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MattNuzum
February 27th, 2009, 12:19 AM
Hello, here's the announcement for the call for help for the countdown banners. The best place to discuss this is the Ubuntu Web Presence Team's mailing list or IRC chat room. Details for that team are at https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Website however I'm subscribed to this thread and will get notified of replies.


If you're wanting to put your creative energy to work to help out Ubuntu, here's your chance to make a highly visible contribution.

For a few releases now we've launched a "countdown banner" that is shown on the Ubuntu.com homepage and syndicated to sites across the net. For 8.10 we finally turned to the community to help out with this. We had some excellent contributions and chose two from Thorsten Wilms to make available. (Thanks a bunch thorwil!) See his work at http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/countdown

How it works is like this:

Users who want to embed the countdown on their page will paste a single line of javascript. The javascript will write out the HTML necessary to display the image and the image will be different for each day starting about 30 days out. So for example, it might be, "Only 29 days until Ubuntu 9.04 is here!"

In the past this has been a simple PNG image but I'm going to say that it does not have to be a static image. If you in the community want to raise the bar by making it a comparably sized iframe that includes static HTML and interactive javascript I'd be willing to go for it. But a static PNG works just as well for me. I will take a firm stance against flash though because I want this to be something that does not require non-free software to view.

The first few times we did this we offered the community only one banner. Last time we chose two. I'd love to be in the difficult situation of having too many choices. I'm really OK with giving a few excellent options to syndicate.

Most contributors to Ubuntu get the satisfaction of helping out a project bigger than themselves. However this is a particularly unique opportunity because your creative work will be seen by millions and millions and millions of people across the world on many different websites. Additionally, I heartily believe in giving praise and recognition to those who help out so I will put a link back to your blog or portfolio from the Ubuntu countdown page if your work gets chosen.

Here are the guidelines for contributions:


Lets keep the same size as before. It worked great. 180px wide x 150px high.
Optimized png, gif or jpg format or, if you're gutsy, a lightweight iframe containing static HTML (no php etc), javascript and images. No google anayltics or web bugs, no flash, small download size, only link will be back to the ubuntu.com website. Animation should not be perpetual (i.e. stop after a few seconds) and should not annoy people. If you want to do the iframe thing ping me on IRC or email back to the list and we can discuss some ideas.
There are 32 images needed, days numbered 30 - 1, a "coming soon" for day 0 and an "it's here" once 9.04 is released
It is not needed nor recommended to try to incorporate the release code name "Jaunty Jackalope" into the design
We need to see results soon.


This needs to go LIVE in 30 DAYS. No, I'm not kidding. :-)

That means if you want to participate start drawing up your idea now. Just sketch up one or two frames and post it to https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Website/JauntyCountdownBanners - then send an email back to the list letting us know about it and we'll check it out.

Remember, the goal is to build excitement about the 9.04 release. Are you excited?

--
Matthew Nuzum
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