Topic: Gallery

In feedback shortly after ALS was put on-line I questioned whether a gallery was a vital component and I am still left asking the question. Is it there for a very good reason or just part of the ALA package? If the former I hope that someone can eventually explain the logic behind the decision.

I know that the developers are concentrating on function, so I hope that if the gallery is to remain that its shortcomings will soon be addressed. I am assuming that this is just a trial batch of images, however before you start on the real thing can you look at the following please
1. In the information that appears when the mouse is over the image please can we have the species name first, apart perhaps from the name of the photographer the rest  is not required
2. When clicking on the image why do we need 6 different thumbnail versions?
3. If I look at the accompanying information supplied e.g. for Image 5723459 (http://images.als.scot/image/details/5723459) it provides information that is largely of no interest, but not the species name.
4. The search needs refining - on the first page of the gallery there are 4 identical images of an orange-tip butterfly, when I search on "orange-tip" or "orange-tip butterfly" I get 189 images but not one orange-tip butterfly. If I search on Anthocharis cardamines I get an image of Cardamine raphanifolia which I am informed in the yellow pop-up box is the food of the orange-tip butterfly!
5. I then tried the Advanced Search expecting to be offered choices on various taxonomic levels, instead I was offered a drop-down list of everything but and then I had to add each criterion separately.
6. The navigation system needs some attention, if I do a search and select an image to view, if I click on Home it takes me back to the main Gallery, the only way I can return to the images selected in the search is by using the browser back button. Similarly when I have finished looking at the images  from my search, the only way I can get back to the main gallery is by clearing the search box and clicking on the search button.

You may be aware of all these points and they may be on your "to do list" and whilst you may have put the gallery on-line in it's raw state to elicit feedback, I think that you might have attached the big yellow "under-construction label".

I am sure that you have used whatever was available, but if you are going to keep this feature I hope that you will have a system of quality control and a rigorous selection process, which includes verification of the subject matter.

Finally if you insist that this feature is necessary, with reference to comments on slow broadband speeds, please can you keep the number of images of a minimum, I had time to make a cup of coffee while waiting for some pages to load.

Thank you for your attention.



Re: Gallery

This provides another example of the idiosyncratic and unhelpful search algorithms on this site.  I have provided similar examples in other contexts.

The good news for NBN is that the blame for that can be hurled at the Antipodean programmers - I have just played with ALA and their search boxes seem to work to the same ludicrous rules.

The bad news is that before ALS can be considered remotely serviceable, the NBN IT team will have to rewrite the routines throughout the site.  That should be made somewhat easier by the fact that there is an excellent search algorithm employed in G5 (one of the few improvements in G5 over G4).  I am sure  the code could be lifted and stuck into ALS - then you might be able to flog it to the Aussies.



Re: Gallery

I've also been back to ALA and I think virtually every adverse comment that we've made about ALS appears to stem from ALA.
Hindsight is wonderful, but I think perhaps it should have been road tested rather more thoroughly before the decision was made.
I'm not sure if this makes the development team feel any better as you still have the problem of trying to make the platform work particularly as the UK biological recorders are obviously harder to please than their Aussie counterparts.



Re: Gallery

Many thanks for your feedback and comments, which we have noted.