Main Points

  • Core Page Updates Changes to core pages of the Earth Chronicle family.
  • Web Design We have some great ideas, but insufficient creative talent. We need great designers to work with!
  • Website Techniques Techniques for improving the performance, flexibility, or power of the website.
  • Long Term Projects These are the big projects that we are probably not ready to tackle at this point. However, we dream big.

The website log tracks all the changes that we'd like to make to the website, both past and present.

Core Page Updates

Database Applications

Create login system for San Diego girl scouts to manage their site sales.

  1. Customize DAL to access GS times, probably need MySQL, can I get that up and running??
  2. Pull data into UI to construct basic information structure
  3. Create login system that which modifies UI to display links to add and remove allowable timeslots; write business logic to determine which timeslots are allowed for each user.
  4. Create dynamic Add page to insert new timeslots for each troop. Add this page to robots.txt to disallow access for SEO purposes.
  5. Create dynamic Remove page to remove timeslots that a troop no longer wants. Add this page to robots.txt to disallow access for SEO purposes.

Study how to use MySQL database in production and how to build and implement connections using .NET

Convert site to run from "http://www.earthchronicle.com/" instead of from subfolders "http://www.earthchronicle.com/EC/" with ISAPI rewrite: 301 redirect all pages from their various subfolders to the new address.

Redo website log as database entries. Display by topic, start or end date, or search the entries for keywords.

Create application to automate the basic pieces of the testing process: track test phases, switch pages automatically from one set of resources to another (testing vs. dated vs. live)

Set up Site Index and Table of Contents to pull from a database (or XML sitemap?)

Set up Image Index and Image Table of Contents to pull from a database (or XML sitemap?). Rename to Earth Chronicle Museum? At http://Museum.EarthChronicle.com/?

Research: Do these need to be based on databases or can we search the file structure and pull the files or images into the page dynamically?

Create Link Factory and integrate it into all of the core pages. This involves taking the full demonstration and working it up into a live version, including...

  1. Writing Business logic so the link factory can use a a data packet / data adapter / data interface provided by the DAL to build links into the application
  2. Building a live DAL to supply the data from a database. That was mostly completed in the demonstration, but we need to be able to leverage MySQL which is the technology available on my account. (If I can use MySQL Admin as advertised to create backups that I can throw back and forth to keep everything synced. I'll be perfectly happy with that.)
  3. Work out .htaccess file for Helicon ISAPI rewriting. I'd like to save the /EC/ and /ECBeta/ links if possible. Rewriting all the links for the link factory would seem to be the perfect time to finish those link issues as well.

Build admin system for Girl Scouts. That takes hours each night if I have to do that in the new year.

  1. Troops need to log in. (Available dates and the troops own dates should be links; avl dates can be added, troop dates can be removed.
  2. Clicking on any link (with location, time & date as parameters) takes you to an "add / delete" page that confirms this is what you want to do. Add / Delete page should be removed by robots.txt for SEO.
  3. Need DAL to retrieve information from the database
  4. Need to populate tables for each sales location.

Content Projects

Rewrite portions to reflect appropriate naming conventions, e.g. Greeks should become "Helenes" in the greek alphabet, followed by parenthesis with the appropriate name for whatever language is set, for English it should read, "This is the Helenes (Greeks) emerged."

2009/01/20 Chroniclemaster1 Add v1 website (the original black and green from geocities/chroniclemaster1) to "live websites" section.

2009/01/20 Chroniclemaster1 Add v1 Atlas website (the black and green variant) to "live websites" section.

Website Design

Background Images & CSS Layouts

Create some great images to decorate the page design. For standard pages we'd love images to give the webpage the feel of an old book or tattered edges of a piece of parchment. Other pages lend themselves to other themes (Does not Roman Forum scream for Roman architectural elements that turn the page into a tour of Rome, colorful circuits and computer chips for the web development section, etc.)

2009/11/05 Chroniclemaster1 For standard pages we'd love images to give the webpage the feel of an old book or tattered edges of a piece of parchment.

2009/11/06 Chroniclemaster1 Create a Red C logo for the beta site.

This was pretty easy. I took the original Earth Chronicle favicon and copied the green C to a new layer. I created a solid red (#FF0000) fill layer above it and set the fill layer to "Color" mode. This gave me the look of a nice red C. Last, I merged the layers down and then saved the new icon. [chroniclemaster1, 2009/11/06]

Create a favicon logo for the Atlas too or is that overkill? Maybe with the whole thing in sepia tone?

Design some more sophisticated and attractive CSS layouts that still preserves a lot of our fundamental goals like fluid layouts. Multiple designs for a new section on creating a design from scratch.

Create a Red C logo for the beta site. Should I do something special for the Atlas too or is that overkill?

Flash

There are all kinds of awesome Flash things we can do with the website from animations of maps or historical events, Flash applications, increasing the attractiveness of the web design, etc.

Multimedia

We would love to add multimedia to the website in order to increase functionality.

Add audio and video galleries to go with the image gallery.

JavaScript

Build a function that permits the swapping out of class names. This is a more reliable and robust way to make changes on a webpage than to issue JavaScript commands directly.

Web Development

Menus

Flyout menus. This would greatly increase the flexibility and number of pages that we could access from the main menu.

Menus that flyout to the left or right, up or down, like a windows context menu depending on where the menus are relative to the edges of the screen. Problematic?

Menus that flyout to the left or right, up or down, like a windows context menu depending on where the menus are relative to the edges of the screen. Problematic?

Server Performance

Research: .NET Data Caching, is the website already doing it? If not, how? We need to be able to add a file, have it update immediately, and then hang as downloadable XHTML, until it or one of it's dependencies are altered and then rebuild again.

JavaScript

Build a function that permits the swapping out of class names. This is a more reliable and robust way to make changes on a webpage than to issue JavaScript commands directly.

.NET applications

Implement a forum so that multiple instances can be run off the same database. The beta site will need it's own and so will Earth Chronicle.

Long Term Projects

Add 2 discussion boards. One for serious history, allows submitters, editors, researchers to post messages for one another, discuss points in public for comment, ask questions, and make Earth Chronicle more interactive for visitors, etc. The other for political/interpretive discussion where people can vent less formally developed ideas and celebrate the diversity of ideas we hope to encourage without the necessity for rigidly researched references, vigorous approval process, etc., etc.

Add a number of new domain names for subsections of Earth Chronicle.

Create an adequate backup system for the websites. One possibility is TIA and MIA systems (Totally and Mostly isolated archives). Ideally all information should also be archived offline. The MIA system could take advantage of limited access to outside files, possibly excluding, possibly including internet access. However, this would make it possible to archive everything from the website to a relatively secure platform that lives mostly away from internet contact. MIA functions effectively as a quarantined system to safeguard information. TIA is simply the most extreme version of this. TIA would never be online or have access to other media. In its most extreme form, the only input to a TIA system would be keyboard and mouse, with all webpages retyped by hand into the archive (obviously sans multimedia files of any kind, text only). In theory TIA would be absolutely secure from everything except physical malfunction. When information is needed from the archive, it would be easy to retrieve it from MIA, by writing to DVD, swappable hard drive, etc. and transferring the information back to the internet server. For security, an extreme TIA would only be able to share information by writing to a swappable hard drive (preferably a new one) or some media drive that was Write only, probably difficult to find off the shelf. E.G. if there were a write only DVD drive available it could be safely attached to a TIA system to burn information in the TIA archive enabling the information to be uploaded back to the server.

Add personality and learning style ratings and searches. People should be able to rate pages for content and style (with a form box to notify us of any errors or problems). People should also be able to search the site for articles they are interested in. These two features should ideally tie in with people's personality and learning style so that their searches turn up articles best suited for them and their ratings serve as markers to other people with similar learning styles. Everyone starts out with simply a general profile, probably using only a "if you like this page, you'll like this one..." format. However by taking a series of short psychological tests, we can give people a reasonable suggestion as to how best to configure their personality and learning style settings. Preferably we would not hold this information to ensure people’s privacy. Quick and dirty approximations of the Strong-Campbell categories (perhaps as simple as the hexagon party room where people are asked their first, second and third choices of groups) and/or Myers-Briggs types would probably be sufficient for personality guides. Visual vs. audio, etc. would be one important class of learning styles to determine, but there are certainly other important ways for people to configure their interface to best suit them that go far beyond such a simple determination.

Build a library of original texts (by jpegs if necessary for documents created before printing was standardized and letters/characters are open to interpretation). Then provide text of the documents alongside to make difficult documents readable. Poetry/Shakespeare would probably have Arden-style notes and possibly full metrical analysis. Materials in a foreign language should have gradations of translations (ideally full Perrill translations) into idiomatic English. Hopefully include other services like Public Domain image galleries and quotation reference guides.

Develop a governing structure for Earth Chronicle. Perhaps along the following lines. A democratic legislative body that sets business and changes by a supermajority (55% minimum) with an elected more conservative Senate that it shares power with. An elected president, and committees (effectively judicial) that oversee all aspects of the website. Judicial, executive, and legislative should share checks and balances and legislative divided into the democratic assembly and the more cautious Senate with checks and balances over each other.