NORVIEW 904 Web Master/Web Design Issues

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4 Δεκ 2013 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 9 μήνες)

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1


NORVIEW
904



Web

M
aster/Web Design

Issues


Web

M
asters at member
organizations share their web development best practices
during this

November 201
1

session
. Keeping content fresh
;

tools and platforms used
;

training; web applications for mobile device
s;

and more are featured.
NOREX retains
the original, unedited version in order to facilitate future networking.


Contact your
NOREX Member Care Team for assistance.




*Please note that this is a transcript of an audio conference and it may contain misspellings and grammatical errors.


The names of participants have been abbreviated, and their organizations have been deleted from this transcript.



Training content authors and designers

................................
................................
....

4

Best practices to keep current with content

................................
...............................

5

Browser versions supported

................................
................................
......................

6

HTML5 and CSS3

................................
................................
................................
.....

8

Microsite poli
cy

................................
................................
................................
........

13

Web apps for mobile computers and cell phones

................................
....................

15

How to accommodate multiple devices besides the desktop browsers

..................

17

























2


N
OREX

Webmaster
/Web
Design

Issues

November

15, 2010




Moderator
:

Good morning, everyone. Thank you for joining today’s
W
ebmaster/
W
eb
D
esign discussion.
O
ur first topic
was
submitted by Jonathon.


TOPIC: Web Development team size and budget


Moderator:

What is your team size and budget, including outsourcing? Jonathan, we
will start with you, and see if we can get some ranges. I actually created a poll
for the
team size. You mean the webmaster department or web development department?


Jonathan D
.
:
W
e

call them web work groups.
The rationale behind this is;

we do not
get to utilize a lot of other resources in our information technology group.
So, in order to
ration and perhaps get additional resources, we needed a comparison with our
organizations. So, what I am looking for is what the explicit size is for people that report
within the web development, web group, and perhaps what other external

resources
you use. Right now, just because of the way hiring works, we have four people. But
really, we only have two normally, in addition to myself.


Moderator
:

Jonathan, how big is your IT staff in general? That might be helpful, too.


Jonathan D.:

I think
our entire staff
is around 35 people, and it is for an organization of
2500 people.





Katie P
.
:
Our total IT department is around 100 folks. People dedicated to web are only
two that are employees or contractors, but then we have outsourced as w
ell. I was
trying to look up the budget on the outsourcing, and I do not have immediate access to
it. We actually outsource the servers, the kind of care and feeding of the servers, the
upkeep of our CMS, and a little bit of web development. So, that is qu
ite a bit of money,
actually, per year. Then, our content authors are out in the rest of the organization, and
3


our communications group also does a lot of the heavy lifting in terms of updating the
content. I am not counting those folks.


Moderator
:

Katie,

thank you. The outsourced portions, has that been working out well,
especially the development piece of outsourcing?


Katie P.:
No.
W
e have taken the development kind of back in
-
house. The outsourcing
part is fine, but the development part was just too di
fficult to coordinate, with people in
various locations and time zones and levels of expertise with our content. So, we
stopped outsourcing some of the actual development, like a new form, something like
that.


Moderator
:

Thank you, Katie. Can we get any m
ore comments, please, and on your
budget?


Jonathan D.:
We have sort of a hidden budget. We are part of IT, so it is difficult for us
to actually assess what ours is. So, I am really curious to know if other people have a
handle on that.


Moderator
:

Like
the percent of your IT budget dedicated to web development?


Jonathan D.:
Yes, and also maybe, if people are doing outsourcing, how much of that
is there.


Moderator
:

OK. Comments, folks?


Alban T
.
:
It has previously been 80. We were four people for the web development. We
have been acquired during the summer by another organization, and now the total of
web development with the two locations is about ten people. The things we have a
problem with, fro
m
AD

our shop, where we develop all from scratch, all the things on the
web, on the intranet, the accounting systems, finance systems, compliance, whatever
they need. When the company which acquired us takes a lot of software from vendors,
we customize the
m, and things like that. So, we have a problem adjusting with the two
things. I do not have any idea about the budget.



I have no idea about the budget. I know now, we were like four people before the
acquisition, and now we are about ten for web developm
ent.


Jonathan D.:
I just wanted to be real corrugated on this. That is really helpful.


Moderator
:

Great. Final opportunity for comments.


Alban T.:
I would like to know if some other people use SharePoint in order to do web
development? Does SharePoint include the CMS system? That is what the company
which acquired us uses, and they still did not make any choice if they want to keep
going with SharePo
int and CMS for web development, or if they want to do it from
4


scratch as we do here with SQL Server, ColdFusion. If some people have SharePoint at
work, maybe they could share and say what
the experience with it is
.


Moderator
:

Absolutely
.
Alban, I am jot
ting that one down as an additional topic. We will
definitely get to that one in just a moment. We will just go through our order, and where
it fits in with the types of tools and products used, we will add yours. Thank you.


TOPIC: Training content auth
ors and designers


Moderator
:

How do you train your content authors and designers to take user
experience and accessibility into account? Katie, do you want to elaborate a little bit?


Katie P.:

Well, specifically since we are a government organization, we have to comply
with Section 508 accessibility standards. So, that is anything that has to be available to
users who may be blind or have low vision, who may be deaf, who may have limited
mobili
ty and be unable to use a mouse, or various other disabilities. We find it difficult,
because our technology team kind of knows what the standards are, and some of the
best practices. But, since we let our content authors actually put the content out there
,
sometimes they are not using the best practices, like using headings appropriately. If
you have to have a table, you have to go into the code and make additional notations in
the cells as to what the layout represents. Captioning, people are pretty good
about
captioning and putting all text on images. But, it is hard when it is not a main part of their
job. I just wondered if anyone had any tips.


Moderator
:

Great question. We do have quite a few government members on that have
submitted topics, and a var
iety o
f

industries on the call in general. We should be able to
get some help. Some hands are raised. Does this mean that you deal with this?
Christopher raised his hand, as well as Jonathan.


Jonathan D.:
I can chime in a little bit. We are a semi
-
governm
ental agency. We are
trying to be 508 compliant, mostly just out of fairness, not because we are under the
pressure. The management does not really see it as an essential, per se. We are using
Google as our content management system, and we use a theme tha
t has built
-
in
compliant features.
What we do is

we have a monthly web author group meeting.
We
have about 70 content creators, and we have these monthly meetings, and we go over
this periodically. Then, we also have an online author resource section, wher
e we list
best practices and, you know, the rationale behind it.
All that said;

we do not do any
enforcement.
If you look through the site, in fact, you find that there are some authors
who are really good, and most are, in fact, not bothering. So, I think

you have to couple
the education and the resources for how to do things with some sort of follow
-
up for
enforcement.


Katie P.:
Thank you.


Moderator
:
Other comments on 508
compliances
? A difficult task, I am sure, Katie.


5


Katie P.:
We are getting there.
I think we are starting to implement some of those
methods.


Jonathan D.:
I can also say that, just for our group, we use various tools. We do not
have the budget for like

a s
creen

r
eader. But there are all sorts of plug
-
ins for, for
instance, Firefox, tha
t allow you to do like one, and in a way that allows you to test
things and see things in the way that
Screen Reader

would. We try and test with that on
various platforms.


Katie P.:
OK, thanks.


Christopher F
.
:
I am also one of the government co
-
chairs
for the New York State web
forum. The accessibility stuff is something we hit hard, especially the last year. What we
found worked best, for the most part, was, we would have sessions, and we have a
couple volunteers with disabilities who would access gove
rnment sites during the
meeting, and specifically go through why there are provisions in 508 for this. New York
State actually has stricter guidelines than 508, and we went through the reasons why
those exist, especially on the government side, where it is

our job to provide information
services to the public, especially those that need it, those who are disabled, if you can
get that message. Sometimes, the only way to get that message across is to put it right
in front of somebody and force them to acknowl
edge it.


Katie P.:
Thank you. I think that was very powerful for us. We had an audit done of our
website over the summer, and my team was able to sit in on a couple of the sessions
with disabled users using our site. It was very instructive. We have a few

video clips,
and I think I need to try to show some of those at our next web group meeting. Thank
you.


TOPIC: Best practices to keep current with content


Moderator
:

Great. Katie, maybe you
and

Jonathan would want to talk offline a little bit
more in detail. We can help coordinate that.

W
e will move on to Theresa. Best ways to
keep current with content. This is challenging, isn’t it, at times?


Theresa B
.
:
Very challenging.


Moderator
:

A little
more detail, or what best practices do you have for this?


Theresa B.:
Well, I do not know that we have any best practices in place right now. Our
web group tends to be isolated from our public information office. So, oftentimes, we are
the last to know of

events that are going on in our department. I am just wondering how
others handle it. We have a central area that updates all of our content. We do not
distribute that out to our employees. So, I am just wondering how others in that same
situation handle
their content.


Moderator
:

We should be able to get some good conversation here. Comments?

6


Katie P.:
We do have a pretty good relationship with our comm
unication
s group and our
PIOs

(public information office.)

But, one thing that we have been able to do i
s get on
their mailing list. They have a daily mailing list of events, and like a roundup of coverage
in the area. So, even if you are not, you know, close to them physically or kind of
socially, water cooler talk, maybe you could get on whatever formal di
stribution list or
calendar they have, because they must have something. That is my only suggestion so
far.


Moderator
:

Thanks, Katie. Jonathan?


Jonathan D.:
We just advocate a content management system, and let the authors of
the public affairs, all the
people who have ideas for content, put it up without having to
interact with the IT folks.


Moderator
:
Jessica has got a nice chat comment here. Content authors, we do bi
-
monthly newsletters for authors with tips, tricks, and other info, to keep certain th
ings
fresh in their minds. It has been useful to some degree, as we have some regular
turnover in parts of our agency, as the intranet’s responsibilities change fairly regularly.
Even though we cover the same topics a lot, new and old authors need the remi
nders.
Jessica, thank you for that chat. Anyone else? Please feel free to speak up on ways that
help you get those business units to help you with the content, whoever is responsible
for it. It is a little quiet. Nothing more on this topic? Theresa, do you

want to add
anything else here?


Theresa B.:
No, I think I am fine. Thank you.


TOPIC: Browser versions supported


Moderator
:

All right. You have our next topic. It is, what browser versions are you
supporting? How far back? Jonathan, you shared on the last topic, we have not done it
yet, but are SFCs. For promoting content updates, is that right, Jonathan?


Jonathan D.:
To get
information from other entities that might be of interest, that might
want to give us
content
.
A

lot of CMSes will allow you to

aggregate from others, if you
get the others and post those directly on it.


Moderator
:

Thank you for your suggestions.


Alban T.:
May I say something? For the browser versions, we support IE, Firefox, and
Chrome. Also, I would be interested to be in touch with Jonathan after the talk, because
it seems he has a very good idea about organizing the information flow by putting
it
online. I would be happy to get some tips from him.


Alban T.:
How many versions, I think, is what she means.


Theresa B.:
Right. How many users support IE6, for
example?

7


Katie P.:
I can speak to that a little bit. We decided we are no longer supporting

IE6 for
full functionality. But, you still need to be able to read the content on it. We are doing
like a graceful degradation approach, or you could say, a progressive enhancement
approach. In the latest version of Chrome, the latest version of Firefox,
it is going to look
much better, and even in IE7, it will not look terrible. But in IE6, it may look kind of
disjointed, but you can still accomplish your task or read everything. We just look at our
website statistics, and we say, if something falls below

a certain percentage, we are not
going to support it anymore. For a long time, IE6 was the bane of our existence with
that, and it was kind of high up there in the percentage. But, it finally dropped and
dropped and dropped, and now, I think in the last y
ear, we have stopped supporting it
fully.


Alban T.:
Which one did you stop supporting?


Katie P.:
IE6.


Alban T.:
IE6, OK. But you support 7 and 8?


Katie P.:
Yes. IE6, you still have to be able to read our website on it. But, we are not
holding the desig
n to look good in IE6.


Alban T.:
I like your approach. It is useable, but you do not look at the details of the
presentation. I like your approach, how you are doing it.


Moderator
:

Katie, do you know that percentage?


Katie P.:
That is a good question. A
t first we were kind of saying, when it was like 20%,
we said we have to support it. When it started dropping, it started dropping fairly quickly.
Eventually it got down to like less than 2%, and we are not supporting it anymore. I think
it would have been

a tougher call if it were maybe at 5% or 6%. We would have had to
say, well, and we would have had to look more closely and said, who are these users.
But when it got down below 2%, it was pretty easy. If you do the progressive
enhancement or graceful deg
radation, then it is easier to convince people that, the
content is still there, but it is just that we are not holding it to the same design standards.


Alban T.:
I think that is a good approach to it. Because if you want to reconcile all the
older
versions, that should be impossible to get only one percent. So some choice must
be made, and I do like the way you approach it.


Moderator
:

Excellent. We have some great chats, and we will definitely take more
comments. I am going to share, Blaise, you de
velop in Firefox, then check other
browsers. You say you support IE6 only if you have Windows 2000 computers in the
group. So, a lot of these relate to IE6 and how you are addressing this older version.
Jonathan shared, we cut off, so everything is possibl
e except IE6, very much echoing
Katie. More importantly, we are also moving to try and support mobile higher end stuff,
also trying to get into progressive enhancement.

8


Jonathan D.:
The more important thing I wanted to say was, we are in the Bay Area, so
p
eople are pretty much up with technology. So, we were able to look at the stats and let
the stats drive us. IE6 is like less than a percent of our users. We were able to just look
at the stats and say, we do not have the do this anymore. But, you cannot ju
st make an
arbitrary decision based on what people here might be saying. You really need to look
at your data and say, what do we need to support? If everybody is running on some
ancient version of
Conqueror
, or if everybody is running on iPads, that shoul
d drive the
decision.


TOPIC: HTML5 and CSS3


Moderator
:

Thank you. Great question, Theresa. Shall we move on? Your next one is,
how are others using HTML5 and CSS3? Anymore detail from you, Theresa?


Theresa B.:
I am just curious if others have started,
and ways that they are finding it
useful.


Moderator
:

So, when you say started, does everyone relate to this HTML5 and what
CSS3 is?


Woman:
Yes.


Alban T.:
Yes.


Moderator
:

OK. How are others using it, or are you using it? Are these more up and
coming?


A
lban T.:
We are just exploring HTML5 so far. We are not fully developed into it. We do
not use CSS here. I used it in my previous shop. We used CFBuilder.


http://www.adobe.com/products/
coldfusion
-
builder.html


Moderator
:

CSS competes with HTML5? No?

(Cascading Style Sheets)


Alban T.:
No. Those are two different things. HTML5 is some code. CSS is a framework
for development like Dreamweaver. It deletes part of reduction. Dreamweaver is p
art of
CSS, 3, 4.


Katie P.:
You can say HTML5 is kind of the bones and the contents, and CSS is
cascading style sheets, and it is how it is presented.
So how it looks is controlled by the
CSS, and what it is controlled by the HTML.
HTML will tell you,
this is a heading one,
this is a heading three, this is a heading three. Then, CSS will tell you, OK, the heading
one is this big and this color, heading two is this big and this color, and it is indented
and has italics or whatever. As far as us, we have

started to use it. So, what we are
doing with it is, creating a template for our new forms. Our regular pages that are in the
CMS, we are not touching those right now. But brand new forms, we created a template
9


using HTML5 and CSS3. So any new forms that
we create from now on, we will use
that template to create them. That also helps us with accessibility. There are some
things in HTML5 that makes that easier.


Alban T.:
What are the advantages of HTML5 versus previous versions?


Katie P.:
I do not know if

I can actually answer that. There is more.


Jonathan D.:
You can do rounded corners.


Chris W
.
:
We just got done with the process of hiring a mobile developer who is going
to come on board in January and we expect virtually everything that he is going to
develop to be in HTML5 and CSS3. Part of the great advantage to it, I am not sure if
anybody on t
he call is familiar with responsive web design. Essentially what responsive
web does is allows you to build one website and there are break points within the
cascading style sheets so that allows the exact same website to render correctly in
multiple devic
es. So instead of siloing off your development where you have a desktop
site and a tablet site and a mobile site you are essentially building one website that
renders correctly across all devices. There is great benefit to that obviously because we
don’t k
now exactly what devices are going to be popular next year. I have heard it said
as; we don’t know what the devices are that are going to be Christmas presents next
year, but they
will

all have browsers. Part of the great way of developing that way is that

it hits Blackberry, Android, iPhone, iPad, desktop and you
-
name
-
it; all devices. I believe
that we will start seeing a lot more of the HTML5 CSS3 development, not only for the
accessibility benefits but that it is going to be usable by virtually everyone.



Alban T.:

I have something to say about the mobile app or actually web app. We
started to explore it so I did the part (?).
Two

o
f us started to create standard ____
toward our intranet application accessible on the mobiles because we have many
people
traveling around the world. We have contracts in various many countries so
sometimes in Africa or many places they don’t have good connections for computers so
they should be able to access our intranet the mobile app. What I did was just
experimental. Jus
t using CSS positioning I could have a good result whether on the
desktop iPad or any kind of phone; iPhone or Blackberry, Android. IT was
fairly

good
results and
fairly

simple. I was a little bit
surprised
. I have a colleague who investigated
jQuery
. That

is new for mobile app. It works well on it with the phone. If we go on the
desktop with other browsers it doesn’t render well depending on the browser. So doing
just CSS positioning was working quite well. It was quite kind of simple.


http://jquery.com/


Chris W.:
We are also using
jQuery

at least as our temporary mobile framework for the
home page. There are benefits to it. It was easy to develop. It was easy to deploy. At
the end of the day however we do realize that
people are coming in on the mobile
devices and the last thing that we need to do is have them download lots of Java script.
I wi
l
l throw this out here so that you all can try this out. As far as the responsive web
10


design one of the greatest examples is pro
bably the Boston Globe. Bostonglobe.com,
pull it up in a desktop browser and then minimize the screen and watch what happens
to the content. It is the exact same website. Basically the layout changes as you move
the browser back and forth.
If you have 240
pixels of width real estate then it is going to
present the content in 240 pixels.


Alban T.:

Well what I did with CSS position in
refusing

(?) different styles of
positioning; absolute or relative or whatever, it was all of the time all the features were
fitting well on either mobile phone screen or on iPad or on the desktop. We don’t have
any problem with any browsers with
fairly

good resul
ts actually.


Chris W.:
Building for mobile web and building for CSS3 and HTML5 is sort of going to
have to take us out of the
comfort

of traditional web mastering where we were all down
with
P
ixel
P
erfect and placing items exactly where we want to on the

screen. Part of
having to build this way allows for fluidity across multiple devices so that it is going to be
virtually impossible to have headers exactly where we want them. We are going to have
to at some point shed the whole Pixel Perfect mindset and
embrace that devices are
different.

Our end users, our customers are all using different devices.


Moderator
:
Great conversation here folks. I am going to share a few of these chats.

Thanks
to all for contributing to the call.
Jonathan

shared that he is

just starting for the
mobile to use…


Jonathan D.:
Right,
we’re

going to redo our intranet.


Moderator
:
We are starting our intranet redo and are doing mobile first with these.
Virginia says; we are still waiting for HTML5 standards to be finalized. Ken
shared: we
are looking into TML5 but have found few browsers who currently support it w
e
ll. Maybe
that is something that we
haven’t

covered yet regarding HTML5. Anybody with a
comment on that?


Katie P.:
That is a problem with HTMS5; not all of the
browsers support it yet. We have
to actually code even more.


Moderator
:
So if you code more that is how you get around it?


Katie P.:
Yes.


Moderator
:

Any other folks with comments on th
ei
r browser limitation right now? OK,
Jes
s
ica shares; Adobe CS5.5 allows for HTML5 Css3 development and will make
responsive web design easier to accomplish as a previous speaker was touching on. It
has capabilities with the click of a few buttons and a few simple code adjustments that
allow you t
o develop your desktop website and use native functionality in the CSS5.5
software to add code to your site that will make it render correctly across devices.
Thank you
J
essica. From web to mobile to app in 60 seconds with
Dreamweaver

CS5.
You have got a

l
ink for us here, right Jessica?

11


Jessica

J
.
:

Yes, there is a link there. It is a quick video to show you how CS5.5 works
to render your website. I actually watched an Adobe
representative

that
usually

works
with the department of defense go through how it a
ll works. It really looks like a great
product. We are in the process of

trying to get it ourselves and trying to head that
direction.


Moderator
:
Jessica, thank you. All
of

the chats, I am sharing them vocally as much as I
can but that link and others wi
ll all be in the transcript too. Do you need something

beforehand
?


Enhanced HTML5 Capabilities in CS5.5
http://tv.adobe.com/watch/cs
-
55
-
web
-
premium
-
feature
-
tour
-
/enhanced
-
html5
-
capabilities
-
in
-
cs55

Updated Support for CSS3
http://tv.adobe.com/watch/cs
-
55
-
web
-
premium
-
feature
-
tour
-
/updated
-
support
-
for
-
css3/


Alban T.:

I just wanted to say that for people who are researching this and were
embroiled in it right now, the things that people have been saying; progressive
enhancements and responsive web and mobile first, they are all sort of intertwined so if
you search for those things you can get some idea.


Moderator
:
Excellent, thank you very much. Blaise is asking; can I have the contact
info
for

the per
s
on who hired

an HTML5 mobile developer. I am trying
to

recall who that
was. Can you share?


Chris W.:
That was me.


Moderator
:
Thank you very much. Blaise we will get the two of you connected. Moving
on to Julio

who

is converting from an apache PHP MySQL website to
a Microsoft .Net
infrastructure. What are the challenges and issues you face during this conversion. Julio
I see that you are on. Has anyone done this on
today’s

call?


Alban T.:


We don’t use PHP or .Net.


Moderator
:
Julio could you speak up at all?
Jonathon

shares; increased cost. When
you go to Microsoft
,

Jonathon
?


Jonathan D.:
We are actually running
Drupal

on Microsoft IIS platform for various
reasons. I am sort of joking about the cost. That is an obvious one. Any time you move
something
, when y
ou go away from the open source and out
of

the very broad
community
support stuff

in some ways it gets harder to support. You can buy products
maybe more easily but you don’t get the open source community support like Apache
and PHP.


http://drupal.org/

12


Moderator
:
Thank you. Blaise asks; do you need to host the PHP in
an

IIS server.
Blaise, that relates to when you convert to a .Net infrastructure? Jessica shares;
enhanced HTML5
capabilities
. Jessica, your comments rela
te to this topic right? You
have some links here again. I think they are more related to SCC3. She is sharing
several links. They will all be in the transcript. Jonathan says; you can do PHP on either
platform. I don’t know if Julio has up on mute or had t
o
step

away. Anything else on this
topic? From here I would like to add Alvin’s topic on SharePoint and using SharePoint
for web development and CMS. You were SQL cold Fusion, is that right Alvin?


Alban T.:

Yes, the organization which has been acquired I

am working for, we develop
web development from scratch. We use SQL server, Cold Fusion and CSS HTML of
course but that is the main thing. Now the company which acquired
us,

they have
SharePoint

and they use the CMS built in SharePoint to do the website a
nd the intranet.
Their big discussion now is to which way
they

want to go. Do they want to go our way
from scratch or do they want to buy off the shelf and do some CMS with SharePoint? So
I would like to know more if someone is using SharePoint for the dev
elopment of the
web site I would be very interested to know more about that.


Moderator
:
Let’s do a show of hands for those who are using SharePoint for the
development

of their website.
Three
. Blaise, can you speak. And we have Patty with her
hand raised. Katie has her hand raised so three. We have about 22 on folks and
everybody is on the web portion so that is great.
Comments from those with their hands
raised?
Alban,

you want
to

know their
experience with it?


Alban T.:

Yes, how do they do it?
How good is it?
What are the pros and cons and all
of
that?

We have to make some decisions.


Moderator
:
What version would that be? Would that be the 2010?


Alban T.:

Well I don’t know which one. I
t doesn’t matter which version. Basically how it
works, I know
that

they use CMS within SharePoint.
If people want to develop websites
with SharePoint through CMs I would like to know if it is possible to customize it on top
of CMS or if it is possible to
even go from scratch within SharePoint or not.


Katie P.:
Where we are right now is we have kind of a pilot SharePoint 2007. We are
getting SharePoint 2010 for our intranet as someone else mentioned. So intranet right
now. Our thought is in about two years

we may expand that to our
public

facing website
however we are also keeping an open mind and thinking that in two years technology
may change. So I have sat through a lot of Microsoft demos and worked with it a little
bit. The best analogy that I have hea
rd so far is that SharePoint is like a swill army knife
and it does a lot of little things. It does a lot of things but it
is not

going

to be the best
tool for any one thing. I think that the CMS portion is
particularly

weak compared to
other things that i
t does. If you talk to Microsoft you can look at ferari.com and that is
built on SharePoint. It is built entirely on SharePoint.
Ferrari

like the car and it is a very
impressive website. So you can
do a

lot. My opinion is that you can do anything as long
a
s you have very strong .Net developers.

13


Alban T.:

OK, I see. And is it possible also to develop a website from scratch within
SharePoint or that is only through CMS?


Katie P.:
I am not sure how to answer that actually. Like you would pull content from
within SharePoint but display it though your…


Alban T.:

I would say using SharePoint to develop a website from scratch meaning not
using the CMS coding or coding all of it.


Katie P.:
You would have
to

have really strong .Net developers. Very strong.


Alban T.:

The other company, they used because they had SharePoint and they used
.Net when they are using Cold Fusion. Not quite compatible.


Moderator
:
I have a comment here from Jan. She shares; we use SharePoint for our
external website but I have no
t been involved in the development. I only maintain the
pages and I find SharePoint very restrictive because they limit the customizations to just
a large farm. It certainly is not good for conte
n
t management. She echoed I believe
Katie’s comment on that.
Jonathan

says he used SharePoint at Morgan Stanley when
he was there a long time ago. Very expensive and difficult
to

work with but
that

was a
long time ago. Blaise, did you have a comment. You had your hand raised as well as
Patty.


Patty D
.
:

We use Share
Point primarily for our intranet. We mostly use it out
of

the box. I
did do some
InfoPath

forms using that and minor kind of development things. We have
also found that
because

we are in a shared environment, a large farm, customization is
more difficult
b
ecause

we would affect other SharePoint sites.
So we haven’t done a lot
of that. We found it works great for our
intranet
. We have not used the content
management feature. Pretty much out of the box for our intranet.


Alban T.:
It seems then all
of

the co
mmands goes (?) then it is easy if they do general
things but as soon as it would be content or specific customized it doesn’t seem to be
too great.


Jessica J.:
You just have
to

have someone that
really

knows what they

are doing
because it is really easy to break.


Moderator
:
Thank you very much. Good comments folks. We have several other
topics yet. I am going to go to Katie
.



TOPIC: Microsite policy


Moderator:

How do you support users who want their own website a
nd not a page on
your organizational website? Do you have a microsite policy?


14


Jessica J.:
We kind of have, this is going to address her and then SharePoint as well.
We don’t
allow

anything externally. You have to use what we have and we work within a
spe
cific framework. We make people do that and if they don’t want it then they don’t get
anything. Internally however we do use SharePoint for our internal sites but we also
have
about

30+ team sites that we use for divisions, sections, units or special
commi
ttees that will last as long as the committee lasts. So kind of internally they can
have their own space. Then going off of SharePoint the biggest problem that we found
that we consistently have to deal with all
of

the time is permissions problems. Who has

permission to what and people not being educated about what they can do with their
permissions. So people who have owner rights will accidentally delete their own owner
rights and then they can’t fix themselves. So we are constantly having to fix permissi
ons
for SharePoint sites, all of the time.


Moderator
:
Kat
i
e, you have 2007 SharePoint, correct?


Kat
i
e

P.
:

Yes, but this is specifically about our public facing site which is not
SharePoint. I guess our situation is a little bit different than a corpora
tion partly because
there are people who get grant money and then go and do their own thing or they just
feel like; we are separate. We are different. It is a struggle for us. We are trying to
support them but let them have their own branding. When people
just go off and do their
own thing we are trying to come up with a better way to support them.


Jessica J.:
We do have, we have put a business owner
of

the site. Our particular
business owner is our government media relations department. So if people come
to

us
and say; we want our own site. We want this separate. We pretty much tell them; you
have
to

go through them. So there is just one group of people they have to go through
to get approved. So that has been a real help for us because we as the web team
don’t
have to deal with someone wanting something that we know they can’; have so we send
them to someone who has more authority than we do to tell them that they can’t have it.
In this particular case we do have a few kind of satellite sites but that is
b
ecause

their
grants provided money to have those sites built. So if we don’t get that money then we
have to go through our regular process. The media relations department
is in charge of
what the public is going to see on our site. If you can convince them

that you deserve
your own little separate area then that is where it comes from for us.





Moderator
:
Thank you. I did put a poll up here folks too, microsite policies in place to
accommodate users; no, no but considering or yes. So far it has been a u
nanimous no
with six people responding but many more to come yet. Patty shares; we don’t have a
policy on microsites but we don’t allow them. Thank you Patty. Please participate in the
15


call. We have got nine who have; all unanimously no. we have got a yes
here. Can we
ask for that person to speak?


Jonathan D.:
We have I think almost 1000 policies and
procedures
. Actually probably
more than that because we

have been around
for

a long time and that is the way that
we do thing. So naturally we have a policy o
n this.
We basically have public affairs and
community affairs office vet anything. We have had some external sites that were
created because we were doing these pilot projects for like automated meter reading
and stuff like that but we are very careful ab
out how we disseminate branding and then
for internal stuff we do allow anybody to create a workgroup
sub site
. They are not really
sub sites
. They are all part of the intranet.


Moderator
:
Thank you. Our results so far show nearly 85%
with
no for micro
site policy
and two, we heard from Jonathan. Anyone else with a comment here? Is that helpful
Katie?


Katie P.:
Yes, thanks.


Moderator
:
Blaise also had chatted, it is related I believe to SharePoint, yes we need
.Net programmers. Setting permissions cor
rectly is also very important. Blaise did you
want to share anything vocally too? I think he may be muted. Thank you for that chat.
Any final things on microsites?


TOPIC:
W
eb apps for mobile computers and cell phones


Moderator:

Peter chats that t
hey are sharing that they are doing a big revamp of the
entire
communications

with the public with a rework of their website. We are exploring
what it would take to offer our site as a suitable display to users of mobile devices. We
would like to maintain
our regular HTML pages as we always have through Adobe
products. It would be nice if there was a piece of software available that would server
that content up in the appropriate format for mobile users. Now maybe one was
mentioned here already today. I thi
nk he is going to appreciate the transcript but any
comments here? What would you do if you had a full revamp of your website?


Alban T.:

I would see there are two offerings. There is HTML5 is not fully supported
yet. It would be a little bit early to go
with that
because

it would be a lot of problems for
some people to access it. The easy way would be we develop it here to be acc
ess
ible
on computers and mobile apps using CSS positioning and with the ID or VH (?) tag on
the form and actually it is very eas
y we don’t even need to use tables. We just lift the
tag, the
labels
, the text box or whatever we need on the phone. We even don’t need to
be in the proper order with the CSS positioning. It comes right on a mobile phone
whether it is a big screen mobile p
hone, a very small one which flips over, iPad; it works
fine. Now of course HTML5 and CSS3
will

be the future and it will be better to develop
in it so I would say if you want to go ready for the future I would wait until HTML5 and
CS3 are more widely acce
pted or supported, I would say. Otherwise if you want
to

do it
right away you can do it this way. It is actually very easy to code.
So that is the two
16


choices I see.
Also jQuery for mobile apps also is not well supported by many
browsers;

it is mostly ____
_ the future like HTML5 and CSS3. Currently there is an easy way to do
it but if you want later on you may have to redo it if you want to go to HTML5 and CSS3.


Moderator
:
Thank you very much Alban. Jessica shares; Adobe Creative Suite 5.5
would probabl
y do the job for them. It is just an updated software of what they already
have. Thanks Jessica. Then Verlene chats; you need to consider what content mobile
users need to see. Good comment. Verlene, anything else? Anything more on this
one? Otherwise I a
m going to move over to a similar

topic
; how do you make a web app
usable for computers and cell phones?


Alban T.:

That is about the same thing as what I just said.


Moderator
:
Maybe we can get you some more conversation going here Alban.


Alban T.:

I

just described how we did it here. We had two approaches because we
were exploring. One of my coworkers was exploring with jQuery for web apps. Coding
-
wise it is easy but we felt the most flexible was just using CSS positioning with the ID
tag with only t
ables even, no structure on the phone. Just put the list of the tags we
want,
labels
, text boxes, drop down list button and then we use the ID with the CSS to
position them on the phone and this was very well received by iPads, any computers,
browsers, any

cell phone. That is the best result we got for compatibility with everything.
Now I feel it is not quite the future but for now that is what
works the best for us.


Katie P.:
The o
n
ly thing that

I

might add is if possible you might have already covered
this but to accommodate if it is a web app any entry fields. If it is a web address, if it is
an email address, if it is a phone number, that the markup note what kind of entry it is,
that the device

can serve up the right keypad for it. Like on an iPhone if you are
entering

an email address it gives you the @ button and the .com or if it is a phone number it
gives you the keypad rather than the keyboard.


Alban T.:

With what I have developed with ju
st CSS positioning and ID the phone was
working the way
it

is
supposed

to. It is an iPhone and there is a drop down list. The
person t
o
uched the drop down list and then up on the screen it brings that list of
options. The person just holds to it with the f
inger, clicks the one and it puts the one in
the value. So this is specific for the phone itself. It doesn’t interfere with that. It just fits
into it. We were
surprised

and
it

was actually the easiest way to do it and it was the one
which was working with

everything.
If it
is

another phone which has another way to
approach a drop down list the phone would do it its own way. It would react properly to
it.


Katie P.:
The only other thing that I have seen talked about is maybe moving your
menu to the bottom
of the screen partially so that when you are scanning the phone you
see the most important things first and partly for navigation if you are using your thumbs
to hit buttons and you have a soft menu at the bottom you can get to those easily
instead of at t
he top like on most web pages.

17


Alban T.:

We didn’t do that.


Katie P.:
Just an idea.


Alban T.:

Especially not for the public but for people here who work and travel, or try to
access the website from other countries and they don’t have a computer networ
k or it is
problematic. But what they do to the form is not everything. It is the things which are
essential for them.
It cannot be late otherwise when they arrive in a place where they
can do; they will do all of their _____.
They want to record a travel
expense and things
like that. So the forms are not that busy. Some are bigger, they can scroll
through
. If we
go that way when they go there they know it is a specific task they have to have. So the
website they get gets right away the form, enter the data
,
and push

the button. It is
specific because in many areas where we work there is a problem with access.


Moderator
:
Thank you. Well we are trying Alban. Here is one more comment in the
chat. Thank you Katie and Alban. Jessica chats; they recently devel
oped a new web
app to
accommodate

courts and attorneys etc. as they were asked for an easier way to
obtain collision reports. One of the big requirements was
that

it needed to be
accessible

from mobile devices as most of the users were grabbing these repor
ts in the court. Our
app development team worked in conjunction with one of our web developers on the
user interface while the app doesn’t change in look from desktop to mobile the
functionality works on both and at the end of the day that is all that matt
ers right now. It
works with our customers.
They are happy they can get what they need for mobile
devices. We will look at a more mobile centered interface in the future.
The link to our
new web app, and she is providing that, is


https://fortress.wa.gov/wsp/wrecr/WSPCRS/Search.aspx
.


I will send that one specifically to you Alban and of course folks it will be in the
transcript. Jessica, thank you for all of the links you have been providing. If someone
needs it before that, just let us know. Just contact
membercare@norex.net

and we wi
ll
send them


TOPIC: How to accommodate multiple devices besides the desktop browsers


Moderator
:
Absolutely
.
Everyone

on will get the transcript. In fact everyone
registered

to be on will get the transcript. Thank you. I think again this is very popul
ar. How do you
best accommodate multiple types of accessing devices
besides

desktop
browsers?

Does anyone want to add
anything

more here on the different devices you use besides
desktop browsers? OK, we can invite a
couple

of additional topics. One we had
for you
related to Drupal. Jonathan I think shared they use Drupal. Can others provide tips on
the development of native apps using a unified development platform like Titanium with
Drupal as a backend service driving the data in the app? Could anyone help

a fellow
NOREX

member with this? They are both related to Drupal. This next one is;
implementation of Apache Solar faceted search on a Drupal site. Has anyone done this
or could network? Is Jonathan still on?

18


Jonathan D.:
Y
es, I am willing to certainly
help

with this. We have the other way
around. We have got a lot of legacy apps that we are trying to integrate into Drupal and
I think the short answer is you either refactor to move things around or better you just
use web services and Drupal has a bunch
of

well they have the service
module

that
works with a bunch of things. That is probably the best way to go from Drupal to
something. I guess that is the short answer.


Moderator
:
Thank you Jonathan. Final comments or final topics before we end today?
Great job everyone.


End of discussion.



















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