Running the local community newspaper, I often come across club secretaries who aren’t too happy at changing their website information because their web designer takes too long to carry out requests. There is a way but it entails a little computer savvy, but the webmaster still retains control of the structure.
This is particularly helpful if the web designer uses Dreamweaver or similar software that doesn’t update the site but totally overwrites the site. This precludes others making amendments as the amendments would be lost immediately the web designer runs Dreamweaver again.
The first stage is for the webmaster to create an additional web directory that Dreamweaver does not touch. Then the webmaster needs to create SHTML files for every HTML file which might need updating.
The next stage it to move all the copy in the HTML file to the SHTML file, and place a link into the HTML file to collect the data from the SHTML file each time the HTML file is activated.
That is all the webmaster needs to do to take all the pressure off his shoulders.
However, there are technical things the club or society needs to do but I am sure they will have a technical person somewhere in their membership who will help. I will itemise the things to do below.
You don’t need to understand what I have written below as your technical member will make sense of it, and your webmaster will certainly.
First of all, two pieces of software are needed.
- An editor to make it easy to write HTML code.
- A program to send the files you edit up to the website.
There are many editors for HTML but Kompozer is a free editor which I use, and is available for The Mac, Linux, Windows. There are also FileZilla, a program also available on Windows, Mac and Linux, which will send your documents up to the website effortlessly.
However, the great thing about Kompozer is that you only need one program to both edit your pages, and then send them up via FTP. Your web-designer will help you set it up. As it is free and on all platforms it will take him seconds to download the software and tell you what to do
We run our Website this way. Our web-designer, Howard, is the CEO for a technical company and although he helps the Finchley Arrow free of charge, he doesn’t have a lot of free time. He uses Dreamweaver and I was using Quanta Plus for editing, and FileZilla for sending the SHTML files up, but now I will use Kompozer for both.
If any club secretary is still hesitant, it might help if I mention it takes me around five minutes to fire up the program, make any changes, and post them up to the website – providing the amendment is small of course. If you have to make an urgent change, how long would it be before you get your website changed? Remember, your website is the window to your world.