You may have noticed this morning that the home page of the KU website, ku.edu, has a snappy new look.
It certainly looks sharp. It also seems to focus more on providing a window to the university for the rest of the world, when compared with the old home page (Google offers a small peek at a cached version, which you can see below).
The page is now dominated by a series of rotating, attention-grabbing photos, with overlaid messages touting the strength of KU undergraduate and graduate programs. Below that is a series of capsules about research news and more. The old A-Z directory of departments and offices is no longer at the top of the page, and the event listing prominently featured on the old home page is also no longer visible (though both the directory and the events are easily accessible via the "KU Directory" tab in the top right). Also new is a link offering information for corporations; the university, and especially Provost Jeff Vitter, are working this year to establish more corporate partnerships for research collaborations, internships and more.
Altogether, the page seems to serve as a bit more of a public face of the university, with less prominent spots for features meant for people already on campus (though, again, it's hardly inconvenient to find those things). After all, KU's strategic plan aims to do things like improve recruitment of students and faculty, make KU research activity more visible and form more business partnerships.
Vice chancellor for public affairs Tim Caboni, who leads KU's communication efforts, tweeted that the site redesign, which also includes a revamped news page, was the result of a "huge effort by a host of folks."
This blog also requires the effort of a host of folks, though perhaps not a huge one. Please send those KU news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.