I sent in some suggestions to Fandom on some things I would rather see being done than recently released nav menu and header. So thought I would share the responses I got back for any one interested in reading.
My initial feedback sent
While I am sure the recent revisions to navigation menu and article headers were deemed necessary and am sure helpful for Fandom and its users overall. I would much rather prefer seeing time spent working on making initial user experience actually more beneficial. I can give further details or examples if wanted but in short, prefer to see following worked on:
Please spend more time improving the Search engine, which is dreadful and appears to have random sort order results.
Please spend more time finding a way to incorporate Category pages in the navigation menu much better. Usually, at least most wikis I have visited, wikis have pretty good structure set up with category pages, it is much easier to navigate and find what pages and articles you are wanting, once you are able to find good category page to start with. I am sure some wikis do not have good Category hierarchy set up, but for the many that do this would be beneficial.
Please spend more time on Help pages, as once you do actually find page you are looking for and wanting to help contribute and add your improvements, is not bad. It is decent start for help pages. However, trying to find specifically what portions you are looking for is not the most intuitive. Worse is the lack of helpful info for those intermediate users. Basic beginner help ... great. Advanced ... pretty much over the top for intermediate. It really needs better help info for those in between. Including a whole list of all options plus better descriptions for each.
Thanks for contacting us with your feedback, it's much appreciated. There's definitely improvements we can make in the areas you mentioned - but I want to talk about two of them in more depth.
One of the problems we run into with categories is that they're almost too flexible: for example, Category A can be placed in Category B ... but Category B can also be placed in Category A. Category C may not exist in any category, or may exist in ten. These situations are fairly unusual, of course - but they provide serious logic puzzles if we want to use them for higher profile navigation. That said, they're a great way to get around a wiki, and suggesting we look into making better use of them is quite reasonable.
For help pages: would you be able to give examples of particular problems you're run into? It may help us get a better sense of where we need to concentrate our future efforts.
Replied back with (shortened)
Yes I understand the dilemna you stated, and structure of categories as well as decent designed category trees will really be dependent upon each wiki and how well they have applied categories. Also the new header / navigation menu has since rolled out, in which I can now see the attempt of actually trying to incorporate better use of Categories being listed at top and bottom. It is not a bad idea, and I can definitely not find fault in attempting to see how effective viewers might make use of it.
However, more of what I had in mind is to actually bring Categories more in the forefront to both admins and users. In hopes of maybe trying to enforce better category structure PLUS better ways to incorporate Category pages into navigation menu. One thing that springs to mind for example is that some have easily viewable Category Tree page so that everyone can see a short list. I know this is already available inside the Special area by going to "Special:CategoryTree" but I doubt many are even aware of this including prolly lots of admins. Plus more importantly you need to already know one of the Category headings to even search for .. and ideally even the main heading in the category tree, which once again although admins will hopefully know what that is, most normal users will not.
Just an idea, but maybe have new link inside navigation menu "Explore -> Category Tree" but it starts off giving the main Category heading page(s). (one wiki's example has 2, one Organisation and other Gameplay). If there is only one main, than it should instantly give category results tree starting from the main. This could 1) potentially prompt admins to make better use of their wiki and possibly improving wiki category structure if they can easily see it. 2) give users a good idea of that wiki's layout and maybe ideas and ways of how they want to go about navigating through that wiki. Possibly even seeing group of articles that looks interesting to them to start off with.
Rather long list of examples I provided, 'this has been shortened.' In essence I felt for the basic beginner or for minor edits, the help pages were easy to find and helpful. But for the intermediate user or someone wanting to go beyond the basics, it is very difficult and frustrating trying to find where in help pages the info is at (have found quite bit is actually there just hard to locate). So one thing I suggested was "Terminology" cause IF you know the correct terminology you know better where to look. What is a Parser Function vs a String Function? Magic Words, Arrays, Parameters, Templates, etc etc. There really should be some page to go over all this.
Most the rest examples I gave shows trend that provides adequate info for a lot of cases, but if you wanted to do more there was no complete list (or it is more difficult to find complete list). Wikitext help page for example does not info mention about blockquote or pre and who knows what else is not given. Help:Wikitext/table_examples covers for lot of cases again, but what other options can be done to alter your tables. Like Styles is one way, but what all commands can use with it, Valign shows examples of "Top" and "Bottom" but are there others, such as middle, center.
Thank you for your full and frank feedback - I have read through it all, and it's a helpful read. I actually don't have a great deal to say in response, since it was all pretty clear and understandable!
The help page situation is an interesting one: we want to avoid being overly comprehensive, since MediaWiki.org can (and does) cover a lot of topics better than we do, and we try to include links to their help pages when we can. That said there's certainly a variety of ways our own help pages can be improved, and I will bring up your thoughts about this (and general wiki category usage) with the team.
Regarding Help:Infoboxes in particular - the options you see described on that set of pages should be comprehensive, at least in terms of special infobox-specific code.
If you do have some questions about what features we support, please feel free to ask us here.