Redesign Update

By: Toby Skinner , 11:45 PM GMT on February 04, 2011

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It's been almost 3 days since the launch of the new site and as expected, we've had a huge amount of feedback from you all. We appreciate all of your comments - both the positive and negative - and rest assured that we are listening to each and every one of you. We would like to address some of the recurring concerns that have been raised:

How long will the classic site be available?
The classic site is not going anywhere. We will be running it alongside the new site but as we add new features and data the classic site will not benefit from these additions. For further reassurance, I can tell you that we are still running our Telnet site from back in 1992 before The Internet took over.

Why change for the sake of change?
We are one of the oldest sites on the Internet and this new site design is the first major overhaul of the user interface for 16 years. The fact that we have had one overhaul in 16 years demonstrates that we do not 'change for the sake of change'. We have added so much data and so many new products over the years that we simply had to re-organize the architecture of the site. Also, we appreciate how much our loyal users love the appearance of the classic site, but for visitors less familiar with it, the brand impression was not always so positive. We have conducted research that showed that many people did not trust the weather data on the classic site because of its dated appearance. Of course our existing users remain our number one priority and these changes are designed to enhance your experience - but to continue to be here and provide you with our unique quality of data then we have to appeal to a wide audience.

I can't find data on the city forecast page?
The number one rule that we set ourselves when looking at the city forecast page was that absolutely no data could be taken away from our users. The focus of the redesign was to instantly surface as much data as possible for our users - but with a layout that doesn't feel like such a data overload. Despite its cleaner appearance, there is in fact more data available on the city forecast page than before, without having to click to a new page.

Why has the 5-day Forecast been moved further down the page?
We understand that some users are not happy about having to scroll down to the 5-day forecasts. We introduced the 'at a glance' data at the top of the page so you can see what weather is heading your way over the next 36 hour period. We could not keep everything at the top of the page but please note that the new city forecast page is more customizable for users with the collapsible functionality of the content sections. In response to many requests, we have just launched a new tab next to the radar image on the city forecast page that will give you the 7-day text forecast in one piece at the top of the page. If you click on this new tab, it will remain the default for your next visit.

Why did we launch the new site during major storms?
We had planned the re-launch for Groundhog Day for several months and we unfortunately could not have anticipated the level of severe weather activity that far in advance.

Are we 'going to do a Facebook' and keep changing the interface?
Again, this is the 1st overhaul of the site for 16 years. If you've used wunderground.com for a while you know that we are constantly making small changes to improve the site and this will continue on the new site. I can't promise that we won't redesign the site in 2017.....!

You can still go to your settings page and view both fahrenheit and degrees - it still needs some work integrating with the new site - we're working on it!

We will continue to listen to all of your feedback as we move forward with the new user interface. Ultimately, our focus is on delivering the most reliable and in-depth weather information - you can choose which version of the site you wish to view the data on.

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classic.wunderground.com






Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Where are the hourly forecasts?
There use to be an hourly button under the extended forecast for my city?
How do I get that back?
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I'm not any happier with the new site a few weeks in, and I've tried to make use of it.

Clearly some work has gone into trying to fix it-- but the data is still too spread out, too much white space, have to click and navigate to get to things, etc.

Sorry, it's inferior.

While it's good that you're keeping the classic site around indefinitely (I never knew you had a telnet interface, truth be told) it's a little annoying that any new features won't be updated into the 'classic' skin.

All I really want is the same 'at a glance' view I can get in classic in the new site...if you can't do this, at least put a preference in for we paying members to default to the classic (I'm still changing or adding bookmarks on various devices).
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Ditto the vision thing. That should at least be an active consideration when designing a new site.

Pat's angry mob picture is hilarious.
Member Since: August 29, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 94
I was complaining to someone this morning about the links on the blog pages still not changing color when they are clicked.
She pointed out that they do change color, although the change is subtle.

She's right in both regards. After getting out my magnifying glass, I see that they DO change colors. The change, however, is so subtle that it's functionally invisible to me.

The color change on the classic page is easily visible. Tell those 20 and 30 year old site designers with perfect vision to find the hex number for the links on the classic page and use it. Those of us with vision issues would appreciate it.

Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
The changes you have made have ruined the site. Used to be you could click on it and without scrolling see almost everything you needed to know at a glance. More data isn't necessarily better....it's a weather site for cripes sake, you're the weatherologists! Just analyze all the data and tell us what's going to happen.
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As a "ad free" user of WU I have been very well satisfied withe the classic WU and think that it's the best of all weather pages available. I approve of change, for web pages, when there is improvement to ease of use and pleasing to the eye and I must say I do not find that in the updated page. The only thing I could find that was improved was the radar button and menu. The dislikes have already been posted and I agree with them all, so will not continue to "beat a dead horse" as I doubt that the decision makers are reading these comments nor will they be persuaded to simply tweak the classic page if needed. I am sticking with the classic page and so is my wife. She will not scroll to find what she is looking for as it requires using a "mouse".

Thanks for keeping the "classic"!
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I came to Weather Underground daily because I liked the display. You've changed it and I no longer like it. I'm off to seek another weather site. I'll check back from time to time to see if you have anything interesting.

I just don't understand why web managers have to change a good thing. You say you haven't changed in 16 years. Good. You had an awesome, quick to reference layout. That's why I came here.

There were three things I would use on your web site.

1) The five day forecast - can't find one any more. Why? Oh from reading these complaint messages I see it is available further down the page. Please give me an option to have it back at the top, or to default to the old style page layout.

2) The Hourly forecast - cant find that either. Why? Same comment as #1.

3) The animated radar. That I could find.

There is nothing else I'm interested in.

Change for change sake isn't good change. You should ask customers before making changes like this. USAToday.com learned the same lesson a while back. They lost so much traffic they had to do a second edit and put back a lot of features.

Oh I just found what I wanted on weather.com. Goodbye
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The AQ color-codes are too small and dim.
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Sorry but since the website has changed design the data has also become extremely inaccurate. For example, if I check Windhoek, Namibia for today it says CLEAR and 50% chance of rain. THAT doesn't make sense. It has been showing between 50% and 70% rain for the last few days and we have had no rain. The website used to be very accurate. Not any more.
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I'm not a web developer, or a meteorologist, just a weather junkie. I use the site to check the weather, and I like the new format, because it lets me check the weather.

Seems like the developers have been working pretty hard to accommodate requests, for instance, adding the 7 day forecast tab and putting the % chance of rain back in the forecast. I see a lot of venom aimed at a site that is free to access and apparently responsive to users.

And yes, I registered to comment. If all I wanted was to contact the site administrators and request a change, I would have gone to the bottom of the page and clicked on "Contact".
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Happy Now ?


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Quoting johnfromojai:
I can't believe I had to register to lodge a complaint. Now I'm really unhappy!
I hate the new design. The old design was more fun, colorful and efficient; everything I wanted at one glance. If I wanted more detail I could go looking for it. At least give people the option of the old design. You've managed to combine bad choices of New Coke with the aesthetic excitement of old IBM.



....pssssssssst


Maybe read the ol second paragraph in the above entry.




classic.wunderground.com


Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I can't believe I had to register to lodge a complaint. Now I'm really unhappy!
I hate the new design. The old design was more fun, colorful and efficient; everything I wanted at one glance. If I wanted more detail I could go looking for it. At least give people the option of the old design. You've managed to combine bad choices of New Coke with the aesthetic excitement of old IBM.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Look on the bright side: At least now we know where the people who developed New Coke have been the last few years. :-)

Classic Forever

http://classic.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/findweath er/getForecast?query=[your ZIP here]
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I am a fairly new member, but have used this site, almost daily, for many years. We are now living in an area where 7 day weather predictions are of utmost importance, during the winter months. When we travel through this and other states during the year, we also like to know what conditions are going to be up to a week ahead, so we can alter our plans if bad weather is forecast. The new site does not provide a simple path to 7 day forecasts of any depth similar to the "Classic". On the road one does not have a regular choice in getting high speed reception, and wating on dial-up with the new system, is wasted time. The "Classic" might have appeared "dated" to some, but their attention span must be limited because the pages were filled with relevant data which was easy to scan, and easy to find what weather information one may need. "Dated" is the argument of someone more interested in form over fact(s). As others have said, return to the "Classic". It is more informative and easier to use.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I would like to see the Humidity listed next to the current temperature on the main screen. Where I live, the humidity makes all the difference. Please add this information to the current weather conditions.
Thanks.
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Quoting discodown:
I personally have be through many site redesigns in my career and users are never very supportive and do not embrace the change even when it is clearly for the better.

Good job


Wait -- how can all these redesigns clearly be for the better if users are never very supportive? I don't intend to undermine your expertise, but that seems like a contradiction.
Member Since: August 29, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 94
I was wondering when Wunderground would redesign. Most sites that have been around as long as you guys have gone through tens of makeovers, just look at Yahoo.

As a web developer I appreciate the difficulty of trying to present all the data Wunderground has in a way that is still accessible but looks clean. I think the redesign is a success and I have since discovered things on your site that I had previously not notice.

I personally have be through many site redesigns in my career and users are never very supportive and do not embrace the change even when it is clearly for the better.

Good job
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The weather stations are no longer capable of being separated by type, as before. This capability is needed (tabs).
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Really miss the wind gusts that I can't seem to find on the new site.
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As a professional web designer I must say you missed the mark on the new design. While some of the redesign is a step forward, most is a step backwards. Your old design occupied the entire screen, however the new design does not. Why on earth would you do that? Most of us use wide screens, not 1024x768 but rather 1440x900 or higher. Almost every single person I've spoke to about this say they wish sites would stop treating their wide screens as if they were only 1024 pixels wide. If you are going to do a redesign then get into the 21st century and design it for the future instead past...aka the old tired look with white space on the left/right side of the screen. Innovate is the only way to redesign.

1. Use the entire screen just like your classic version does.
2. Stop posting so much information on one screen. Information overload. Why do designers think all this information needs to be on one screen? When we go to our area to check the current conditions and forecast, that's what we want to see...we really don't care about the other junk on the screen. Put buttons or tabs and new screens for those items. Put the list of weather stations on a secondary screen, or tab, as well.

Just because your site has not been redesigned in 16 years does not mean it needs it. If the wheel is not broken why try to fix it? If you're going to redesign it the least you could do it make it better.

One has to wonder if wunderground reads any of these comments and if they do, do they think we have no idea what we are talking about. e.g. This is our website and we don't really care what users think and/or say. I sure hope this is not your attitude because if it is users will go elsewhere for their weather.
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This is just a general comment. There is an error when the powers that be entered days in the future forecast. There is Saturday, Sunday, and they have noted Monday as "Washington's Birthday." It is NOT. It is celebrated as "President's Day," to lump Lincoln's Birthday (the 12th) and Washington's, which is truly Tuesday the 22nd!! Can't change his real birthday, even if it's celebrated some other way or day!
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I don't appreciate your new format. I want to know about my area now--not taking half the page with info about world weather events and the country's weather. Too bad I can't get the classic view up first and than have the option to see the overall country and detailed info on our area that I now have to wait for to come up when I click twice for the classic view (the wait is long since we don't have high speed internet access). I'll be looking for other weather information connections.
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I'm trying to get used to the new format but so far I am frustrated. I have not yet found how to produce a printable version.During the spring and summer months we showed weather underground print-outs for 4 different cities of concern to our visitors every day.Is there a print tab somewhere on the new page I am missing? If this question has been addressed in a previous post I missed it. That's my major concern but, so far I have to say the new site does not appear to be an improvement. New Coke?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Too time-consuming to navigate. Not intuitive. Has a scrambled feel to it. I love, love Wunderground, so don't like to be critical. Please keep working on more elegant modifications.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
It took some time to find the new "weather history for this station" link (some indication might be added to direct users). Other than that, while dismayed by change, I'm confident that it is good for the soul!

Good job, thanks!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Do like the new look, just have one suggestion.

How about a button on the local weather page that opens for my favorite city.

Where and what you ask well... Under "hourly forecast" a button instead of a text link for "Detailed Hourly Forecast " Took me a while to find it, and still have to look closely to find it. It is one of my favorite pages to view for detailed information on the next weeks weather. Thanks for listening and for the new look.
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I liked the concise classic display with the quick view of the Hi/Lo, cloud/sun displays. It's a hassle to scroll down and have to read what was a quick overview for the next several days in the classic view
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I liked the old site, but I also like the new one. Change is not always good, but I think it is this time. Keep up the good work!
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The new site is HORRIBLE please revert and accept that you made a BIG MISTAKE
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting gtmp:
Also, I definitely vote for a Classic preference being re-enabled. My browser window is typically ~800x400. Amazingly when I open the site, NO ACTUAL WEATHER DATA IS SHOWING! Instead I only see window trimming -- headers, welcomes, tabs, ... Then I have to scroll to see what the actual weather is. What I want is to see all the basic info, which for me includes at least a 7-day forecast at a quick glance, and I'm willing to work harder to get to the other less frequently referenced data, like travel data, severe, world wx, etc.


This is a huge point and a big turn-off to so many who have used the Classic site for years. When one goes to a weather site and sees no weather information when the site opens up, at first there's surprise (am I on the wrong site?) dismay (what the @#&*!!! happened?) and annoyance (where the %^&*!!! IS the weather?!) it's rather like going to the gas station and having to wade through displays of undergarments, socks and suspenders to get to the pumps. It shouldn't have to be this hard to find what should be staring you in the face!

Some folks may have had fun designing the new site to look like every other ho-hum site on the Internet and I'm sure they made many house-payments while doing it, but what they really needed to do was make the site easier to navigate than before, not harder, more legible, not less and left the things that worked well alone. I didn't think the Classic WU really needed any change, but then I have noticed various changes in the last ten years since I started using WU and seen many wonderful things come about. This wasn't one of them. The new WU will need another redesign before it will come close to rivaling the efficient and effective display of information and features that the Classic WU has.
Member Since: November 16, 2002 Posts: 73 Comments: 7430
Please dismiss the person that changed the site. Fixing something that isn't broke is a major problem with webmasters and IT people.
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Ok, I like the new format but I miss my side bar on the left. Maybe make it bigger on the top if it can't be moved to the left or wherever you want it. Other than that change is good if for a purpose so lets do it.
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464. gtmp
Clicking on Extended Forecasts tab doesn't get stored. Every time I return to site it has reset
to Current Data. Is there some place to save the Extended Forecasts setting?

Also, I definitely vote for a Classic preference being re-enabled. My browser window is typically ~800x400. Amazingly when I open the site, NO ACTUAL WEATHER DATA IS SHOWING! Instead I only see window trimming -- headers, welcomes, tabs, ... Then I have to scroll to see what the actual weather is. What I want is to see all the basic info, which for me includes at least a 7-day forecast at a quick glance, and I'm willing to work harder to get to the other less frequently referenced data, like travel data, severe, world wx, etc.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Number one priority: keep weatherunderground thriving and in business so we can use it!!!!

I agree with some of the comments about the new site - I say to those (like me) who have used the site and love it: LET THESE GUYS DO WHAT THEY HAVE TO DO SO WE WILL HAVE THEM!!!!

I apologize for shouting and being impolite, but let's not forget the proverbial forest for the proverbial trees!! Sometimes you have to consider silly things like fashion to get your message across. Even T.S. Elliot wrote blurbs for books!!

Good luck to you guys/gals at weatherunderground.

Loyal user.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Sorry to complain again, but I'd like to point out a problem I haven't seen mentioned here before. I, and I believe the majority of your users, come to your site first and foremost to find out my local weather. I'm glad you provide all the background information and weather for other areas, but that's secondary.

And yet, when I first come to the new site, at the top right of the home page I see the world "Weather Events" map occupying some very important space. Now, I think it's fascinating that it was 67 below zero in Siberia the other day and 113 degrees somewhere in Africa, but frankly that's not what I'm mainly interested in; I would rather that prime space be used for more immediately useful local data so I don’t to scroll so much to find it. The world information could be accessed with an appropriate link (with more clicking and scrolling ;-)

Follow-up to my previous post: on close examination I think I detect a subtle difference in color of the comments page number I'm on vs. the others, but this is complicated by yet another similar color, perhaps for pages already visited. I think these differences need to be made much more obvious, and Previous and Next page buttons would be nice too.
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I love your site, and use it for work on a daily basis. As an aerial photographer, the cloud cover % is important to me in the five-day forecast. Somehow the new 5-day forecast takes up almost twice as much vertical space as the old one, requiring constant scrolling. No new data has been added, but somehow the thing is just larger and more awkward. I use adblock, so I don't see the adds, but I assume this is to make room for advertising. Although I would like to be progressive, I'm very thankful that you continue to keep the classic site, as that is the one I will continue to use.
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There's another problem, this time with this comments section: at the bottom of this page, it says "Viewing (posts) #xxx - #xxx". Below that are page numbers -- but there's NO indication of which page I'm on, or which pages have which post #'s, and there's not even a "Next Page" button! Makes it much harder to read the posts.
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Hmmmm . . . make a poll and see who likes what.

I'm getting used to the new format, but we need to get '% chance of precipitation' back on the forecast section like it was on the classic site.
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This is for redbridge, parkerpark, weamerbike, shadowcatcher and others. To go directly to your zipcode in the Classic view, save a bookmark like this one for Chicago:

http://classic.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/
findweather/getForecast?query=60601

but change 60601 to YOUR zipcode or city name.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AppleJack:
Some like the format change, most don't. Personally, I don't. The LEAST you can do at WUnderground is provide an option in the Settings menu to default to the Classic view. That way, you have responsibly serviced ALL your customers.


Wondering if any admins in Wunderground reads these posts?

Or can it be that they do; but simply don't care what the loyal customer base has to say?
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Quoting weamerbike:
Three steps that used to be one.





Is there a way to save the classic view in my account settings so that it is the first page that I see?


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At first I didn't like the "new" but have changed my mind. You have tried to make site better and I agree.
Wendell
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OK, the "extended forecast" tab is solves one of my family's major issues with the new format. However, I never would have figured this out if I hadn't read this page so I'm sure there are a lot of people who won't figure it out.

However, my second issue I didn't even realize until days after the change because it's something that's just gone. All pages used to have a random weather photo. This was one of my most heavily used items. Now to see current photos I have to click through to the photo page every time. You actually have to THINK "oh, I'd like to see some weather photos" as a destination rather than them just being there. So I don't think of it and haven't looked for photos since the transition.

Then when on a photo page you have to blindly click through the next arrow or return to the main photo page rather than having thumbnails showing possible photos to jump to.

Although I'm all for new formats I think I'm changing back to the old one just for that.
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Some like the format change, most don't. Personally, I don't. The LEAST you can do at WUnderground is provide an option in the Settings menu to default to the Classic view. That way, you have responsibly serviced ALL your customers.
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Some strange data issues. When I check for Windhoek, Namibia I get some strange data. On days forecast with rain you regularly see "water equivalent of mm" but there is no figure in front of mm. Similarly for heat index. There is regularly no figure but the text is there.

I have also seen strange things such as 70% rain when there is 0$ cloud cover. Rain with zero clouds?
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Three steps that used to be one.

I have to agree that while this new site is very new and cool looking, it is infinitely more difficult to navigate and the colors do not present the data clearly for those with eyes over 40.

I have looked all over the site, including the preferences and settings in my paid account and cannot find how to retain the "classic" view when I open the page. I now must open the site, click on "classic" then once that comes up, click again on my own city. THREE STEPS!

Is there a way to save the classic view in my account settings so that it is the first page that I see?
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I scroll down.

The screen jumps back to the top of the page.

I scroll down again.

The screen jumps back to the top again.

Repeat a zillion times; consistent continual results

This is a permanent bug.

Please fix, or else I'm going to have to leave this site and use something else.

You have been my favorite (and just about only) Wx site for years now; at least two, maybe five; not sure.

Please stop jumping back to the top of the screen when I try to scroll down. You are killing my interest in your service, and killing your own ad revenue as well.

Thank you
Carl


---------TECH----SPECS----------
Browser: Opera 11.01
Windoze XP
Speed; something like 5 or 10 Mbits
Connection; normal ordinary cable modem
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I think the redesigned layout a lot; it's much cleaner and more modern looking, and makes it easy to locate the information I need. I am a bit bemused to have a prominent chuck of the page taken up by a weather summary, and weather events, for North America though. If you can't localise this, get rid of it from the 'front page'.
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