Carnegie Mellon University

Building a Cleaner, More Performant Site for CMU’s Human-Computer Interaction Institute

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The Human-Computer Interaction Institute (HCII) at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) is renowned for investigating the relationship between computer technology and humans through interdisciplinary research and education. HCII’s prestigious academic programs teach design, computer science, and behavioral/social sciences to help students understand and create technologies that benefit people and society.


CMU website screenshots

As an institution with computer technology at its core, HCII’s website is a critically important and visible resource. Its visitors, including students, faculty, alumni, and the general public, are an especially tech-savvy bunch with high expectations for the site’s design, UX, functionality, and performance. While CMU was happy with the designs on the HCII website, they wanted to clean up the theme, revamp search and authentication, and improve overall site performance. 

Working in close collaboration with CMU’s Web Technology Services team, we successfully rebuilt in about nine weeks. HCII’s new website retains its original designs but now features faster performance, UX tweaks that improve the mobile and touchscreen experience, a better Panels interface for editors, improved search, authentication and accessibility, responsive images, and a Pattern Lab implementation on the front-end. It's now utilizing more of the foundational Drupal modules commonly used across CMU, leaving it well-positioned for future enhancements and updates.

“This project has run super smoothly. You guys are a pleasure to work with, super organized, and do great work. The department is very happy with the product and it’s going to be a very helpful tool for them going forward. And you taught my team a bunch of great new stuff that we'll use for a long time.”

Jordan Harrison, Associate Director, Web Technology Services

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We provided the following kinds of services to help this project succeed.

  • Performance and Scalability

  • Search

  • UX & Design

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