[LINK] My School web site design problems
tom.worthington at tomw.net.au
Thu Jan 28 22:21:19 AEDT 2010
Hon Julia Gillard MP, Minister for Education launched the "My School"
web site today: <http://www.myschool.edu.au/>.
This is intended to provide information to the public on schools,
including the number of students and teachers, socio-economic status and
literacy and numeracy test results. Media reports indicated problems
with the site responding. I found the site would not respond at about
9am, but by 9pm it was working well. However some simple changes to the
web page design could improve the site.
I ran some tests on the page for the Montessori International College
(Buderim,QLD,4556) and found:
* 140 HTML Markup errors
* The W3C Mobile test reported: This page is not mobile-friendly!
* An automated web accessibility test reported 6 Priority One, 37
Priority Two and 86 Priority Three problems.
This school web page contained:
1. document: 139.1KB (HTML, text and scripts),
2. stylesheets: 26.4KB,
3. images: 16.3KB.
The document contains 4.4 kbytes of text, only 3% of the total. This
indicates an excessive used of HTML mark-up in the page design. Reducing
this would speed up access to the site. Some simple changes would reduce
the code size by two thirds.
The code shows an excessive use of nested DIVs. At one point DIVs are
nested ten deep, to display just two images. The large amount of white
space which this deep nesting causes may also slow the system down,
depending on how the pages and generated and transmitted.
Also automatically generated identifier names appear to be excessively
long, such as:
In other respects the page is reasonably well designed . It is readable
(perhaps more readable) with the styles turned off. However, it is not
clear if the general public will be able to understand the complex
tables displayed. It might be better to offer an introductory page for
each school with summary data. This would also be a way to reduce the
load on the server. Most readers will not read past the first few lines
of text and therefore downloading the complex tables is a waste of
This posting with links in my blog:
Tom Worthington FACS HLM, TomW Communications Pty Ltd. t: 0419496150
PO Box 13, Belconnen ACT 2617, Australia http://www.tomw.net.au
Adjunct Lecturer, The Australian National University t: 02 61255694
Computer Science http://cs.anu.edu.au/people.php?StaffID=140274
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