Unique Landscapes

Intercultural Website
November 2015
1st Semester

Designing an international online presence

For this fourth project, we were assigned a task where we, as something for the first time ever, were actually required to code something functional. The assignment was to create a website consisting of 1 front page and 4 sub pages in 2 different languages, namely english and danish, which would equal to 10 total pages. This assignment was something else though, because we had an actual business as a case, this time it was an english gentlemen who is a landscape designer and has been so for the past 19 years. He just got a new website, and we essentially had to do an expert review on his website as a start, and then build our own with the requirements already stated.

We decided to do a website with a front page and 4 pages that we deemed to be the most necessary; design process, portfolio, about us and contact us. The reason being is because we are dealing with a creative business which means that stuff like a news page isn’t the most necessary thing to put in the navigation at the top.

This assignment was a bit tough and difficult, because the project scope was huge, and I feel like a lot of the stuff that we had to do, like create body text that is culture sensitive, isn’t even anything that has anything to do with what we might be working as with the degree we are gonna be graduating with. The body text example, that’s something that a dedicated copy writer would take care of, not the developer. That already made it a lot more difficult to fit it into the only 2 week length of the project that we had available.

The other thing is, this project was mainly about coding a website, which isn’t really something that can be split up efficiently while at the same time maintaining consistency and having a decent end product with the varying levels of proficiency in the group, which means the logical thing would be would be to offload all that work to one person, but that is simply ridiculous. At that point, the assignment might as well be a single person assignment since the other people in the group won’t really develop their skills.

I am not really satisfied with the end product, to be completely honest. The project feels rushed and lacked planning, and it was too much work for a single person. Many a sleepless night were had. Furthermore, the usability took its toll as a result of that, not really scoring that well. Better group work and organisation is something I will be working on in the future.

Post hand-in makeover

We did some usability tests on the website, and one of our findings that kept on repeating with each testing participant, was that they didn't know that on the design-process page, there was a big button at the bottom of the screen that would take you down to the next step, which was the intended procedure of usage for the page. The idea was a full-page slide for each step in the design process. The following image is the before image.

concluded that one of the design paradigms we set up using the design principle of color, which stated that all things that are interactable or clickable must be the iconic Unique Landscape shade of purple, was not consistent on that page. The bottom buttons were white and became pink when hovered over. That is something that I'd think would highly improve the experience for the users and have them interact with the website more in line with what we intended. The following image is the after image.

My reflection

During this project I learned a lot about off-loading work-load and trying to make a team work. Because a lot of the students at CPH-Business are passive, there has to be someone who has to take the initiative and try to drive the team forward to where they want to be. At first, that might sound like a load of jargon, but it's true. If nobody is there to delegate assignments, part of the work-load or at least offer team-members the work that needs to be done, nothing would really get done. Somebody has to be a leader whether they like it or not, and sometimes, it ties in to the Belbin-test that we did during our Company class.

I also learned about basic HTML website file strucutre, and hyperlinking to other pages on the same webserver, and trying to build a cohesive site.

// contact me