Friday, September 26, 2008

ALA Facelift

My favorite library association (to make fun of), the ALA, launched its website redesign this week. The process began almost two years ago with the following goals in mind:

The restructured and redesigned website would show the following improvements: 


 align with users’ mental models of information architecture 

 eliminate difficult and confusing navigation 

 do a better job of “flagging” content for various audiences (member, nonmember, etc.) 

 improve the searchability of the site 

 create a more pleasing graphic design 

 assure up-to-date content and links 

 eliminate cryptic terminology and jargon 

 eliminate long, meaningless URLs 

After extensive user testing, focus groups, expert feedback, and thousands of dollars the  old website was radically transformed from this clumsy, difficult to navigate, red white and blue visual abortion

[Courtesy of the Internet Archives]

Into this!

A grey version! 

I kid I kid the two sites are nothing alike... the new website has far more broken links and bugs to work out. 

The best part is that in their  attempt to give the people what they want with a fresh, cool, up-to-date site using the latest technologies (RSS feeds weee!!!) - the brain trust that cooked up this redesign dreamed a template that looks almost identical to another group we tend to associate with forward thinking and innovation.


This website further proves that the Librarian Shortage is soon at hand  (which the ALA predicts will occur any time between now and the Apocalypse) since clearly this website was designed with baby boomers and adult diapers in mind. 

- The Gossiping Librarian

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