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New Museum: Digital Observations

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ObservationsEdit

Browser VariationsEdit

Viewing www.newmuseum.org on different browsers (Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer) does not alter the homepage. The navigation bar extends across the screen, regardless of browser width, while the information area does not scale to browser window size; white space extends to the right when the browser is at full width. The text and images can be increased or decreased based on the user’s preferences; the top navigation bar stays the same.

MobileEdit

Within a mobile device, using Safari, the navigation bar includes “Home,” rather than on the desktop, which shows “New Museum” surrounding the “Exhibitions” button. The mobile option is much clearer for navigation. Also, the mobile layout fills the screen, with the navigation bar and page at the same width; the user can zoom in or out without changing the scale or surrounding white space.

HTML ValidatorEdit

On the homepage, there were eight errors, with six of those for missing end tags, one for the Id “content” already in use, and one for an “onClick” option. None of these negatively limit the usability of the homepage.

Web Page Test (www.webpagetest.org)

http://www.webpagetest.org/result/120516_C7_KAK/

The New Museum uses Click Tale, in addition to Google Analytics, to analyze traffic on their site.

MetadataEdit

Only the title of the site and the museum appear in the metadata for the <head> section, with the Events and Exhibitions navigation tabs listed in the <title> sections.

UsabilityEdit

When the user selects one of the top navigation tabs, the subnavigation options appear in the bar directly below, in the same color, but they do not stay once the user scrolls off the top navigation tab; this makes for bad usability.

As a sort of breadcrumb trail within the desk, the top navigation tab selected will become colored, while the other tabs remain in grey, and the subnavigation tab will appear with a brightly colored box around it.

AccessibilityEdit

No “Search” box, which limits accessibility to the content for all users. The G:Class (www.gclass.org) site and the New Museum Digital Archive (archive.newmuseum.org) both include a search option at the top of the page; these are external.

In the Lynx browser, the navigation tabs are listed textually, and there is alternate text for the icons, but not for the full-page images of artwork that cycle through on the homepage. Within the Exhibitions page for “Bodies of Society,” for example, the Alt tag only offers the artist’s name and an image number, not a description of the image.

The New Museum site uses FeedBurner to allow subscriptions to their Events and Exhibitions pages, but these show up on Lynx as text.

Cookies placed throughout the site, like on the G:Class page, stall the usage of the site on Lynx.

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