Future phases

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The 2020 website redesign project focusses on a subset of the public-facing pages. Quoting from our phase 1 RFP:

Future phases:

  • Member and team spaces
  • internal Work Groups homepages
  • specifications template
  • mailing lists archives
  • W3C Community Groups and Business Groups
  • wikis
  • blogs
  • Search

Here are notes relating to elements that are out of scope for phase 1.

Member and team spaces

  • It's very difficult to find anything, such as a list of groups in which the AC Rep's org is participating, from which they could take relevant actions. Suggests we might start from a new page, e.g. my.w3.org and add necessary links and explanation from there.

Feedback on need for new AC rep space or page

  • Alan Bird, W3C Business Development Lead: new AC Rep Info page (to replace the "start-up package" that is sent to new AC reps in advance of their onboarding call)
  • Naomi suggests:
    • to loop in Admin team and Member Relations team
    • not to replace the current automated message

Internal Work Groups homepages

Specifications template

Past research

In 2018, Jefferson University conducted user research to inform a future spec template redesign. Their work might be useful even though the layout of specifications is out of scope for phase 1.

Other comments from the community

  • Isabel (Lynn) Holdsworth: "Would be great if very long pages like the ARIA 1.1 spec could be broken into multiple pages, as my screen reader really struggles to interpret and navigate huge chunks of HTML. Thanks"

Mailing lists archives

W3C Community Groups and Business Groups

Home Page

The current CG pages are limited to text and you can't include an image that illustrates the focus of the CG. An image scaled to the width of the text would be fine.


  • [A] better way to search through the set of CGs to find which ones relate to given key terms.
    • We could perhaps have a word cloud for the key terms where the size relates to metrics for the number of participants and level of activity. Clicking on a term in the cloud takes you to a view of the list of associated CGs.




Given the w3.org site is so huge and content is managed in a number of different systems, any out-of-the-box CMS search is not going to be effective.

At present w3.org links to a DuckDuckGo search page. DuckDuckGo do not offer any commercial branding options and do not allow sites to embed their search results in their own pages.

Search can be really important to users, though clear navigation should help users in the first instance.

Things to consider for a future search project:

  • Dedicated search for specification pages? This would help users find specific details quickly.
  • In a site search how do you judge relevance and prefer up-to-date content over archived content?
  • Support multilingual search, so users can find content in their preferred language?
  • Commercial search engines are good at judging relevance based on real-world usage. Can W3C use a search API such as Microsoft Bing Custom Search?
  • Another alternative is an open source tool such as Elasticsearch, easier to refine to exact requirements, though would require more development work.
  • Recommendation: user testing to help understand how users want to use search.

One single FAQ page

In the future it would be good to have all questions answered in one place, much like a support section. All questions would be tagged and there would be a search to get to the users query faster. (e.g. https://help.dropbox.com/, https://help.etsy.com/hc/en-us?segment=shopping and https://faq.whatsapp.com/)

Other general feedback or requests

  • It would be nice to have guidelines for extending appropriate elements of the redesign (colours, fonts, some boilerplate items, etc.) into other pages on our site, that don't fall under the redesign (eg. i18n subsite, of course). I don't mean page templates to replace current pages, but rather documentation of colour choices and suggestions for use, likewise for fonts, advice about creating whitespace for breathing, etc. that people could adopt piecemeal as they create new pages.
  • Dates and times in the viewer's timezone (e.g., when we display W3C events times and date)