Logo Standards?

Hi All,
I’ve been noticing something that I, at least, find more than a little strange. First, I’d like to say that yes, this is my rookie year, so I may not know the way around things… But, when talking to a 159 alum, he gave me the impression that having he FIRST logo meet their logo standards was a requirement for winning any kind of award. Just looking around CD, however, I have seen at least two websites that won their regionals, but were not in any way close to meeting FIRST’s Logo restrictions. Is it something to do with the judges, or what?

If you could give your input or help explain this, it would be great!

Link for logo standards below


I think he is referring to the standards they have when using their logo. They are very strict about what you are allowed and not allowed to do. Go here for information. I assume there are legal ties involved besides logistics, but I wouldn’t think it would sway the judges that much.

It would be better to follow their rules, though. We wouldn’t want to upset FIRST, now would we?

If you look on the Web Award manual, FIRST gives you everything you need to know about for what judges look for when evaluating the sites. However, different judges may not take off as many points as others, and these sites might just be so awesome that -5 points for a logo might not make a difference. Unfortunately I’ve seen more logo violations than not during my times as an evaluator - don’t let people who get away with it be your guidance. Keep doing the right thing and follow the logo standards :slight_smile:

Companies and organizations spend a lot of time on their logo, as a result FIRST does not want us to use their logo in a manner that does not meet their criteria. As FIRST’s logo is not in the public domain we use it with their permission, their permission is contingent upon the criteria outlined in their logo usage guidelines (comprehensive guide here)

As Michelle says, the criteria for web sites is published by FIRST. You can see how many points things are worth and make your decision from there. If you have a site that has a very consistent visual identity you may decide that breaking the logo usage guidelines is acceptable. (Not suggesting this by the way)

The two most common problems that I see when I evaluate sites is:
a. Not following FIRST logo guidelines
b. Not making outside links open in new tabs

Both are easy five pointers that many teams miss out on.

While the FIRST guidelines say that outside links should open in new tabs, as a web user, I consider that to be BAD design. All links should open in the same tab, unless I, as the user, explicitly decide to open a link in a new tab.

I’ll respectfully disagree. I find it very important to cue the user that they are leaving my site and going to one I have no control over.

can links open in a new window? or does it have to be in a new tab in the same window? thanks

As far as I know there is no easy way to open a window in a new tab explicitly. you would have it open in a new window and most modern browsers will open it in a new tab instead (depending on configuration)


<a href="http://www.url.tld" target="_blank">Link Text</a>

would open in a new window, but the browser catches that and makes it a new tab instead.


PS. If there is a way to say tab only let me know.

I absolutely hate it when when clicking a link opens a new tab if I wasn’t expecting it.

Seriously, the whole “outside links open in new windows” mantra has remained unchanged since at least 2004. While it may not seem that long ago, that was before Firefox existed, and the tab-deficient IE6 had pretty much a 95% market share at the time. For the time period, the outside links opening in new windows made plenty sense, because most people only had at most a handful of simultaneously open windows, and the back-forward philosophy had flaws in that IE6 didn’t cache websites very well (which caused them to reload upon hitting back instead of drawing from cache, which absolutely sucked if on dialup).

However, with the widespread adoption of tabbed browsing, three button mice, and broadband Internet, the whole new tab/window requirement needs to be taken behind the barn and shot. Between mousing over links and seeing the URL in the status bar, and upon clicking that seeing a URL in the address bar, there should never be any confusion upon when a user leaves your website.

A much better solution would be to put a new window icon http://www.team228.org/images/icon_newwindow.gif next to all external links, and let the link open in the same window. This icon is generally used across many websites on the Internet to show that a link is external, and nor does it break the web browsing habits of the user.

After all, people browse the Internet in as many ways as they drink coffee. Some people just hit back-and-forward all day long in the same tab, unless a link happens to open a new one for them. Others use tabbed browsing like there is no tomorrow, piling on dozens of tabs at once. So telling people that all external links have to open in a new window is like Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts telling their customers they are only going to serve coffee the way that the manager of the local franchise likes their coffee.

To be honest, I agree with you, and I have argued with FIRST on that in the past, but they’ve not changed their guidelines, so I gotta score by what they ask for.

here’s a different way to let the user choose:

run a script that recognizes the first outside link a user clicks on, and asks them whether to open it in the same tab, or a new one. after that, all other outside links follow the user’s choice, stored in a cookie.

just my $.02