The FLAIR website has been redesigned to incorporate RWD - Responsive web design, in the attempt to provide the visitor the best possible viewing experience on any device. The old template has been replaced by a simpler and clearner look with a grayish navigation bar incorprating a blacka nd white FLAIR logo on the top left. Nested webpages are subsequently being upgraded to this format. The main page has a slider/carosel followed by a rolling marquee for the latest news. Another addition on the homepage is the information for prospective and FYP students. The research showcase contains youtube weblinks to some of the media items and experimental/numerical videos. The webpage has been added to Google analytics for better management. Another idea was to incorporate a google search, but this was turned down due to the ads which would appear alongside our search result.
Welcome to the redesigned website of the Fluids Laboratory for Aeronautical and Industrial Research (FLAIR).
The previous incarnation of the FLAIR website was built in 2005, and incorporated a number of design features that inhibited straightforward modification and additions to the site. Chief among these was the employment of <iframe> tags for the insertion of header and footer HTML code onto each page, and the extensive use of tables for page layout.
The website has been redesigned with a fresh new visual appearance, but behind the scenes the site now makes increased use of Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) to control the layout and visual appearance of the pages, and most scripting and style sheets are contained in separate files to minimise the download overhead of each page.
Website visitor statistics have show that 85% of visitors view the site with at least 1280 by 1024 screen resolution, 14% with 1024 x 768 resolution, and only 1% view the site with 800 x 600 or less. The new site is designed to be best viewed at 1280 x 1024, with annoying horizontal scroll bars being avoided at 1024 x 768 resolution. To maintain balance on higher-resolution displays, the site has a liquid (stretchable) design in the vertical direction, though in a departure from the previous site design, the footer is now fixed to the bottom of the browser window, and page content is contained in a scrollable region dominating the centre of the screen.
The previous site design had a number of common page links "hard-coded" into a menu on the header, which meant that users had to return to the main page to access a number of site pages. This was clunky and frustrating for users, so in the redesigned site we have adopted a collapsible navigation menu which remains at the left of every page. The header has now been reduced in size, as has the footer, to maximise the screen size available for page content.
Visually, the site is intended to provide an engaging and intuitive interface. The page has the appearance of a frosted glass panel sitting vertically on a surface. A vortex flow is visible through the upper portion of the panel, creating the illusion that the panel is translucent, and providing a three-dimensional feel for the visitor. The top of the panel is adorned by the FLAIR logo and name, the left edge by the navigation menu, the base by the footer, containing contact details, copyright and accessibility information, and a link to our parent institution, Monash University. Dominating the panel is the page content area.
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