Built for us by CloudRaker (of Montreal) in HTML5 and powered by The Plant (of Tokyo and Hangzhou) using their new Qor content management system, it’s not a huge departure from the previous site (designed in 2008).
However, there is one huge technical step: where we previously used Flash to give the overall experience a “licked” feeling, we’re maintaining the slick look in HTML5, without the pains about embedding content, URL management, search engine optimization, and the rest of the pains associated with full-page Flash sites.
This is a good opportunity to plug my age-old article on Evolt that explains why well-formed HTML matters. We could of course do more: rich snippets for example, and we broke the half-way decent mobile version we used to have, and we could replace it with a game of media-specific stylesheets rather than with a distinct set of pages…
The other big step is in content. This year, we’re turning the spotlight on creators who are influenced by Japan, to give more depth to Onitsuka Tiger’s message “Made of Japan”. Again, I think there’s much to be done, but I think this is great progress already!