Assignment 4

The three views discussed in the chapter are site-view, page-view and user-view.

  1. site-view: creates a blueprint of the site. It gives the overall structure
  2. page-view: wire framing. organizes the copy, navigation and visuals in a way that makes sense to the user on the other end.
  3. user-view: is the relationship of one page to the next, task flow and actions intended for the user to follow.

A content audit is an evaluation of every piece of content text, imagery and media that will be going into the site. It’s a very large task of deciding what should be included (and excluded) and clients may often feel overwhelmed by the process and opt for the easy way out and wish to use the former content. This should be avoided so that a proper organization and stream lining of the new site can be accomplished.

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Assignment 3

Some overall goals for our re-design would be…

  1. To make ourselves more appealing to perspective students and their parents.
  2. To communicate more effectively with current students/alumni/faculty.
  3. To make ourselves more appealing to perspective donors.

A project plan consists of clearly defining topics to both the client and the team of the project. Like: Cost, team and their individual responsibilities, project deliverables, goals of the redesign, communication brief,  and so forth.

Good documentation practices for a project:

  1. If a client signs it, save it.
  2. Get signatures via fax if possible.
  3. Keep individual project folders.
  4. print important documents along with saving the electronic files.

An Additional Charge or Change Order form would be used when something has been added the original job by the client and it needs to be charged for.

Two ways to approach the Scheduling task are: Create and overview schedule the shows the plan in order of sequence. The create a date assigned format that itemizes  deliverables and approval reviews. Get both approved by client.

A visual designer is responsible for the look and feel (graphics) of the project whereas the information designer is responsible for the organization of the of the content.

A staging area is an area of communication set up on the server. We should have one for use of the team to share information (unseen by the client) and one for the client to see the progress.

A “kick off” meeting should include:

  1. Introdution of the Project Plan
  2. Overall goals of the new site
  3. Schedule and timing
  4. Content (where will it come from)
  5. What happens next
  6. Schedule regular meetings







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Assignment 2

The main difference between a formal and informal analysis is money In a formal analysis a team is hired to do a major analysis of the market. Whereas an informal analysis will be done by the web designers comparing to other like sites.

Somethings to look for doing a competitive analysis is…
The users. Who are they and what do they want.
Is there advertising on other sites
Do they use animation
Are they interactive, do they have log-ins
do they have animation
how fast are they
Do they have a splash page
Do they have an email page

The 3 main areas of evaluation are
1) Overall experience
2) How well does it Function
3) The Design look and feel.

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Assignment 1

Core Design Process
How many phases are part of the Core Process and what are they?
1. Define the Project
2. Develop site structure
3. Design the Visual Interface
4. Build and Integrate
5. Launch and Beyond

What is “Scope Creep” and how can you prepare for it?
Scope Creep is the gradual growth of a project. Small additional request that keep adding up. In the beginning of the project with a new client, set up a schedule, deliverables, and process to keep on track.

What are the two ways to combat content delay?
Set up a content delivery plan or hire on content manager

What does the “QA” in QA testing stand for?
Quality Assurance.

What do the authors mean when they refer to “Smart Design?”
Smart design is a balancing and organizing of needs.
Research what the site is needed for and who it’s audience is. Gather all info needed to put it together and organize such that it is easy and clear to navigate through.
It should be aesthetically pleasing to the audience and complementary to the subject matter.

Gathering Information
What does the word “Discovery” refer to?
The process of learning about your site. 1) Gathering info   2)Understand the audience.  3)n Analyzing the industry  4) Understanding discovery

Give me a couple examples of “good client” attributes and “red flag client” warning signs.
  A good client is thoughtful in answering the Client Survey and has a team orientated approach.
A red-flag client may have unrealistic timelines and try to rush to get it up quick. They don’t feel out the survey.

Understanding your Audience
What is an audience profile? What is another name for it?
Audience profile or Audience demographic…. age, gender, online frequency, connection speed, surfing habits, web savviness, type of browser and computer, where they live

Name some of the things you need to analyze when determining an audience’s capabilities?
speed of connection, browser, window size, how web savvy they are.

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Site Map

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Midterm Project

I wish to be the first person to critique my site.

Though I am happy I was able to complete this assignment (finally), unfortunately, it did not materialize the way I had originally wished for it to. I had a lot of trouble getting things to become placed and stay placed where I wished for them to be. I also had a lot of overlapping elements in my original design and I don’t really understand how to make that materialize. Therefore, a major portion of my design was eliminated,  simply because I wasn’t sure how to do it.  My right side photo was also supposed to change from page to page.

On a positive note, I do like the design of my rollover. It’s my favorite part. I wasn’t sure how to make the highlight stay “on” as to show the visitor what page they are on. It would have been great had I figured that out.

So all in all, I think my site needs quite a bit of improvement. However, I did learn a lot in the process. I also, discovered a lot things I need to figure out. I feel like I’m in the process of learning a new language, and I find myself saying “huh?”, “…what the?” and “oh my God”. A lot. – but I understand more today than I did before my midterm. The quickest way to learn a new language is to go somewhere that you’re forced to speak it.


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Week 3 Writings

1.) The 3 main rules outlined in “Rules for a Perfect Website Navigation” are to

  • Always use active/hover states. This tells the user where they are within the site. it shows that the site is comprised of links and isn’t just one static page. It also make site more engaging, thus welcoming users to navigate.
  • Don’t use too many links. Keep links between 6-7 (give or take 2) as to not bombard and confuse the user.
  • Keep menu prominent and clear. Easy navigation is key. We don’t want are user to get lost and frustrated.

2.) Breadcrumb navigation is a useful tool with larger sites with lots of content. It’s a good organizer. It isn’t useful with smaller sites.

3.) The basic rule of navigation is consistency. However, you need to be consistent with your design so users know where they are, but change it enough from page to page so it is clear that they have gone elsewhere in the site. Also keep it simple and keep menu items to about seven. People have more difficulty processing larger amounts at a time.

4.) The 4 items to remember in gather information for a site are

  • What is the purpose of the site.
  • What is the goal of the site.
  • Who is the target audience for the site.
  • What is that target audience looking for when they visit the site. (content)

5.) I don’t get inspiration from one fixed place. It comes from a variety places. I have found definite color inspiration in the past from kuler as the author suggests. It gives great color pairing idea. I have also used art and nature inspiration for layout design. It’s less obvious than looking at others layout ideas, but can spark creativity.

6.) The main advantage to Web Standards is that different browsers are able to read the same set of instructions.


  • “Alt” attributes used for discriptive images.
  • Do aspects of the layout change if the font size is changed.
  • Are all links discriptive.
  • Is there sufficient contrast in color brightness.
  • Delays in response to drop down menus for those with reduced motor skills.
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Midterm Comp

The beginning stages of my remodel.

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Bad Site, Good Site

For this second assignment, I searched for a bad website. One would think it wouldn’t be too hard to find a horribly designed website. That is of course, until you want to find a horribly designed website. Then, suddenly, they all look great.

That is until I had the pleasure of clicking on I warn you: It’s not pretty. Which, for the purposes of this assignment, is a good thing.

The color and layout are not consistent when you begin to navigate around. It almost looks as if 2 different people designed this site and they each went their own way. Sometime the navigation is on a red bar, and sometimes it’s not. Sometimes the background is a gold to white gradient, and sometimes it’s not. One consistency is that the text (no matter where it falls on the page) is always centered. Left justified for larger bodies of text would make it much easier to read and give it a better flow. The home page is such a clutter, that the eye doesn’t know where it is supposed to go. There are also WAY too many colors being used. It’s as if the page is screaming at you. It is uncomfortable on your eyes. The FYI aqua text box, is actually hiding other information. Hmmm…intended?

Not all is bad, though: when I click on links, they take me where I’ve asked to go.

As for the midterm redesign, Joe could use my help, but his site is only 6 pages. Therefore, I must keep looking. This task of finding bad sites is more challenging than anticipated. I realize that I don’t remember all the bad sites I have visited through the years. Probably, because I didn’t return to them after the first unfortunate experience. As of now, I have no ideas for my midterm assignment. I will keep looking.

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Assignment 1

When on the internet, the three websites I find myself visiting most would be, and Craigslist and are such wonderful tools in finding employment opportunities and to see what is going on “out there.” Pandora is a site I visit purely for musical enjoyment. I love how you can just give it the name of an artist or song and it will play a variety of music from this example that you should also like. It opens me up to musicians and songs I would otherwise go unaware of.

In the field, I most see myself as a Designer/Web Designer. I love coming up with ideas and going through the process of bringing them to fruition. I love the “problem solving” aspect of design.

I just finished reading

Ten logo design tips from the field

on I like to hear what others consider the essentials of a good logo. My feelings have always been to make it as strong and simple as possible. Something that is easily recognizable and noticeable at the same time. The blog says that a logo doesn’t need to show what the company does in the design. I agree with this.

A feel a good logo should represent the company as simply and boldly as possible to the appropriateness of the company.

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