Launched no more than six months ago in December 2011, Coursekit is an online application that re-imagines the education experience for the Internet age by combining simple course management tools with social networking. Over 600 institutions use the service where teachers students can have discussions, share resources, and give and receive grade assignments on the spot. Yesterday, Coursekit announced it would change its name to Lore — co-founder and CEO Joseph Cohen explains that it “gives us freedom to grow, and reflects our belief that learning is about connecting people.” A very nice parallax scrolling microsite explains the name change and defines Lore as “knowledge shared between people.” The design was done in-house, led by Aaron Carambula. The process and inspiration of the identity is captured in another microsite worth a look.
After studying, sketching, and striving, we were satisfied that we should embrace the simplest, most natural solution to this design challenge. […] We love this mark because it has power through combining fundamental elements and represents our belief in challenging norms — a square peg in a round hole.
— Designing Lore
The name change is a good move, going from something very specific (sharing courses) and perhaps with even a little of a jaded reputation (online courses) to something more broad that could allow Lore to go beyond traditional college courses and into knowledge sharing for civilians. The name is short and simple. Just like the logo and identity. There is almost nothing to critique about it; not because it’s perfect but because there are so few elements and they are all simple as it gets: it’s a circle with four geometric slab serif characters in it. Done. I like the simplicity, which I think will turn off a lot of people, but it’s hard to argue against it. The one thing I don’t like is that it can read as Lo-Re — I keep reading low-res in my mind when I see it. The rest of the identity is still kind of undefined but everything from the ambiguous chart at the bottom of this post to the website are lovingly sophisticated and restrained. Overall, nothing to drop out of college for, but a nice execution all around.