We discussed this at the beginning of CHI, but what I’ve learned the most through this fellowship is that failing does not equal losing. Of course, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t cause me to get a little sad or even angry when I do fail. The biggest “fail” (if you can really call it that) for me during this fellowship was my attempt at Bootstrapping my CHI Fellows project. I did not have a lot of confidence in my ability to develop a project from scratch, and since the Bootstrap for my group’s Project Vision worked out really well, that was the path I chose. I was really excited about it because it meant that I already had the screen size set up for a mobile device, which is important for my site since people will be able to access my website while on the archaeological site.

For reference, here is a screenshot from my first attempt at the website:

Contact page of the scrapped version of my CHI Fellowship project
Attempt 1 at my CHI Fellows project

While I was finally able to figure out how to change the color scheme, there were tabs, and there was a contact page already formatted, I kept running into issue after issue. First, changing the colors required to go into each individual page, which meant a lot of extra coding. I attempted to find the colors in the source code and was successful, but the Bootstrap would not allow me to change the overall color palette. Second, none of the tabs actually worked – I had to go into each HTML file to change everything, and I tried several different methods of connecting the tabs to no avail. My final straw was with the contact page, which I couldn’t get to work.

Once I finally went through the five stages of grief (okay, a little dramatic but still), I started my project from scratch. Through some incredibly helpful videos and tips from another CHI Fellow (thanks, Phil!), I was able to start five HTML files that all connect together when you click their associated button in the nav bar! While a small success in the grand scheme of things, it made me excited about my project again!

Introduction page to my CHI Fellowship project
Contact page to my CHI Fellowship project
The above two photos are from my “from scratch” project! The first is my introduction page, the second is my contact page

I am really proud of the new version of this project. I was able to make it look exactly how I wanted to, and I was even able to learn how to get the tabs to change color when you hover over them! Next on my list is to learn how to get maps into the Marco Gonzalez and Mesoamerica tabs, and to get the contact page to work (I see JavaScript in my future). I plan to make the maps using Leaflet. Stay tuned to see my next set of updates!

So this is just a long reminder that failing is a good thing! If we were perfect, then we wouldn’t have the chance to learn. Where’s the fun in that?