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|Warn||1||The words contained in each h1 element should match a subset of the words contained in the title element. Words (%1) in h1 elements should also be in the title element.||Title|
|Fail||1||Every frame element must have a title attribute with content that describes the purpose of the frame.||Frames|
|Warn||1||If the content of the alt attribute is not empty it should contain at least 7 characters and less than 90 characters. The text should provide people who cannot see the image orientation to the content and purpose of the image in the website.||Images|
|Fail||2||Each heading element (h1..h6) must have text content.||Headings|
|Check||2||Heading content should be concise (usually 65 or fewer characters in length).||Headings|
|Warn||2||Avoid using text links that are shorter than four 4 characters in length.||Links|
|Fail||2||Each input element with type=text | password | checkbox | radio | file and each select and textarea element should either be referenced by the for attribute of a label element via its id attribute, or have a title attribute.||Forms|
|Fail||2||The b element must not be used to bold text content, instead use heading (h1-h6) elements for heading text or the strong element for emphasizing words, phrases or sentences.||Text Styling|
|Fail||2||The font and center elements must not be used for text styling, instead use structural markup should be used with CSS for styling.||Text Styling|
|Fail||3||Each img element should have alt text.||Images|
|Warn||4||The content of the headings of the same level within the same section should be unique.||Headings|
|Warn||8||Avoid using images that are smaller than 16 pixels by 16 pixels as links.||Links|
|Warn||12||Each map, ul or ol element that precedes the last h1 element and appears to be a navigation bar should be immediately preceded by a heading element, preferably an h2.||Menu and Navigation Bars|
|Warn||126||Ensure that links that point to different HREFs use different link text.||Links|
|Warn||139||Ensure that links that point to the same HREF use the same link text.||Links|
As someone who has been a strong advocate of pruning the groups, I would like to repeat what I've said before. Inactive groups are clutter. They discourage participation by those who might bring new life to an old topic but can see at a glance that it has been discussed before and died. And personally nothing is more annoying to me than seeing a notice indicating new activity, checking it out and finding that nothing has changed. The activity counter is, apparently, keyed to hits instead of new contributions.
NavigationThe issue in doing this is you already have a front page crambed full of things. Adding yet another thing to do what is already available, and from what you say cannot be changed because of Ning's overall constraints, is doubling up. The only way I could see this of being an added benefit is if the new side menu was a floating menu staying in view as members scrolled up or down.
Thanks to everyone so far who brought up site navigation as a barrier to participation. I'd like to focus on this, if possible, with concrete ideas on how to modify the user interface for better browsing. One suggestion so far was a direct link to blogs on the menu bar. I just had a thought that maybe we need a secondary menu in the left column linking to the main site components: forum, blogs, groups.
Recent activityYour an Admin who needs to be able to see the things you mentioned. Do the rest of us need to see this though? Some features can be turned off for "regular" members while still being available for Admin to see, at least I think they can.
We can modify the recent activity feed. It is helpful to me to see who recently joined and that people are commenting on each others' profiles. From an admin perspective, keeping track of new members at a glance is essential (especially for spam management). If the profile comments annoy everyone, we can remove them. My opinion is that the social aspects of the site help to set us apart from other academic networks hosting just forums or mailing lists. Seeing profile interactions can allow us trace side conversations or explore unexpected tangents, or simply get to know new people other than those leaving the most regular forum contributions. This small feature is a type of discovery engine. Since that's one of the reason's I'm here, I don't personally see it as a hindrance.
Francine Barone said:Recent activity
earn another system.