Propeller Win the 2008 McFarlane Prize for Excellence in Australian Web Design

29 September 2008

Having been shortlisted for the McFarlane Prize for the second year running, Propeller packed up and headed to Sydney for Web Directions South 2008.

WDS08 was well attended and featured a stellar cast of the net’s finest with over 30 sessions hosted by international speakers such as Jina Bolton, Jeffrey Veen, August de los Reyes, Jeff Croft and Cameron Adams amongst others. WDS08 was sponsored by Microsoft, Adobe, the W3C, Xero, Gruden, 99 Designs, Sitepoint, Molten, Wacom and Opera.

Following a fascinating insight into Microsofts’ new ‘surface’ technology by August de los Reyes, conference organisers John Allsopp and Maxine Sherrin presented this years’ McFarlane Prize.

The Prize is awarded to an Australian designer or team for a site launched or significantly upgraded between August 1 2007 and August 31 2008. The McFarlane Prize is awarded by a jury of Australian experts in various fields of web design and development. Entries are assessed for their adherence to best practices in accessibility and standards based coding (correct and valid use of CSS and HTML).

The top 15 sites are individually assessed in four areas by members of the jury who have expertise in a particular area.

The standard of this years’ finalists was exceptional with Melbourne-based friends and competitors ‘August’ back in the mix with their stunning home site redesign alongside Citizen Watches, Billy Hughes at War, Parker & CO and Spoon Media. With such high profile competition, we were delighted to make the finals but absolutely shocked to be selected as this years’ winners.

Reaching the finals of the McFarlane Prize two years running is a major and unexpected honour for Propeller but to win is absolutely amazing. The 2008 winning Pro Plaster site was launched in July, just pipping into this years’ awards.

Much of the work we do is unseen, as the details are 'under the hood'™, hidden in the code so to be recognised by our peers and a panel of international experts in a competition of this stature is a great reward for the hard work we've put in over the past couple of years.

We'd like to point out that the great design, strict web standards coding, accessibility and usability that contributed to Propeller receiving this award are built into every site we produce and our methods are constantly evolving and improving.

If we’ve already built a site for you, are in the process of building one or you are considering enquiring with us about commissioning a new site, you can be confident that working with one of Australia's leading web standards based developers; your site will be built to the latest standards ensuring great search engine visibility, user experience, access to persons with disabilities and future proofed!

And you never know, your site could be next years'™ McFarlane Prize winner!

Congratulations to John and Maxine for organsing another awesome conference and acting as custodians of the McFarlane Prize. We’d also like to thank some of the vendors and open source teams who’ve contributed to or provided the fantastic applications and technologies that allow us to do what we do:

  • Team Textpattern for our open source CMS of choice and Gerhard Lazu for his amazing glz_custom_fields extension without which this project would have been impossible.
  • David Greiner and the Freshview team for Mailbuild.
  • Chris Campbell, Kevin Hale and Ryan Campbell of Infinity Box Inc for Wufoo
  • Todd Dominey and Brad Daily for Slideshow Pro and Director

Last but not least, we’d like to thank Vickie at Pro Plaster for having the faith to work with us throughout this project but also for going on and performing such a stellar job at adding and maintaining the content after handover.

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