EDIT: I just had to correct the spelling of dockdockgo.com…
Conclusion first (click the picture for full scale):
Background: Still feeling a bit lost.
After some three years of navigating the McNeel sites, I still can’t remember the individual site’s base urls. As a newbie it took me months to even get to know they existed.
Be positive, start with pointing out something good. Or at least “not so bad”. You already did on the developers guide page something that would, if extended, benefit all pages on all McNeel sites, namely a header menu leading you to some essential main sections, and we’re even hinted (back) to the Forum.
Not bad, not bad. Could be better though. What’s missing in the header menu is for example a main link to Rhino Help, and why not also to McNeel Products? And to Rhino Support? What about the Wiki? I just noticed that the Wiki is a subdomain under mcneel.com, not under rhino3d, so how would you find your way if not knowing that it exists in the first place, so you could “quack”* it (which I had to do just now to find the thing).
- Quacking is btw my new verb for searching the web, using duckduckgo.com
Similar problem for any other major site I don’t know of yet.
OK, you all already got my point, but I think that describing the problem will at the same time provide a straightforward guide about how to fix it. Unfortunately the bad examples goes for most other mcneel sites. Most sites simple lacks any hints about how to find the other sites, although this is actually what you often need when bumming around looking for answers.
And on pages meant to address some of the problem, like Rhino Support for example, you will have a hard time finding a link to the developer site. But, low and behold, after doing a search on the page I found it under the disguise header named “Related Products”. And so on.
Links to main sites/sections really should be available in a main header on ALL sites and pages at all times, including the Forum, the Wiki and, all of them. That would be an easy way to essentially remove the “feeling lost” experience as well as reducing many questions on the Forum (OK, more people would find the Forum asking moire questions but…).
So, the web user experience is less than optimal. Many users, new or old, will simply never find relevant sites or pages because they don’t know what sites actually exist, or if the do know they exist, where to find them.
Lots a work? Yes, but happy users becoming more functional and up to speed in less time would probably pay back. Less manual support and more people spreading the word about the (more) useful of Rhino software. As we all know, learning curve is often way more expensive than the price of software.