Kiwi Recovery Programme

Size: 250 pages, 10MB

Government status: Government Department

My professional status: contractor at CWA New Media and then independent web designer/developer

Website client: Department of Conservation, Bank of New Zealand (sponsors), and Forest & Bird

Dates: January 1998 - October 1999

Categories: Client liaison, Project manager, IA & UX, Website designer, Front-end developer, Writing for the web, Content-loader, Webmaster, jQuery/JavaScript, Old-school table layout, No CMS, Government websites, Large sites

Brief: to build a framed website following a design created by another company. Levels 1 & 2 to follow design already laid down. Greater design freedom (whilst maintaining feel of site) in lower levels.

It's great Ali, well done, we are all delighted with it.

Pam Crisp, Project Owner, Department of Conservation

My responsibilities included:

  • Translation of a complex design in Photoshop into a workable framed site with a built-in search engine
  • Development of style and design
  • Creation of graphics, HTML, JavaScript, video and audio
  • Close ongoing liaison with both DoC and the BNZ during the creation of the website
  • Once the website was launched, I suggested areas within the site that could be developed, all of which I then created - these included Kiwi at Night, Weird & Wonderful Kiwi Facts, The Life-Cycle of the Kiwi and Kiwi Evolution
  • Research into, and writing the content of these new sections, in consultation with DoC kiwi researchers
  • After leaving CWA I was contracted (at the request of the BNZ) to write and develop new sections as required - most recently the section on Kiwi Evolution.

Oh boy - what a site! It was hard to let this one go when I left CWA as I had put so much work and so many of my own ideas into this one. An initially delicate relationship between the various clients became a beautiful thing once I was able to meet with the main man at the BNZ - we got on like a house on fire.

Kiwi at Night animation

This design was something else - double-framed architecture with a new frameset needed for every page... and an internal search engine - so we played around with the JavaScript and made it a bit simpler. I taught myself how to do frames with this website - certainly an interesting challenge.

Elements of our design were incorporated into printwork (posters and flyers for the Kiwi Recovery Programme) and the Kiwi at Night graphics featured on the BNZ's ATM machines nationwide.

Kiwi Evolution module feedback

Alison - the Kiwi Evolution looks a great job...

Phil Bilbrough, Account Manager, CWA New Media

Congratulations!! It looks great and reads well. Well done Ali, another top effort!

...the coloured oval panels really do work a lot better - well done!! I am keen to get the module live as soon as practical. Thanks for a tremendous effort!!

Kieron Goodwin, Project Owner, BNZ Bank

Hi Ali! This is excellently written, and really adds value to the site.

Pam Crisp, Project Owner, Department of Conservation

I think it is great and am hoping this can be live soon.

Lyn Bates, Project Owner, Forest & Bird


WAMMO PostBeta award 3.5 stars - 6 April 1998

This is a busy site laden with info including bilingual education kits for school, kiwi news, and more.

SODA award - 30 April 1998

The frames are used in this instance to help navigation, which they do very well, providing a context sensitive menuing... and they provide instant recognition of where on the site you currently are. Images have been very well created, with a neat background image used to reinforce what the site is all about.

Content is King - we've often said it. This site isn't selling anything - its purpose is to provide education, which it does very well at several levels.

There's a few little tricks in the code with JavaScript too, so ensure for the full effect, that your JavaScript is enabled.

A great visit for all Kiwis.

Computerworld magazine Website of the Week award - 18 May 1998

A month or so ago I slated Te Papa's website for, among other things, the museum's apparent lack of will to engage the world beyond its walls - and the education sector in particular. If the museum's management ever does decide to start providing better value to the nation's schools, it could not do better than to look here for inspiration. because this site, the work of education specialists Copeland Wilson and Associates, does everything you could ask.

Visitors to this site will be looking for, naturally enough, research, news and information about the national bird, and utility has been emphasised by the prominent placement of a simple search form at the top right of all pages. In an encouraging touch for young users even a failed search turns up a list of suggested resources rather than an error message.

Mouse rollovers on the navigation bar at the bottom of the pages reveal a quick explanation of each section (including one specifically for schools). The site has some fun elements too - animated kiwi tracks pick their way across pages even as you read them.

Would-be corporate sponsors should have a look here, too, if for no other reason than to see what kind of value the BNZ is getting from its involvement. The bank's branding is well incorporated, and the site integrates nicely with both the Department of Conservation resources - it carries DoC's Northland Kiwi News bulletin, for example - and the Forest and Bird Society.

This is, in most important respects, the very model of the kind of site it is. It adds value to an existing project, delivers its information simply and smoothly and offers a multitude of pointers to the Internet and beyond. The little brown bird has been well served here.

New Zealand PC World Web Design Awards - 1998

Highly Commended.

New Zealand PC World Web Guide - Hot Sites - February 1999

The BNZ's Kiwi Recovery Programme site offers a fair amount of useful information about the bird, as well as a chance to help preserve the species. The BNZ is encouraging you to save - the national emblem that is. It's a bird that's suffering at the hands of farmers, possum trappers, dog owners and people who destroy native forest. This site tells you what you can do to help to save this species which has dwindled in number from millions a couple of centuries ago, to under 100,000 today. According to the site, the kiwi population is halving every decade. And it's not because they're moving to Australia.

NetGuide - Top 50 Hotspot - March 1999

New Zealand acted as a time capsule for kiwis. Thanks to a largely predator-free environment these flightless cuties have existed for about 8 million years. Homo sapiens on the other hand have clocked up less than one million years. But we've got opposable thumbs so no other creature is likely to push us towards extinction. Not so the kiwi. A freak of evolution, it's not suprising the kiwi has become the national bird of New Zealand. Here's the site to visit to learn about this beautiful native bird and, most importantly, efforts to keep it alive.