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A new version of our Classical Music site - what do you think?


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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 8 Apr 2014 03:26:38 BDT
David Henry says:
Hi there,

We recently published a new version of our site, www.openclassical.com, which has the mission of indexing the works of all composers (yes really!), with an easy to use interface. Further, we automatically pull in YouTube movies for all works (where movies exist), so in most cases you can easily listen to works you might not have heard before.

For those who might have seen the site before, the new version is a big change to the interface, with some new features.

We are looking for all comments & feedback, and hope of course that you enjoy the site.

It will be a while before all composers are done, but we do have a lot to offer already, including complete Beethoven, Rachmaninoff and Chopin. Our team adds more music every day.

Thanks!

-David

In reply to an earlier post on 19 Apr 2014 10:28:45 BDT
Last edited by the author on 19 Apr 2014 10:29:44 BDT
enthusiast says:
This forum seems to have gone to sleep, David, and no one replied to you. I will have a go but the site is not the type of thing that I usually spend time with. I guess if it could also find a range of performances of works that would be more to my taste. And I didn't at all like the "top ten" approach - with some very bizarre choices! - that governs the way the site responds to the searches I tried. Probably there are ways of avoiding this? I didn't spend a lot of time on the site so my comments may be unfair. But others also might initially experience it as I did. I'm not sure who your intended audience are or who makes up your "team" (are they volunteers, for example, or paid?). Still, what you are all doing looks like a lot of work.

Posted on 19 Apr 2014 11:06:59 BDT
I found the Top Ten approach quite entertaining - a fair few of the choices *are* strange, but all the more interesting for that. However, such an approach does seem to me to limit the wider appeal of the site and TBH I'd be likely to pay an occasional visit only. If you're looking for greater uptake than that, I would think (a) the Top Tens should become a subsidiary part of the site and (b), given the sometimes surprising choices involved, there would need to be some explanation of how they were arrived at!

Posted on 22 Apr 2014 01:52:57 BDT
Last edited by the author on 22 Apr 2014 01:55:55 BDT
David Henry says:
Thanks both, this feedback is really helpful.

For the Top Tens, they are driven by user page visits, so the pieces that are viewed & listened to more go up in our chart rankings. The idea was to present rankings driven by visitors, so you're looking at a democratic Top Ten, as opposed to someone's specific subjective choices. But maybe we should also add our own recommended Top Ten, so that there are different charts to check out? As well as catering to people who already love this music, our goal is to make it easy for someone new to classical music to get started with the music of the composers.

We thought it would be enough to show this as 'x views' on the right hand side of each item, but we've got a lot of feedback now that this is not obvious to visitors (how the ordering works), so we need to revisit this either in terms of design, or presentation.

Making the Top Tens a subsidiary part of the site also sounds like a good idea. We're really going to think on this. As our dataset and team is growing, this is now feasible.

Could you suggest any particular new features you might want on our site? For example, on the page for each composer, or the front page? Or a new page entirely with a new feature set? What might attract you to visit the site more often, if we offered it?

We are open to all suggestions.

Thanks again.

David

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Apr 2014 11:52:49 BDT
Mondoro says:
David,

An interesting site, certainly, and apart from some (non intrusive) Amazon details, lacking many of the really irritating features of YouTube.

I hope that at some stage, the site will be up to a search facility - finding one of the lesser known works by Mozart or JS Bach involves rather a lot of scrolling down, and it will get worse as more works are entered.

Posted on 25 Apr 2014 16:40:53 BDT
David Henry says:
Hi Mondoro,

Thanks for the comments. Search is high-up on our list of features to build out for the future, and you're correct - as we continue to add more, navigation will get harder. As we plan out the next major version of the site, search will very likely be included.

-David
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Participants:  4
Total posts:  6
Initial post:  8 Apr 2014
Latest post:  25 Apr 2014

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