29 Jul 2009 faw   » (Journeyer)


Redesigning Communication
Comments about the ideas of a better "looking"
It seems to be a "hot topic" week for Debian, yesterday the announcement of Time Based Freeze Cycles and today the proposal to redesign some parts of Debian. No matter how orthogonal those topics are, communication seems to be needing real improvements inside Debian Project, but I will leave this item for later (and I mean communications amongst teams and developers, nothing related to the Press Team).

First of all, let me state this perfectly clear: I believe Agnieszka (pixelgirl) did an incredible job with her redesign proposal. As a concept. (Or proof of concept). That's why I share some of Rhonda's concerns.

I don't think anybody disagrees that several parts of the Debian project urges improvements in the design field, some of them requires a total redesign, that doesn't mean we need a new logo. It is curious to see how some things happen in a strange related fashion, no matter if you believe in $DEITY (superior power or destiny), life has its ways. Early this week, the new logo of Pepsi was announced and some comparison images were created to show the evolution of Pepsi and Coca-Cola logos. It's possible to find quite a few articles commenting about the new logo, about brand, market share and strangely related to a "new logo proposal".

Yes, I like Debian's logo, it has a strong recognition, I don't think we need to change it and I don't have reasons to believe we need a new one.

The Swirl can be applied vertically and horizontally, it can also be applied alone without the "debian" text and for those wondered about the details of our logo and font, a quick (re)search would review the DebianLogo wiki page, with a lot of details.

That being said, the art work concept is indeed an important first step, but it is certainly not the only one. As I said, life has its ways, yesterday, Rhonda mentioned the amazing work of Kalle Söderman, who has looking for the Debian's Global Picture since 2007 and who did move to the step after the mockups having real instances implemented maintaining part of Debian WWW Team informed and working on feedback and smooth integration.

No matter what people said (or will say), CSS can't do all the magic.

Kalle deserves a big Thank You for his work and, IMNSHO, should be the first option to be considered in a merge (that's why you shouldn't resign Rhonda, you got quite some work to do to get it integrated).

The point, is that Kalle is not alone. There are a lot of people behind Debian Art and it would be great to see a joint effort from all artists interested in helping Debian to have a better unified look-and-feel on the Debian Project, not only on our web interfaces, but also on our products: CDs/DVDs (and its covers), desktops, wallpapers, boot loaders, splash screens, documentations, business cards, banners, t-shirts (and a bunch of other materials). It is not just a matter of writing something completely new without keep in touch with an already existent community, it is also the need to communicate and push such goals project-wide, so we can have massive adoption.

I was surprised by the fact that a lot of people mixed quite a few orthogonal points. Specially the fact that the website also needs some work in the Information Architecture field in order to improve the users' experience, but that's one point of a project-wide concern (that Kalle took into account).

Finally, some may not remember that we vote (General Resolution) to choose our logo, back in 1999 (10 years ago).

Yes, we need to do better on communicating and we need do to better with our design (and probably Marketing), but please do not start such work by changing our logo.
Yes... long time since I last post. Apparently, I will be able to graduate by April of 2010, but that remains for another post.

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