In summary, this e-learning program covers service providers, developing HTML and other programming skills, good web page design, development issues, search engines, search engine optimisation and extra resources and references. It provides two information streams: design and re-design.
A sample of the issues covered:
For new starters, you need an internet service provider to gain access to the internet and email.
The company that actually "hosts" your site may be different. For example, some people who have found this page, may choose a free hosting service which is different to the service they use to surf the web Alternatively, you may have an existing provider and you want to review the service levels received.
The first major issue for new users is the need to develop skills in HTML and the programming languages used by the internet. For existing users, the questions relate to using the more advanced tools that are available. Should I upgrade and how do I do it?
HTML is a relatively straightforward "markup" language that enables you to format the way your web page appears. It was fantastic when it was first introduced. But there is much more to learn including CSS and XHTML.
The second major issue is the design and "feel' of the web site. Like many modern magazines and "glossy" brochures, I believe many websites are "over designed". By this, I mean they use too many gimmicks, have too much color and generally overwhelm the viewer. They are difficult to read, have too many distractions, and take ages to download. If you have an existing site, you may be considering streamlining the appearance and presentation of your web pages.
The key elements of good web design:
pages load quickly and provide something to read almost instantly;
pages are well laid out and easy to assess i.e. work out what they are about;
pages are static i.e. they do not jump about as images load;
pages are easy to navigate so that you can find what you want;
and most importantly, the content is useful and worthwhile.
Once you finalise your thoughts on the design, then development proceeds. This involves finalising the design, developing key templates, coding, testing and refining. The overall design is very important.
The ongoing maintenance and operation details then need to be implemented. It is an ongoing process. It is essential that the design facilitates expansion and maintenance.
This e-learning program covers the above issues in greater detail, aided by personal insights and links to a comprehensive range of helpful and informative sites.
Your objective in taking this journey is to achieve elements of good web design in your own web pages, whilst making it easy for you to expand and grow as needs change.
This e-journey has about 10 major pages with many links to external sites that provide general and specialist information. Depending on your needs, it will take a minimum of 30 minutes to examine this e-journey fully. Using the links and putting all the information into practice will involve more time. In the long run, the lessons learnt and the direction given, has the potential to save you from many hours of frustration and annoyance.