Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Omar's project - Banjar

It's always great to hear about one's project in person because I was able to have myself more engaged. I told Omar that I'm neither U.S. Citizen nor interested in politics but he said his website will be also designed for someone like me who doesn't know much about political issues. His goal is to maintain intellectual discussion among different political parties and fully understand systems. I can definitely tell Omar is passionate about the Banjar project and he is collaborating with Greg so I expect truly high-quality website that isn't like any other websites out there.

I had a chance to look at the basic format of the website and it doesn't look like a political website at all where usually blue and red colors are all over. It seemed easy to navigate. I would like to see how it is going to become a social realm for being a casual political website with a very simple form. We talked about how facebook has many options and tend to draw attention from many confusing advertisement. Banjar site is not going to be non-commercial and informative. Having many visual materials have both good and bad aspects. I think Omar's project needs to stay simple and straightforward as possible.

Now, what is missing for the project is actual user testing among groups. Surveys among individuals are well done and it's still in progress. How to make people understand politics better and clear? A group interaction scenario via a group chatting will help to figure out how people interact over the political issues and this must be done before building the website.

What else could he try? Many times a logo of website tends to become an overview so Omar and Greg could work on that and have professors, peers and users look at them and give feedbacks. In the website, registered people may want to have ratings so that will give a mode of satisfaction from writing a thoughtful essays and comments and encourage more participation.

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