Our New Homepage

Avatar for Matthew StanciuMatthew StanciuAvatar for Willy LienWilly LienAvatar for Lilian ZhaoLilian Zhao

We've been working on a new landing page for Purdue Hackers throughout the Fall 2022 semester. Today, we want to share it with you.

screenshot of a website covered in moon face emojis

screenshot of a website with a teal, windows 95-esque background, and a window containing an "email"

screenshot of a website with a light amber background and two large blocks of text: one that says "purdue hackers", and another that says "a community of students who collaborate, learn, build, and build kick-ass technical projects"

screenshot of a website with poorly-drawn characters–a weird looking human, a t-rex, and a ghost cat—throughout, with large text saying "ready to find your people?" and two buttons under it that say "browse events" and "join discord"

This website's story goes all the way back to May 2022, when we began searching for inspiration for new branding for Purdue Hackers.

screenshot of a board from the ipad app muse, including handwriting and images of various websites

same as previous screenshot

(If you're curious, you can check out the full Muse board.)

At the time, our homepage looked like this:

screenshot of a website with a dark gray background, text that says "purdue hackers", under it "build, collaborate grow". under that, a screenshot of a drawing of purdue's campus, and under that a yellow button that says "check out our events"

screenshot of a website. white background. to the left, two pieces of text: "who we are"; "We are the largest CS organization on campus. We provide students with a collaborative platform to build and strengthen technological skills. We host events with sponsors and peers to grow networks and better serve members of our community." to the right, a drawing of purdue's bell tower

It wasn't a disaster, but it also didn't communicate the soul and magic that we wanted people to take away in their first impression of Purdue Hackers. We wanted to follow it up with something great.

We were inspired by blocks.css, bright colors, and high-contrast elements. With these in mind, in late August we began working on the website.

Making this website was an enormous challenge. Each new section required thinking about three things at once: what story it should tell, what aesthetic it should have, and how to actually build it. Building this website was also the primary means through which we were figuring out our new brand identity—so this website was actually two major projects masquerading as one.

Typically, companies and web design agencies that embark on a project at this scale do it over months of sustained work, with a team of designers creating countless mockups and a team of web developers working to implement those designs. A rebranding project alone is often a sustained months-long process before they even begin thinking about the website.

We were three people, who are not designers, figuring it out as we went along. As a result, work on this website was carried forward entirely by bursts of inspiration, and was on and off throughout the semester.

The hero was the first thing we built, and has remained unchanged since August. The call to action at the bottom of the page, the email section, and the Hack Night section, were built throughout the first half of October. The workshops section was built at the end of November. Finally, the community section and a revised Hack Night section were built in early December, just before the website shipped.

screenshot of a website with a bright yellow background, discord messages scattered throughout, and a card with text describing the community

screenshot of a website that is styled to resemble a newspaper. from the middle to the bottom, three cards describing past workshops

screenshot of a website with a dark gray background and lots of random windows scattered throughout, including a terminal-styled window, an image of a hack night event, and an image of a 3d neon keyboard

This project was a labor of love that we spent countless hours on and that pushed us hard creatively. We're incredibly proud of the result.

We hope you feel inspired reading through the new purduehackers.com. And if you go to Purdue, we hope to see you around 💛⚡️