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I'm starting the process of redesigning Dilbert.com.

Long overdue, I know. But I've been quite busy lately.

I'd love to hear your suggestions as I compile my list of requirements.

I know the comments engine here is a mess. And I know you want the profanity filter to die. And I know the site is uglier and slower than it needs to be.

I'm thinking of killing the mash-ups feature. It had a good run. Unless you tell me otherwise.

I'm noodling on adding a few new things below the strip on the main page, which has been mostly wasted space. Some ideas include:

1. A Reddit-like feature so you can suggest interesting links and others can vote on them. I would build the engine so you can include your profile picture (or any image you choose) plus a section for you to give a plug for yourself or your company. 

2. Some sort of Dilbert-branded store -- operated by a third-party -- for items that everyone needs, such as replacement cables, phone chargers, or other common tech devices. Another way to go would be a Dilbert-branded store for more exotic and cool tech stuff or uncommon products that cleverly solve common problems.

3. Guest bloggers: Anyone can submit an opinion piece, with a plug for yourself or your company. Readers vote up the best ones.

4. Highlight links to other great comics at GoComics.com.

5. Reader-submitted stories of bad or absurd management. The ones voted to the top by readers would become comic fodder for Dilbert.

6. Add other content that supports your morning ritual that includes checking the Dilbert comic, checking stocks, weather, and some other popular tech and business news sites.

7. Irreverant business news of the day, summarized by Dogbert or one of the other Dilbert crew in a separate window.

8. User-submitted hacks and inventions. Upload photos and descriptions of your awesome hacks, work-arounds, inventions, and fixes, for, well, anything. Show your geeky solutions to the world.

9. Investment ideas and discussions with an emphasis on tech companies.

I'm told that a good website needs to inspire curiosity in visitors. If you have any ideas on keeping readers curious, I'd love to hear them. 







 
Rank Up Rank Down Votes:  +36
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+8 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 24, 2013
I'd love to see the return of the mission statement generator.
 
 
Aug 24, 2013
I miss the written humour from your books and especially the old newsletter. The blog rarely seems to match it. How about Dogbert answering reader letters again? And a few Scott stories (your humourous look at real life).
 
 
+1 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 24, 2013
LOTD!
*sniff*
 
 
Aug 24, 2013
Considering how annoying it was to log in for this comment, maybe make it so this site remebers you logged in already once?
 
 
Aug 24, 2013
Please don't kill /fast.
 
 
Aug 23, 2013
The 'Rands In Repose' guy got it right: popular posts in a little section, so if you're new, you know where to get the good stuff. Make site searching easy: I often bring up your blog in conversation "hey did you see the one about the ShopVac and the man points? Now, THAT'S blogging." "how do I find that post?" "Um, just Google it." The Rands guy has a little "so you want to read more by me?"- ads with links to buy the books, and then a keyword section so if you like _this_ post, here's a bunch more related to that one. Fantastic. Overall, 4-out-of-5 though: his comment section is terrible.

http://www.randsinrepose.com
 
 
Aug 23, 2013
Actually Im OK with the way the site works now except for the profanity filter.

As for guest bloggers...well, might work well. If you decide to do this would like to see your blogs in one place and the guests in another. Dont want your blogs to get spammed out by everyone else's.
 
 
Aug 23, 2013
Each character needs his own wing in the Dilbert Store.

"Wally's Premium Coffees". The pricey one could be marketed as "Not exactly from civet cats 'per se', but still passed through a mammal's digestive system."

"Dilbert's 3D Printer". Dilbert could sell action figures, and you interact with him while he's doing a very technical setup on his 3D printer. Then some video is played of your item being made.

"Pointy-Haired Boss Inspiration Posters". Suitable for the office, posters with his most famous homilies, including: "Dress for the job you want, not the job you have", and "Move the mouse more to the right".

"Alice's Menstrual Cycle". A daily thermometer-type graph showing her irritability index. Sell chocolate with a price tied to the index.

"Catbert's Power Ties". Photos of elegant neckwear. When the customer complains they only got an inkjet photo for $40, just purr.

"Ratbert's Sweat Shop". T-shirts and hoodies made by young rodents in a hot, crowded, windowless building in Elbonia. Don't forget the anti-suicide nets.



 
 
+2 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 23, 2013
Bring back Lazy Entrepreneur - I still miss it . . .
 
 
+11 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 23, 2013
For the front page, I would suggest a KISS strategy - think Google, not Yahoo/MSN/every major news channel's site/etc. Maybe just the day's comic with navigation selectors, with a list of links under it: "Other cool stuff"

As for the Other cool stuff, rather than a set of links to other comics at GoComics.com, how about links or displayed comics from artists that you think are not getting the exposure they deserve? As an example, I found "Basic Instructions" due to your blog posts about it, and have been enjoying it since. That kind of thing.

In fact, running with that thought, I'd recommend only allowing stuff on here if your hands/involvement are apparent in it. Make the site very Scott Adams, with few, if any, exceptions. In other words, make this a personal website that happens to feature a world-famous comic strip. If you do that, I think your fans will enjoy whatever creative leaps you take here.
 
 
+30 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 23, 2013
I'd like to see the site stick to Dilbert comics and things that are closely associated with them. I'm tired of seeing some website that has a legitimate but minor purpose suddenly decide that it needs to be the portal of everything I want to do on the internet. It smacks of the site owner making a desperate grab for money and influence. All of the things like that already have much bigger and better sites that do them.

Like #1 - a Reddit-like link collection and voting site. Reddit already does that, and does it much better and with a much bigger community. If you think you can build a better Reddit, then go for it by all means, but trying to leverage the popularity of Dilbert to bootstrap it seems lame and will probably decrease the popularity of both Dilbert and the link site.

Links to other comics and absurd management stories are the only things on the list that sound like they really belong on Dilbert.com.
 
 
Aug 23, 2013
(1): Turning dilbert.com into a geeky social site (which is what this amounts to) would be quite interesting, IF it is more than yet another reddit / digg / slashdot / Facebook clone. I freely admit I have no idea how that would happen, but I do know I find the aforementioned sites alternately boring (even-numbered days) and annoying (odd.) I suspect a lot of other people share this sentiment.

(2)(a): NO. With commodity hardware you'd be directly competing with Amazon, et al. You would lose.
(2)(b): This might work, aggregating the clever cool-tools-ish stuff that are hard to discover on the mega-shop sites.

(3): Sure. Seed with essays from some powerhouse bloggers on off-the-wall topics (Neil deGrasse Tyson's favorite recipes?) to get / keep things moving.

(4): Meh.

(5): Basically your old newsletter. Which I liked, so sure, why not.

(6)-(9): While I was reading these, a cosmic ray or something zapped a long-dormant neuron of mine, and I remembered an old (~1960) early morning TV show, title forgotten, that was a lot like this morning-ritual support concept. It was an hour (more?) of three-way split-screen, with the current time (live feed of a wall clock!) at top left for dad, cartoons running at top right for the kids, and a news ticker the occasional ad in the bottom third for mom and dad during breakfast or whatever.

Fast-forward to 2013, where most new TVs have Internet access, app capability and a LOT more presentation room. So how about a "Dilbert Channel" designed to play on TV as background while you get ready for work / make/eat dinner / do housework / etc? If it's app-driven, you could even configure it to select stuff you're interested in from a variety of different feeds. If the app is really smart, it could learn from watching your selections and pick and choose the viewer-interesting stuff on its own. Integrate with some of those other thoughts, and perhaps it would be the first crowd-sourced TV channel.
 
 
Aug 23, 2013
I would suggest skipping #1. Unless you have some particular requirement not provided elsewhere, Reddit already does it, and probably better than anything you or your developers will come up with (no offense intended to anyone, they simply have an almost insurmountable lead).

This also applies to #3. My preference would be for you to pick certain people and highlight them - either some of the people who comment here, or people you know who don't typically blog. I come here because I am interested in your take on the world, not Joe Public (who I can already see elsewhere). I think allowing anyone to blog would simply dilute the site (quantity is not always preferable to quality).

In regards to #7, I think it would be cool if that could be animated in some way (perhaps that is what you meant). This is a bit "pie-in-the-sky", but if you had some sort of Dilbert-themed version of Xtranormal or some such, you could write out a post, pick a character, and have it generate the entire animation for people to watch. That might be more work than you would like to invest, though.

For point #8, that's also already been done - Instructables. If possible, for both that site and Reddit, I'd see if you can just create a sub-community and link to it from here. It'd save you a lot of work behind the scenes and still give you the same effect.

Beyond that, the rest seems pretty cool. I can't wait to see what you come up with!
 
 
+2 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 23, 2013
Wait, there are ads? I don't have an ad blocker and never see any. Where are they?
 
 
Aug 23, 2013
I agree fully that mash-ups should go away. They have become unreadable due to individuals posting 40 variations on the same bad/lame/nonsensical punchline. Suffice to say, your most active mash-up fans would make very bad humourists.
 
 
+3 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 23, 2013
I'd love to see something like what Adam Savage does on tested.com A weekly 30 minute video podcast talking about whatever happens to be on his mind at the time. It's always fascinating, and I think yours would be as well.

I love the guest blogging feature. BTW
 
 
+3 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 23, 2013
I'd love to see the ads go away. They're distracting. I don't want to just enable ad blockers because that seems rude, since that's how you've decided to pay for your content. But if you could find a way to monetize your site without the ads, or at least only put up ads for products that you personally want to endorse as opposed to any random company willing to toss some money your way, it would be a nice improvement.
 
 
 
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