A call for help I

I’m going to put up a couple of short posts one after the other in an effort to get your input on a couple of issues.  First, MD and I are in the process of redesigning our website and blogs.  Instead of using one of the available blog templates available through WordPress we’re having our own design.  We’ll have better integration among the blog, the website, and all the features that are carefully hidden in our blog/website right now.  And – we hope – these hidden gems won’t be quite so hidden.  As it stands now, the new design should be functional in a few weeks.

My question to you is what features would you like to see.  All I have done so far is look for features that make life easier on me, but since you all are the readers, what would make life easier on you?

Please use the comment section to let me know what changes you would like to see.  And please don’t go off topic on this one because I want to have all the suggestions in one place without having to sift through a bunch of off-topic comments.  Thanks in advance.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

44 thoughts on “A call for help I

  1. I would suggest the following:

    1) The search function should return more than 4 or 5 hits per page. 15 or 20 would be better.
    2) More than once I have had to look for your and Mary Dan’s biographies. I eventually found them, but it wasn’t easy. It’s great information to pass along when I’m trying to get people to read your stuff.
    3) Please link to your cooking show website!

    I do have a link to our cooking show website. It is listed in the links right on the front page of the blog.

  2. See, someone already wants a video link. I wish I had thought of that. Hee, hee.
    OK:
    1) A list of your recommended daily supplements, amount to take and their exact sources.
    2) An additional list of supplements and/or nutriceuticals for those wishing to take it to the next level.
    3) A checklist of tests and procedures you deem essential for one’s annual check-up. Let’s stick with males forty plus and females fifty plus for now.
    4) Excerpts from your new book.
    5) Excerpts from your previous publications, videos, multi-media as a sort of “Greatest Hits” of the low carb lifestyle.
    6) Speaking of lifestyle, we need more on the pros and cons of exercise than Slow Burn and beating some other hacker out of his mad money on the golf course.
    7) And, finally, some more musical and cultural references to add to the merriment of your already fine work to date.
    HAPPY NEW YEAR to one and all.

  3. I agree about the search – it’s quite hard to find something with the current system.

    One thing I was searching for recently was something about sunlight and Vitamin D. Having read the chapter on this topic in PPLP I had some queries I was hoping you would be able to answer (which I will not mention here for fear of going off-topic!) I suppose what I am saying is that it would be good to see some posts which deal with some of the major nutritional topics as well as the excellent research reviews you already post. I appreciate this could easily balloon into a big task, but if done sparingly it could create a nice interlinking set of posts, whereby you link the research reviews to your own material on the subject. Clearly you don’t want to end up posting the entire contents of the book to the site, but perhaps there is a level of detail that would offer a middle ground?

  4. Hi Michael,

    Yes, I agree with Lucy. The search function could be much better.

    1. More results per page as Lucy said.
    2. I would also love the ability to search within comments as your comments are often very insightful. Right now I use Google for this, but within your site would be even better.

    Otherwise it’s an amazing blog and just keep on doing what you do!

    Michael

  5. It would be great if searches included comments too. And I agree with Lucy returning more hits per page on search would be much less annoying.

  6. How about a “Forum” for discussion on specific topics. Seems like the blog comments often move off-topic although to a relevant issue which still deserves discussion. The Forum would have a heading for each topic. You and MD could comment or not in-line as appropriate.

    I don’t know if this is what you’re talking about, but there is a forum already, and it’s been around a lot longer than the blog. I assume that most of the people on the forum are also readers of this blog, so the discussions would all be among the same people as they are now. The fact that you didn’t know (I assume) this forum exists is one of the reasons I’m having the blog and website redone to be better integrated. Or are you suggesting a forum within the blog?

  7. Dr Mike,

    It would be nice to have an option for the search function to search the comments.

    Happy New Year to you and MD and thanks again for this blog!!

    Regards,

    Philip Thackray

  8. It would be helpful if we can print out blog without extra pages listing all topics/links. Thanks for all you guys do!

  9. I agree with the comment concerning the search engine returning more results, say 25-50 per page. It is much easier to browse through a list on one page to target in on information desired than to have to click several pages worth of 5 item lists, all the while trying to remember what the previous choices were.

    I would also recommend spending a good deal of time with your web designer on determining the best possible navigation for the site. Organization is vital for a pleasant user experience. You may want to include an “About Us” section to the site, for instance, or other choices which do not now exist. Roll over menus (navigation choices) would be helpful as well. Thus, if I move my mouse over “Products,” a sub menu will appear which gives me specific choices of interest like “Books,” “Supplements,” etc. The less clicking I have to do to find what I am seeking, the happier I am. I do web development part time, and I believe that overall organization is the most important aspect of a great website. I am sure that you, MD and your developer will come up with a great new site together.

    Finally, by veering away from the wysiwyg (what you see is what you get) templates, you will gain total control over all aspects of your site. Congratulations to you for taking this step.

  10. 1. I like the fact that the blog loads quickly. Many don’t.

    2. I like the “Read More” function. It makes it easier to scroll down to older posts.

    3. It would be nice to have a “Preview” function for posting. It’s very frustrating to send a comment, and see it replete with typos in the waiting-to-be-moderated section.

  11. I second the above comments, esp. the biography comment. Still haven’t been able to find that (when I click “About”, it gives me a “404 file not found” error.

    One of my favorite features of the site is the “Random Post”. Please keep that.

    The categories, blogroll, links, are great, as would be archives (if it worked properly).

    I like the clean, simple format.

    The reason you get the 405 error is that we don’t have any info in that section. I hate writing biographical stuff, so I’ve avoided it. We will definitely have something up in the new blog. Right now if you want to find out about a few of my quirks, click here for a post I did early on when I fell for one of these, Tag You’re It deals that were running through the blogosphere. MD’s tell all is here. Unfortunately, all her photos are gone. All this will be fixed with the new design.

  12. Make sure the posts are bigger than the ads!
    Just kidding. But it would be awesome if you had a good resource section with links, information about books, compiled research, etc.

    It’s in the plan.

  13. I agree with Lucy. The search engine could work better; a couple of times I searched for things that resulted in nada when I know something should have shown up. Otherwise I find the site attractive and user-friendly. I like the way the blog is set up.

  14. Happy New Year to you both, and thanks so much for all the good work you did in the old year.
    I particularly second the request for more returns per page on the search function.
    Also, it would be great if the comments were searchable, independently or together with the blog postings. And if there were some way to search readers’ comments separately from your replies to them (and vice versa) that would put me over the moon.

  15. Yes, a more robust search would be great. Also, if the search could find results in the comments section, too, that would be great. Oftentimes, you’ve answered a question in the comments section that wasn’t in the main article.

    Is it possible to have a “preview” on the comments? Just to see my entire comment and once and be able to edit it would be a nice feature.

  16. Sometimes one way to get ideas is to check out the competition. One of the better sites I’ve visited as far as layout and organization goes is Barry Sears’ drsears.com.

    AAAARRRGGGGHHHHH. Like a knife in my heart.

  17. So you already have a forum, My goodness you do. Just saw it for the first time. It looks like something I will add to my already too long list of ‘must check in with’ forums.

    The below link has a nice feature, A “there’s more’ button which expands the artice in place if you want to read more. It works very neatly. (and ps, if you haven’t heard about him before he is a genius, former (?) basebal stats guy who puts his mind to what political polls really are saying)

    http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/

    I guess I can’t see the difference between the ‘There’s more’ link on the 538 site and the ‘Read more’ that’s on mine right now.

  18. Your regular posting is awesome, keep it up, even though it’s a blog. I actually don’t care for blogs. I mean, the blog design/structure. A forum seems SO much better for many reasons.

    As for blogs… as far as readability, I have a friend who uses blogspot.com and his seems more readable than the blog software you use. I think blogspot has a commercial option.

    The software you have on your forum is quite powerful, I have used it on many sites and I designed a site where I purchased that exact software. It’s quite robust and the support forum they have is about the best I have ever seen. I always got an answer within hours to whatever I needed help on.

    I can’t think of anything you do on your blog that you could not do with that forum software… plus, have all of the advantages that a robust, dynamic forum offers.

    If you canned the blog and used only the forum, I think you would build a hugely popular forum. I mean, how many forums have an expert with your credentials regularly posting? Maybe we could take Protein Power to the level it deserves. It puzzles me why you are not even more popular, although, you’ve done pretty well, haha! Seems to me, you should be Top Gun. And the combo of you/wifey is very powerful, indeed.

    As for subjects… I am still struggling with the concept that exercise isn’t so helpful with weight loss. I’ve read this and that but geez, it is hard to accept.

    When you debunk a new study or other news item that hits, that’s always welcome.

    Another thing you need… seems you could have your manufacturers send you a .pdf of the scanned label of a product. Click on the Label.pdf and up pops exactly what is on the product.

    Thanks again, you’re da man!

  19. i actually like wordpress. but i think you’re right that it is a little disconnected from the rest of your site.

    i’m sure you are already planning this, but it would be nice if you kept this blog in the archives, or imported all of the data into your new software. i think keeping the search function (and apparently improving it, but i haven’t searched enough to know the difference) is important.

    finally, it seems like the ads/external links/other stuff i don’t use takes up a lot of your precious space, or at least it’s in the same size or bigger font, and so makes the whole page look a little cluttered. i like minimalist web design (think drudgereport)

    as the others said, though, overall it’s a great resource.

  20. oh, maybe the ability to subscribe via email, but in digest fashion (one email containing the whole day’s posts and comments).

    this could be a revenue stream for you :-)

  21. This blog has been an amazing help to me and an almost endless source of information — thanks so much for putting in so much effort on it.

    Here are few things I would enjoy:

    First, a better search function that would include phrases or names within the comments lines. Sometimes, I find myself wanting to go back and review comments to something I read months ago but I can’t remember which post I was in. Usually when I want this, or when I want to search a phrase I’m pretty sure I’ve seen in the text of your post, I go to google instead. Perhaps you could install a google search bar on your blog? Don’t know, but this would interface nicely, I think, with your system of labels.

    I’d also like to read all of your posts as some point, preferably from beginning to end. Archiving them by year and month with a sidebar for the archives would be very helpful toward that end. Now I could go to your sitemap and read all 33 pages of the outline of posts according to topic, but reading in chronological order would be better for me!

    Cheers and a very happy new year!

  22. Hi there,
    I really like the site, “Modern Forager”, (thank you for suggesting it) and I love how you can print out the article and with it the urls.
    Also, I love this site… : )
    Dorothy

  23. Consider the colors: grey, blue, and black, along with the clashing, varied colors of the advertisements – ! Some color consistency would lessen the distraction.
    Also: there is a forum? Where? Make it obvious.

    This is what I mean. Right now my blog is a giant dog’s breakfast of multiple changes by different ‘helpers’ that I’ve contracted with over the years. I’m working on making it all interlock smoothly together. BTW, here is the link to the forum.

  24. It would be nice to be able to see more than three related posts for a topic, perhaps a list somewhere organized by topic. And a better search function would be nice, one that returns a list of results sorted by date, relevance, etc.

  25. I like to read all your responses to comments Dr. Eades. But if someone posts a comment on an old post and you repsond, how am I to know that there’s a new comment and response on an old thread? I’m suggesting there be a way to know that a new comment/reply has been posted. One idea would be a “recent comments” section. However, I do not know what would be the best solution for this.

    I think there is a way in place currently to sign up to get an email each time a comment is posted. I’m not absolutely sure, but I think that can be done now. But, I deal with comments in bunches, so you would be getting dinged with emails by the zillions whenever I do the comments.

  26. -I too would like to be able to search archives chronologically. Some blogs have little calendars with ‘post days’ highlighted. Something similar would be helpful.

    -It would be great if the comments could be numbered. When there are a lot of responses, one would be able to scroll down to approximately where one left off reading previously. Also it would be much easier to reference previous comments.

    Thanks for the opportunity to input.

    Just got a note from my web guy that the archives are fixed. He found a better plug in than the one that got disabled when I upgraded to the new version of WordPress. See what you think of it.

    I, too, like the idea of numbered comments.

  27. I would love to see an email/print/save type function. Since I use web-based email, I prefer the type that calls up a form, rather than the type that trys to open Outlook on your computer. This would make it easier to share your insights.

    This is more of a concept, but something to draw in the potential low-carber who has is kicking the tires around the web to decide if this low-carb thing is worth trying. Ultimately, it should result in book sales. As it stands, if I try to put myself in those shoes, from the ProteinPower home page I would end up at either the blogs or the forum. The blog subjects are organized alphabetically, so not much help there. At the forum there is a Welcome category and a Protein Power at a Glance category, and the best path from there seems to be the post with the Protein Power in a Nutshell article. What I have in mind is something even briefer than the Nutshell article, maybe even bullet points, to set the hook, with references to more in-depth posts or articles relevant to the beginner.

    That said, thanks for everything!

  28. I like to load my favorite blogs onto my laptop for reading on the train to work. I used to be able to do that with your blog, but then the blog changed so that whole posts are not displayed. Instead, there’s a “Read more” link for each post, which of course doesn’t work when I’m on the train with no internet.

    So I would prefer that you go back to the old style of having full posts on the main page. Alternatively, you could do what http://www.fivethirtyeight.com does, which is to have a “There’s more” link in which the text is already pre-cached, so when you click it the missing text appears instantly, even if I’m not online. I think it takes some Javascript magic to make that happen, though.

  29. Sorry if my last comment was offensive, none was intended. But perhaps as a professional application developer/designer my take is a bit different. What I would like to see is some information about “Protein Power”. If a person interested in your plan were to visit this site there is no information available, that I’ve found, as to what the plan is, why they should do it, or any kind of example of what eating on protein power would be like, or any indication if anybody has ever been successful using your plan. You’ve got a well respected voice in the community, but a little shameless self promotion could raise your visibility and have a site that does more than preach to the choir.

    Respectfully,
    kd

    Your last comment wasn’t offensive. I’ve just got this sort of competitive thing going with my good friend Barry Sears. I am whatever the polar opposite is of a shameless self promoter whereas Barry is a shameless self promoter. I envy and admire him for it, but I just don’t know exactly how to go about shameless self promotion. Not that I don’t want to.

  30. This blog has comments with a reply link:
    http://www.healthcentral.com/diabetes/c/17/53622/comments

    Conrad,
    To the right of the posts on the main blog page, down at the bottom, there is a link to the comments feed. In Bloglines I get a listing of “Comments for The Blog of Michael R. Eades, M.D.” and the comments are arranged with the latest comment approved at the top and they look like this with the title being a link to the comment on the original post.
    *************
    Comment on A call for help I by Conrad

    By Conrad

    I like to read all your responses to comments Dr. Eades. But if someone posts a comment on an old post and you repsond, how am I to know that there’s a new comment and response on an old thread? I’m suggesting there be a way to know that a new comment/reply has been posted. One idea would be a “recent comments” section. However, I do not know what would be the best solution for this.

    I think there is a way in place currently to sign up to get an email each time a comment is posted. I’m not absolutely sure, but I think that can be done now. But, I deal with comments in bunches, so you would be getting dinged with emails by the zillions whenever I do the comments.
    ****************

  31. Your blog, like your books, is completely lacking in hype. It’s one of the things I love most about both your internet presence and your published works. But it’s also probably keeping you more or less invisible. In my far-out dreams, I’d love to see you have one of those service websites like Denise Austin or South Beach Diet has. You know, for a fee your members have access to menu plans, strength training plans, food logs, etc. I once subscribed to Denise Austin’s plan (when I was in Low Carb rebellion), and all I could think was “If only there were a Protein Power version of this.” Agreeing with Kevin, I’d have to say that a little more hype, a little more self-promotion, will go a long way. Roll-over menus, as Deanna mentioned, are a huge plus when I’m web browsing. Oh, and as for your website, it would be great to see some sample recipes, etc., from your books. Thanks for all you do.

  32. there is a “sitemap” link at the top of your site, and it maps mostly blog entries grouped by categories. in the new design, it would be cool if the map helped navigate all over the site like top level items ‘diet’, ‘excercise’, ‘sleep’, ‘misc’ and whatevs, you can drill down to specific tags like “vitamin D” and there you have within one click – all blog entries, all discussions on the forum, relevant links to the online shop and so on…

    Sounds great. So much so, in fact, that I would like to have it for myself. I don’t have a clue as to how difficult such a thing would be to pull off. I’ll certainly ask about it.

  33. As far as Dr. Eades VERY GENEROUS Protein Powered forum…well, we’d LOVE to have more interaction there! More the merrier actually!

    Thank You Dr. Eades for providing that ‘place’ for us to work it all out at. I’m amused at all the responses to your call. lol Poor you…but lucky US! :)

    I’m just a lowly member…lol but …well, I’ll leave it at THAT! lol

  34. I would like it if when I clicked on a category heading, I got a simple list of articles rather than the front picture and several paragraphs.

  35. If you decide to do a new forum I don’t think it should be connected to the existing forum.

    That seems more for low carbers who are dieting than for blog readers.

  36. I’d like to be able to go through old posts more easily. Please have an index by date. For example, have a list of all the previous years and under each year list the months. If I click on “January” under “2007” it should return all the posts from January 2007.

    Thanks! I think you’re amazing to even have asked the question.

    The old posts are archived exactly as you want them right now. Go to the right of the blog text and right above the Blogroll and there are the Post Archives. Click and you will find a list of months going back four years. Click on a month, and you get a list of all the posts in that month.

  37. Just my two cents, now that I’ve read all the good ideas everyone else had.

    I personally dislike the rollover menus. Stuff is always popping out and covering what I’m trying to read, and when I’m on a site where there are rampant rollovers, I find myself sneaking my pointer around the page to avoid hitting rollovers. Some of them have a very fast “trigger” — you can’t avoid popping out menus even if you zoom by. I’ve wondered if the trigger can be set so that you have to hover for a mini-moment or two before the thing pops.

    I think one of the ideas was to move more in the direction of a forum rather than a blog. I don’t use the forum at the moment. I find forums to be cluttered and without a strong central voice. Your blog has a very strong central voice (yours) which is the reason I come to it pretty much the moment I see new content. I appreciate what commenters have to say and often use the information they suggest, but I would be completely lost in a forum-only format.

    I second (or third) the ideas of searches that include comments. But this hasn’t been a problem for me as I too have used Google’s Advanced Search feature to search your website for content I knew was there someplace.

    I also second the idea of a larger text size. A blog I visit has a clickable text size button, and it remembers my selection so I don’t have to click it every time I visit.

    As others have said — thank you SO MUCH for this blog and for all your posts and comments to comments and help interpreting test results and so forth and so on. –Anne

  38. Never knew you had a forum.

    I’d like you to consider more of a “newspaper” type layout for the blog’s front page than one that requires endless vertical scrolling to see more than one article.

    Here is an example of what I’m talking about (this is an off-the-shelf WordPress theme):

    http://www.revolutiontwo.com/demo/lifestyle.html

    That theme is $60, and is easy to customize. (I think it’s a spectacular value.)

  39. Dr. Mike – I hope this isn’t a pesky question and I apologize for it coming up so late in the game: Is it possible to find out which posts are still active either by doing a search on my end or being notified by email from your end as with the current posts? In other words, I would like to know somehow when you respond to a cataloged or older post. There are so many topics now on your site and I recently realized that posts over 2 years old are still active. I don’t want to miss out on anything!

    I’m sorry, but I really don’t have a clue. I will try to address this issue when I get the new blog/website custom design up in the next month. If anyone out there knows, I’m all ears.