Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Tamara Shopsin

A message to Readers: I guess all I wanted to say before my last (10th) blog post was that I have really enjoyed this assignment. I have learned about so many new and interesting web sites by reading my class mates' blogs. Today's post is about an artist in New York, Tamara Shopsin, her work can be found in the NYTimes regularly and she has many other interesting projects, products and websites. I chose this website becaue it is a little different from any other portfolio website I've seen.

Intended Audience:

Those interested in Tamara Shopsin's work, people reading the NYtimes articles on-line that are accompanied by Tamara's work. Also, people interested in hiring TS for design, illustration, animation ect.

Usefulness of the Content:
The content on this website is designed to give the intended audience a idea of the breadth of TS's work. There is a reasonable amount of content on this website. The content is almost exclusively visual. Since Tamara's primary work (at least from what I can see) is illustration so her images are able to stand on their own with out explanatory text. The content is useful in so far as it is a visual indication of the profundity of TS's creation.

Ease of Navigation:
This website employs navigation tools that may be unfamiliar to some/many users. The Website is a single frame site meaning you never navigate away from the home page to another internal page within the site because there are no other internal pages. There are three viewing areas oriented horizontally on the screen. The middle area is a viewing area that loads images that are selected by clicking in the two side viewing areas. Each of the three is controlled by a horizontal scroll bar. Generally horizontal scrolling is discouraged is websites probably because of the design of the computer mouse has hard coded human behavior. Like I mentioned earlier this can be unintuitive.

Consistency of Design:
I am a huge fan of the design choices made to create this web page. The at once "new old"
feeling is carried through the other websites associated with TS's work namely her e-commerce site. Since there is only one page to this web site (a frame site) design is consistent from papge to page.

10TH Post: Express

Intended Audience:

* People who wear fashionable clothes
* Middle income
* People who like to plan before they go to the mall

Usefulness of Content:

Very Useful:
* Sections for him and her
* For Her section offers: tops, shirts, hoodies, sweaters, jackets, etc...
* For Him section offers: graphic tees, rugby and crew necks, jackets, jeans, etc..
*Tells you the department, color code, class, and style of clothing pieces, and lets you find a store that carries the piece

Ease of Navigation:

Very Easy to navigation
* Can find whats new, for him, for her, gift card and credit card sections at top of the page, along with my wishlist, find a store, and e-mail sign up
* Local navigation for each section on the left
*More links at the bottom about careers, contact, fashion dellivery, terms and conditions, etc...

Consistency of Design:

Very Consistent
*Black background
*White font
*High fashion photos
*Products on white background
*Navigation is always in the same spot - global at top; local at left

Intended Audience:

Anyone who owns a credit card with an available balance.

Usefulness of Content:
Comparison rates and ability to make reservations for:
  • Flights
  • Hotels
  • Car Rentals
  • Vacation Packages
  • Cruises
  • Tourist Activities
  • Business Travel
You can access information on special deals if you don't have a specific location in mind, or check out global maps.
Consistency of Design:
The design is visually and technically consistent throughout. Each page closely resembles one another so that you do not have to relearn how to use the interface every time you need a different service.

Ease of Navigation:

The interface is very easy to use. It is always my first stop when making travel plans. Left hand section allows you to plug in your dates without having to weed through a lot of information. The tabs are well labeled and self-explanatory allowing you to easily navigate to your area of interest.

Ann Arbor District Library Catalog

Intended Audience:
Ann Arbor District community members who wish to search the library's holding via their OPAC.

Usefulness of Content: This library catalog is called a “SOPAC” otherwise known as a “social OPAC”. It was developed by John Blyberg and consists of social software built into the AADL catalog. Once signed in to their account patrons can rate, review, comment-on, and tag items. The content behind the interface is a library's holdings so the content of said web site is dependent on each library patron.

Consistency of Design:
The site makes use of navigation bars and lists well and spreads the information out. This site uses Drupal which is an open source content management system to put a new interface on the legacy catalog.

Ease of Navigation:
The left and top navigation bars allow for an ease of use. Really once you are in the catalog though you mostly use the drop down menu boxes to navigate through the system's collection. The right column are tags which have been added by patrons to materials in the catalog. You can also browse the system by different facets, new items, hot items, and by media. The only thing I am confused about is content below the search boxes, it looks like user contribution posts but I do not know where these are inputting. I am assuming that once a user logs in under their account they have more interactive options than a visitor.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Discovery Channel

Intended Audience

The target audience of this site is anyone interested in the Discovery Channel's TV shows and programs. The site is fairly bandwidth intensive, so it's best accessed via a broadband internet connection.

Usefulness of Content

The content of this web site is quite useful. It includes TV schedules and content related to its programs, including individual sites for certain shows, games, full episodes, unaired footage, and more. It also contains information about things other than its TV shows. For instance, it has news on various topics including: science, animals, history, archaeology, tech, space, and several others.

Consistency of Design

The design of this web site is somewhat consistent. Most of the major sections of the site have the same design and layout. However, the specific pages for the TV shows each have a custom design related to the show, and the video section also has a significantly different design that the rest of the site.

Ease of Navigation

This site is generally easy to navigate. It has a consistent navigation bar at the top that gives easy access to the major sections of the web site. One annoying navigation issue is that the logo on the navigation bar, which also serves as the link to the home page, opens a new tab in my browser instead of just returning to the home page.