Week 10

Thoughts & Decision-making Process

I wanted to do an interesting and simple layout for the redesign of the site, which was a little difficult. After researching other sites I came up with a layout that could contain the breakdown of my sections (3-column layout). Then I began creating a logo. I took elements from the AET logo (lowercase lettering, sans serif font, and some of the colors) and the redesign of the building (colors). It’s also how I came up with a color palette and font choice for the content of the site.

Creating the site wasn’t to difficult. I guess taking that CIS HTML/CSS over the summer paid off :o). But of course like always the navigation gave me some problems, just glad it was an easy fix.

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Week 8 & 9

Comps:

Week 6

What are wireframes?

Wireframes are storyboards for the site. Also known as content layouts or page schematics, these are non-design-oriented sketches of unique pages showing rough navigation, copy layout, graphic allocation, key headers, and any other elements that need to appear on a page.

When do you not need to define key user paths?

If your site does not require the user to actually do anything task oriented like:

– fill out a form

– log  in

– purchase

Week 5

What is a “site map?”

It is the backbone on which the project stands. It also shows a visual representation of the site structure, organization, flow, and grouping of content and information. It communicates, it defines, and it structures. It is a chance to view the site structure and organization as a whole.

What are the two types of naming conventions that are addressed in the book?

The two types of naming conventions are organization/numeric naming and HTML naming.

organization/numeric naming: simply applying a numeric or alphanumeric standard to page and sections of the sitemap.

HTML naming: a filename extension for files containing html. Some people abbreviate and condense, use upper or lowercase to help organize and define, and other ignore all standards and abbreviate some and write out others.

Week 4

What are the “three views” discussed in the book involving the content of the site.  And what are the differences between the three views?

– Site-View, known as sitemapping, sets the overall structure and creates a “blueprint” of the site.

– Page-View, known as wireframing, presents and organizes copy, navigation, and visuals in a way that is logical and meaningful to the end user.

-User-View is the relationship of one page to the next, including actions and task flows intended for visitors to follow. This view also outlines paths and decision points  from start to finish.

What is a “content audit?”

Content audit is an evaluation of every piece of content (text, imagery, or media) in the outgoing site that is relevant to the redesign.

Week 3

1. Name a few examples of “overall goals” for the web site design or re-design.

Some possible overall goals for the web site design are:

– to increase traffic

– to increase sales

– to highlight a new product

-to make a dynamic, content-driven site

– to decrease calls to customer services

– to create intuitive navigation

– to streamline browsing and purchasing

– to create a scalable structure for growth

What does a Project Plan consist of?

The project plan should consist of :

– a project overview

– a schedule(including deliverables and methodology)

– a budget breakdown, with allocated hours

– a communication brief

* Not mandatory but sometimes included are: target audience information, audience profiles, audience technical capabilities, user testing plan, a line for the client’s signature, details and assumptions.

Give examples of good documentation practices for a project.

– if the client signs it , save it

– email approvals, followed by a hard copy that can be faxed for a signature

– have a project folder filed for each project housing all signed documentations: contracts, briefs, the initial proposal and subsequent revisions, approved sitemap, visual design directions, etc

When is an Additional Charge Form used? (oftentimes referred to as Change Order)

If a client ask for an additional feature or section that is not within the original definition of the project, an AC form is used to document the change.

What are the two ways to approach the Scheduling task?

By creating an overview schedule that shows methodology chronologically. Then build a detailed date-to-date format that itemizes deliverables and approval reviews according to due dates.

What is the difference between a Visual Designer and an Information Designer?

A Visual Designer is responsible for creating stunning, effective graphics while working within the limitations of the capabilities of the target audience. Where as an Information Designer is responsible for translating content and business goals into functional schematics.

What is a “staging area?”

An area for communication that is divide into two sections. One section is for the client or internal decision-makers, set up a central HTML staging area to post all deliverables and project documentation. The second section is a spot for the team development area that is password protected. The area serves as a place to stage and view work-in-progress.It is not for client viewing.

What is included in the agenda of a “kick off” meeting?

-Introducing of the Project Plan

– Overall site goals

– Schedule and timing

– Content

– Next steps

– Regular meetings

Week 2

What are the differences between a Formal and an Informal Industry Analysis?

Both a Formal and an Informal Industry Analysis have 6 steps (team, approach, results, report, budget, and goals).  But a Formal Industry Analysis team has an independent research team with expertise and background in marketing, communications, research, and/or strategy. Whereas an Informal Industry Analysis team has members of the web development team who will be re-creating the user experience online. A Formal Industry Analysis approach is a Formal analysis of industry, market segmentation, trends and forecasts, and customer needs. An Informal Industry Analysis approach is an Informal analysis of competitive sites focusing on features and user experience. a Formal Industry Analysis results are quantitative data-driven, market-and-research-centered focus. An Informal Industry Analysis results are feature-driven, qualitative information; show what is working and what isn’t. A Formal Industry Analysis report is a huge book of information but an Informal Industry Analysis report is 5 to 20 pages, short and sweet. A Formal Industry Analysis budget is $20,000 and up whereas an informal Industry Analysis budget is lunch to $20,000. The goals for a Formal Industry Analysis are to provide comprehensive, detailed, strategy-based recommendations on changing marketplaces, evolving business models, and customer habits and segmentation. The goals for an Informal Industry Analysis are to gain firsthand view of customer experience. Provide relevant documentation and industry information to the client.

Name a few of the features you might look for when you are doing a Competitive Analysis.

You would want to look at the current, outgoing site’s features and learn about the online features that the competitors use.

What are the three main areas for rating when evaluating for a Competitive Analysis?

The three main areas for rating evaluation for a Competitive Analysis are: Overall experience, Functionality,  and Look & Feel.

Week 1

Core Design Process
How many phases are part of the Core Process and what are they?

There are 5 phases included in the Core Process. They are: Define the project, Develop site structure, Design visual interface, Build & integrate, and Launch and beyond.

What is “Scope Creep” and how can you prepare for it?

Scope creep is the  change or growth of project scope. I  would explain to the client how keeping careful tabs on the schedule, deliverables, and process will keep the project on target.

What are the two ways to combat content delay?

By staying on top of content delivery and set clear and realistic deadlines that can (and should) be adhered to.

What does the “QA” in QA testing stand for?

Quality assurance

What do the authors mean when they refer to “Smart Design?”

To design for the audience’s experience rather than what the designer likes.

Gathering Information
What does the word “Discovery” refer to?

Discovery refers to the client’s online goals, the audience and its needs and capabilities, and the industry and the competition as it relates to the web.

Give me a couple examples of “good client” attributes and “red flag client” warning signs.

A “good client” has the following attributes: 1. Has a team oriented approach 2. Is in agreement on deliverables, schedule, and budget 3. Answers Client Survey in a clear and detailed manner.

A “red flag client” warning signs include: 1. They don’t know what the content should be but they want it to “look cool” 2. They cannot give final approval or is not putting you in touch with the decision-makers 3. They have a small budget with a swift deadline.

Understanding your Audience
What is an audience profile? What is another name for it?

Audience profile is a brief or detailed document that gives a detailed description of a typical site visitor. It is also called a persona.

Name some of the things you need to analyze when determining an audience’s capabilities?

What percentage of yous audience is still at an 800×600 screen resolution? At what browser level is most of your audience? What bandwidth can these people comfortably handle?

Design Process for Final

Before starting I looked up other college radio station websites to get a general idea of what their layouts look like. Then i picked a grid layout that was clean and showed a clear hierarchy throughout the pages. Then I picked an accent color to make the website standout. After that I went through the sites content to pick out what I thought was important so the pages didn’t bombard the reader with a lot of different subjects on each page. Once I finished those steps it was easy to create the layout in Dreamweaver. Although I did watch a couple of tutorials on creating forms.

Competitive Analysis

I have compared CJLO’s site to the other 6 sites in Quebec. The sad thing is that the other site’s make CJLO look decent. CKUT is too content heavy the deeper you get into the site and messy. CISM has a nice layout but messes it up by making the listen live and mailing list forms so huge. I also don’t like how the layout of the footer as it relates to the rest of the site design. CHYZ  also has a nice layout until you get to the bottom. I feel like everything is getting bigger and brighter as I scroll down. CJMQ’s site hurts my eyes because there too much blue, everything it closed off in a table, and the contrast of the white text on blue is not working well together. CFAK’s site is neatly lead out and consistent in its layout from page to page. The only thing I’d change is lowering the opacity on the background image. Finally CFOU has a nice layout but the homepage has a lot going on. The other pages on the site are cool. But the navigation gets lost on every page because it’s so small and has 500 million things around it. All the radio stations including CJLO have the problem of bombarding the reader with a lot of information on the homepage making it hard to notice the headings on the page, creating no hierarchy.

One thing that helps CJLO web site standout is that its more diverse in its music genres and advertising by having a magazine and sessions section.

1. CKUT-FM

2. CISM-FM

3. CHYZ-FM

4. CJMQ-FM

5. CFAK-FM

6. CFOU-FM

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