design school web sites (was: In case you knowanyone who might be interested...)

12 Jul 2007 - 9:06pm
9 years ago
1 reply
832 reads

Sorry, but I couldn't watch any longer...

In theory, I agree that to attract the very best, innately talented *new*
interaction designers, its site must speak to their sensibilities for
usability, elegance, aesthetics, etc. On the other hand, a Design School
Web Site's primary purpose is to acquire new applicants and/or facilitate
the application/education process (people learning about the school). Yes,
I am turned off by poorly designed web sites, and yes, I might use that to
weight my selection. On the other hand, if the company achieves its number
one business need with the site, and only loses the most gifted potential
students, they're likely still doing pretty well.

I agree it's not right. I agree there's a better way. I also work for a
pharma company, so I know when I'm supposed to shut up and accept bad design
(80% of the time, it's right after I escalated the issue to the SVP). With
some sites, we have an amazing collaborative experience building something
everyone loves. With some (yes, including the company home page), we deal
in critical usability risks and try like hell to keep the company from
paying the agency who made all the fonts 8 pixels tall.

In looking at the site that started this thread a little closer, it seems
they can be given some credit. If you search Google for the school name,
their site is primarily HTML and more traditionally designed. Not great by
any means, but it's not a big JPG. The fact that their site (and even links
from home to the Pilot Year program, the topic of the JPG) is more "normal"
leads me to believe that the JPG in question was most likely a print
advertisement that someone pasted directly into their CMS system. I didn't
see any way to get to the advert from the home page, which again makes me
think it's just that, and ad. Given that the primary content for the
program is indexable and searchable (they track it with google analytics),
this "splashy ad" may not even need to be searched, copied, pasted, etc.

I still don't think the JPG is necessary, but it doesn't seem to have
affected the site, is pretty much a full-page "banner ad", and one could
give credit at least to the web folks who made sure they got the site's
primary navigation shoved in at the top.


> You probably have a great point, but in this particular instance, I
> was talking about a page made up of a giant JPG containing all the
> text for a page. Can't search it, can't index it in a search engine,
> can't copy and paste from it ... heck, you can barely *read* it in
> some places. This was not the work of an expert.


13 Jul 2007 - 6:13am
Isabel Froes

As the one who made the initial posting, a quick
note.... I agree the jpg was not the right
medium, initially sent a pdf embed on the email
which wasn't accepted to the list, therefore, as
I was posting that onto many lists, I posted a
jpg online which would be a quick shortcut - by
having the link, people could reach the main
website and gather more information from there.
Again, I realize that it was a bad, bad idea for this list... ;)
Should have written the text and put a direct
link to the direct page instead... Point taken, I
have to admit that I was impressed about how far the discussion went!

Thanks for all the comments and if you can forget
the Jpeg and want to read more about who we are
you can check our people area at (and be aware that we
are just a year old and everything has been under
construction and understaffed, despite the amount
of work which has been done). After that I hope
you feel confident enough about spreading the
word about our exciting pilot programme! :)

Cheers, Isabel

Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design (CIID)
Njalsgade 88, 2nd floor,
2300 København S

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