Langara Outlines

PRM Departments 2017

Job Titles and responsibilities in the web industry vary widely and are in continual evolution.

For a sense of what I mean here, please read this article by Chris Coyier, the host of CSS-Tricks.com, on the range of job titles in the web industry.

That said, please review the following job descriptions, and then write down your three preferred departments. I will ask you to give them to me on Wednesday June 21st. Include a brief description of why you think you would do well in your chosen departments.

I will try to accommodate everyone’s wishes, but I cannot guarantee that you will get your first, second, or even third choice. 

These descriptions of duties are necessarily loose. Hopefully, everyone pitches in regardless of position. You all have contributions to make.

Remember, also, that production of LangaraPRM.com will likely continue into the exam period (July 31 – Aug 11). If your team is needed during our regular class times during that period, you will be expected to be here.

Editorial Department

The Editorial Department will upload all stories to the site. In consultation with the Web Design, WordPress, and Media teams, they will also decide which images are to be used with each story.

All of this year’s stories will need to have custom-crafted excerpts/summaries written. These will be shown in archive listings or on search pages. For example, if a reader clicks on a story that has been tagged 1999, then a list of stories from that year will be generated. The summaries need to be consistent in style with those written previously.

Typically, archives present the stories’ titles, author(s), featured “thumbnail” image, or other meta-data, and a summary—along with a link to the full story, of course.

Very useful information to have in such a listing is the excerpt/summary content. Crafting it ourselves is much more professional than getting WordPress to spit out an arbitrary number of words from the first paragraph.

The Editorial Department will also proofread all the content in the magazine (particularly that which we enter this year), so good grammar and close reading skills are a must. Sometimes “stray html” ends up in content (especially when entered via the Visual mode of the post editor). This “extra” code can get in the way of other design and development efforts.

The Editorial Department will sign off on all content before the site goes live in late July or early August. In this, the Editorial Department will affirm that they have entered clean copy, marked up with care to preserve semantic patterns set in previous years.

The editorial department will also be consulted by Designers for their thoughts on how to integrate article sidebar content, pull quotes, etc.

Job Titles: Online Editor

Media Department

The Media Department will have two main tasks this year:

  • To produce a number of short videos for the promotions team
  • To oversee and produce the graphics for the site

For the first task, you will be provided instruction in how to shoot and edit video, courtesy of Sara McIntyre from the Film Art department. Most of the videos will be interviews of former and current students taking about their experiences in the program and producing PRM.

The Media Department also will compile and process the graphics from this year’s stories in appropriate formats, sizes, and quality for use in our CMS.

Areas of investigation here include SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics), icon fonts, and pixel-density media queries.

The Media team will develop effective favicons and touch/home screen icons for mobile devices.

If required, the Media team will use tools like IcoMoon to produce a custom graphic font for interface elements.

The Media team will develop and follow a consistent and logical naming scheme for all images.

Because WordPress will automatically resize uploaded images (according to code the WordPress Designers will put in the template), the Media Department needs to determine, in consultation with the Web Design team, the needed dimensions and work on the WordPress code that will size the images.

Job Titles: Media Producer

The QA Team

The Quality Assurance team will have a number of tasks to accomplish:

In the early part of the term, the QA team will research the best system(s) for keeping track of bugs and assigning them to relevant production people for correction, and conduct additional testing.

The QA team will also formulate a CSS and HTML “best practices” style guide to be followed by the WordPress Designers.

The QA team will, as early as possible, produce a written series of guidelines to make sure that this year’s LangaraPRM is the most accessible version yet.

They will thoroughly test the designs produced by the WordPress team with current shipping browsers, major mobile devices (through testing on simulators and actual devices), and legacy browsers to be determined.

Bug tracking and the coordination of bug fixing is a major responsibility of this team in the later parts of the site production.

Job Titles: Quality Assurance Specialist

Web Designers

The web designers obviously have great responsibility for the success of the magazine. They will produce the graphic mockups for the following site templates, as well as any more deemed necessary after our competitive analysis exercise. Likely candidates for mockup include the following:

  • Home
  • Story (single)
  • About
  • Contributors / Masthead
  • Departmental Landing Pages
  • Year Archives
  • Others?

All designs submitted by this team need to be considerate of the fact that the designs will be produced by others, so this will be very much a collaborative process between the Web Designers & the WordPress Designers.

The mockups produced by the web designers will show the small, medium, and large views.

The Web Designers will be marked on how they solve the design challenges identified in our competitive analysis.

The Web Designers will closely work with the WordPress designers in order to maximize the time we have available for production.

Perhaps most important to our entire production process, the Web Designers will create designs that stress modularity, consistency, re-use, concision, and ease of production.

Job Title: Web Designer

WordPress Designers

The WordPress Designer team has the most hard-core technical task: to convert the static designs of the Web Designers into the required HTML, CSS, and PHP template files for our snappy little WordPress operation.

This job appeals to code geeks who can learn quickly and independently, with high attention to detail. If you always want to know why things work, this might be the department for you.

Obviously, one of the major tasks of the WordPress Designers is to get ahead with the content of PUBL 1232. I will give a heads up about what you will need to study in advance, and plenty of help.

This job is challenging, but it rewards the dedicated. If you enjoy solving problems, you will do great in this department.

Job Title: WordPress Designer

The Promotions Team

The promotions team will resurrect the current blog, producing updates on the summer semester and the ongoing production of the magazine.

All blog items created by the Promotions team will need to be submitted, via the WordPress interface, to the Editors for publishing on the site.

The Promotions Team will have access to LangaraPRM Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Google analytics accounts will be created for the Promotions team to assess the impact of their work on visits to the site.

The Promotions team might also be asked to curate and produce content that promotes the Publishing program, for inclusion in a new section of LangaraPRM devoted to student work

Job Title: Social Media Specialist

Standard