Instructables

Featuring Checklist (updated 7/14/2014)

Updated: July 2014

Want to know what it takes to get your Instructable featured?  Here are the basic guidelines we use to identify feature-worthy Instructables! 

Authors who have their projects featured get a free PRO membership coupon that they can apply towards their account, or gift to other members. This is our way of thanking authors for posting awesome projects. 

STEP-BY-STEP STYLE INSTRUCTABLE FEATURING CRITERIA:
  • Title fits and explains the project
  • All original photos
  • Intro image is descriptive, clear and in-focus
  • All main step images are clear and in-focus
  • Intro step explains reason/motivation for the project
  • Project is detailed enough to be repeatable
  • Project is broken into enough steps to be easily understood
  • Every step has sufficient explanatory text
  • Every step has at least one useful picture (if needed)
  • Most steps have multiple pictures
  • Pictures use image notes as needed
  • Spelling and grammar don't distract
  • Parts/materials/ingredients/tools list included, with links to sources as needed 
  • Includes links to references as needed
A step-by-step instructable is one where you break your project down into pieces to better explain it. These are our favorites! A good step-by-step is well written and photographed, and tells the story and purpose of the project in an easy to understand manner. 

PHOTO STYLE INSTRUCTABLES FEATURING CRITERIA:
  • Title fits and explains the project
  • All original photos
  • Contains at least 3 photos
  • At least 1 image that show final project
  • All photos in focus with correct lighting
  • At least 2 paragraphs describing project inspiration, process, outcome, challenges, etc
  • Reference links if required
The criteria above apply if you're just sharing something you've made and don't have a ton of process photos. Even if you can't show us exactly HOW you did it, we still want some explanation along with clear photos showing all the important parts of your project.

VIDEO STYLE INSTRUCTABLES FEATURING CRITERIA:
  • Title fits and explains the project
  • Title credit within movie
  • All original content
  • Good production value (consistent lighting, focus and composition)
  • Clear narrative
  • Appropriate sound 
  • Written description of project: inspiration, process, outcome, challenges, etc - at least 2 paragraphs.
  • Additional photos are a must - at least 2-3
Video style Instructables are exactly what they sound like: an Instructable that showcases a video of a project. If you choose to share a video, please also give us an explanation of the projects and some additional photos. 

Please know there's an element of "wow, awesome" that is nearly impossible to define, but is clearly visible when you see it.  Such ingenuity, creativity, originality, and utility may compensate for slight weaknesses in presentation.  The goal of the featuring process is ultimately to identify excellent projects, and help them find an enthusiastic audience on Instructables and beyond.

Want your project featured? A lot of authors sometimes can't see where their project could use some enhancements, luckily there is a peer-review of projects at the volunteer-run Clinic.

Picture of Featuring Checklist (updated 7/14/2014)
Kiteman2 years ago
Do you want your instructable to be featured?  Then please read this:

It is very rare for a feature-worthy project to be missed, so it is not usually worth simply requesting that your project be featured.

Instead, if you want to know how to change a specific write-up so that it becomes worthy of a feature, please use The Clinic.

That is where knowledgeable and helpful people hang out, specifically to help authors improve and polish their work.
jackwp11 months ago
If you want suggestions, you should correct your sentence "Authors who have their projects featured on the homepage get a free 3-month pro membership coupon that they can apply towards their account or gift to to other members".
Kiteman jackwp11 months ago
What's wrong with it?
jackwp Kiteman11 months ago
to to
Kiteman jackwp11 months ago
Oh, yes!
darman12 Kiteman11 months ago
Haha, it still hasn't been changed :P
Kiteman darman1211 months ago
I'm not sure the author has time to these comments so often.
darman12 Kiteman11 months ago
Ah... when I saw you respond to jackwp, I assumed you were the author. I didn't look to see who it was *facepalm* I was wondering "If he just responded to him, why didn't he just change it??" Haha.
Kiteman darman1211 months ago
LOL
caitlinsdad darman1211 months ago
Was it Ha or Haha?
iloveandroid12 months ago
please suggest some improvements - http://www.instructables.com/id/DIY-Arduino-motor-and-Wireless-Shield
knex dude 20001 year ago
check my knex lancia delta instructions please.
annahowardshaw1 year ago
Also, it seems to be up to different people at the time things are published, so it is still very subjective. I have one unfeatured project that won a contest, another that was selected for one of the Instructables books and one that is at 11,000 views without having the 'featured' banner. It's definitely great to ask for feedback, and generally featured projects are going to get more views, but don't assume that not being featured means something is wrong with your work!
Thanks a lot this was really helpful!
username2522 years ago
http://www.instructables.com/id/Knex-Sliding-Puzzle/

I think I got most of them.
Can anyone check my instructable if it fits the criteria? Personally, I think it's from the uninterested of the item or the it's a Photo instructable. I would want to make a step-by-step one but I don't want to stay on the computer from being busy.

Is anyone willing to give me some advice?
It's I think just too much information for a photo instructable.
Step by step, this would be an awesome project.
KRA5H1 year ago
How do I change:

http://www.instructables.com/id/Mic-Stand-MonopodCamera-Boom/?ALLSTEPS

so that it becomes worthy of a feature? 
pranjal121 year ago
Please, Please tell me how to improve my instructable.
http://www.instructables.com/id/MACHINE-GUN-DOORBELL/
KRA5H1 year ago
Please review: http://www.instructables.com/id/Hack-Your-Snap-Circuits-a-Minimalist-Very-Few-Co/

Let me know what I need to do to improve it to become a featured instructable.
BLUEBLOBS22 years ago
This really helped me. What about guides? Could you add a criteria for guides? If not, it's okay.
-BLUEBLOBS2
dimtick2 years ago
One thing that I would add is that timing is also a factor. As a general rule don't publish before a major holiday if your project is not related to that holiday. Its very easy for a project to get buried and overlooked in all the holiday traffic. Best to wait until after when things slow down. I made the mistake of publishing my last instructable right before Easter. After a week it's only had 44 views and probably half of those are me. I'm kicking myself for not waiting.

This also holds true for when there's a major contest deadline approaching. Contests will naturally get more attention so it may be worth waiting until after the deadline.


Bot13982 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
Kiteman Bot13982 years ago
See my PM.
themadjeweler2 years ago
anyone think my instructable is any good?

http://www.instructables.com/id/Textured-Dime-Pendant/
susanrm2 years ago
Thanks for this cool set of guidelines. It does help me understand the criteria, and I am grateful to have had my -ibles featured so often. That being said, I'm confused about why one of my favorite, most awesome projects wasn't featured. It isn't easy to craft felted creatures with fun personalities, and I thought the wider community would like to be aware of it. But it has received little notice, whereas those who have seen it in person, or have seen the -ible because I pointed them to it, have been very impressed. (And poor Myron's feelings are hurt... especially after he got beat out by felted soap on the homepage today!)

This is the instructable. http://www.instructables.com/id/Felted-Pumpkin-With-Personality/ Feedback would be helpful, thanks!
jen7714 susanrm2 years ago
Maybe you should post your question here. This checklist is a guideline so unfortunately not all the ibles that meet the criteria are going to be featured. 
susanrm jen77142 years ago
Thank you. I was unaware of that clinic up to now. :-)
farzadbayan3 years ago
I want to know which one of the Step by Step rules, isn't in my new Instructable?
kelseymh farzadbayan3 years ago
This one:
Keep in mind that there's an element of "wow, awesome" that is nearly impossible to define, but is clearly visible when you see it. Such ingenuity, creativity, originality, and utility may compensate for slight weaknesses in presentation. The goal of the featuring process is ultimately to identify excellent projects, and help them find an enthusiastic audience on Instructables and beyond.

'Nuff said.
farzadbayan kelseymh2 years ago
Please explain the rules to become feature about this one.
I think it have "wow, awesome" element.
farzadbayan kelseymh3 years ago
Thanks, but I couldn't understand your purpose enough. For example I made this video for that Instructable. As you know that's a few hard and take many hours to make. I made that, because I think that can explain my Instructable more, save time and will help people that they don't want to follow steps.
Also I could publish that in a Video Instructable, but I didn't do that, to make my Step by Step more complete.
Sorry, but I can't understand your purpose yet and I think Instructables.com is not a good place to publish projects about Scripting, Computer, and CG. (also that made all of my pictures "low quality", how you want me to send high quality pictures?)

Please explain your comment for me a few more (with fluent grammar, because I can't understand hard grammar sentences.)

Thanks.
A reminder to take a break is nice, but the whole "sitting is bad for you" debacle was *painfully* dumb. I was embarrassed for whoever wrote that, and sad that they had never gotten the opportunity to be exposed to logic, science, or critical thinking. Sadly, not everyone is fortunate enough to get an education in reasoning, analytical skills, or research.
LR, do you mean places like this, are wrong?

Finding articles on the bad effects of sitting aren't hard, finding ones that claim otherwise is more difficult.  

Some are less "specific" then others.    There are studies being taken on, on the side effects of extended sitting, and how it effects the organs stress wise......
I mean that correlation does not imply causation.

(Also - the first link does not provide any citations from peer-reviewed scientific journals, associated content is not precisely an authority on...anything, and your last link doesn't have anything to do with the fatal effects of sitting.) 

I've no doubt that never going outside and sitting for every hour you're not asleep is detrimental to your health, but that story was beyond hyperbolic and alarmist ("Sitting is killing you"? "It's clear that sitting is killing us"? Give me a break). From the context in the Mashable story from which ed got this silly infographic, its main purpose seemed to be to sell stand-up desks using pseudo-science. It citied media reports that sitting can cause back pain and is associated with such maladies as obesity and diabetes in a sad attempt to prove its relentless refrain "sitting is killing you."

It twisted the evidence into pretzals, citing studies showing that excessive amounts of sitting can be predictive of health problems to literally claim that sitting will - and *does* - kill you. Not the physical inactivity, or the diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, or other health problems of which sedentary lifestyles may be either predictive or contributory, but the simple act of sitting in a chair. This is a patently ridiculous claim. It is like saying that being Russian killed those who died as a result of radiation exposure after Chernobyl. Being Russian (or, if you like, a citizen of Pripyat) was certainly more predictive of dying of radiation-related health consequences than many/most other factors, and could in a sense be said to contribute to their deaths, but only a fool would say that it was being Russian that killed them. More accurately, they died because they were where they were - *because they were not elsewhere.* Almost tautologically, a sedentary lifestyle is harmful because you're not getting exercise (or getting less exercise because being sedentary takes away from time you would otherwise be active) - not because you're sitting. The issue is ratio of exercise to sedentary activity, not that you sit at your job, period.

A facebook comment on the story put it best:

"Breathing has been shown to increase risk of death as well.. People who breathe regularly are 100% more likely to experience death than those who aren't breathing...."

Correlation, people. It doesn't imply causation.
Well, I was unable to "access" the peer reviews on the subject that I had read "about" and heard doctors speak of.

However, understandably if the thread you are talking about was alarmist I understand what you mean.  It was just that reading "just your comment"  helped me misunderstand then.  Because a number of recent studies link organ stress on prolonged sitting.    Just as inactivity is not JUST correlated with, but is the cause of much of the muscle atrophy found in many persons,  so it has been determined that prolonged sitting can cause unhealthy side effects.  

Other things to worry about are DVT or Deep Vein Thrombosis, and  three common areas that are affected by a desk job are the hips, shoulders and head/neck. In a seated position, the front of our hips are in hip flexion. The hip flexor muscles are shortened and tight in this position and will tend to stay short even when we are up walking around....etc.   Actually, any form of stagnation can result in problems, even sleep, if done in a problematic way.
Sure. What I'm saying is that it is entirely inaccurate to say that *sitting* is bad for you - it is an incorrect ratio of activity to inactivity that is associated with all of those things. (Not to mention that so many health problems are largely hereditary, and diet and lifestyle actually factor into them very little...but that's a bit of a tangent...)

But that doesn't make for a nice attention grabbing headline... :)
Of course, sitting is not bad, any more then standing is or eating, but anything can be done in excess. Sorry for my misunderstanding you.
BeFit3 years ago
I made this instructable "The ULTIMATE Guide to Loose Weight & Build Muscle": http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-become-fit-loose-weight-and-increase-stren/, let me know what you think and your suggestions on how to make it even better!
PS: somebody asked me if all the photos in the instructable are really mine, the answer is yes, every single photo.
I'm waiting for your kind feedbacks :)
annahowardshaw3 years ago
I knew I had one photo Instructable featured with fewer than 5 pics so I looked at the current features. On one page of recent photo features, 7 out of the 20 contain fewer than 5 pictures.

No issue with featuring projects that only have one or 2 images, but the guidelines should reflect that so that people do not feel the need to add superfluous pictures.

Sorry for spelling out 'one' and then following that with a numeric. Should have proofed better before posting!
A vanishingly-tiny goof.

Goodhart Kiteman3 years ago
Indeed, very few left anymore that would have noticed :-)
annahowardshaw3 years ago
Quick grammar comment...

Under the photo section it reads:
"At least 1 images that show final project"
The Ideanator3 years ago
Yay! finally a set of guidelines to write our ibles by to get them featured! HQ published these quality standards in the nick of time, the quality of newer ibles has been declining.

*checks date*
Oh.
This is from 2010.

*compares to new stuff in the archives*
I'm confused.
canida (author)  The Ideanator3 years ago
Check the "updated" date at the top. ;)
The Ideanator canida3 years ago
Its about time this got stickied in plain sight for everyone to see instead of being swept under the rug, so to speak.

Please tell me you stickied this...
canida (author)  The Ideanator3 years ago
?
kelseymh canida3 years ago
Idea would like this forum topic itself to be easily visible to all users, rather than have it disappear down the "old topics" hole once we stop commenting.

In particular, as he and others have suggested, putting a link to this topic right on the Submit page (for example, in the sidebar where the three types of I'bles are defined), could be really helpful to users.
Exactly my meaning kelsey.

Yes canida, I would really like to see this forum post or something similar but formatted a bit neater and still contain all the same information visible to all users by way of the submit page. perhaps it could be combined with the authoring tips page and be set as a banner there, somewhere on the homepage, and scattered randomly around the website.
Kiteman canida3 years ago
I think he means there should be a permanently-visible link to this list somewhere.

Maybe in the grey bar at the top of the page, under the search box, or somewhere in the submission process?

Chuckle....yeah, I didn't check either, but just added to the newly started "conversation" .... :-)
Kiteman3 years ago
There is also that indefinable element of awesomenossitiness (hard to spell or say, let alone define!).

IMO, awesome levels of incredible ingenuity, cleverness, usefulness or originality can compensate for a lack in other areas.

canida (author)  Kiteman3 years ago
Noted and added.
Kiteman canida3 years ago
Awe, you didn't use my spelling...
caitlinsdad Kiteman3 years ago
I think that is tied in to your levels of midi-chlorians or mitochondria or something.
Ninzerbean3 years ago
Requiring a paragraph of text with each step can make an 'ible unnecessarily wordy, sometimes a picture of stuff being mixed in a bowl or something put together sort of says it all. There is only so much you can write sometimes.... lots of times I imagine only a sentence will suffice, are you sure about this requirement?
jeff-o Ninzerbean3 years ago
A paragraph doesn't necessarily mean half a dozen sentences. I think two sentences would be enough to constitute a "paragraph."
Goodhart jeff-o3 years ago
    I was thinking the same thing.
One need not "be overly wordy" but still it is good to be clear (and concise) :-)  
canida (author)  Goodhart3 years ago
Good points, all; updated to include that nuance.
Goodhart canida3 years ago
Thank you, tis much appreciated !
kelseymh Ninzerbean3 years ago
Some descriptive text is necessary, since not everyone can see pictures, and screen readers are not yet able to provide auido description of photographs.
MichelMoermans4 years ago
I think this one should rotate on the homepage continuelly or be on a special list that anyone quickly can find it :D It's really good, I agree with everything :)
Maybe "pegged" to be visible easily?
I think it should be stickied to the homepage and on the ible creation page for easy refrence, speaking of which, what happened to the thing that popped up detailing the recommended bits to do and put into an ible before you started it?
Yeah, something like that :-) Oh, I don't know, I thought it came up when you "start" a new ible. Doesn't it anymore?
playfulplans3 years ago
Wow, excellent summary.

My first Instructible was featured on the front page yesterday, and I just found this post. I'm no expert here.

Which goes to show it's pretty much an intuitive process if you have something genuine to offer and can muster the photos, a vid or two and explain the process clearly. Step-by-step is the only way I can imagine ever doing it...

My first instructable was featured too. XD
depotdevoid3 years ago
Ah, just found this again, it had sunk pretty far into the blog. Lots of good info here, thanks!
jwystup3 years ago
Hey I just saw this and I was wondering: are there any specific criteria for getting featured in the email newsletter? I've had a couple of 'ibles featured on the homepage (yay!) but what would it take for those to get in the newsletter? Do they just have to be more awesome?
kelseymh jwystup3 years ago
I suspect that's right. Consider how many front-page features there are in a given month. They all (by assumption) meet all the featuring criteria. At that point, how do you choose the "best of the best"? The newsletter editor is probably the arbiter of those decisions.

As with the advice for getting featured in the first place, if you are really interested in getting into the newsletter, your best bet is to probably look (critically) at a bunch of the Instructables that have been there, and try to integrate what sorts of things they might have in common, especially in terms of how they're presented, not the specific project.

Good luck!
canida (author)  kelseymh3 years ago
The newsletter usually includes high quality (featured) Instructables that also have clear evidence of reader interest (popular). There's editorial discretion there too, of course, but a well-titled project with an awesome picture that's irresistably clickable is likely to earn you the attention necessary to level up to the newsletter.
DJ Radio3 years ago
If you don't have an image for a step, but you have a video to take the image's place, would that be acceptable?
canida (author)  DJ Radio3 years ago
So long as it's not the intro step, sure. But it's also pretty easy to grab a snazzy still from the video, which will make people more likely to click onto that step.
miiwii3 DJ Radio3 years ago
couldn't you do both..?
sunshiine3 years ago
Thank you for posting this! Important information that should benefit someone, especially the newbies.
Gorfram4 years ago
Okay, maybe I'm quibbling, maybe I'm curious. I do promise that this is not a "You shoulda featured my 'Ible!" whine: I can think of several good reasons that it might not have been Featured.

It's just that this Instructable (http://www.instructables.com/id/Stovetop-Photo-Studio/) seems to meet 13.5 of the 14 items on the "General" checklist (the Intro photo is a little fuzzy due to a severe crop); and, as nearly as I can tell through my own subjectivity, 2 of the 3 "Bonus" checklist items (that Intro photo really should be better than it is).

Good reasons for it not to have been Featured:
1) It may be of limited interest.
2) It really could be dangerous, if the safety precautions on the Intro page and in Step 3 were not followed.
3) It was a contest entry (does that make a difference?).
4) It pre-dates the "Channel" structure on this site; and, while it rates well for  a "Channel Feature," it falls somewhat short of a "Category Feature."

It's a perfectly good 'Ible, but it's not going to rock anyone's world (well, not unless they ignore the above-mentioned safety precautions :). Could you perhaps expand your checklist to better reflect the reasons that it might not have been featured?

Thanks.


canida (author)  Gorfram4 years ago
I probably should state above: since this is all done by humans (who, unlike Robot, occasionally sleep!) we sometimes miss good projects. For this specific project, I've just featured it in the Photography channel - so yes, #4 is correct. #3 is irrelevant, #2 doesn't apply because you've clearly defined how to do this safely, and #1 is true - this is of interest to photography buffs. The single most important item for a category or homepage feature is the picture, though. A killer picture can bump an otherwise niche project up to a more general interest level. As you mention, the photo is a bit blurry. It's also not 100% clear what's going on (composition) and could be lightened (photo editing software). So, while not right for the homepage or category, it's an extremely solid Channel feature project. I hope that helps!
DJ Radio canida4 years ago
I think interest in the subject that an instructable demonstrates shouldn't really count for or against featuring. That's like saying a video clip is bad because not a lot of people watch it, even though the video has mostly positive feedback from people who do watch it.
canida (author)  DJ Radio4 years ago
That's why it's part of the bonus checklist: homepage or category features should be of interest to people besides those who already know and like the subject. As I said above:
This personal storytelling aspect also increases the chance an Instructable will be interesting to someone not already familiar with the subject. While some topics are more generally interesting by their nature, a high-quality, detailed, awesome project will grab almost anyone's attention.

This means that, for example, a crochet or K'Nex project isn't likely to appear on the homepage unless it's a subject or story that's likely to appeal to a broader audience.  Make sense?
DJ Radio canida4 years ago
Yeah I guess so, but I still find it kind of unfair that topics with broader audiences get better chances of being featured, even with the storytelling at all.
Gorfram canida4 years ago
Thanks, Canida, for your detailed response; and for Channel-Featuring this Instructable. (FWIW, I've changed the Intro photo to one that is definitely less fuzzy and hopefully more explanatory.)

(Yippeee... my first "Featured"!!!! :) :) :)
(And that means I'm eligible for the Gift Exchange now! :)

Of course all the (non-robotic) Instructables staffers should sleep, and eat, and do their laundry, and every so often go out to play in the sun. I hope my earlier post didn't sound like I was taking you to task at all - I figure that your job must sometimes seem like herding Schrodinger's cats, and I'm very glad that you and the other staffers work so hard at doing it.
Gorfram Gorfram4 years ago
PS to add: Thanks for the checklist - it's great as it is, and very helpful. :)
DJ Radio4 years ago
What does it mean if a requirement "Doesn't apply"?
zascecs DJ Radio4 years ago
Probably if you didn't meet one of the requirements.
DJ Radio zascecs4 years ago
No, I think that just means the requirement isn't met. It would still apply but you just haven't met it.
zascecs DJ Radio4 years ago
...isn't that just what I said...?
canida (author)  zascecs4 years ago
What other folks in this thread said - "doesn't apply" means that, for this project, the criterion is irrelevant. For example, if you're doing something that's really dead-simple, you may not need multiple pictures on each step, or even very many steps. Here's a good example of an excellent but super-short Instructable: How to Remove a Tick
Saturn V DJ Radio4 years ago
It means it's not relevent. If you have a step that has no possible relevent pictures, then that wouldn't apply to that step.
Gorfram DJ Radio4 years ago
I expect it means that that particular requirement isn't relevant to that particular project. For instance, if no tools are needed to do the project, the "tools list" requirement wouldn't apply.
Skyfinity4 years ago
Very nice. This is a good list.
Kryptonite4 years ago
Fav'd!
killerjackalope4 years ago
Did the list you to just have being awesome on it?