Testing a website on a smartphone simulator

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Madeleine's picture
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Has anyone tried this? I realize I need to get a second website out there for smartphone users but I've asked guests to show me the website on their smartphones and it doesn't look bad. The screen has to be sized so maybe guests will grouse about that, I don't know.

I just used an iPhone simulator online and it didn't work. It wouldn't show my booking calendar and it DID show my Flash slideshow. So, even the testing app doesn't work right.

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 I don't know what all the fuss is about with this mobile phone special site. Didn't you all read SWIRT's post below??? I think someone is out to make a buck. Sad

But the easiest is just use something like wordpress. Every site I have done, I test on tablet and smart phones and they all look ok. To be sure, just use a WP responsive theme.

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catlady wrote:

 I don't know what all the fuss is about with this mobile phone special site. Didn't you all read SWIRT's post below??? I think someone is out to make a buck. Sad

But the easiest is just use something like wordpress. Every site I have done, I test on tablet and smart phones and they all look ok. To be sure, just use a WP responsive theme.

the fuss about this site is that you don't have to learn Wordpress. It is user friendly. It automatically sizes your photos. easy peasy and quick to change if you want to update or put in specials. If you have a chance at your next conference go to their demo.

RIki

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 WORDPRESS is easy too. Most inns are not doing their own websites. WP is tons easier than Dreamweaver. And getting the right theme template makes it even easier. Yes I do customize the ones I do, but anyone can do wordpress..believe me..I have taught some pretty computer illiterate innkeepers how to use it to update their own sites and blogs.

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catlady wrote:

 WORDPRESS is easy too. Most inns are not doing their own websites. WP is tons easier than Dreamweaver. And getting the right theme template makes it even easier. Yes I do customize the ones I do, but anyone can do wordpress..believe me..I have taught some pretty computer illiterate innkeepers how to use it to update their own sites and blogs.

That's true but does Wordpress have the ability to check the website for all the different phones as to how it works? The system that I use adjusts for all that and all I have to do is fill in the words and upload the photos. That's it. No learning curve.

It has a button to email, to post on facebook, to text the information. Easy for the phone user. 

Also I think I have the premier package. You can pay less and list your inn and driving directions for less. And they are working on new stuff to add:

photo gallery page

You Tube movie page

Social Media Linking

They are in the business of constant updating and adding what mobile phone users are doing. It's far cheaper that using B uu te c for $190 a month for the same thing!!!!

I could do Wordpress but don't know if it would appear correctly on every phone, and phones are constantly changing. They are keeping track and updating as things change. My Wordpress website could be obselete in 6 months and I don't have the time to keep an eye on the industry.

I know this is working for me as the emails tell me when they are coming from a phone and it's up to 40% in the short time I have had this site. To be kept up to date without having to do anything is well worth $250/year,  Just takes one night booking or one tour to pay for it.

RIki

 

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 A theme that is truly responsive grid would adjust to all current and future phones without reallly caring what the phone is.  It just responds to window size.  It would not get out of date and does not need to check the list of possible phones.

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swirt wrote:

 A theme that is truly responsive grid would adjust to all current and future phones without reallly caring what the phone is.  It just responds to window size.  It would not get out of date and does not need to check the list of possible phones.

I just noticed that my WordPress blog is a responsive grid! I didn't even realize it, but if I squeeze the browser down narrower and narrower, the photos get smaller, the number of columns gets reduced, etc. Amazing!

Yes, definitely the way to go! Thanks, Swirt!

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Surprise! I told you most wordpress template though they may not be labeled as responsive, will adapt to whatever is being used. I know responsive means more than just that, but it works Smiling

Yours is the basic wordpress install 2011. You said in another post that it can't be used as a "website." I beg to differ, it can be, you just have to change things up a bit. Add in some plug ins and customize. Here is your same template which I used for this site.

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OK, I like that template-driven website. Most of them look too 'blog-like' and therefore, to me, not sophisticated. I like a website that looks like the person took some time to develop it and not just plug in their own text. ie- I like novelty in a website.

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That is how I felt till I started reading about them.  So many can be altered to give an individual web, not blog, look.  But it does take some work.  The ones that claim to be 'liquid' have more flexability, at least that is what I have surmised from reading. 

 

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 Oh you know...it is too funny. One of the themes I have purchased is COLORWAY and the owner touts it is a one click web site.  HA HA..there is no way. It isn't hard, it take a bit of time and they do provide good support. But I keep telling him that is not truthful advertising..because no way will one click do it.  Only if you want to use their template theme EXACTLY as they have it. And no one can do that.!  If you decide to go with one I know, I am happy to provide you with some insights Smiling

 

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Thanks so much CL.  Will get back with you when we decide on one... it is hard to choose!  We are currently looking at a ThemeForest one called Coherence by Kriesi. 

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copperhead wrote:

We are currently looking at a ThemeForest one called Coherence by Kriesi. 

I am also looking at Coherence, but on Kriesi's website, under "Key Features of Coherence" it says "deactivate responsive features with one click in your backend". That just sounds painful!

Eye-wink

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Arkansawyer wrote:

copperhead wrote:

We are currently looking at a ThemeForest one called Coherence by Kriesi. 

I am also looking at Coherence, but on Kriesi's website, under "Key Features of Coherence" it says "deactivate responsive features with one click in your backend". That just sounds painful!

Eye-wink

Ok, working again today with Coherence and I'm realizing what an old curmudgeon I have become, because a few things are really irritating me! Every time I save a setting it displays the message, "OK, Sparky. That was saved with no problems whatsoever."

On the contact form it has some nice features, like when it asks for the potential guest's e-mail address, it automatically checks to make sure it's a valid address. But it also has an optional section where the guest can set the priority of their contact message the guest can send to the innkeeper. The default priority levels in the template are:

Low, Medium, High, Urgent as Hell, ASAP DUDE!!!

I'm picturing some overseas teenager cranking out these themes and templates! I wish grownups could create these things but I know they/we can't Sad

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FOUND IT!

Go to Theme Options / Contact

Scroll down and Go to that section. Click in the box and edit Then save.  The Sparky thing...I will be looking at the code to see if I can get rid of it somehow. I am tired of it as well.

 

 

 

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catlady wrote:

FOUND IT!

Go to Theme Options / Contact

Scroll down and Go to that section. Click in the box and edit Then save.  The Sparky thing...I will be looking at the code to see if I can get rid of it somehow. I am tired of it as well.  

Thanks, but I already knew how to edit it. That's where I found it in the first place. I was doing the contact setup and ran across the defaults they put in there.

I sure hear you about having to remember where things like that are. The controls for stuff are spread out all over the place in Page, Theme, Appearance and Settings. There are a few things I ran across early on and have NEVER been able to find them again!! (this is all to do with WordPress in general, not just this particular theme)

Have you run across "Screen Options" in the upper right corner of the Page editing page? That's where you can show additional things like "Custom Fields" that let you add a slideshow to any page. Who would have thought to look in the upper right corner when all the other controls are on the left?

And I had to go in and change the footer.php file manually to get it like I wanted it and get rid of the "another Kriesi WordPress Premium Theme" stuff they had in there. I paid for the theme, so I don't need his ad on it!

So, slowly gettting it, and once I've got it I'll be set...until everything changes again in a couple of years!

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So, slowly gettting it, and once I've got it I'll be set...until everything changes again in a couple of years!

Do you actually think you will have years before things change again?

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gillumhouse wrote:

Do you actually think you will have years before things change again?

No, but I have years before   change again!

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 oh yeah, screen options....check it for Every page you are in because there are all sorts of hidden goodies in wordpress. thdn of course the plugins...on and on.

yes I edited the footer copyright first thing! Be sure you save that file on your computer because if they upgrade the theme one day, your changes to the .php files will not be saved like the custom syles you add under theme options.  or create your own custom styles.css

Most times, it is better to just start out with using your own child theme. I have done that with most of my early wp sites that did bot have the theme option...custom styles settings.

 

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 Of course now I can't remember where I edited it. I will keep looking and when I find it, I will let you know. This senior mind is about at capacity after all day at this Sad

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 I know I have been working on Sterling off and on all day as well. You can edit all of that stuff out on Coherence. Yep...they are young but that's who is out there doing this stuff these days Smiling

I also got this from Miquel at TruThemes:

The Layout category refers to how the overall layout is designed and constructed in the CSS – it can be fixed, liquid/fluid, or elastic.

Here’s a great little article for details on that:
http://blog.webassist.com/2010/02/the-4-types-of-css-layouts-which-one-is-right-for-you/

Responsive is how the theme renders on Mobile vs Desktop Browsers. “Responsive” because it “responds” to the smaller dimensions of a Mobile Browser.

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CL, when I am ready, I think I will just send it all to you and pay you to make it pretty!!!!!

 

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 Well , the co  herence site says this: "The theme uses a flexible template system that enables you to create stunning pages out of the box with no coding knowledge at all"

That's a joke! If you can't read some code and know where and how to change it, you will be stuck.

I have been working with the theme for 3 days now and have had to solve all the different issues myself. I have had no one from support get in and answer my questions on their support forum. They do others but it is random. Don't know what the secret is. Fend for yourself is the message I am getting.  I am still trying to figure a way to get header images that are not sliders on the subpages, but haven't discovered that yet. May need to get a plug in to do it. 

this is what my draft site looks like now. Don't know yet if the clients like it or not. Haven't heard from them.

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CL - thanks for all the good advice.  Just looked at that site both on PC and on my Droid... PC looks very nice, clean and easy to view and read.  On my Droid I had to flip to the side to get the full site, vertically the pics were covered with the words and things seemed a little distorted.  But again once I flipped the phone all seemed to show up fine.... though it was not just like the PC format. 

DH does know code, but I am sure not as versed as you.  DH will need support and thought this one had good support

I am also not happy the mobile view, is not as attractive as on the PC. 

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copperhead wrote:

But again once I flipped the phone all seemed to show up fine.... though it was not just like the PC format. 

I am also not happy the mobile view, is not as attractive as on the PC. 

Yes, that's how a reactive one works, by reformating things automatically for the smaller screen to make it readable. If the mobile view was just an exact replica of the PC screen everything would be so tiny that it's unreadable on the phone...

...which is the typical iPhone view of a non-reactive website. The whole page width shrunk to fit on the screen. The only way you can read that is to MANUALLY enlarge it section by section using pinch and drag.

I don't see any way possible to have it both ways, to have it as attractive as on the PC and readable in the tiny mobile view without having to manually pinch and spread and drag around like on the iPhone. The reactive layout that automatically reformats for the small screen is THE way to go, even if it's not as attractive as the huge PC screen version.

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catlady wrote:

I have been working with the theme for 3 days now and have had to solve all the different issues myself.

Well you've sure done a good job solving the issues because the site looks great to me! It works very well on my iPhone, pretty much like it's custom made for the screen.

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 Those of you looking for a new wordpress theme with RESPONSIVE settings, my favorite company now has theirs available. Go here to see STERLING

Their support is TERRIFFIC and they have training demo videos that walk you through the how to's. They are all in understandable ENGLISH   They also have the best documentation for using the theme I have seen. All again in plain and correct English.

Take a look and see what you think

 

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Had my eye on this one also. Please let me know how this one works (compares to the other). 

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Thanks for sharing!

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CL - I like the look of that one, what does Layout     Fixed mean.

Does that mean that the general format is fixed as in you can edit the text but not the layout of where it sits?

 

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Weaver wrote:

CL - I like the look of that one, what does Layout     Fixed mean.

Yeah, I see that in the box over on the right side of the theme description. It's obviously a typo. They just copied another theme's description and didn't change that. It's definitely NOT fixed. It's responsive.

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that is what I thought but this is not my strong suit so I figured I missed something.

Thanks everyone!!!

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 Fixed, means a fixed width.  Not Fluid and not responsive.

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 Yep, i knew that,  but what I was trying to asking was where she saw that in regards to the theme I was pointing to. Because this Sterling theme is a RESPONSIVE one.

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catlady wrote:

 Yep, i knew that,  but what I was trying to asking was where she saw that in regards to the theme I was pointing to. Because this Sterling theme is a RESPONSIVE one.

I went to the link and right on the first page of the details of that theme it says "fixed", which threw me for a loop since you said it was responsive.

I will see if I can capture the screen to show you.

Edited to add:

Created 10 May 12
Columns 4+
Compatible Browsers IE8, IE9, Firefox 2, Firefox 3, Firefox 4, Safari 4, Safari 5, Opera, Chrome
Software Version Wordpress 3.3, Wordpress 3.2, Wordpress 3.1, Wordpress 3.0
Documentation Well Documented
Layout Fixed
ThemeForest Files Included Layered PNG, Layered PSD, JPG Image, HTML Files, CSS Files, JS Files, PHP Files
Widget Ready Yes
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I have seen other responsive themes that are listed as the layout being "fixed"  The other the other term I have seen for layout is 'liquid' which is what the other site CL just used has (the one we have been currently discussing re: PC vs phone looks. 

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 Thanks. I see that now. I have told Miquel about this. I think this was a posting error because everything says it is responsive.

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catlady wrote:

I think this was a posting error because everything says it is responsive.

Don't have to rely on what it says. Just grab the right side of the browser window and drag it left and you'll SEE it resize as the window gets smaller and smaller, all the way down to mobile screen width. That means it's reactive, not fixed width. No question about it.

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 I am not sure what you are referring to? There are several types of layouts you can choose from and lots of options to make it your own. the basic structure is set by the theme, so unless youknow coding, you would stick with what is there. But I have not found any ofthem to be confining.

I just bought this particular theme so have not gotten into it yet. but as i looked it over, it should do anything I want

 

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 Great that is good to know. I looked at it on my tablet and it was fine. but hadn't looked at a phone yet.

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 ha ha...I just bought it so have to play around with it.

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 That one looks nice, but look at the ones that have been purchased the most as well. To me that is indicative of how good the site and support for it is...at least that is how it has been for the other ones I  have purchased there. I am looking at a few of them right now for a new site I am going to do.

With this fellow, you can actually go to his support page and actually read the questions and his answers before you buy...that's a good thing. On most, you have to buy and register before you can see their support. http://www.kriesi.at/support/  one other good thing....this fellow is based in Vienna..so hopefully his english is a bit better than some others.

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CL, what a nice site... peaceful!  

Which theme did you use for this one? 

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 For that site I used the freebie that comes with the download of WP. Twenty eleven. Then customized to suite my needs. It took a little bit of learning...of styles...but it is really pretty easy if you use FIREBUG, inspect the element and then copy and paste into your styles.  OH I might mention. If you use this ALWAYS FIRST create your own CHILD THEME. If you don't when there is an upgrade, you will lose all your custom styles.

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copperhead wrote:

CL, what a nice site... peaceful!  

Which theme did you use for this one? 

You definitely want to look at that template for yourself. I think this would work really well for you.

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catlady wrote:

...you just have to change things up a bit...

Yes, a bit, but a LOT more than I know how to do! I spent hours yesterday trying to figure out how to turn a WP blog template into a regular web page. Finally gave up and went looking for my bottle of scotch.

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Here's an FYI for you and others who do their own websites and are thinking of going to Wordpress

Take a look at this tutorial

This gives you great information on how to use Firebug to edit your wordpress site. I use Firebug all the time. It is also a great way to learn more css. In many of the themes, you don't have to edit the style sheet, you can go into their Theme Options and Custom styles and just copy and paste the code into that section rather than opening up the WP editor.

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 Here is a B & B site I did with the Twenty Eleven Theme. This one was early on in my learning curve and I would do things just a bit differently now..but it still works just fine. This one I did for our garden club from the same theme. I did this site pretty quickly and no real bells and whistles...but hey it just won one first place at the South Atlantic District Conference Smiling I do have to brag a bit. I took all the photos and they are all my flowers.

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Very nice - spotted the gnome!

Weaver's picture
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CL - very nice and not blog like at all.

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Arkansawyer wrote:

catlady wrote:

...you just have to change things up a bit...

Yes, a bit, but a LOT more than I know how to do! I spent hours yesterday trying to figure out how to turn a WP blog template into a regular web page. Finally gave up and went looking for my bottle of scotch.

Aren't there some unwritten rules about blogging while drinking?  BUI  LOL

 

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