*Disclaimer: Humor articles may be works of fiction. Quotes should be considered libel and slander.*
In a stunning announcement from the American Design Award Foundation, the Stuyvesant High School Web site (www.stuy.edu) has received the prestigious graphic “Golden Backslash” award for excellence and innovation in web design. The Stuyvesant site was widely considered to be a dark horse candidate, as an educational institution’s page had never before been nominated.
The Stuyvesant site was nearly overlooked by the judges. “We’d heard from the design community that innovative things were happening at stuy.edu, but when we typed ‘stuy.edu’ into the browser, we got a baffling error message,” American Design Award executive Vice President Kevin Javid said. “We nearly wrote it off as a provocative comment on the ephemeral nature of our wired world, but we then realized that the site just won’t work without a ‘www.’ first.”
This near miss turned out favorably for the Stuyvesant site, however, with the judges praising the archaic ‘www.’ suffix—which was made superfluous by most websites ten years ago—for “lending a handcrafted, artisanal quality to the webpage.”
“I never thought of myself as an artisan,” Assistant Principle Technology Eddie Wong said. “I guess it goes to show you, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. [And if it is broken, fixing it is really optional. Not a big deal if it doesn't get done. Really.]”
Also singled out for praise was the minimalist template, which was cutting edge when it was introduced shortly after the panic surrounding the Y2K bug died down. However, for the panelists, the standout design element was the banner of randomly selected static images of Stuyvesant facilities that sits atop the homepage.
“When you think school, you normally think students, but www.stuy.edu boldly refuses to show any human beings in classrooms, labs or the underused swimming pool,” Javid said. “Stuyvesant really forces you to address your preconceived notion that a school should be primarily focused on students.”
Students reacted to the award with a degree of humility. ”Why can’t I see my new program? I keep getting error messages! I DON’T KNOW WHAT CLASSES I AM IN,” said senior Simon Ayzman, in an email exchange that was cut short by technical difficulties.
Other school officials and students were contacted for comment, but emails sent to their stuy.edu accounts went unanswered as of press time.