CMC Magazine December 1, 1995 / Page 5
The Vision of an Accomplished Webmaster
with The New York Times' New Content Development Editor
by Chris Lapham
Elizabeth Osder's list of development rules:
Link to interview
- Change Content Daily: The home
page must be changed regularly. People
need a reason in the first screen load to keep coming back. If the site
is evergreen, develop an element that changes automatically.
- Maximize First Screen Load: Get something fun,
new, and informative in the first load.
- Include Interaction :
Create context for conversation by framing
information and questions for forums. Don't just say here's the forum.
Spike users interest: get them involved.
- Make Navigation Part of the Narrative: Don't forget that navigation
is now apart of the narrative. Wherever you are on a site you should
be able to easily link to other parts of that site. For example, on
the top navigation links on the pages connect to
the content areas and the
navigation links on the page bottom connect
to all the interactive areas.
- Make Graphics Worth the Wait: If you are going to be graphically
intense, make it worth the wait. Roaches is a bit much at 14.4, but it's
worth it and we haven't had a complaint yet. Always insert image sizing
so text loads first.
- Remember that Nothing is too Obvious: Give people an idea about what the site is about. We have an
icon glossary on Rockhall and descriptive sentences
on Weather. People have different learning styles.
There are readers and mad clickers. I'm a mad clicker, but I have to think of the folks who want
to read before they make the decision to stop and visit an area.
- Don't Overlink: Why link out and make someone suffer the look-up time?
Develop your own content.
- Let the User Write the Site: Create tools, vehicles for feedback,
such as forums, and let the site take the direction users want. Allow
them to write content--we do this successfully in the
Best Rock And Roll Memory
Forum on Rockhall.