Irish Architects Websites

Irish Architects Websites

Postby reddy » Wed Jul 23, 2008 4:25 pm

Just saw this site in the thread about the new courts building on Parkgate Street.

http://www.mcculloughmulvin.com/index.html

Really good redesign of their site.

Given the historically terrible state of Irish architects' websites, which do people think are the best and the worst?
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby Starch » Wed Jul 23, 2008 6:48 pm

...yeah I posted that- it's clean but hardly original......I hope David Chipperfield doesn't get wind of it because it's a carbon copy! http://www.davidchipperfield.co.uk/

I keep an eye on the list of notable Irish architects on the Irish Architecture wiki article ... here's the list...if anyone can add more then that would be cool.....

CAST architecture http://www.castarchitecture.ie/
Mc Cullough Mulvin http://www.mcculloughmulvin.com/
O'Donnell and Tuomey http://www.odonnell-tuomey.ie/
Heneghan Peng http://www.hparc.com/
Grafton http://www.graftonarchitects.ie/
Boyd Cody http://www.boydcodyarch.com/
Hassett Ducatez [url]http:///[/url]
Scott Tallon Walker http://www.stw.ie/
FKL http://www.fklarchitects.com/
Tarla MacGabhann http://www.macgabhannarchitects.ie/
Mc Garry Ní Éanaigh http://www.mcgnie.ie/
Hackett and Hall http://www.hackett-hall.com/
Buchholz Mc Evoy http://www.bmcea.com/
de Blacam & Meagher http://www.deblacamandmeagher.com/
Niall McLaughlin http://www.niallmclaughlin.com/
Henchion & Reuter http://www.henchion-reuter.com/
Murray Ó Laoire http://www.murrayolaoire.com/
LID Architecture http://www.lid-architecture.net/
Dominic Stevens http://www.mimoa.eu/projects/Ireland/Dromahair/Mimetic%2520House/
Gilroy McMahon http://www.gilroymcmahon.com/nonflash/profile.html/
ODOS http://www.odosarchitects.com/odos/odosarchitects.html

With the risk of being lambasted which usually happens to anyone who makes any criticism of archiseek/archeire , I find that the site used to have a lot more style, personally i think it's become a bit sloppy......in fairness the logo for archiseek is really bad http://ireland.archiseek.com/ (ok I'm now going to adopt the brace position) (ps I like archiseek!)
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby reddy » Thu Jul 24, 2008 8:18 am

Cheers Starch. Thats a good list. A couple there I hadn't seen before. It still strikes me as ridiculous that many architects still don't have websites. Its the most basic marketing tool these days. So many of those listed below are still such poor sites. Although architects worldwide are prone to too much flash and not enough usability.

The Mcullough Mulvin/ Chipperfield rip off is so blatant!! Well spotted. Its a good format I suppose...

Anyway I'll keep adding to the list..

CAST architecture http://www.castarchitecture.ie/
Mc Cullough Mulvin http://www.mcculloughmulvin.com/
O'Donnell and Tuomey http://www.odonnell-tuomey.ie/
Heneghan Peng http://www.hparc.com/
Grafton http://www.graftonarchitects.ie/
Boyd Cody http://www.boydcodyarch.com/
Hassett Ducatez [url]http:///[/url]
Scott Tallon Walker http://www.stw.ie/
FKL http://www.fklarchitects.com/
Tarla MacGabhann http://www.macgabhannarchitects.ie/
Mc Garry Ní Éanaigh http://www.mcgnie.ie/
Hackett and Hall http://www.hackett-hall.com/
Buchholz Mc Evoy http://www.bmcea.com/
de Blacam & Meagher http://www.deblacamandmeagher.com/
Niall McLaughlin http://www.niallmclaughlin.com/
Henchion & Reuter http://www.henchion-reuter.com/
Murray Ó Laoire http://www.murrayolaoire.com/
LID Architecture http://www.lid-architecture.net/
Dominic Stevens http://www.mimoa.eu/projects/Ireland...tic%2520House/
Gilroy McMahon http://www.gilroymcmahon.com/nonflash/profile.html/
ODOS http://www.odosarchitects.com/odos/odosarchitects.html
Box Architecture http://www.box.ie/
Paul Keogh Architects http://www.pka.ie
Shay Cleary Architects http://www.sca.ie/
Lotus Architects http://www.lotusarchitects.com/
4 architecture http://www.4architecture.ie/
Boyer Kennihan http://www.rwka.com/
A2 Architects http://www.a2.ie
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby spoil_sport » Thu Jul 24, 2008 8:48 am

I happen to like Mc Cullough Mulvin's website, its certainly a lot better than their last one in terms of easy navigation and being able to view each project more clearly ad easily. Its good to be able to see what's ongoing or currently in design. Sure it looks similar to Chipperfield's site, but most architectural sites are designed in a similar manner either: time-lined, or with Current, Ongoing, News as the menu options - look at Niall Mc Laughlin's website for similarities too! The white background is just a clean, refreshing change to the darker tones used, for example, in Boyd Cody's website. That in combination with black and white cardboard model shots makes for a very un-inspiring website altogether.
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby johnny21 » Thu Jul 24, 2008 3:48 pm

HERES A FEW MORE.

hkr architects http://www.hkr.com
omp architects http://www.omp.ie
abk archtects http://www.abk.co.uk
burke kennedy doyle http://www.bkd.ie
gerry cathill architects http://www.gca.ie
hmg architects http://www.hmg.ie
kmd architecture http://www.kmd.ie
hjlyons architects http://www.hjlyons.com
lafferty design http://www.laffertydesign.com
james toomey architects http://www.jta.ie
john spain associates http://www.johnspainassociates.com
mdo architects http://www.mdo.ie
modelworks http://www.modelworks.ie
project architects http://www.projarch.com
naus group http://www.thenausgroup.com
tranoy o toole http://www.totarch.ie
wejchert http://www.wejchert.ie
oms architects http://www.oms.ie
obk architects http://www.obk.ie
anthony reddy http://www.anthonyreddy.com

oms have an interesting project on the naas road. more high rise?? looks good :D
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby reddy » Thu Jul 24, 2008 4:13 pm

Just stumbled across this...

http://architecturenow.ie

Never knew this had started up.

Also This article from the Sunday Business Post.

http://archives.tcm.ie/businesspost/2003/04/06/story489941796.asp#
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby reddy » Mon Aug 18, 2008 11:36 am

New Resource created by the RIBA:

http://www.ribapedia.com

Good to see the RIBA embracing the web and all its possibilities.

Archiseek gets a mention too!!
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby Starch » Mon Aug 18, 2008 12:30 pm

couple more



* architecture53seven http://www.architecture53seven.com/
* Aughey O'Flaherty http://www.aof.ie/
* DTA http://www.dta.ie/


by the way has anyone been at this http://www.easa008.ie/ ...looks great
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby johnny21 » Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:20 pm

FIND INTERESTING WEBSITE, DEVELOPMENT COMPANY WORKING ON MAJOR PROJECTS IN DUBLIN. NORTHSIDE,U2 TOWER,GRANGEGORMAN AND UCD GATEWAY. http://www.urbancapital.ie
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby PTB » Thu Aug 21, 2008 8:31 am

http://www.richardmurphyarchitects.com/

Not quite an Irish architects website, but still, this is a very good website
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby Starch » Sun Sep 07, 2008 3:47 pm

......not quite a a website either ;)
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby PTB » Sun Sep 07, 2008 5:17 pm

Boy, I'm really stumped as to who started that website....
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby jimg » Sun Sep 07, 2008 7:06 pm

I tried to start a vaguely related thread a while ago but it didn't achieve any sort of traction.

It explains why I rarely or never visit architects websites. Sometimes the information is buried there but often it isn't because the site is designed in such a way that makes keeping it up-to-date is difficult and expensive. Navigation for users/visitors is generally vile so it normally requires an enormous amount of f*cking about to even establish that the information isn't there. I read archiseek instead :D

My point in the original thread was that nearly all architects' websites were rubbish. They completely disregard the fundamental principles of the medium.

The poor users/visitors are ignored for the sake of what is ignorantly imagined to be impressive appearance/graphics.

It's very simple. People visit commercial websites to find information on: background on the firm, how to make contact and projects completed or underway by the company (or products or services depending on the nature of the business). The information must be current. In addition the medium itself has a few properties which must be respected; if you don't make it simple to reach, link to and bookmark individual parts of your site, again you are f*cking your users and visitors.

Anything which gets in the way of facilitating access to this information is retarded. This includes forcing users to watch cheesy f*cking montages or click on "skip intro" links or attempt to learn a purpose designed Flash menu system which makes linking impossible.

All studies have shown that flash based websites, intros, wierd menu systems and non-standard structure are killers for visitor numbers. Yet through ignorance or egotism, architecture houses seem to commision websites which disregard these fundamentals of the medium over and over again. This is why I doubt I would ever bother trying any of the links listed above even though I am generally happy to waste time looking as stuff on the web. I also suspect the fact that it is only in the latter part of 2008 that such a thread attempting to collect URLs for architects' websites is started reflects the singular lack of utility offered by architects' websites in general.
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby spoil_sport » Sun Sep 07, 2008 7:15 pm

So... do you like the McCulloughMulvin/Chipperfield/DTA website format or not?

See, what you mean about the flash stuff, the architecture53seven site is a bit of a head wrecker.
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby missarchi » Sun Sep 07, 2008 7:22 pm

Starch wrote:......not quite a a website either ;)


yeah its funny they don't have a phone number or address...
someone better call 911 ;)
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby jimg » Sun Sep 07, 2008 8:30 pm

spoil_sport wrote:So... do you like the McCulloughMulvin/Chipperfield/DTA website format or not?

See, what you mean about the flash stuff, the architecture53seven site is a bit of a head wrecker.


No I don't like it. It doesn't break every rule but it breaks lots. Off the top of my head:

Menu items on the bottom of the page? This is a terrible idea as it means the main tools for navigation are invisible for people if their browser window isn't tall enough. Your eye has to travel down to the bottom of the page to see what your options are.

It uses a fixed size so looks "off" if your browser window isn't sized at 900x700 pixels. The web isn't like the printed medium; people's computers (and PDAs, mobile phones, etc.) have different screens with different capabilities and even then people should have the freedom to resize their browser (within limits) and still be able to use the site.

The terms and labeling are not intuitive which breaks another rule; you do not force the user to click on a link to find out what it represents. "Practice" is not an intuitive or well known way to group pages called "About Us", "Publications", "Credits" and "Awards". Everyone knows what information these four links are likely to retrieve but "Practice"? Why not just have direct links to them on the first page - there's plenty of room. And please, "Topology", wtf? I'm showing my ignorance here, but what proportion of your prospective users are going to know where a link called "Topology" is going to bring them?

At least the worst feature is well disguised: initially I was simply irritated by the f*cking montage that takes up three quarters of the main page. Thus telling the user - WE'VE decided what you should look at instead of providing you with the tools to find what information YOU want to access. The images are useless as they are unadorned with any other useful information; at least attaching the location of the buildings would have endowed the effort with some utility. Did it ever stike the designers that visitors may have arrived in order to FIND OUT what some of their work looks like? That it is likely that the visitors WILL NOT be able to identify the project they are interested in from an image alone?

However by accident I discovered that if you click on this image at the right time, you are brought to a page on the project. Even when you KNOW that the montage has this feature (I don't know of any mass market website which provides a navigation tool like this), it is f*cking irritating in the extreme because you have to WAIT for the project you are interested in; again this tells the visitor that their time is irrelevent and WE will give you the opportunity to access the information you are looking WHEN WE FEEL LIKE IT.

This is the first page only. I'd like to be charitable but no, it sucks alright - like nearly all of the others.

The problem with web site design is that expertise is not appreciated and every idiot feels that they can do it. I was in the business years ago for a short while as a side line but couldn't compete with graphic design monkeys and Flash "programmers" who never even heard that there was a field of study called computer-user interaction never mind read anything on the subject of user interface design. The problem is that the users themselves are often unaware and assume the difficulty in navigating a website is due to themselves rather than the designers. Moreover clients for web design generally feel that they had some insight into how a web site should be done and will often insist on implementing rubbish ideas.

However even if the crappiness isn't immediately evident, the visitor numbers will eventually tell you the truth but even then most people with websites will never properly analyse basic visitor stats such as the % who never bother going past the first page.
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby spoil_sport » Sun Sep 07, 2008 9:48 pm

That just seems like nit picking to me. When have you ever wanted to look at architects websites on a PDA? and I don't see what the big problem with resizing your browser window is?

"WE'VE decided what you should look at instead of providing you with the tools to find what information YOU want to access.... visitors may have arrived in order to FIND OUT what some of their work looks like?"

Is that not what the montage does? Is it not the aim of a commercially orientated website to put the best foot forward? And does it not seem more logical to present the images on the main page rather than a page of text.

"The images are useless as they are unadorned with any other useful information"

Yeah, but if you want to find out more just click on the image, it's a well established precident on the internet.

"Why not just have direct links to them on the first page - there's plenty of room"

But then the first page gets cluttered, and people end up reading through lists, and while I agree some of the descriptions: "practice" etc are not always clear, people are not stupid, a simple process of elimination should solve most questions, and surely its not that hard a task to click through 3 options.

And as for "visitor numbers", architects websites are hardly ever going to be as popular as the sports pages or boobes.com
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby jimg » Sun Sep 07, 2008 10:41 pm

It may sound like nit picking to you because you haven't studied the field and because user interface design is a subtle art; for example, it is simply a mistake to put a handle on a door that can only be pushed open (even if you also add a plate with "push" above it), yet I've seen this in many buildings. The correct way, is to have a push plate and users don't even have to think about how to do what they want to do (i.e. get through the door). Making the "user" have to read a sign that says "push" even if they aren't conscious of having to do it is a design mistake; it's been studied, books have been writen, etc. etc.

Same with web design; key menu items on the top or left of the page, use standard menu expressions for navigation or if forced to use non-standard terms then make them completely self-explanatory, then never rely on pure images for navigation, don't use fixed size (in terms of pixels) layouts, allow the user to drive the navigation (i.e. no "timed" links), don't assume the visitor knows what you know (e.g. what the school you built in ranelagh looks like) and most importantly think about what the user is likely to want to achieve and facilitate that (driven by "use case" analysis). Again, this has been studied, written about in books, etc.

And you either deliberately ignore my point about visitor stats or misunderstand it; it's not about absolute numbers; if a significant amount of visitors never bother progressing past the first (or a subsequent) page, then the design is seriously flawed. If less than 100% of visitors to an architecture website don't view details on more than a couple of the projects, then I imagine your site design has failed. The problem with user interface design mistakes is that they are generally not catastrophic but if you are interested, their effects are measurable. But generally people don't bother because they don't really care about users.
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby Paul Clerkin » Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:22 am

[quote="celtcia"]Not quite an architects website

I'm not missarchi or shamrockmetro really
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby spoil_sport » Mon Sep 08, 2008 3:01 am

I still figure that it's more important that it looks good. Examples of good wesites then? Architecture or otherwise?
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby reddy » Mon Sep 08, 2008 9:30 am

Sorry jimg, never noticed your previous thread before starting this one.

Totally agree about the lack of usability on architects websites. Its really puzzling. In my mind though it coincides with the shoddy way many practices are run. Its almost like they're running an artists studio and are unconcerned with the business side of architecture. So marketing, client communication, accurate timekeeping and filing and many other aspects which business in other industries take for granted get left behind. Good architecture and good business are absolutely not mutually exclusive so i never understand it.

And in times like these (I won't mention the R word), these shoddy business practices come back to bite firms in the ass.

The firm I work for has an all Flash website and while its possibly more user friendly than most and designed by really good web designers, it is low on information and image heavy. I'm in charge of updating and while its relatively easy, its very time consuming so not done often enough. The principals in the firm have always viewed it as a way to attract new staff rather than new customers so they seem fairly unconcerned about it. I think this is a major underestimation of the power of a website to generate new work. After all if you or I are looking for a service, the first place you'll look is very probably the internet.

As for Mcullough Mulvin's site, I think its a serious improvement on their previous effort. While the navigation problems you listed above all apply I think its at least a slightly calmer version than the vast majority of other architects sites.
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby what? » Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:08 pm

http://www.thelivesofspaces.com/exhibition.html

pretty good website for the irish pavillion at this years venice biennale
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby missarchi » Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:19 pm

it is a good website but if you have slow internet like me it stutters ...

the leprechauns got there first;)

I'll wait n watch the movie
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby what? » Thu Jan 22, 2009 1:08 pm

New facelift for the AAI website. Looks more functional than before.

http://www.architecturalassociation.ie/

and Irish Architecture Foundation is launching an new look website tomorrow (Friday 22nd Jan) morning

http://www.architecturefoundation.ie
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Re: Irish Architects Websites

Postby missarchi » Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:40 pm

http://www.architecturefoundation.ie/

I don't know what was done with the timer but its negative now!!!
we will be waiting an eternity!!!!
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