It’s been a year since we moved the GDS blog to GOV.UK. Happy birthday, blog. Since then we’ve had over 500,000 visitors and nearly 1,000,000 page views. Here are the five most-read posts over the whole year.
In ascending order of views ...
5. On getting people online
If we do these things, we’re doing digital inclusion.
This was a checklist for government and other organisations that want to help people get online, and a call for feedback.
4. On GOV.UK site use
...the story here is the rapid rise of 'portrait' smartphone screen resolutions such as 768×1024 at the expense of traditional 'landscape' desktop resolutions. Further evidence of the rapid shift to a wider variety of screen sizes as mobile device use takes off.
Browser, operating system and screen resolution data for GOV.UK by Tom Loosemore.
Here Tom compared lots of interesting GOV.UK data from January 2014 to January 2013. This paints a picture of a trend towards mobile devices – a trend that seems to be continuing. And as Tom predicted, 2014 saw the first day when visits from mobile devices than a PC for the first time – on July 12.
There's much more detail here on how that data breaks down.
3. On verifying identity
When you use [government] services, you want to be confident that someone else can’t sign in pretending to be you, see your sensitive personal records or use your identity to make fraudulent claims. You want to be confident that your data and services are secure and your privacy protected.
What is identity assurance? by Janet Hughes
This post explains the importance of verifying identity for both users and government when using government services.
This work has led to GOV.UK Verify, a way for people to prove who they are online when using government services.
2. On reporting misleading websites
Government services have been getting a growing number of complaints from people who feel misled by websites which charge for access to public services that are either free or much cheaper when accessed via the official GOV.UK website.
Report a misleading website to search engines by Tom Loosemore.
People searching the web for government services sometimes fall foul of prominent ads linking to intermediary services (to put it mildly and charitably). These are services which charge more money to use government services – more than would be the case by using the official service at GOV.UK. Hence the #StartAtGOVUK campaign.
Misleading ads can be reported to the search engine where you saw them. Here are the appropriate links for Google and Bing. It's currently not clear where you report dubious ads to Yahoo. We're trying to find out.
1. On how we design
We don’t want a culture of designs being 'thrown over a wall' to a dev team. We don’t make 'high fidelity mock ups' or 'high fidelity wireframes'. We’re making a Thing, not pictures of a Thing.
What’s the design process at GDS? by Ben Terrett.
Obviously people are very interested in how we do design at GDS. This post is a great start. We also have a blog about it: GDS design notes.
There's been a lot of interest in working with us. More than 50,000 visitors wanted to find out more about GDS vacancies and what it’s like to work here. See the GDS jobs page for the roles we're likely to be recruiting in 2015.
The busiest day of the year was 22 July when Mike Bracken wrote Making things open, making things better about open standards for file formats in government. July was our busiest month, too.
Let us know in the comments if there’s anything you’d like to hear more about this year.