February 19, 2007

The Union's Website

Writing about web page http://www.sunion.warwick.ac.uk/portal/Default.aspx

Is it just me or is the design of the Students' Union website a little crap.

When I'm logged in I count 21 main navigation buttons! Have they ever heard of a sub-menu? 


- 14 comments by 2 or more people Not publicly viewable

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  1. 22!

    19 Feb 2007, 11:37

  2. Matthew Jones

    The thing that annoys me most is that you have to put the www. http://sunion.warwick.ac.uk/ doesn’t work. Apache rewrites anyone?

    19 Feb 2007, 12:14

  3. Bookmarks anyone? Anyway, yes it’s a rubbish design.

    19 Feb 2007, 12:18

  4. Compared to some of the problems there have been, a poor interface is minor.

    19 Feb 2007, 13:06

  5. Not really, a poor interface just serves to make the Union look amateurish and incompetent.

    Ok, so maybe it’s not such a problem.

    19 Feb 2007, 15:05

  6. he thing that annoys me most is that you have to put the www

    Problem with your browser maybe? Typing “sunion.warwick.ac.uk” works for me; both the http:// and the www. are appended automatically.

    19 Feb 2007, 20:44

  7. Alex

    Amit: just because some browers are configured to “guess” what to do when a website doesn’t load properly doesn’t mean the Union site couldn’t be reconfigured to work a little more intuitively :¬)

    (Though incidentally I don’t think that particular issue has anything to do with the Union: DCS doesn’t work either: http://dcs.warwick.ac.uk http://www.dcs.warwick.ac.uk )

    19 Feb 2007, 20:55

  8. Yeah it is pretty poor. I heard that they were going to be redesigning when I was still at uni and I expressed an interest in getting involved but was eventually told that it was taken care of.

    I’m particularly keen on how they fix some of the old security issues by simply removing features. I’m amazed that they actually managed to make it worse than it was before.

    I’m not even that expensive :(

    19 Feb 2007, 22:07

  9. I’m particularly keen on how they fix some of the old security issues by simply removing features. I’m amazed that they actually managed to make it worse than it was before.

    The software for the portal is being marketed too. Although I did specifically ask a question at Union Council last year about whether the known security holes had been patched up and was told that they had been.

    19 Feb 2007, 22:36

  10. The best bit about the portal is the site map linked to at the top.
    Some of the highlights:

    - There’s at least 5 links listed as “Cholo” which are actually Xanana’s, South Central etc

    - According to the map, pages on Drinking and Self Harm are listed in the category “Sex, contraception and pregnancy” in the hierarchy

    - There appears to be a blank page linked as “where” under sabbatical officers… possibly just in there to ask the question.

    - Then there’s Steph

    Not quite sure what it’s purpose really is… it’s not really a navigation tool that’s for sure.

    21 Feb 2007, 15:58

  11. I think its also interesting to note the union-wide lack of aesthetically pleasing design, not just the site, but promotional material as well.

    22 Feb 2007, 00:04

  12. All this despite the fact that the Union apparently employs two full-time graphic designers . . .

    22 Feb 2007, 17:18

  13. Some of the Union’s designs looks really good, albeit with some dubious colours (orange) here and there.

    I think the Union sells the membership system (apparently quite good) to other organisations, I don’t know if the website is included in that. But if it were, its the first thing I’d replace.

    Compared to insite, the Union’s site just looks amateurish.

    22 Feb 2007, 17:29

  14. The Union website came up in our debate last night with Nic Warrington and Brian Duggan on RaW. My shamless plugging suggests you should listen back to it. (linked from www.flipthelid.co.uk)

    23 Feb 2007, 09:41


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