New MacPorts web site

Ryan Schmidt ryandesign at
Mon Apr 7 08:01:53 PDT 2014

Dear fellow MacPorts developers and enthusiasts,

I’ve been working on a new MacPorts web site for some time, and I would like to share with you my work so far:

username: mp
password: 333

It is not yet complete but I hope it gives an idea of the direction I’m going, and I very much hope that you like it.

In some areas I tried multiple different page designs; on those pages you’ll see a widget for selecting among them.

Gentle feedback about what works and what doesn’t (both functionally and conceptually) and what else you think should be there would be helpful; with any luck I’ll agree with you. But let’s distinguish between features which are essential to get to a functional first version that we can publish, and those features that would be nice to have eventually but which can be postponed until later so as not to delay the initial release.

My focus so far has been on the following areas:

 * Make the homepage simple and inviting
 * Make the install page as simple as possible, providing instructions specific to each OS X version
 * Provide a page for each port, containing helpful information extracted from the Portfile, logically and attractively presented
 * News
 * Site infrastructure
 * Database

Further work to be done, in no particular order and not necessarily before the first release:

 * Further database and import script overhauls (maybe later)
 * Port search, at least equivalent to what ports.php on the current web site can do (essential)
 * Port pages:
   * Variants (essential)
   * Licenses (essential)
   * Subports (essential)
   * Distributability and binary package availability (nice to have; pretty easy)
   * Version and revision history (nice to have; difficult)
 * Maintainer info pages (later)
 * Category info pages (later)
 * Learn how the new statistics-gathering code in base works and integrate with it
 * Figure out what to do with the site footer — add more links? remove all links?
 * Contact page?

About the look and feel:

The new site’s styling is done using a CSS framework made by Twitter called Bootstrap. It provides a somewhat generic but aesthetically appealing design, with many elements and components that tend to appear in modern web sites. I like it because it is supported by a well-known organization and is well documented, making it easier for others to contribute, and it scales to devices with different screen sizes, making the web site look pleasant regardless whether you’re on a Mac, iPad, or iPhone. To make the site look less like other Bootstrap sites, we could customize the fonts and colors, by trying out a number of third-party Bootstrap themes such as those at Bootswatch, or by making our own.

More information about the macports-dev mailing list