Rebuilt the site’s dropdown menus to work like the main site’s.
Upgraded from Drupal 5 to Drupal 6.
Imported all content (including most recent webform submissions and what have you).
Adjusted inline page tools capabilities, including the arrangement of them all into a single tidy block.
Reworked a custom Trumba calendar module to be Drupal 6 compatible.
General blocks, menus, templates, and modules Drupalery.
And so on and so forth.
Here you can see the site’s old header, which didn’t match the rest of the university website’s layout, menu functionality, and visuals. Its many orange elements veered from the classic Husky purple and gold — and web-friendly gray — color scheme, leaving the Career Center’s decor looking a little wrong. (The new header can be seen in the image above.) Note that we didn’t design the new header and footer; we implemented it into CSS:
This is the site’s former footer:
And this is how the footer, redesigned by Career Center staff, looks after ENGINE’s assistance:
Bottom line: we’re very proud to now be associated — even if it’s in a very, very small way — with one of the nation’s oldest, most productive, and largest universities. If we may be so bold, we’re already looking forward to getting our next chance to lend our skills to another incredible academic institution.
D.C. Open Government Coalition, a nonprofit dedicated to increasing government transparency, hired us to redesign their Drupal site. They had been using a theme very similar to the stock Drupal theme and needed a visual identity that also helped tell the story of what they do.
Using the colors most commonly linked with the United States government seemed like the right idea — with the most space devoted to white to take advantage of the obvious associations between clean and open. We also used rocket-glare red to draw attention to the Report a Violation item, creating a call to action that stands out without stealing the show.
To streamline the experience for both visitor and editor, we also modified several content types and consolidated some navigation items. For example, combining several of the site’s dynamic content avenues (News, Announcements, etc.) into a single Blog cuts down on clicks — plus readers are much more likely to use RSS when looking at something that acts like a blog instead of a news section.
As a side note we’re very proud to be a part of this project, as we wholeheartedly support efforts to increase government openness.
Thing: Conan O’Brien’s tweets on billboards by Examiner.com. Everything Conan bangs out on Twitter immediately appears on billboards around the country. There’s not a syllable I can add to this that would make it any greater.
Thing: Inside WikiLeaks’ Leak Factory by (Drupal-powered) Mother Jones. However you feel about WikiLeaks’ video release from earlier this week, it’s worth reading up on the site’s founder. The type of cat who claims his Facebook fan page is run by Noam Chomsky when it actually isn’t, this guy chides a pair of assassinated potential sources for not acting “anonymous” enough. WikiLeaks has an amazing public ideal and has certainly mixed lots of very good work in with all its weirdness, but this article just offers up too many really revealing and hilarious quotes to pass up.
Thing: What Makes NPR and the Economist So Special? by the Washington Post. The answer, if you want the short version, is that they’ve found the sweet spot between news and opinion. Newspapers are dying because it’s too easy to get news the moment it happens, rather than waiting to read about it the next morning. Think about the blogs you read — chances are they include very little straight-up no-frills news content. Something anyone who writes, speaks, or creates can ponder… how can you tell the story-of-the-week in such a way that people will listen? [Via Rafi Kam]
Bonus Bonus Bonus
SEOmoz shows how to use the psychology of choices to improve your site’s conversion rate. In their example, a nonprofit was able to gain more newsletter subscribers by altering their call-to-action. Instead of just asking users to subscribe, they began asking users to either subscribe or link.
Think about how many times this could happen in a day: Mary Internet is on the fence about subscribing. She’d like to pitch in, but doesn’t feel like committing. But there’s another option — a link? Sure, that’s a one-time way to help.
There’s no data on this part, but it’s not hard to imagine subscriptions would increase too, making the new call to action a double success. Brilliant! We’ve been working with more nonprofits lately, and we’d love to try out something like this.
Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees is a Sonoma County, California nonprofit that helps immigrants settle into new communities. After they saw themselves on our list of nonprofits using Drupal, they asked us to add some new functionality to their site, including a home page slideshow and new design elements.
More on GCIR in their own words:
GCIR seeks to influence the philanthropic field to advance the contributions and address the needs of the world’s growing and increasingly diverse immigrant and refugee populations. Our goals are to:
Enhance philanthropy’s awareness of issues affecting immigrants and refugees and their new communities.
Deepen the field’s understanding of how these issues are integral to community building in today’s dynamic social, economic, and political environment.
Increase philanthropic support for both broad and immigrant/refugee-focused strategies that benefit newcomer populations and strengthen the larger society.
It was a knockout week for articles about people who are smarter than normal people.
There are over 300 million people in the US — only 32 of them are annually selected to be Rhodes scholars. There are almost seven billion people on earth — only 32 of them are annually selected in the NFL Draft’s first round. What are the odds that one person could score both? Hey, I only graduated from relatively lowly Kennesaw State University, and even I can calculate that it’s SLIGHTLYRARE. Future NFL star/current Rhodes scholar Myron Rolle makes you and me and everyone we know all feel like big, big losers. Can you imagine the pressures of being Myron Rolle? Article’s most underrated moment: when we learn that Rolle, quite possibly the most smartest American pro athlete ever, enjoys the music of Plies, who looks like this.
Rolle’s fellow people-who-are-smarter-than-you, Ivy Leaguers Jessica Lin, Jessica Matthews, Julia Silverman, and Hemali Thakkar, have created a soccer ball that generates energy by being kicked. Fifteen minutes of play generates enough power to run a light for three hours, meaning a whole day of running/kicking can help patch the electricity gaps third-world villages have to deal with.*
The Atlantic’s food columnist compares Walmart’s produce with Whole Foods’, hosting a blind taste-test for 16 professional food critics. THIRD-BULLETTWIST: several critics end up “not entirely happy” to discover the produce they preferred was actually THEPOPULISTPRODUCE. This changes everything! Update the class war scoreboard: Little Guy 1, Rhodes Cornerback & The Soccer Teslas… still somewhat more than 1. Ok, fine.