually much faster than GWW's style.
- The compact format makes it impossible to sort things any other way; if I want a list of all Melee Attacks, and then want to group them from, say, lowest to highest recharge (irrespective of profession) because my build would benefit from the absolutely lowest recharge one... I can't.
- On the other hand, GWW lets you sort freely (Melee attack), but it looks more cluttered and it's harder to pick things out by profession visually.
So as far as basic skill listings, I would say that GWW is less attractive but more functional when hunting down just-the-right-skill. On the other hand, GWiki is smoother on the eyes, but makes fine-tuning results difficult. If GWiki's sharper style could be modified to be sortable, it would definitely be my preferred site to use for skill sifting.
Like Hex removal skills quick reference. <br\> Positive aspects: tabled skill listings
- For example, Hex removal skills quick reference.
- I believe GWiki is stronger for having so many esoteric skill listings, and formatting them with more information packed in. Compare Deep Wound and Deep Wound.
- The fact so many QRs exist at all is wonderful and contributes to the easy depth to which I can investigate things using GWiki.
Bothersome aspects: tabled skill listings
- Again, not sortable. Assuming I want the lowest-recharge 5 energy Deep Wound skill, it's very difficult to narrow down what I'm looking for on the Deep Wound listing.
- Some QR tables are sortable (see Self condition inflict skills quick reference). The problem is that it works quite poorly; for example, sorting by duration, 5s and 3s are considered "longer" than 25s (!).
- Additionally, the "Stats" section is one homogeneous blob, meaning that while you can press the Sort arrow, it's just nonsense. There's no way to sort by Energy specifically or Activation specifically etc. Instead it just forms a semi-arbitrary jumble based on the first stat it encounters; and again, 25 energy is considered "less" than 5 energy but "more" than 10 energy (!).
- Skill Type is not separated from "Elite/Not Elite" so that the alphabetical listing is impaired and it's not possible to filter away Elite or non-Elite skills (for example, if you know which Elite your build must have, you don't want other Elites cluttering up search results).
- Sorting by Attribute cannot be separated from sorting by Profession; one may just want to see all Necromancer skills together, but that is not possible. Again, this makes it hard to sift with.
- Notes should probably have its Sort button blocked from appearing because sorting the Notes offers no conceivable benefit (since they're sentences, and have no standardized formatting for semantics or syntax).
- Likewise, the icons column should not be listed as sortable.
- The general look of the tables is functional but not visually appealing. Sharp black lines cutting holes in the entire visual field makes it more laborious to pick out information going across rows or down columns, since it's like the eye hitting a brick wall every time a new solid line is encountered.
- (this one is not a big deal) The mint green/golden backgrounds, while helpful on block listings (Melee attack skills quick reference) are visually cluttering on the crowded table listings. Perhaps coloring the skill based on its profession (as GWW does) for quick visual cues, or just only coloring the borders of the icons green/gold and making them a little bigger/more padded.
- No standardization between QRs. On one hand this is good, because it lets each QR tailor its columns to meet its own needs. On the other hand, it makes it very difficult to experience consistency in what information is or is not presented, and in what way. There should be a common set of information that every QR displays, followed by a fill-in-the-blank format for adding further categories. To some degree this will decrease how well a given QR table can be fine-tuned, but the positive would be that global controls could be consistently applied to all QR tables in tandem with a subset of controls/formatting specific to each table.
- No standardization between what follows Table format (Self condition inflict skills quick reference), what follows Block Listing format (Melee attack skills quick reference), or what is just tossed into a summarized list on a main article page (there is Hex removal skills quick reference, but no "Stance removal skills quick referenced" -- just a section under Stance).
Whew! Wow. As someone who loves information and loves sorting it, this Suggestion has a lot of my heart in it. It's amazing how simply organizing and presenting complex topics can make them crystal clear, and the QRs have done wonders for me many times so far. I would love to see them taken all the way to their full potential. :D -- AudreyChandler 00:16, 5 April 2009 (UTC)