Tip of the Quill: A Journal
Antici…

This is a tiny little thing, but I was thinking this morning about how the GAMBIT website uses funny terminology for each of its sections. Back when Philip and I were first designing it, we wanted to name each section after a component of the gaming experience, so “News” became “Updates”, “Careers” became “Join Game”, “About Us” became “Campaign” and so on.
This came up because a graduate student writing an article on us pinged me to ask some very basic questions, which would have all been answered by a quick trip to our website. Initially I was irritated because it felt like said student simply hadn’t done her homework, but then I wondered if perhaps our funny naming conventions weren’t part of the problem. You couldn’t simply type in “http://gambit.mit.edu/people” and go to our people section, or “http://gambit.mit.edu/games” and go to our games section.
Or could you?
Ten minutes later, the GAMBIT site now offers logical redirects at:

Trying to anticipate everything people might type in is a fool’s errand, of course, but this is a nice start. Of course, a working search function would be nice too, but that’s coming up fast on the to-do backlog.
Pation. (Didn’t want to leave you hanging, did I?)

One Comment

  1. J. Faust
    Posted January 8, 2009 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    So the thing is, that’s a good start, yes, but outside of the more tech-savvy browsers who might think to try that, it still leaves people out in the cold if they’re not comfortable making up and guessing their own URLs.
    You might consider adding in tooltips that appear when the mouse moves over the major nav links, indicating what’s really in that section of the site… don’t remember the specific syntax, but HTML has a simple structure for it.