Red Bull CoPilotWWW.REDBULLCOPILOT.COMRed Bull delivers on its hyper-caffeinated brand with a site dedicated to motorcycle racing and acrobatic flying. Featuring documentary footage of actual races shot from multiple angles, Red Bull CoPilot invites users along for the ride, through hair-raising turns and loops. Complementing the video are schematic diagrams of the vehicle; sophisticated information graphics that chart speed, altitude, and relative position on the racecourse; and biometric data about the pilot or rider. In the online cockpit, users can select their own soundtrack or listen to the driver’s commentary. The jurors agreed that the site, designed by Odopod, provides a rich documentary experience and points the way toward future innovations. “It is interesting as a model for interactive television,” Tribe said. “You are not constructing the narrative, but you are able to make camera-angle selections. And the various slices through the content and components can be customized and configured.”
Design Odopod, Inc. (San Francisco): Tim Barber, David Bliss, Jacquie Moss, creative directors; Chris Brown, design director; Michelangelo Capraro, technical lead; Gino Nave, sound designer; Andre Andreev, production designer; Scott Runcorn, Ryder S. Booth, 3-D animators; Jess Ruefli, Alan Aldridge, illustrators; Tim Barber, writer; Rebecca Hill, Gwinn Appleby, producers. Kevin Townsend, Science + Fiction, executive producer (Los Angeles). Live Action Production: Ocean Watch (Fountain Valley, CA): Sumesh Thakur, producer; Jim Mutter, editorClient Red Bull (Santa Monica, CA)Software Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop; Macromedia Dreamweaver, Flash, and Flash Communication Server MX
AIGA Design ArchivesDESIGNARCHIVES.AIGA.ORGCreated by Second Story, the AIGA Design Archives catalogues the design organization’s competition selections and medalists since 2000. Entries are classified by keyword, collection, category, medium, and client industry, and consist of images, a project description, and a complete credit list. The credits also function as an index, allowing visitors to cross-reference other projects by the same designers. With more than 1,000 entries, the archive provides students and practitioners with an unprecedented overview of the profession and an opportunity to compare work across media. The jury appreciated the site’s clean and efficient interface, which doesn’t compete with the work itself. Sayegh called it “a feature-rich archive of some of the best examples of design. It’s just fantastic.”
Design Second Story (Portland, OR): Brad Johnson, creative director; Julie Beeler, studio director; Jeremy Clark, producer; JD Hooge, designer; David Brewer, David Knape, Thomas Wester, programmers; Marti Johnson, quality assurance; Carolyn Brewer, David Waingarten, Marti Johnson, production assistantsClient AIGA (New York)Fonts Helvetica; StandardSoftware Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop; Macromedia Flash; Zoomify
Nike GridironAWARDS.WEB.RGA.COM/2004/GRIDIRON.HTMLThe amped-up world of professional football isn’t the jurors’ natural habitat. Nevertheless, they admired R/GA’s site for Nike Gridiron—a line of football apparel and gear—for its depth of content and technical muscle. What the site lacks in graphic subtlety it makes up for in the sheer number of pixels pumped across the screen. Everywhere you look, something is animated: Messages streak across the screen even as players pull their shirts off in the navigation. The site loads fairly quickly nonetheless, because video elements are overlaid onto non-animated backgrounds. “Gridiron represents a significant advance in the seamless integration of video as a structural element in websites,” Tribe said. “There are pixels that are refreshing and pixels that aren’t, and there isn’t really any kind of frame.”
Design Design R/GA (New York): Jason Marks, Rei Inamoto, creative direction; Mikhail Gervits, Takafumi Yamaguchi, David Hyung, Sacha Sedriks, Cesar de Castro, visual design; Can Misirlioglu, video editing; Matt Walsh, interaction design; Scott Prindle, Michael McLoughlin, Martin Legowiecki, Stan Wiechers, Chuck Genco, Charles Duncan, Stuart Buchbinder, programming; August Yang, Todd Kovner, Michele Roman, QA; Winston Binch, Matt Howell, productionClient Nike, Inc. (Beaverton, OR)Materials Polycarbonate; nylon; aluminumSoftware Macromedia Flash; Wild Tangent
Vote: The Machinery of DemocracyAMERICANHISTORY.SI.EDU/VOTEBehavior’s site for the Smithsonian Institution about the history of voting in the U.S. is as busy as a butterfly ballot. The interface juxtaposes old campaign buttons and images of civil rights and women’s suffrage struggles with modern information graphics, such as the red and blue map from the 2004 presidential election. Unlike the infamous Florida ballot, however, Vote is easy to navigate. Click on a content section, and the images fade away, revealing the underlying page structure with sections color-coded by subject. Helfand liked that the site looks innovative even with vintage imagery and a muted beige-and-blue palette. And Tribe approved of the visual clutter: “American design is not about white space,” he said.
Design Behavior, LLC (New York): Khoi Vinh, art director; John Reineck, designerClient Smithsonian Institution (Washington, D.C.)Fonts Behemoth; RockwellSoftware Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop; Macromedia Flash; Zoomify
Zembla MagazineWWW.ZEMBLAMAGAZINE.COM“Typochoreography!” Helfand exulted about the website for Zembla, a London-based literary magazine designed by Emeryfrost (see Zembla on the graphics design distinction page). Her fellow jurors agreed that the dancing type on a stark white backdrop was exceptional but argued that the website failed to break new ground in terms of function. “It’s a beautiful example of graphic design,” Tribe said, “but that’s not all this category is about.” Sayegh worried that the sparkling typography might overwhelm the content. In the end, the trio decided that stunning visual displays are still rare enough in interactive media to make the site worth celebrating.”
Design Emeryfrost (Surry Hills, Australia): Vince Frost, creative director; Matthew Willis, designerClient Simon Finch Rare Books (London)Fonts Arete Mono; PalatinoSoftware Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop; Macromedia Dreamweaver and Flash
MoMA Tall BuildingsWWW.MOMA.ORG/EXHIBITIONS/2004/TALLBUILDINGSThe jurors agreed that this site by For Office Use Only was more than worthy of its lofty subject—a Museum of Modern Art exhibition of 25 eminent skyscrapers. Crammed with information about the buildings, which range from Kowloon Station in Hong Kong to the forthcoming New York Times headquarters in midtown Manhattan, the site provided detailed floor plans, maps, renderings, and contextual information. Helfand admired that building profiles were used as a navigational tool: “The morphology of the building becomes its signature, and you’re not navigating by dense forms of content but by shapes and sizes.”
Design For Office Use Only (New York): Anh Tuan Pham, art director, designer, programmer; Chris Lasch, concept designer, programmer; Jodie Gatlin, programmer; Kimba Granlund, design and productionClient The Museum of Modern Art (New York)Fonts PBell Centennial; VerdanaSoftware Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and Premiere; Macromedia Flash MX 2004
SpeedScriptSpeedScript is a touch-screen text entry system for pocket PCs that packs the functionality of a full keyboard into a space slightly larger than a postage stamp. “While SpeedScript does navigate content, it is really more like social software,” Tribe observed. Sayegh was more effusive: “This is truly interactive design in the best sense of the word.” SpeedScript’s unique writing interface is based on the observation that vowels account for about 40 percent of most text. Here, vowels appear in the center of the screen and words are formed by small stylus strokes that connect vowels and consonants. The system allows users to read and enter text in the same small area, combining the functions of screen and keypad. Helfand called Speedscript a major step toward “breaking the tyranny of the QWERTY keyboard.”
Design Raphael Bachmann, SpeedScript LTD (Zurich). Andreas Frei, art director, principal. Agentur Rostfrei (Beth, Switzerland), fontsClient SpeedScript LTD (Zurich)Fonts SpeedScript SpezialSoftware Embedded Visual C++
Nike CyclingWWW.NIKECYCLING.COMIn keeping with the sport it represents, the Nike Cycling site by Odopod is more streamlined and quicker to load than other Web-based offerings from the athletic-gear giant. But like its brethren, Nike Cycling blurs the boundaries between content and commerce, marrying footwear, apparel, and equipment with features on riders and races. The elements in the top navigation expand to reveal an image-based sub-navigation that gives equal weight to Nike’s short-finger cycling gloves and to a heartfelt interview in which Lance Armstrong discusses his struggle with cancer. All content is united by the yellow and gray palette and by an effective use of interstitial screens, which Helfand described as “pixelated portraits that introduce the theme of each section.” Tribe agreed that, while the site feels very light and fluid, it manages to pack a visual punch. “Sizzling dynamic graphics,” he approved.
Design Odopod, Inc. (San Francisco): Tim Barber, David Bliss, Jacquie Moss, creative directors; David Bliss, Ammon Haggerty, engineering; Jess Ruefli, John Weir, Andre Andreev, Ammon Haggerty, designers; Jess Ruefli, John Weir, Jason Martin, Rob Bruce, illustrators; Tim Barber, Dennie Wendt, Leighann Franson, Tiffany Paul, writers; Margot Merrill, producerClient Nike, Inc. (Beaverton, OR)Materials Aircraft-grade aluminum; high-strength steel; proprietary decking and binding materialsSoftware Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop; Macromedia Dreamweaver and Flash