We got the new UMW Interactive Map live enough for a beta test, and have been getting very constructive feedback from faculty and staff. If you’d like to test drive it yourself, visit http://tour.umw.edu. Then, when you’ve had a chance to play around with it, send us your comments by clicking on “Provide Feedback” in the lower left hand corner.
To keep this process as transparent as possible, I’d like to provide you with the response data as well as what we have done in response to the responses 🙂
It would appear that we are largely on the right track, but this has helped us to prioritize what we are doing first. We are on track to launch the beginnings of the live interactive map for outside users within the next two weeks. It is intended to be an iterative, ongoing project, and we look to have community input throughout the life of this application. We would even welcome offers to develop new features for this as a platform, should anyone be interested in participating. Here are the comments and our responses to them so far.
Building plans with room #’s, etc.
We do not have the data to accomplish this at this point. This is something that would be helpful in an enterprise calendaring system, but beyond this application.
Pictures associated with each location.
Some elements do not seem to render well in Chrome.
If you can tell us which ones, that would help. We use Chrome as our primary development browser and have not seen anything so far, but please give us details.
The map is cluttered and hard to read on a mobile device. Images or partially display.
We are reducing the size of the bottom bar and replacing icons with small pins.
we need a picture of the economics house, 1004 college ave.
It would be helpful to actually list Lee Hall on the map. (There are only symbols for the departments on the map at this time.
It’s there. You can hopefully see it now that all the icons are gone!
This is a nifty little tool! It located me right away, and correctly, from my laptop. I noticed a couple things as I was navigating: 1) The “see more” button on the Seaco description is messed up – it takes out only half of a sentence in the middle of the text block. 2) Lee Hall is not labeled on the actual map as the other buildings are. (Could be important for new students!) 3) Center for International Education is not included in the description of services in Lee Hall. Great work on this! It’ll be great to see additional photos go up. It’ll be a useful tool for visitors and new students alike.
Let us know the browser you are using. Lee hall is now visible (see above). CIE is now there. More photos are there, and we are planning on a photo upload feature for future.
Just what I said before. How to get to these buildings is not clear. How can you walk from Dodd to the Library? Well done! The fountains are not pictured… I like how you added trees.
We are writing a script to calculate distances from your location to the building you’re looking at. This will be down the road – more development time needed.
Would like to see the building as you scroll over it w/o having to click on it. HATE icons. Had no idea what a few were until I clicked on them.
Got rid of the icons. Not sure that “hover” would not be annoying as the buildings are close together on a mobile device.
I think the map is wonderful, and a fantastic idea. The pictures are beautiful, the map and details are very helpful. Since you asked for constructive criticism, I did take a second look at the map with a more critical eye. When I click on the Bookstore, the details never tell me that the Bookstore is located IN Lee Hall. Folks might be looking for a separate Bookstore building. The picture of the Eagle Village Shops should be taken from the corner of College and Route 1 so that Home Team Grill and the restaurants in the front are shown. I think Home Team is trying very hard to show support for UMW by displaying UMW apparel and team things. You really can’t see the shops/restaurants in the current picture.
1) Bookstore description now mentions Lee Hall; 2) We definitely need better pictures of the Eagle Village shops and will get them!
My only suggestion would be to include the UMW Bookstore web address on the details page for the Bookstore. This would allow people to search for branded clothing and textbooks.
The description of Randolph Hall has a typo, centrally is spelled entrally. The description of Marye House should indicate that it houses, Student Life, Judicial Affairs and Community Responsibility and The Office of Residence Life and Commuter Student Services.
1) Typo fixed; 2) Departments added to Marye House, with picture.
Newer buildings, such as Eagle Landing and the Dahlgren Campus, don’t show up on satellite view. While we wait for Google to update their imagery, perhaps outlines of the buildings could be overlaid on the satellite view?
We will see if these “kml” files can be imposed on the satellite view. This is based on the Google Maps API and we’d have to see if that is possible. It’s a great idea. Waiting for Google Maps to update can be very frustrating.
Right now, I either have to punch “show all” or look at one subgroup at a time like academic buildings OR residence halls. There doesn’t seem to be an option to look at two or three subgroups at a time, like residence halls AND academic buildings, without having to look at all campus buildings. Will that be an option in the future? Also, any plans to add a function that estimates walking distance/time between points on the map? Or shows the best handicapped accessible route between two points?
We are looking into this and agree with you. We are also researching scripts to calculate distances (as the bird flies) between the user’s mobile location and their destination. Adding accessibility information is important. Right now, we can add it as a narrative in the content and it’s on our “to-do” list. Thank you!
It would be helpful to have the Anderson Center named, instead of “gymnasium” as the Graduate Commencement will be held there.
The names of all the buildings are on Google Maps. We are researching if we can overlay a label, but may not be able to do this before launch.
Anderson Center now seats 1700 for basketball / volleyball games; check with Ed Hegmann for exact figures
Made the change.
Good map. Somewhat difficult to see on my iPhone until I sized it. Still the building icons appear large in relation to the building.
Replaced icons (see above).
Not sure the PDF walking tour adds a whole lot, would be better to have tours laid out on maps, with information linked. Also, on iPhone the bars for the labels (Dashboard, PDF Map) take up large amount of space, might be better if possible, to make them less height on screen
Agree. We’re canning the walking tour since it’s old anyway. We are reducing the bottom bar size.
I think also listing the other buildings that are close when you click on the detail link, will help new staff and students reference their location on campus better. Also a “where do you want to go” search from the building details would be helpful.
This is an interesting idea. Since we are looking for ways to calculate distance, we can see if this can be applied to the function you mention.
Some departments in Student Services were excluded – Student Accounts, Financial Aid and Parking Management. These departments should be included with the others listed as well.
These departments are now in there.
The images seem random and some buildings have no image at all. It might be more appropriate to have the map navigation then allow building navigation in this way the map could be a navigational tool where the user could start at any level of detail.
We’ve added a lot more images and will continue to improve on them. Getting images for every building has proven to be a very large challenge. Hopefully when we allow user image uploads, this will add to the life and texture of the images. Right now, they are intended to be more informational than beautiful.
I would make sure to describe the parking areas better. Ensure that visitors know where they are able to park. Some of the descriptions are still blank.
We filled in the blank ones and linked all of them to the Parking Management website. Having that info reside in the tour itself would be hard to maintain since policies change over time.
More detailed text in regard to parking areas. In particular areas that are often reserved for events, GW lot for example. Also interested in sidewalks for those visitors walking to Lee for example.
See above abour parking. To show sidewalks and the campus walk would be a monumental effort unless we can get shapefiles plotted for these areas. The Geography students and Professor Brian Rizzo assisted us with shapefiles for the newer buildings. I am not sure if they exist for the sidewalks, but I’m willing to check with the city to find out. We were also dismayed that the Google Directions can only work along roadways that they know about. So, giving directions to the Dahlgren Campus is impossible on Google right now. The roads don’t even exist!
I think having an interactive campus map is very important and I applaud the work being done. Some concerns/recommendations stem around overall web accessibility and how we can best design workarounds within this framework. Such as: alt tagging over pictures used so a screen reader can pick those up (not necessarily using flash based image), having an identifiable text key with all the campus buildings, etc that will be displayed visually, if color is of importance, making sure this is written out as well.
Also, I am working now on adding alt tags where they are missing – good call. I was being too fast with the data entry!
The building name labels are blocked by the icons which makes it difficult to find buildings. The Events Office would love to use this map for events – if there would be a way to customize it for an event such as Family Weekend to let people know where each event is that would be a great feature.
We have removed the icons, replacing them with small map pins. There is a satellite option in the dashboard.
Offer a map option for a satellite view in addition the the drawing view – similar to the Google maps option
This is available in the dashboard.
Phone # in “details” text of UMW Bookstore very helpful as quick reference at end; add to others?
A maintenance headache, unfortunately. Because these numbers are maintained in Banner in a different way than we need them on the tour, it would have to be done manually, and we just don’t have the personnel to manage that.
Add a “gathering space” icon to Jefferson square; and the lawn between Mason/Randolph once open.
Added to Jefferson Square. Will add to Randoph/Mason in the fall after it opens.