Idea for department global navigation.

Discussions of visual designs, content area elements,
interface issues of UNL web templates.

Idea for department global navigation.

Postby dsockrider » Thu May 25, 2006 9:40 am

I like the look and placement of the department global navigation that Melissa designed.

While this navigation looks good and solves some navigation issues within departments, certain proposed current UNL global navigation links will cause problems with more than one department.

I propose dropping the UNL global links titled Research & Faculty/Staff. I would drop those links from the UNL global navigation to the department level navigation to allow departments to use links titled Research & Faculty/Staff to direct to those areas of their departments.

As currently proposed, having the UNL global links titled Research and Faculty/Staff, will result in not allowing any department to be able to use the link titles 'Research & Faculty/Staff' within their own departmental pages.

Accessibility issues will not allow us to use the link title twice in the same page if the link goes to different locations.

If we're not going to be able to have a departmental link that says 'Research' what does the group suggest we label Research? ....Areas of Focus, Stuff We're Studying....???? If we can't use the link title 'Faculty/Staff' for our departments and college what are we going to use for a faculty/staff link title? ....People? ....teachers and workers?
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Well....

Postby dsockrider » Thu May 25, 2006 10:34 am

No decision has been made, this is just David making his suggestion (again).
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Apparently the decision has been made because it still exists in the design.

Aaron, Do you have any positive suggestions or justifications for leaving the link titles as is? Convince me how this improves our marketing effectiveness and you won't hear it (again).
Last edited by dsockrider on Thu May 25, 2006 11:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby dsockrider » Thu May 25, 2006 11:20 am

Well, maybe i'm reading it wrong, but it sounds like cwalter's comment is a fear of losing the ability to use faculty/staff or research on the college of engineering site. Which has not happened and I don't see how that could happen, am i reading that wrong?


As explained above, we are concerned about not being able to label a link to our research areas as 'research' There's no doubt we'll have even more research areas than currently exist. We just want the ability to use the link title RESEARCH.
The design (and site map) is still in a state of flux. Therefore, by my understanding, no final decision has been made.

As we left our meeting it was my understanding from Alvin, Bob and Brett, that coding is beginning on the design.
It's an issue that has already been raised several times and is being considered by the (appropriate) powers that be.

Good. Who are the (appropriate) powers that be?
P.S. Also, if you check the most recent version of my draft, a new set of global links have been inserted. If this is what we end up using, this should clear up any problems discussed here.

http://www.unl.edu/housing/ngrg/unl_modern.jpg
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...If coding has began, what design is being coded?

Thank you for removing the 'Research' link from the global navigation. I'd appreciate moving 'Faculty/Staff' to the department level.

Thanks
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Postby dsockrider » Thu May 25, 2006 12:03 pm

That new global navigation list was sent to me by Bob, not changed at your request.


New global navigation list? I thought the site map was controlled by the CWIS advisory board that hasn't met in like 3 years.

You're talking about site map issues, and we're working on the design here. Just the design.
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You consider the layout of the links as being totally seperate from where those links actually go to? To me, designing a website means designing the information architecture that is behind the the interface design. There's the visual design and the information architecture design. Both being design.
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adding shading

Postby JRW » Thu May 25, 2006 12:28 pm

I really like Melissa's solution--it's clean and doesn't detract from the overall design.

I added a bit of shading on the lower bar to pick up on the same shading from the left side.

http://www.unl.edu/is/globalnav.html

Jon
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Postby saltybeagle » Thu May 25, 2006 1:10 pm

Some sort of global navigation was agreed upon by committee... that decision has been finalized.

But, I think it's important to stress that no global 'keywords' have been identified yet, nor do ~we~ have any direct influence on what those keywords will be. So arguing over what may be there or not is somewhat pointless atm.
But, one thing is certain - we have only a finite set of symbols and words in the english language. Some could argue that those symbols and words could be arranged uniquely to infinity, but who would want to download that web page? So let's discuss ways to mitigate these collisions which WILL occur no matter what words are placed anywhere on any page.

So let's talk solutions.
@cwalter
perhaps you could consider including a link on the UNL RESEARCH page to the research area of every department in every college throughout the university


This is a excellent suggestion (for the current Research page). All of the University research needs to be highlighted and/or accessible through this page. An entire list may make this page a little unfriendly though. I would guess that everyone's interest is to market/display all of our research equally for the importance it deserves. Perhaps the Vice Chancellor for Research could help determine how this research page is outlined to ensure adequate coverage?

You make a good point, the local content should be accessible through the global link (and I hope it is now).
The bigger issue is, when these collisions occur I think the content should be accessible both ways.
What I'm proposing is, if there were a link to Research (for the sake of discussion) globally and locally, as cwalter suggests the local content needs to be accessible through the global link - but some might argue that the global research needs to be accessible from the local research page.

Reason being, the innermost content of our site is increasingly becoming the entry point for our visitors through the help of search engines, and our web presence needs to acknowledge this.

So I would propose that the content be accessible both ways (perhaps even in absence of such a direct collision on the immediate page).
I hope this is a good point for people to consider.

@dsockrider
Accessibility issues will not allow us to use the link title twice in the same page if the link goes to different locations.


I proposed something in a previous meeting that could mitigate this. Prefacing whatever global words with something identifiably 'global.' IE, Students becomes UNL Students or Student Hub (please don't comment on my poor title suggestions). This is an easy solution to mitigate collisions between links that are supposed to be unique.

Excellent points all around... But, without knowing any of the keywords we will be dealing with, I hope some would agree these potential solutions could help mitigate the problems we know will occur.

AaronG, the design is coming along very well... thanks again for your hard work.

-Brett
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Sitemap and Other Issues

Postby rcrisler1 » Thu May 25, 2006 1:46 pm

I think we've discussed this several times before, including in yesterday's meeting, but we need to remember that the Next Generation Web Committee is responsible for recommending an information architecture to the CWIS Advisory Board.

That has been, since the very beginning, one of the interesting challenges to this project ... how do we retain flexibility in the design and code so that we can move to a new information architecture when it is approved. Some might say that we should wait until that's worked out. I disagree ... we need to move forward despite the situation with information architecture and be flexible enough to transition to a new IA whenever that decision is finalized.

On the issue of conflicts in link names, that's just inevitable. We need to gracefully come to a conclusion here. The conclusion implied in the current template design is to add a modifier to the link name at the local site: in the case before us, S&FA Home. I'm taking no position on that other than to say that neither the department, college or institutional levels are necessarily more important than the other. They all need to work together to serve the site visitor. But there are no trump cards in this discussion.

I think this is looking great, by the way, and I don't want anyone to be discouraged.
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Postby alvin_woon » Thu May 25, 2006 3:00 pm

As we left our meeting it was my understanding from Alvin, Bob and Brett, that coding is beginning on the design.


Just for everyone's information, the coding phase hasn't begin yet. We will starting working on that once we get the final .psd file. :wink:
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another nav look

Postby JRW » Thu May 25, 2006 3:32 pm

This is just building on what Aaron and Melissa have done. I wasn't sure if the red lines worked, so I replaced with a screen above the photo and text that would wrap inside:

http://www.unl.edu/is/unldeptnav.html

(Realizing that the font would match the text in the left side navigation)


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