IF Archive site redesign competition

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Tagged: contests, css, web design, if, ifarchive

I help maintain the IF Archive, the community repository of free text adventures and associated tools and materials.

Before I was a maintainer, I helped design the web site itself. The Archive was originally an FTP site, so I was creating an HTML index for it, really. I was not a web designer. (I still am not a web designer, although I've designed a couple of web sites.) I just threw in some <ul>s and some <hr>s and left all the visual styles at their defaults. To fancy it up, I added a little block quote. Formatted with a <table>.

It still looks that way. It's not pretty. Functional as heck, but not pretty.

We, the Archive management folks, would like to change that. (The "not pretty" part, not the "functional" part.)

Therefore, we announce the IF Archive CSS Competition. Submit a CSS file to make the Archive less ugly! Deadline is Feb 8th. We'll use the best submission.

Here's the rules page. Basically, you download our five sample HTML pages and bare-bones CSS starting point. Update the CSS file and submit it back to us.

You can modify the HTML files too, and add images to support your CSS -- but be moderate about both. The less of those things you do, the better.

Once February 8th has passed, we'll let the public vote on the entries. Then we'll make our decision. We'll take the public vote seriously; we just need to reserve the right to take other factors into account. (Accessibility, portability across web browsers, maintainability, etc.) Again, see the complete rules.

The Archive is a volunteer-supported effort, so this contest has no prize beyond "We'll use your submission and credit you!" We will continue to display a gallery of all the entries, as well, to showcase the public-vote winners.

Thank you -- in advance -- for helping to make the IF world cooler.