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Template talk:Traveltopic

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So a couple of issues about this:

Majnoona 14:13, 21 April 2006 (EDT)

I support not having it at all and allowing the status ratings do the talking. Plus, if the readers scroll down five lines they'll probably figure out that it's a travel topic (if they didn't already figure that out by the article's title. - Sapphire.
The main value of this (to me) is that it provides a link to Travel topics, putting the articles - even those without a geographic connection - into some context on the site. So if someone comes to a travel topic from a Google search, they can easily find out what other interesting topics the site can tell them about, without having to go all the way back to the main page or being savvy enough to find "What links here" or "related articles". - Todd VerBeek 18:43, 21 April 2006 (EDT)
There's also the option of adding some RDF to the status templates, and changing the title or something to show that it's a travel topic. I think the place that Wikipedia puts the "featured article" star (see Wikipedia:Buckingham Palace for an example) might be a good place to put an article type indicator (travel topic, itinerary, phrasebook, city/region/country guide) as well as an article status indicator. It might also be useful to add a sub-title, like "Teaching English -- a travel topic from Wikitravel". --Evan 14:27, 21 April 2006 (EDT)
If we do place a star on articles how about a blue star to indicate the article is a destination and a red star to indicate its a travel topic. Reserve the Gold star to indicate that the article (doesn't matter if its a topic or destination) is a star? - Sapphire
Yeah, but, you know, I don't think they have to be a star. We can come up with some other logos. --Evan 17:51, 21 April 2006 (EDT)

We've got a great, flexible "brand identity" with the Wikitravel logo; if there are any other icons they should be derived from that design. But I'd suggest being careful about adding icons to indicate type and status. From a visual design perspective, that sort of thing starts to get a bit "busy". Country articles are already going to have quickbars, and well-developed region/city articles (and probably topics and itineraries) will have photos or maps in the upper right. Pretty much everything will have a Table Of Contents, plus the Wikitravel logo and the nav bar along the left. That's a lot of elements on the screen already. Wikipedia's "featured article" star manages to be inconspicuous by being really small, but that works only because what it's trying to say is very simple ("this article is special") and it's on just 1 page in 1140 on the site so the message is pretty self-evident. Icons on every page trying to convey things like "this is a usable-quality travel topic" would have to be fairly large... enough to "fight" with the Wikitravel logo and any photos.

If we're going to differentiate articles of different kinds visually, I'd rather do that with other design elements, such as color (e.g. make the rule lines, headers, and TOC background a different hue) or layout (e.g. indent the left/right margins of travel-topic articles so the text columns aren't as wide). The contents of the articles will naturally provide visual clues as to what kind of article it is; just use some CSS dressing to enhance that visual distinctiveness.
- Todd VerBeek 19:24, 21 April 2006 (EDT)