Surviving a Responsive Retrofit

Session Speaker(s): 
Sunday, November 9 2014
Room: Bowser’s Castle
Time: 11:00am - 12:00pm

You have 9 months to make 188 university websites responsive. You have to use as much of the existing design as possible (design changes require approval) and you cannot make any changes that impact your client web editors. You should also make the sites more accessible. Go.

PS: the CMS you're using isn't Drupal.

Responsive design is complicated enough when you're starting from scratch to create a new design. What about retrofitting an existing design to make it responsive? How do take a website design that predates Apple's iPad and update it to adapt to as many devices as possible? How do you do all of this without adversely affecting your web editors, site admins or site visitors?

In this session, I'll present the challenges we faced while converting a large university web presence to a responsive design. I'll talk about the design trade-offs our team faced and how we worked through them. I'll explore the process and philosophy we used to guide us through difficult decisions on the project. On the technical side, I'll talk about how we made decisions about frameworks and dev tools, and provide an overview of the technology stack we used to develop our new web templates (SCSS all the things!). Most importantly, I'll talk about the lessons our team learned (including the hard ones) and offer my advice to any team facing a "responsive retrofit."

Remember when I said the CMS wasn't Drupal? I wasn't kidding. But fear not, I will still talk about Drupal.