Of the three contenders detailed in my previous post, I have decided on http://www.victorianweb.org/ as the website that I will redesign for this next project.
The site has an enormous volume of quality, in depth content. Each subject/genre leads contains links to a great number of articles, which themselves contain many links within the text to other related articles.
However, the UI design of the site is so poor that the breadth of content is not immediately obvious. There are no details on the home page to draw the viewer into the content, and some of the really interesting content is hidden away with in-concise links.
The main content on the current site is laid out in a diamond formation, which seems a paradoxically complex achievement for the general simplicity of the design of the site in general. Also, the linked titles to the left of the page are ordered not in relation to their importance, but in relation to the length of the string, presumably so that it fits with the diamond formation of the main content. To me, this was quite a bizarre element of design consideration, and completely impractical with regards to UI.
As this site is focused on content over style, I decided to break down and analyse the content before even starting to consider any design options.
Being an Accounts Technician by trade, I tend to default to using MS Excel for organising data and so this was my tool of choice for analysing the content of the victorianweb site.
|Victoria & The Victorians|
|Genre & Technique|
|Theatre & Popular Entertainment|
|Victorian Web books|
|Related WWW sources|
|What is the Victorian Web?|
|What countries does the Victorian Web discuss?|
|Can I use materials from The Victorian Web?|
|Which browsers work best with this site?|
|Are the articles on this site refereed?|
|Versions in other languages: French|
|Versions in other languages: Spanish|
|How do I cite The Victorian Web?|
|Directions for contributors|
|Contact the webmaster|
After having listed out all of the content from the home-page, I went on to categorize each section (column B in image below), and decide where each part would be best placed on a redesigned page (columns C and D below)
Having decided on more concise categorization, I drew up a very simple template for a rough layout of how these would be placed on the new homepage:
Next, I will set out to build a framework, with minimal styling, based on the above layout