EAE Award Winners 2001
Tango Fleet (January
Honestly, we never cared that much about online RPG's, but Tango Fleet strikes us as an example of a very appealing and well-organized game. With its serious and distinguished structure Tango Fleet is much like an official government website, like a representation of the real Starfleet. Rules, procedures and rank structures are an important point of an RPG, and they are extensively elucidated here. Reading the news and summaries of the main site and the various ships which are always very recent, it is obvious that setting up the Tango Fleet main site was definitely worth the effort. Not only the overall organization, also the design is outstanding. In particular the many beautiful custom-made graphics, including rank pips, departmental emblems, ship logos, general buttons and background graphics are praiseworthy. Anyone who has tried to do something similar knows that, apart from advanced software like Photoshop, a lot of skills and knowledge are required especially for the apparently simple graphics. Being a group effort, the whole of Tango Fleet doesn't have a uniform appearance in all departments and ships, but a certain degree of individuality may be desirable, since Starfleet is not the Borg Collective. ;-) Congratulations to Tango Fleet, the first RPG to win the EAE Award!
(Bernd & Lance)
Paris Nights (February
I always strive to see Star Trek as a whole, but it may be equally appealing to pick a certain aspect and cover this aspect exhaustively. Paris Nights succeeds in doing this like very few other websites. It is a site dedicated to the character of Tom Paris (obviously) and the actor Robert Duncan McNeill. Everything related to Tom, including pictures, interviews, general Voyager info and specific Paris info, is dealt with in great detail. In addition, Paris Nights has a huge fan fiction section with currently around 1000 stories, plus a writer's guide and a fan fiction award. I wonder who will ever be able to read all this, though. ;-) It is worth mentioning that webmistress Elli updates the site on a regular basis too, unlike it is the case on many other themed sites whose creators probably don't feel like frequently caring for fresh content. I already liked the previous layout of Paris Nights, but the new design is just great - and was the incentive to finally award the site. The new user interface keeps a perfect balance between ease of use and eye candy. The single sections of the site are logically arranged and easily accessible. There are hundreds of carefully designed illustrations. Summarizing, although I'm personally rather interested in the female characters :-D, I couldn't imagine a better place to go for Paris fans.
Sektion 31 (March
Online databases use to have something for everyone - from the inexperienced visitor who likes to get some basic information to the dedicated Trekker who needs a reliable reference. It is astonishing how many German sites are among the best Star Trek databases in the web - see also my links page. While many of them truly deserve an award, I would like to honor Benjamin Niermann's site Sektion 31 in the first place. I think Sektion 31 is most inspiring because it is a well-researched and well-written personal compendium of the Star Trek Universe. It is easy to notice that Benjamin didn't just "borrow" the required text and graphics elsewhere, but created his own thing. Sektion 31 has extensive information on starships, species, episodes, Section 31 (of course), and the best illustrated list of characters I know of. In addition, there are sound files and specials like the exploding body of Remmick in TNG: "Conspiracy", a scene that was never aired because it was regarded as being too cruel. The navigation is very fast and easy - a nice contrast to the many other databases where one has to browse through several sub-menus to find only very scarce facts. Congratulations to Sektion 31, a Star Trek site that manages to combine a pleasant look, ease of use, and extensive information!
Lately, new rumors about Series V and Star Trek X are keeping the Trek community busy almost every day, and TrekToday seems to be a hub of these activities. The place thrives because of the enthusiasm of the contributors and the indefatigability of the webmasters. Everyone who runs a website probably knows the efforts of occasional updates, so it's even more amazing that TrekToday is updated with several new articles each day. It's not a full-blown Trek site where one could find everything, but much like a Trek portal and newspaper - and the site has been optimized to that effect. What I like in particular about TrekToday is that the news is easily accessible. No slow graphically enhanced interface, no browsing through many sub-menus. The content rules over the design, a virtue that most other people presenting news on the internet -not only about Star Trek- seem to have forgotten. TrekToday, as part of the Trek Nation Network, is linked to the other sites of the network, most notably the Trek BBS where each article is connected to a thread. An interesting feature for other Trek webmasters is TrekToday's headline service, which is definitely beneficial for both sides. Maybe there will be a bit more tranquility once the current Series V hype is over, but TrekToday will stay a premier information source.
I know TrekMania and its webmaster Mark for quite a while. Already the old TrekMania offered lots of stuff on starships and other topics, but the recent upgrade with a completely new interface, loads of new content and a new domain was so impressive that I spontaneously decided to honor this with the EAE Award. The new TrekMania is a site where one can see at the first glace how much work has been invested - and that the result is worth the effort. The site has virtually everything the die-hard Trekker can expect to find on a website - a large collection of starships (canon and conjectural, some modeled by Mark himself), reviews of Trek episodes, discussions of inconsistencies, a compendium of alien races, technology, and more. Not just the same kind of scarce database one can find everywhere in the web, but original content with a personal touch. The design of TrekMania is original too. Supported by countless illustrations, each page has its distinctive character. Well, many users probably like LCARS or similar menu styles with lots of navigation buttons better, but I think Mark's style is more efficient and, after all, I have intentionally designed EAS the same way. Congratulations to Mark for creating a brand new Star Trek top pick in the web!
Stone Trek (June
Star Trek, and in particular TOS, is probably the most spoofed TV series because of its distinctive atmosphere, but there is hardly anything as funny as its crossbreed with another popular TV show of the 60's, The Flintstones. The result is Stone Trek, a parody that goes where no caveman has gone before. As it's the case with The Flintstones too, the humor is in seeing how complex devices made of stone and wood can "work", and also in the spoofed characters and stories with countless allusions to specific TOS episodes. See for yourself in the two episodes "The Deadly Ears" and "20001 BC: A Space Oddity". The animation and the sound of Stone Trek are superb, and they suit both the styles of Star Trek and The Flintstones. Unlike it would be the case with heavily compressed MPEGs or Real Videos the technical quality of the Flash movies, ideally suited for animations, is outstanding, and they still load relatively fast - one can even play a puzzle while the movies are loading. The user interface is completely made with Flash too. There is an alternative plain HTML interface (something that I would prefer for sites that have plain information), but it's definitely more fun to explore Stone Trek with all the accompanying effects. Congratulations to Stone Trek, the ultimate prequel - and one that is intentionally funny.
Copernicus Ship Yards
and Starship Class (July
It is a special pleasure to award two websites that were created in the course of our Wolf 359 project. The history of Masaki Taniko's Starship Class began with a photo of the starship USS Princeton that he contributed to the Wolf 359 Research Project last year. Based on this one ship he created a website that soon included detailed information on several more starship miniatures. The latest feature is a starship database with a fantastic 29th century TCARS interface. Aside from starships the site includes a community section with many links, a message board and other interactive features - mostly in Japanese, but I firmly trust him that it's good too. Chris Spinnler's Copernicus Ship Yards (coincidentally that's the name I considered for my own site before I settled on EAS!) is devoted to presenting the ships that were seen in the Wolf 359 graveyard. It's not one of the biggest sites in the web, but the time and diligence invested into the presentation, graphics and, of course, the content deserves a high praise. Moreover, it is an interesting example that a lot can be made even of a very restricted premise, in this case, a few blurry background starships in an old TNG episode. My congratulations to Chris and Masaki!
The above requirements for the EAE Award state that any language I can decipher is welcome. Although my knowledge of Spanish is restricted to a few sentences (and to words which are the same in French, Italian or Latin), it is safe to say that Hispatrek is a high-quality website. It is quite obvious that a lot of time is invested into the development and maintenance of the site. With its all-round service Hispatrek serves as a portal to the world of Trek for Spanish speaking visitors. The features include Trek news, e-mail addresses, banner rotation, links, the authorized Spanish version of SevTrek and, finally, a role playing game. What I like most are the frequent editorials on various topics from the operation of tricorders to Janeway's hairstyles, which can be discussed in a message board at the bottom of the respective page. I would also like to point out the distinctive layout of Hispatrek with the blue background and the great graphics which is a nice contrast to the many Trek websites with "space design", as well as the technical quality. The site is optimized for Internet Explorer, but works with Netscape too. Congratulations to webmaster Williams Castillo who takes the EAE Award to Venezuela!
Trek Voyager - Lower Decks (September
"They also serve" is the motto to this unusual Voyager fan site which cares about the men and women who are usually not in the focus of interest in the TV show. From the ubiquitous Lt. Ayala to the many crew members who appeared only once and vanished without a trace, here is the place where they get their deserved attention. The site is centered around a large archive of fan fiction, and besides the fan fiction itself, it hosts a complete list of crew members, ship specs, the Maquis, maps, ranks - everything an aspiring author needs. Some features are of particular interest and, as far as I know, unique on the web. The "Archivist's Challenge", for instance, is a contest of supplementing character bios with fictional stories. There are exhaustive and strict guidelines for writers, to preserve a high quality and consistency of the fan fiction. Almost no need to mention that the site has an FAQ, a message board and a survey too. The design of Star Trek Voyager - Lower Decks relies on few graphics and a consistent font and color scheme. It is definitely a nice contrast to the many flashy designs that too often suffer from too little content. Now that Voyager is over on screen, I hope that fans will continue to care about this series which once again extended the Final Frontier, and here is one especially interesting place to go.
Trek Fr (October
Although Star Trek has always been conceived for the American TV alone, its popularity is worldwide. If there is still another proof necessary it's Star Trek Fr, a well-organized French website that serves as a portal to Star Trek. The main part of the site consists of daily news and articles, episode guides, trailers and links, which should fulfill every daily need of a fan. I especially liked the interactive aspect that allows registered visitors (registered obviously to avoid misuse) to submit comments, episode reviews or news and, the other way round, webmasters to insert Star Trek Fr news to their websites. There is also a forum and a chat for all things Trek. Something especially interesting is an interactive episode where the visitor decides how it continues by clicking on the according link. User management and database access is controlled with PHP and SQL, and this makes the whole site very dynamic compared to conventional websites. The design of Star Trek FR is quite simple, but appropriate considering that it is mainly supposed to provide fast information. Mes félicitations au Trekker Fou qui gagne le prix EAE pour un site Star Trek excellent!
Already months before Enterprise first went on air there were already a bunch of websites about the new series. Now that it is running and plenty of information can be made available, Enterprise sites still keep coming and going, many of which never make it beyond their developmental stage. It is a pleasure to see that there are several exceptions. Of the many Enterprise sites I have checked out, TrekEnterprise is the most professional, most complete and most often updated one. TrekEnterprise, unlike many other sites of its kind, has more than just a few nice bits about the series. There is a wealth of information including daily news, information about cast and characters, episode descriptions and reviews, a press archive, plus images and media files. TrekEnterprise allows to follow the course the series has taken in the fictional as well as in the real world. The first layout of TrekEnterprise was nice, but it has recently completely been redesigned to look very professional. The consistently brown and orange color scheme may not be everyone's favorite, but I like the distinct look. TrekEnterprise is maintained by webmistress Kara with endurance, diligence and dedication, and this I would like to honor with the EAE Award.
I know Devilsworld for almost three years - and it is amazing how it has become the probably largest site with Star Trek art and meshes in the web. Webmaster "Devilman" Andrew Hodges presents his own extensive work, as well as a wealth of user-submitted stuff. Federation or alien vessels, canon or non-canon - Devilsworld has images or meshes of nearly every Trek ship that has ever been modeled. Several meshes are salvaged from the unfortunately defunct SciFi Art website. There are also ships from other sci-fi universes, as well as landscapes, planets, nebulae and starfields. Everything beautifully rendered and in high resolution. One could spend days browsing through the galleries, and with a slow connection it's hard to decide which images to download. What I appreciate too is that Devilsworld pays a lot of attention to giving the artists proper credits and preventing misuse. The web design of Devilsworld is simplistic and practical, with an adaptable index frame at the left, allowing fast access to the many sections of the site. Congratulations to Devilman in Down Under!