The elusive hyperlink

There is one thing I have noticed about official Indian websites – they do not do justice to the intellect of our nation. India is one of the nations that generates creative minds a dime a dozen – and more so in the IT industry – but it is unfortunate that Indian government websites are so poorly constructed almost everyone swears at least once while trying to locate information. They want it to be user friendly, but the user is barely friendly at the end of it all.

Websites with good navigation live by the rule that people should never be more than a click or two away from finding what they need, no matter what page they are in. Several US and EU based government websites literally serve information on a platter. They follow the norms of good web-navigation, they are advertisement free, they come with no fancy flash graphics or irritating GIF animations – something Indian websites need to learn from. To quote one instance a year back – a German friend told me that he had a tough time figuring out requirements to obtain an Indian tourist visa from the website. I was mighty embarrassed by the situation.
Let me make a disclaimer here – that most of the Indian official websites have indeed improved over time – one major example is the IRCTC – it used to be full of unused space – and all the wrong fonts were large in size with weird colors that would make you think the last cigarette you smoked had marijuana in it. It has become way better now. Our computerized railway reservation system maintains (and has been maintaining) one of the largest rail networks in the entire world, flawlessly! It’s a pity that this brilliant software was, for a long period, accompanied by a website plagued by flash ads and mind numbingly disturbing animated GIFs. Here is a screenshot taken once upon a time and circulated in an “It happens only in India” theme.
During a discussion with a friend, he pointed out that in most cases, the web-designing jobs are outsourced to bhanjas, bhatijas or distant relatives – who may not be qualified enough for the job – but this is difficult to beat in a country where nepotism is predominant within the government.

I would like to say that for a country that can make such a beautiful tourism ad (Incredible India), the websites should be of top notch quality too!

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Filed under *Sigh*, India oh India


2 Responses to “The elusive hyperlink”
  1. Deepika says:

    This ad is breathtaking. It gave me goosebumps. Thank you for putting it here.

  2. Kokonad says:

    🙂 You are welcome!

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