Polymer Nanocomposites Laboratory
This was a really fun project working with the Polymer Nanocomposites Laboratory at my alma mater, Texas A&M University. Dr. Jaime Grunlan was referred to me by a friend of mine who is a PhD student in this research group–thanks Morgan! Dr. Grunlan wanted to:
- Have the site redesigned to update and freshen the overall design (I remember Dr. Grunlan clearly emphasizing that the new site should "look awesome")
- Utilize the latest and greatest web development techniques and technologies now available (always exciting for your web developer to hear)
- We agreed that we both wanted to better emphasize their research and work for their visitors
- Continue to stand out from other materials science research groups
- Finally, and most importantly the site needed to act as a tool to help the group continue interesting potential collaborators and sources of funding
With those ground rules laid out and some initial research conducted, I got right to work. Dr. Grunlan and I worked closely together on the initial design for the site, and after receiving his enthusiastic approval, I moved right into development, finalizing the design in the browser as I went. I also setup and completely customized WordPress (as their CMS) for Dr. Grunlan and the students to easily maintain their new site, as before, maintaining and updating the site caused massive migraines for everyone.
Since Dr. Grunlan was open and insistent on me using the best and latest technologies and techniques I went to town on their new site, having a lot of fun in the process. The new sites utilized the following:
- An extensively customized WordPress CMS to make it very easy to update, create, and maintain the various content for the new site (the students collectively breathed a sigh of relief after I showed them how to use WordPress)
- A responsive site that adapts to the width of the device the site is being viewed on, which makes for a site that will look great across many different devices (phones, pads, computers)
- Use of cutting-edge web development technologies including: html5, css3, microformats, modernizer, selectivizr, Typekit, the Pictos icons, and various other wonderful snippets of goodness from frameworks like "320 and Up" and "HTML5 Boilerplate"
- Several other treats and surprises for people on iPhones and iPads who add the site to their home screen and start it
Through us working closely together throughout the project, with both Dr. Grunlan and several of the PNC Lab students, I believe the new site has been a big success. Dr. Grunlan has mentioned receiving several emails with praise for their new site, and is also quite happy with the project's outcome. It's been awesome working with the PNC Lab, and I don't think I got to learn anything about particle-polymer systems : )