Macromedia, which is on a campaign to improve the functionality of Flash-based Web sites, is inviting Flash developers to enter a contest in which they design a site for a fictitious clothing company. Macromedia announced the
competition at this week’s flashforward2001 conference in San Francisco.
The “Snug Wear” site should be “attractive, engaging, creative and fun, showing Snug Wear’s clothing to be cool and stylish,” Macromedia said. “Above all, the site should demonstrate how Macromedia Flash can improve the user experience.”
Entries must conform with Macromedia’s
usability guidelines, which include such tips as keeping user goals in mind and avoiding unnecessary intros. Macromedia has provided specs and artwork for use with the site in a 2.08MB StuffIt archive. The site must be live on the Internet to be considered.
Winners will be recognized in two categories, one for experienced users, the other for beginners. The top prize in each category is a Titanium PowerBook. Second prize is an MP3 player, third prize the winner’s choice of any Macromedia software product. Winning entries will also be published in Publish and Macworld magazines.
After a panel of judges select the top sites in each category, Girlzilla, a New York-based “user-centric” design firm, will conduct usability tests to determine the winners.
Deadline for entries is March 30. Winners will be announced April 10 at the Macromedia User Conference in New York. Macromedia is also offering
off the price of Flash 5 until March 31.
Macromedia has been promoting usability since last summer’s fastforward2000 conference in New York City, where some attendees complained about the proliferation of Flash-based Web sites that have confusing navigation elements, useless intros and other problems. Usability was also a big theme during Monday’s keynote at the flashforward2001 conference in San Francisco, where Macromedia products president Kevin Lynch showed examples of what he considered to be poorly designed Flash sites.