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Next message Richard posted on Tuesday, 28 June, 2005 - 03:02 am
I've not had much to say for the last few days, but I've been busy.

Apart from earning a crust, I've been working on the long-planned update and redesign of the JW site. Apart from the actual look, I've started from the most difficult element, which is the discography.

The current version of the site offers little flexibility, so I'm re-doing the presentation from scratch and including a lot more information. I've created several heavy rods for my own back, but in the long run I hope it'll be worth it.

Before I get too carried away creating over 90 new pages, I want a few people other than myself to look over what I've done thus far and let me know if it makes sense (it makes sense to me because I know what I'm trying to achieve and I know how things slot together - I don't know if things are all that obvious to an onlooker who doesn't have the complete picture).

Please note that links to pages outside the main discography are either dead ends or lead to the current version of the site (which won't link back to this new material, so don't bother going there, but do feel free to roll your mouse around the menu). :-)

I'm adding links to the discography list as I create new ones, and the list itself is incomplete (there are also various notes-to-self all over the place: this is very much a work in progress!). I'm working my way up the list: in other words, you need to scroll down towards the bottom of that page to find the brand-new material.

The current exercise isn't about fishing for compliments (although they're always welcome) :-) but hopefully detailed feedback on what works and what doesn't. There are elements missing all over the place which will be added in due course, but for the time being all I want to know is whether I'm headed in the right direction.

Oh, and no prizes for guessing which album cover isnpired the new colour scheme! (BTW does the million-fretted guitar look silly or does it work?)

Anyway, go here and start looking:

I'm going to take a break from further page-building for a couple of days to get on with other things, and I'm disappearing "Up North" to Yorkshire on Thursday and Friday, so I'm not actually going to make further progress with the site until the weekend, so you have a few days to tinker with what I've done thus far and to think about feedback.

Do your worst!

(BTW Bill, I know I owe you a couple of emails: I'm afraid they'll have to wait until the weekend too. Sorry.)
Next message Richard posted on Tuesday, 28 June, 2005 - 03:30 am
P.S. Just thought I'd mention that one of the links on the menu that does work is the "discussion" one which will take you straight to this board... So you have no excuse not to leave a comment!
Next message Oliver  posted on Thursday, 04 August, 2005 - 06:52 pm
How you getting on?
Are you able to use any dynamic scripting? e.g PHP, ASP, JSP

The best way i think it to have a site wide template that is used for each page then just the content(text images) is loading into the page depending on the url requested. Looks like you need some sort of catigrization (is that a word? anyway) for the urls of John Williams links and what not you get me?

anyhow how ya getting on? just interested.
Next message Tricky  posted on Thursday, 04 August, 2005 - 09:55 pm
Richard, the link attached to the "Sky in Bremen" text on the "Albums" page takes you to the Bedrock concert (legends.htm) page. You did ask!
Next message Richard posted on Friday, 19 August, 2005 - 07:12 pm

I can run whatever I want on this server (I mean that pretty much literally) in whatever way I want. The problem, however, is not one of scripting, but on the one hand of getting the template right, and on the other of building the database which has to get fed into it.

The test pages I put up were specifically for the purposes of testing the template (which has since changed in various subtle ways, partially as a result of feedback recieved). As for the content, I had thought about building parts of the site (in particular the discography) through a database, but building the database would have proved as time-consuming (if not more so) than building the pages individually in my text editor (I use TextPad rather than any specialised HTML editor: I find HTML editors so overblown and designed for a way of working which isn't mine).

A couple of issues I immediately recognised were that most pieces require a Long Title and a Short Title, composers have different names, and some pieces would need fairly extensive notes in different kinds of directions (alternative titles, alternative orchestrations, etc, etc). Also, whilst an obvious index field would be the catalogue number of a particular album, some albums have more than one. Furthermore, by building pages individually, I have a control over appearance which I simply wouldn't have with an automated system.

I could probably build a database out of the info I now have, but I actually prefer viewing the details in a web browser and I have access to all the information in any direction I'd want anyway (apart from the fact that most of it is in my head anyway).

I may get around to building a database if someone asks for it once I've finished, though...

Tricky: thanks for that; I had forgotten that the text and image links were independent of each other.
Next message Oliver posted on Sunday, 21 August, 2005 - 06:22 pm
Ow well good stuff. :-)

Will be good viewing it when its all done.
You can run a parser over your pages of content later on and put it in a database anyway so itís all about ease of use for you really.

Good luck.
Next message Richard posted on Monday, 22 August, 2005 - 09:15 pm
I'm putting the finishing touches to the last couple of pages. The new-look site should be fully uploaded and active some time tonight.

For some reason I can't quite fathom, I'm dreading this update!

With any luck, we should see some new faces on this board in the near future...
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