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Suggestion; website feedback topic/system. Also perhaps on Marketing

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1:19 pm
April 27, 2010



posts 12


Post edited 1:40 pm – April 27, 2010 by Julius

For me it's not really clear where feedback on this website should be placed.

In 'General' there is:…..e-changes/


In 'suggestions & Questions' there is all sorts of website related stuff like:…..e-spaceup/

I wrote some feedback here:…..e-website/


Or perhaps it could be structured something more like this:

> External communication

>> our website

>> official press

>> social media (youtube, twitter, facebook, etc)

>> Misc


> Internal communiation

>> Forum

>> Wiki

>> online tools

>> mailinglists

>> misc


I understand some changes to the site are underway, so perhaps I should be patient..


I'd also love to write down some persona's and see if we can use those as a design tool to base our choices on.

A small start:

- The tech guy/girl – has tech skills on earospace, would like to contribute

- The enthousiast – would love to help, no tech skills, would like to promote this cause somehow

- The media guy/girl – knows stuff about media, would like to contribute.

- Press guy/girl – just visiting the site to see if there is a nice item for his newspaper in here somewhere

- The rich space geek – knows space stuff, but doesn't want to actually build stuff. He/she would love to give advice from his/her life experience, and perhaps donate some money at some point.

- The Admin – he/she started this. They have to be able to keep track of things, keep everybody (including themselves) motivated.

Well, best would be to specify some relevant qualities, make them feel human (add a picture and name).

For instance: John Merkov a the tech guy, 23 years old who knows a lot about rocket fuel, he's student and would love to work in this field. He thinks this is a great way to get experience and perhaps he could put his contributions to this project on his CV. He learned from this project, via a comment made on reddit. He has realistically 1 day a week he could contribute to this project, and perhaps if there is something special he could use a holliday to do something. He lives in Orlando, Florida and has visited 2 space launches.

They don't need to be too detailed, just enough to make the description seem human and get a feel for how he thinks and what he would need from a site or an (online) tool.

If you have persona's, you can think of sceniaro's. The website has different functions to different people. Choices need to be made on what has priority over what. For instance an argument could be made that for now the enthousiast, the rich space geek, and the press guy/girl are not so important at the moment. The most important is perhaps the Admin, but luckily he/she is willing to do some extra effort so the website doesn't have to be made so its easiest for them. Perhaps the most important right now is John Merkov (the tech guy) and the media guy/girl.

A very important scenario is the one where they first visit the site. What made them go to this website in the first place? What do they want to know? What would they like to do? What would make them trust this website?

Thinking of John, you could imagine he came to this site, because he read somewhere that there was an open source space mission. His first question would probably be 'what is this for website, what do they (want to) do'. (The homepage is very clear on this) 'is this ligit?'. So he would be searching for signs that gives him the feeling these people know what they are talking about. Once he feels this is something interesting he might ask to himself 'how could I contribute to this website?'. He would then go to the 'get involved' page. He then clicks on 'the welcome center' because that is where the page is guiding him. He then sees a forum index..

I think there the flow of the site breaks somewhat. It should be easier for him to contribute. The site should tell him how he could be valuable. Take him by the hand, if at the moment the 'new members info' is the best the site has to offer for new users, perhaps the welcome center link has to immediately take new users to this topic. You probably would like to give John more specific advice on how he could help, so either link to seperate introductions to seperate target groups, or just urge everyone to quickly write about themselves and some of the admins will help from there.

That's the short term solution, so I'd think that at the end of the 'new members info' topic it should say something like that. It should give the link on where to start this topic, and what type of information would be good to write in this new topic so the admins can easily guide this person to the place where he/she can help out.

This is just an example of a persona and a scenario. I'm rather new here and it would take a bit more effort then just making something up on the fly like I just did if you want to get the most out of this design tool. Still, it is better to have quickly made up persona as a design tool, then to have a broad "male, age between 20 and 40, likes tech" description. It is really important you get to feel you are designing for real humans with feelings and perhaps limited time, etc.

And the structure of the website could then be designed with these scenario's in mind.

Perhaps a wiki page somewhere to do something like this?

Ok, that was fun. And now I'll go watch championsleage football on tv :).






5:06 pm
April 27, 2010



posts 25


Thanks for the suggestion Julius, you made some good points. I'd like to have it where a user selects different skills they have in the sign up form (astrodynamics, fluid mechanics, control engineering, etc). On submission the new user will then be suggested missions in which they could put these skills to use. If interested, the user can then just casually provide comments and assistance and eventually fulfill a role in the mission. The user profile would list this information, as well as a feed of their contributions, their photo/avatar, links to their sites, a short bio, etc. Thoughts?


6:57 am
April 28, 2010



posts 12


Post edited 7:02 am – April 28, 2010 by Julius

Yes that does makes sense.

Just to be clear. My main point was not on a specific website detail, more on the possible value of using persona's as a tool. I gave some examples, but those where quickly written down just to explain what I ment with persona's and scenario's.

More information on how to use persona's can be find on this website:…..?q=persona


To get back to your suggestion; i'll just try to 'cut it in pieces' with some questions:

  • For who are these features?
  • What is the function of these features?
  • Are they the best way to help the users achieve their goals?

For who are these features?

I guess it is for new visitors to the site who would like to contribute in some way. (the tech guy/girl, the media guy/girl in my persona examples)

Also it is for other people working on projects, who would like to use this new manpower/girpower to be aligned with other efforts being made. (mainly the admin's probably)


What is the funcion of these features?

  • Make clear how one be made usefull  in a project. At the moment it is primairly a tool for the admins to quickly figure out how they could guide newcomers, and not so much a way for the newcomers to immediately know of themselves how they could contribute.
  • By adding photo/avatar and other personal photo's, the feeling of a community can grow. People get more personally invested.

On the features themselves

You probably also thought of multiple skills people could claim and not just having to pick one (like with a radiobutton question)?

I'd break them in two pieces:

  • info uniquely relevant to C-start
  • info personally relevant (probably also available on other social sites)

The information unique to C-start is something that just hás to be there. The skill-set is the most important one. It might be a bit hard for me to sum up my skills. Also people might be a bit held back to claim that their hobby is an actual skill. They might not know that much about it, but would still like to learn and contribute on a certain field. So perhaps the question take this into account somehow. Also it would be nice to have some broad categories like 'I like to promote this effort locally' or 'I know nothing how I can help, but I would sure like to'.

On how to ask this information; you might not want to stick a whole bunch of options in front of the user, because it might be a bit overwhelming. A number of questions following each other might be a good idea for this. In order to be able to make choices about how to go about this, someone has to make a list with all the skills needed and/or offered. I'll probably be able to help form this list or help structure this list.

Since you'd like people to have to do as little as possible, all the stuff that's not specific to C-start could perhaps just be a bunch of links to other social websites. I'm not sure if it is possible, but it would be nice if you could just have your picture, bio info, etc be synced with what you have on twitter/facebook/etc. Perhaps making use of gravatar for the photo part?

Are these features the best way to help the users achieve their goals?

I don't have time to really delve into this, so I'll keep it as an open question.

Are the proposed features the best way for newcomers and admins to get to know how newcomers could be valueable to the team?

Just a some ideas that might do the same thing with different features:

  • Different pages for different groups of skills. A video explaining the main goals in the language that fits the targetgroep.
  • A list of tasks on the site. Tagged by skillset , people could be free to filter the list anyway they want. (they wouldn't have to write their skillset down in this scenario).

That's it for now, hope this is helping C-start somehow :).






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