Attending Google Polymer


Google Polymer project held an event in London to learn about Polymer and meet other developer. It was a fantastic experience, where there was lots of information about new technologies and ways to develop.

Arriving at the venue, the branding was everywhere, and it was possioble to find the venue by simply following the crowds of people from the station.IMG_1144.JPG

I was to go to the main desk where I checked in, collected my pass, shirt and was directed to the breakfast lounge.


Arriving early at 8AM breakfast was served, this was free and seats were provided around the venue in a typical Google fashion, it encouraged conversation between developers. It was fascinating to meet professionals much better than I had ever expected.IMG_20161017_0844219.jpg


It was at this point people were discussing what the days events were going to be able what they were most looking forward to, people were crowding around these moniters, checking out the days itinery.IMG_1147.JPG

At 9AM the doors opened and the opening speech began, luckily I managed to get one of the front row seats.IMG_1155.JPGbut looking back there were the 700 attendies from over 100 different countries.img_1156img_1157I spent the day watching talks on cutting edge web technologies.img_20161017_1100091img_20161017_1814150img_20161017_1013256I also attended workshops where I would get involved with coding apps.8a37397f-7474-4e9c-bafe-3216be405a94.jpgWhen the days coding was over, Google had an open bar with free drinks and food to allow for conversations between coders.img_20161017_1905222img_20161017_1843083img_20161017_1843134


Initial design research

I am creating a photo portfolio of pictures taken in Paris, I thought it would be valuable to examine a few examples of current designs online. Since we Have to have a search feature. I think that the site should be more like a search engine. The landing page is a simple image of Paris with the search bar on top allowing the user to search. Once the user has searched it will bring the relevant results back with the option to search again. Here are a couple examples of the landing pages for search engines, bear in mind that I am not providing any other content than the image so the more content heavy pages will be irrelevant so I will be looking at the most simple ones.

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Firstly an clean simple landing page is vital, as you can see above from Bing and Google, there is the search box and not much else, apart from Bing strands out a little more as it has an image behind it, this works well and I think I should use this in the design I make.

Have a brilliantly designed homepage, it combines an image and a white box with the title and the category of the industry that they work within. This could work really well with the search bar for the Paris site. Since Paris is seen as luxury, romantic place to be, it would work well to market this site as a more luxury service, and this has been achieved well through Pollen Londons’ website.

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Flickr has an unusual way of presenting the images, just by using a grid where the images are only aligned with vertical size, it makes for an interesting format.


Since I am only placing ten images on thew site, there is only going to be a small return for any searches conducted. Therefore, I have found the design of to be quite relevant to mine, they have created large views of the images, with text above to describe it, I think this would work really well in my design.

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Third Design Stage

The third step In the largest step in the process of the design, there are a lot of key factors that come into play between this and the previous stage of my design. Here’s the design;


Firstly, the biggest change you will see is the colours, I searched through and found a colour set based on army colours;


It seemed appropriate to use army colours since I was illustrating the effects of the war and the military has large role in this. By using the colours I have done, it makes it much more obvious that my site is about the military than the bland colour palette I had previously had. Next you will notice the video the top has been removed and been replaced with an image.


I thought this would be moire appropriate as again, the purpose of the site would be the impact of the facts, so I didn’t want any distraction, by having an image that visually helps the user understand what the page is about it seems much more effective and works better with the flat design. You will also notice how I have added images with a low opacity to blend into the flat colours to give it a little extra detail so that the user has something as to relate to, therefore the budget section has an image of money, oil sales section has an image of oil rigs, the deaths section has a soldiers hand in the air, and the 9/11 section has an image of the twin towers with smoke billowing out of them. You can examples of this here;

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You will notice how I have now completed what the military did and could have bought with the budget section again with their own colour schemes to set them apart and making the war side darker to illustrate the greed.

Relating the design back to the first concept on paper ( you will notice how I have kept in line with the way I split up the different sections to give them different content. At this stage I was I was reasonably happy with the design being almost complete so I decided to add some interactivity into the page so that rather than just it just being scrollable there are actually areas for the user to click on. First was to decide the areas which would be most shocking and then deciding to use those areas for the interactivity. I decided to use the statement made by each president an interactive part so that you could actually click on a video icon and watch him saying it. You can see both examples here;

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Next was adding more detail about the more important facts so that it wasn’t just more interesting, but also more believable. I did this to the only two sections that I felt it was appropriate to explain more about, the first one being who made the most money from the war, you can again see my example of this below of the 11 different sections;

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The next section was about the oil reserves that Iraq had when the US invaded, and I believed this was an important part of the war because it was one of the main reason why the US invaded in the first place.

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Something else I have changed since the earlier design is the font, which I changed to Century Gothic, I did this at it features in movies and games that focus on war and violence, you can see three examples below;

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Something that I believe needs change is the way the viewer purchases tickets, if you are to capitalise on the experience the user is having, you need to make it incredibly easy for the user to buy tickets to the exhibition, preferably without leaving the page, this means the user doesn’t get sidetracked or distracted, so that you can capitalise on the emotion of the viewer while they are still shocked by the facts and want to learn more. This is the current state of the ticket section before I change it;


The final thing worth noting about the design so far is the call to action section, in my research I found a site ( that had an excellent call to action at the bottom of the page, you can see it here;


The site is about how corruption and poverty leads people into cocaine farming in Peru and also how hard you must work and the health risks if you are to farm gold, cows or even chop down rainforests, so it basically sums up with three images what you purchase as a result of everything on in Peru then has a simple statement “if you think this has nothing to do with you, think again and get involved” which I thought was really empowering so I stole it for my design but changed the concept to keep it in line with the general design of my page. I placed a oil drum on the page which went to a petrol pump which led to a car with the same statement below it. I think this is an excellent way to get people involved, you can see my version on my design below.