Surfing to .. Indonesia

Southern Asia has been in the news recently so I decided to visit Statistics Indonesia (http://www.bps.go.id/eng/ ) whose website is in both English and Bahasa Indonesian. The English version of the site offers less than the Bahasa version both in content and detail: for example, the news releases in Bahasa give the key message of the release but in the English version it is generally just the subject that is given. Navigation is clear with white text for the top navigation and blue for the rest. A minor improvement would be to hyperlink the any graphics (for example on the right-hand navigation) as well as the text. When within the site, each page has a link to the Home page on the top navigation that works quickly: however, the logo of Statistics Indonesia is also hyperlinked – but did not go anywhere.

The left-hand navigation sets out the themes of available statistics: the open list at the top is for Social and population: the Economic/Trade and Agriculture/Mining themes are accessed only through the separate links. Within the Economic and Trade list, I sought out the GDP information as this was one of the highlights cycling at the top of the Home page on the day of the visit (but the link did not go to the PDF). Looking through to the dynamic table of GDP, the data are shown to two decimal places of billions but all of the second decimal digits are zero! The table does not need any decimal places. More interesting, however, is what the user is offered at the top of the page presented for a theme: new navigation to an explanation of the theme concept, the methodology employed, a list of available tables and the full glossary (helpfully with an alphabet selection at the top). If a letter has more than one screen’s depth of terms, they are paged.

The two data items usually searched for in my reviews are population and CPI. Population is one of the items shown in the left hand themes on opening the Home page: the second of the listed tables gives the data by province for 2010 as well as for the country as a whole (at the bottom of the table). The Consumer Price Indices theme is listed in the Economic and Trade tab. Choosing the first table, the user is given even more choice: a table is presented but also, above the table, is an option to graph the data. The table has a few Bahasa words in it without the English equivalent: some are understandable, ‘Tahun’ is not. I looked then at the graph of the data: the x-axis labels for the vertical grids were Nov 08, May 09, Dec 09, Jul 10, Feb 11 .. – an uneven sequence but equally spaced on the graph.

I looked into a few of the publications on offer from the publications link on the top navigation. The tables with decimal places in these publications used a comma for a separator and not the full stop as in tables looked at for GDP. The large file sizes were not noted – which could lead to some delay in opening – and the site used an unusual program for viewing the publications which did not allow the viewer to move easily across chapters.

Several broken links were found on the site. For many tables with percentage distributions, the default number of decimal places appears to be 2 which are not always necessary. Some translation still needs to be followed through and the provision of file sizes for the publications (more than 350 Kb) would help the user. The additional level of navigation when looking at themes is excellent for the user allowing access to both methodology and a glossary. Obviously the glossary is for the whole site and not topic specific – but that is certainly easier to maintain and is presented well.

This review was undertaken by Ed Swires-Hennessy using Internet Explorer version 11.0 on 24 April 2014 at 10.00 hrs. GMT using a 60 Mb link to the Internet on an Intel Core i3-2100 3.1 GHz machine.

This and reviews since January 2009 are published in the blog; earlier reviews are published to my website, http://www.surfingwithed.org.uk

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This entry was posted in 2014, Asia, Continent, Year and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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