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View Full Version : need website update help



Holden1
08-25-2005, 03:18 PM
I want to redo our main (front) home page, which is:
http://www.townofholden.net/

here are two I like the look of:
http://www.ci.worcester.ma.us/
http://www.ci.southbridge.ma.us/
(I had a much better reference, but can't currently find it.)

I like the drill-down ability they use here, but not necessarily the actual execution. What I want is something which has similar text colors with reversing highlight colors, and drill-down abilities, but otherwise the same basic layout as our current page. Something using CSS and text styles instead of javascript/"word images" might be nice. I do like the current image popup in the center to correspond with each selection, though.

I want something which will work in any browser and not be too slow.

Any ideas? :confused:

Tristan Gray
08-25-2005, 03:24 PM
Answer me these questions three:

1. What server-side technology does your host support, particularly PHP?
2. Are you familiar with Cascading Style Sheets?
3. Do you expect someone else to do this for you or are you just looking for ideas?

Holden1
08-25-2005, 03:32 PM
Answer me these questions three:

1. What server-side technology does your host support, particularly PHP?
2. Are you familiar with Cascading Style Sheets?
3. Do you expect someone else to do this for you or are you just looking for ideas?

1. Apache/2.0.36 (Unix) PHP/4.2.1 as far as I know. Also MySQL. If you give me the command to check versions, I can firm those version numbers up for you. Running on a modified version of Slackware Linux.

2. Somewhat familiar with the concept, but not too much with use. I'm willing to learn.

3. Either or both. I see the Worcester one uses Front Page which is allegedly easy to use. I have heard some "not so good" things about Front Page, though, especially as relates to standards. I'm open to suggestions.

Tristan Gray
08-25-2005, 03:38 PM
Ok, first suggestion is that Front Page is craptacular. The code it gives you is several times larger than it needs to be and it does not support the separation of content and style at all. Which is a shame because that separation makes future updates ever so easy. I would take the world wide web consortium and other's CSS tutorials to familiarize yourself with it. I would try to think of a layout and general design geared toward the overall purpose of the site before beginning to actually code.

What kind of a layout do you want? Tabbed navigation, three columns, footer? That sort of thing. PHP is a huge asset, I love php and it will enable you to add a lot of nifty little tidbits to your site, but structure is the first thing.

Holden1
08-25-2005, 03:42 PM
Ok, first suggestion is that Front Page is craptacular. The code it gives you is several times larger than it needs to be and it does not support the separation of content and style at all. Which is a shame because that separation makes future updates ever so easy. I would take the world wide web consortium and other's CSS tutorials to familiarize yourself with it. I would try to think of a layout and general design geared toward the overall purpose of the site before beginning to actually code.

What kind of a layout do you want? Tabbed navigation, three columns, footer? That sort of thing. PHP is a huge asset, I love php and it will enable you to add a lot of nifty little tidbits to your site, but structure is the first thing.

We like the current layout, but it just a little inflexible. We currently want to add a new category to right side for example. We might like the ease of adding and removing other "categories" in the future. Right now, these are images of the words, of which I have no way to recreate or mesh a new one in with the existing very easily. The javascript code is somewhat complex and I'd rather make things simpler and more modern. Like I said, we have php server running.

Holden1
08-25-2005, 03:43 PM
The other thing I'd like to add is the "drill down" capability.

Tristan Gray
08-25-2005, 03:44 PM
What do you mean by the drill-down capability? Yeah, I'm pretty sure you can get what you are looking for and more by using more modern CSS techniques.

SpirtOfGrandeur
08-25-2005, 03:55 PM
The other thing I'd like to add is the "drill down" capability.


Menu structure. Do you want a JS one or a CSS one? CSS will work in all modern browsers and ones in the future. While JS ones will work on all older ones to whenever they change something in JS.

Holden1
08-25-2005, 05:41 PM
What do you mean by the drill-down capability? Yeah, I'm pretty sure you can get what you are looking for and more by using more modern CSS techniques.

By "drill down", I meant that there are sub-menus or choices under the main ones, like on the two reference sites. Thanks.

Holden1
08-25-2005, 05:42 PM
Menu structure. Do you want a JS one or a CSS one? CSS will work in all modern browsers and ones in the future. While JS ones will work on all older ones to whenever they change something in JS.

I thought I hinted pretty strongly at CSS over Javascript.

The question is, where to begin?

Thanks.

SpirtOfGrandeur
08-25-2005, 06:24 PM
http://www.alistapart.com/articles/dropdowns/

Is a good place to start :)

bazz
08-25-2005, 06:25 PM
I like the drill-down ability they use here, but not necessarily the actual execution.

Do you mean you don;t like the appearance of their flyouts? If so, that is all changeable with your css. I use suckerfishes drop down with 6 levels (though it's not heavily populated yet). Maybe it would be of use?

Bazz

Holden1
08-25-2005, 06:30 PM
Do you mean you don;t like the appearance of their flyouts? If so, that is all changeable with your css. I use suckerfishes drop down with 6 levels (though it's not heavily popultaed yet). Maybe it would be of use? here (http://demodirectory.thechrissystem.com/index.php)
The menu is at the top left of the window.
I'll take that link out tomorrow as I am not plugging my site.

Bazz

No, I realize the appearance can be changed. I guess I'm not 100% sure what I meant. The Worcester site looks pretty decent, but I'd want other colors and maybe larger fonts, but that's about it.

How does one begin to do this?

Thanks again.


Edit: I liked your site, but the navigation isn't totally intuitive.

I do like the maroon, but I'd rather have it simpler than that still.

Holden1
08-25-2005, 07:13 PM
Using some links from another thread, I was able to find these:

http://www.aplus.co.yu/adxmenu/examples/netymology/
http://www.aplus.co.yu/adxmenu/examples/netymology-hs/


Now, if I could get the categories to be in 2 vertical panels like our original home page, and then have the dropdowns open towards the middle...


That, or maybe I'll rethink the entire site design.

hmmmm.

Thanks, keep the info coming...

mrruben5
08-25-2005, 08:39 PM
I'm a webmaster of a site for my company and I've been using alistapart.com's tuts for 2 years now, they are really good. I've been currently redesigning their homepage (FRAMES, YUCK!) with a cms and I used horizontal dropdowns for this one. Believe it or not, but that menu runs on the same technique as alistapart's.

http://www.encyclue.nl/etomite/

CSS can do a lot if you know how to handle it.

bazz
08-26-2005, 11:59 AM
No, I realize the appearance can be changed. I guess I'm not 100% sure what I meant. The Worcester site looks pretty decent, but I'd want other colors and maybe larger fonts, but that's about it.

How does one begin to do this?



Hi, Holden1,

The code I linked too (Suckerfishes), is simply a 6 level flyout. The number of levels (In this case), is determined only by the number of lists in the html.

SO,
If you dont have the content in your html lists for six levels, then it won't show six levels, it'll show just whatever your html needs it to.

If you wish to change the colors that's css.
If you wish to chnage one or more levels to horisontal display, thats also in the css.

Basically from that 6 levels application, copying the code can give you whatever layout of menu you want with however many (up to six) levels.

It sounds like it is what you want although you'll have to change the css colors and text style values to suit your own application.

Looks can be decieving :) Often, it may look like it's not what you want but when you strip out the style, it actually may be.

Feel free to copy the menu, play about with it and/or use it. (so long as Suckerfishes conditions [if any] are adhered to).

Bazz

Tristan Gray
08-26-2005, 01:54 PM
Hehe, whenever I hear of a six-level menu I have to laugh... that's so crazy. I don't even mind it much anymore, but I just think it is wacky, a nice demonstration of the power of the suckerfish menus though. Most pure java menus only allow for three levels.

Only disadvantage to suckerfishes is that if you want to change the nav you must change it on each page. Unless you use PHP to populate the lists, which would be cool because you could update pages so easily. Another though I had was saving a fram called nav.html and then using inline frames to generate a menu bar with the suckerfishes. Would that work? Or would it clip the drop-downs? If it wouldn't then you could simply change that one nav.html and all your pages navs would update without needing php.

bazz
08-26-2005, 02:03 PM
heh heh :) :smug:

Mine's done in perl so it is automatically updated as each new business is added.

Bazz

Tristan Gray
08-26-2005, 02:08 PM
Cool, there's so many ways to skin that cat, although my preference would certainly be PHP. The frame idea seems very clunky to me, and yet I'm interested to see if it would work.

bazz
08-26-2005, 02:14 PM
Funny, I remember that days when I thought that my project could only be done effectively in frames. Then I heard about the search engine difficulties that they can cause so now I am so out of touch with frames that I don't know if it would work.

You could do a SSI so that an html file (with your menu) is loaded to a normal shtml page. If all your pages had the 'include', then you could achieve the one-menu-for-all-pages effect without (I think) compromising SEO.


Re. PHP, I don't know enough about PHP to discuss its virtues or the merits of it over perl (and vice versa), but, in perl - and with significant help from people in that forum for several aspects- my whole thing is powered with perl.
From one admin form all client records and files are built.

Bazz

Tristan Gray
08-26-2005, 02:18 PM
Yeah, check webcredible (http://webcredible.co.uk) for articles on it, but I think that inline frames hurting SEO is a myth that has been disproven. I just don't like frames when they are not needed. I am really divided right now because I was planning on using the mambo content management system for my big site this fall but now that project is up in the air. I could code my own, but I'd much prefer to use one as vast as mambo because there will be a metric tonne of content and a host of writers/editors.

bazz
08-26-2005, 02:25 PM
Yeah, check webcredible (http://webcredible.co.uk) for articles on it, but I think that inline frames hurting SEO is a myth that has been disproven.
I'll read that



I just don't like frames when they are not needed. I am really divided right now.....
Dividied. What?? you mean split (into frames perhaps) :D



... I was planning on using the mambo content management system for my big site this fall but now that project is up in the air. I could code my own, but I'd much prefer to use one as vast as mambo because there will be a metric tonne of content and a host of writers/editors.

Heh. I'm getting more excited :) I will be holding a 'metric tonne' of data oin mine too. and potentially 75000 editors.


Bazz

Holden1
08-26-2005, 03:23 PM
Well, I grabbed that site with the orange boxes on the left in a foreign language.

I changed some of the text to my own, and it seemed OK.

You say I can easily change colors and layout with CSS? Have a quick example?


What I would like is a quick way of drilling down through (in this case) departments to get to an item quickly. Sometimes, there are going to be many many items.

What is the best way to set this up so it looks consistent throughout the site?

I like the frames idea because one can put a list of the basic frames down one side, drill down to the desired content, and put the content in a right frame.

How can php help generate this as you both have said? We run php, but I am not hugely familiar with it. We use it to generate some of our stuff currently, but I had a student do that, and said student is now unavailable.

I don't want to make this overly complex, but some automation would be helpful.

Thanks.

bazz
08-26-2005, 04:21 PM
I like the frames idea because one can put a list of the basic frames down one side, drill down to the desired content, and put the content in a right frame.


possibly. I can't really recall how frames work but I think you may find that the flyout in a 'left' frame, will not be visible whenever it shoots under the right frame. beter to use an SSI (Server Side Include) imv.

I'm posting this in case it may clear up some possible misconceptions for either you or others, who find this in 'Search'.

The yellow menu in a 'foreign' language (is that not Latin? and I thought, sort of, orange?) you speak of sounds exactly the same as what I started with. The content you have changed won't make a jot of difference to how it works because the structure is in the html, instructed (if you like), by CSS. The text is just stuff... on top.

Imagine a car (the html), the driver (the CSS) and the bodyshell (the text). The html makes the thing what it is; the CSS controls it (if properly programmed), and the text sits on top. Of course, it is what's underneath which makes it what it is, not the superficial covering. (just like a car).

The difference as I see it between the real world and that of coding, is that there is another dimension in the coding world. You have it as I described and then for the web user, you have a different aspect. They see the style as the appearance and the text - totally oblivious to whats happening underneath. So for them, the style is the surface (the colours), if you like and they are oblivious of the significance of the power behind it.

I'll stop that line of chat before I suggest that the difference is like the stereotypical views of boys and girls in respect of cars :D

Anyway, copy the source of my page - as I suggested earlier - and play about with it. If you need PHP advice or help, you need to go to that forum.

Bazz

Holden1
08-26-2005, 04:47 PM
Thanks Bazz. I thought that is what I said. (YOU said yellow, not me! (-: )

I DID download your page, which is what I said. I HAVE played around with it a bit.

Again, I am getting the simple lists to populate, and the info and links filled in.

Next is to get this automated. The other thing is to get the info once you click the "drilled down" link to display on the page rather than opening a new page.

Thanks again so far.

Holden1
08-26-2005, 05:03 PM
Also, what part does "Etomite Content Management System (http://www.etomite.org/)" play in this?

I got that off the bottom of your web page.

Thanks again.

Holden1
08-26-2005, 06:30 PM
I loaded the test page up to the web, but now see that the "flyout" ("dropdown"?) menus don't work in Microsoft Internet Explorer. Am I missing something?

Thanks.

bazz
08-26-2005, 07:00 PM
Firstly, when you have something additional to say, where there are no posts in response to your previous one, it makes it a darn site easier if you edit your previous post instead of making a new post. ;)


Well, I grabbed that site with the orange boxes on the left in a foreign language.
I changed some of the text to my own, and it seemed OK.
Thanks.

That means it was you who said yellow :-) Anyway, we shan't argue.




Also, what part does "Etomite Content Management System (http://www.etomite.org/)" play in this?
I got that off the bottom of your web page.

erm, I don't think so. You're using the yellow/orange whatever color of menu. That isn't mine and anyway, to be fair to Suckerfish, mine is only a modification of his/hers/theirs.




The other thing is to get the info once you click the "drilled down" link to display on the page rather than opening a new page.


Maybe you're putting this into frames already? maybe that's why it opens a new page? My application of it opens in the same window.



I loaded the test page up to the web, but now see that the "flyout" ("dropdown"?) menus don't work in Microsoft Internet Explorer. Am I missing something?


Yes. Probably the JS code which is essential to making it work in IE.
However, I won't know for sure without seeing your code.

Bazz

Holden1
08-26-2005, 07:30 PM
Firstly, when you have something additional to say, where there are no posts in response to your previous one, it makes it a darn site easier if you edit your previous post instead of making a new post. ;)


I'm pretty sure they were done at totally different times, with totally different subjects and intentions, therefore a totally new post.






That means it was you who said yellow :-) Anyway, we shan't argue.
...

Maybe I did. If so, I meant our current one is yellow. I figure I can leave the colors alone for now until I get closer.






...
erm, I don't think so. You're using the yellow/orange whatever color of menu. That isn't mine and anyway, to be fair to Suckerfish, mine is only a modification of his/hers/theirs.
...


Oh. I am either getting people mixed up, or something. Anyhow, to remove the content (web site) from the style (people) here, what is that CMS thing and what does it add to this?







...Yes. Probably the JS code which is essential to making it work in IE.
However, I won't know for sure without seeing your code.

Bazz


Just go to our main home page, and put in /beta.html at the end.



Thanks again so much.

bazz
08-26-2005, 07:47 PM
cms just means content management. In my app. it just enables me to edit my clients data (rather they do it :) ) so that the content is real-time accurate.

To keep things simple (something which I am normally not good at ;) ), I suggest you ask in this forum for CSS help,
Ask in the PHP or perl forum for cms and server-side help and in site-reviews for any viewing styling appearance issues.

I expect that you haven't seen my web page then. (not blowing about it but it does have a working menu). I'll nip off and get the JS code. However, I don't know how it works and so don't know if it will fix you menu.

Bazz

back again..
here's a link to the page from where I started my menu. It is this one that I thought you were talking about.
here (http://www.htmldog.com/articles/suckerfish/dropdowns/example/bones3.html)

The JS that makes IE work, is in the source code of that page.

Bazz

Holden1
08-28-2005, 02:35 AM
Thanks, but I copied the javascript (correctly, and into the same place as yours), but it still doesn't work in IE. I checked the security and privacy settings, but nothing seemed out of place. Any other ideas?

bazz
08-29-2005, 10:41 AM
funny, the source code I looked at of your page seems to have neither css nor the JS. I looked in your css file but didn't see the nav rules.

Could it be that you haven't uploaded the new page yet?

also, does this actually do anything? I tried to take a lok into them for the JS for the nav menu but only got your 404 page.
Bazz

Holden1
09-06-2005, 04:14 PM
funny, the source code I looked at of your page seems to have neither css nor the JS. I looked in your css file but didn't see the nav rules.

Could it be that you haven't uploaded the new page yet?

also, does this actually do anything? I tried to take a lok into them for the JS for the nav menu but only got your 404 page.
Bazz

I may have just updated it locally and not uploaded it. I'll check again later today. Thanks.

Holden1
09-09-2005, 10:27 PM
I AM NOT SURE WHO DID IT, OR WHERE IT CAME FROM EXACTLY, BUT NOT TOO LONG AFTER PUTTING THIS "BETA" CODE UP, WE HAD OUR WEB SITE HACKED. THE HACKERS WERE NOT TOO MALICIOUS, HOWEVER, AND EVEN BACKED UP OUR INDEX FILE FIRST.

SIMILAR TO:
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=BYOND+HACKED+palestina1815%40hotmail.com&btnG=Google+Search

I WILL HAVE TO LOOK ELSEWHERE FOR HELP. :-(

JamieR
09-09-2005, 10:35 PM
Have you made sure your server software is up to date and all "beta code" - what exactly was it? has been removed?

Holden1
09-09-2005, 10:46 PM
Have you made sure your server software is up to date and all "beta code" - what exactly was it? has been removed?

We are as up to date as possible and the "beta code" was the working version of the file I was trying here. I am assuming somebody put something in one of the scripts I copied into the page either from the fish thing or one of the other menu pages. Serves me right. Now I need to check the code deeper. Removed the pages for now.

Holden1
09-15-2005, 02:36 PM
Has anyone else experienced any security problems with any of the above advice or web pages?'


Thanks.

Holden1
09-20-2005, 03:54 PM
Is there any other way than javascript to have those menus work in IE?

Thanks.

bazz
09-20-2005, 05:27 PM
I AM NOT SURE WHO DID IT, OR WHERE IT CAME FROM EXACTLY, BUT NOT TOO LONG AFTER PUTTING THIS "BETA" CODE UP, WE HAD OUR WEB SITE HACKED. THE HACKERS WERE NOT TOO MALICIOUS, HOWEVER, AND EVEN BACKED UP OUR INDEX FILE FIRST.[/SIZE]

I WILL HAVE TO LOOK ELSEWHERE FOR HELP. :-(

Oh you're back??

I'm not sure what your aim is here. If you look back through your thread here, you will notice that you jumped around from script (and to different web forums), trying to get it working.

I wasn't the only one who gave you help to get it working and, I had no problem with that because I have been helped out in this forum so much in the recent past. Overall, everything is in this thread to make such a menu from scratch. I expect, however, that you got confused because you began to talk about a different menu.

Nonetheless, the answer to your first post is in this thread and none of it has anything to do with busting your terminal or hacking you.

gratitude eh? :rolleyes:

PS,
[humpy head]
I even gave you a link, at the time, to see the whole thing in action in my own web site. All the code is publicly available through the source code and so, it is unlikely that I would be showing you that if there were anything dodgey in it. And if your were to take the time to learn 'copy and paste', it would be working for you in less than ten minutes. then all you'd have to do is adjust the css.
[/humpy head]

Bazz

Holden1
11-02-2005, 09:19 PM
Is there any other way than javascript to have those menus work in IE?

Thanks.

Still wondering about an answer here.

I think the orange menus look OK, and would like to explore/expirement further; but don't want to add extra code for different browsers.

Isn't that the point of using standards?

That said, if there are other, similar solutions, I'm open to suggestions.

sage45
11-02-2005, 10:36 PM
There are CSS options available... Give me a few minutes and I'll see if I can find one that will serve your needs...

-sage-

sage45
11-02-2005, 10:42 PM
I don't know if anyone has directed you here yet:

http://dynamicdrive.com/dynamicindex1/indexc.html

There are alot of different menu's to choose from... I hope you can find one you like... If you need any help implementing one we will be glad to assist in any way possible...

-sage-

Holden1
11-02-2005, 10:59 PM
Thanks, but I'd rather avoid javascript if at all possible. I thought maybe there was a css only way of doing this, which would be useable by all browsers.

sage45
11-02-2005, 11:19 PM
In that case, here are some strict CSS menus:

http://www.dynamicdrive.com/dynamicindex1/indexb.html

-sage-

Holden1
11-03-2005, 02:43 PM
Menu structure. Do you want a JS one or a CSS one? CSS will work in all modern browsers and ones in the future. While JS ones will work on all older ones to whenever they change something in JS.

Yes, CSS. The one in the post just before this reply has CSS ones, but not as nice as the "orange" one in a foreign language. If that one worked nicer without the javascript, it would be just perfect (still need to check for external hacking links...).

Thanks.

Holden1
11-03-2005, 02:47 PM
Using some links from another thread, I was able to find these:

http://www.aplus.co.yu/adxmenu/examples/netymology/
http://www.aplus.co.yu/adxmenu/examples/netymology-hs/


Now, if I could get the categories to be in 2 vertical panels like our original home page, and then have the dropdowns open towards the middle...


That, or maybe I'll rethink the entire site design.

hmmmm.

Thanks, keep the info coming...

Anyone familiar with this site, or how it was done? Thanks.

Holden1
11-03-2005, 02:49 PM
I'm a webmaster of a site for my company and I've been using alistapart.com's tuts for 2 years now, they are really good. I've been currently redesigning their homepage (FRAMES, YUCK!) with a cms and I used horizontal dropdowns for this one. Believe it or not, but that menu runs on the same technique as alistapart's.

http://www.encyclue.nl/etomite/

CSS can do a lot if you know how to handle it.


When I say the "orange" site, this is the one I mean.

So, I need to put javascript as well as the CSS in there to let it work on IE? Then, I need to copy the entire block of CSS and javascript to each web page to have it show up and make it all navigable? Is that correct?

Thanks.



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