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View Full Version : Chatter Revamping my website... Any opinions?



Jorge P
12-14-2011, 06:43 AM
Hi all,

Roughly once a year I check the links on my site to make sure they are all working properly. I was sort of surprised when I just now noticed that Gallery.Live.com was retired. I've made the decision to no longer produce gadgets, even though they still work in Vista, Windows 7, and maybe 8. These gadgets I made got me to the #1 search ranking for "Hulu Video Gadget" search in Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Unfortunately, I am forced to alter the entire purpose of my site.

I will still be using the site for my .NET software and have recently added a Propeller section. I would like to focus mainly on the Propeller and soon BS2.

I will be doing allot of maintenance on my site in the next few days and would like some opinions as to what Propeller material I should place on the site. If someone here, maybe a high ranking member, would help me to gather a listing of most commonly asked questions in the forums that is not contained within the manuals.

I will link to anyones Propeller site and create some banners representing that website, that anyone can use to link from their sites as well. It is one of the only ways I can currently offer anything in return for the help I have received here.

The site itself is hosted through OfficeLive.

So to sum it up, I would like to gather all/any sites that have Open Hardware designs, Propeller Material, and any sites that no longer exists about the propeller that someone might have an archive of, that I can publicly archive on my site. Any language, but English preferred since I only speak English. Maybe, if Parallax will allow, I can archive some of their retired and no longer available documentation in case someone needs it.

My website is linked in my signature.

Thanks.
Jorge P.

zappman
12-14-2011, 02:07 PM
Hi all,

I will link to anyone's Propeller site and create some banners representing that website, that anyone can use to link from their sites as well. It is one of the only ways I can currently offer anything in return for the help I have received here.

Thanks.
Jorge P.

Hi Jorge,

I have added whatsavailable.org (http://whatsavailable.org) (including a logo) to the links page of my ZappBots Website (http://zappbots.wordpress.com/).
My ZappBots Site and Forums (http://z13.invisionfree.com/zappbots/) are about building robots, microcontrollers, electronics and more.
.
Regards,

zappman

softcon
12-14-2011, 04:20 PM
Not that you'll get a lot of visually impaired/blind users, but good web design really should have alt tags on images, and descriptive text on links. None of your images have alt text, so they all just show up as image on screen readers.
The link to codegen has no text at all, so it just shows up as link which doesn't really help determine what it's a link to. Search engines use these bits of info as well to help rank pages as to their relevance, so fixing them will solve two problems at once.
hth.

DavidSmith
12-14-2011, 05:43 PM
After you finish your changes, pay a below average 12 year old to spend a day w the site.

If he has to go more than five layers deep to find out the purpose of the site, start over.

Jorge P
12-15-2011, 12:29 AM
@softcon
I will check some settings on images, but this may be beyond my control. If I can't alter the alt tags, I will raise an issue with support regarding this, Microsoft is usualy good with accessibility.

@zappman
I will link back once I rearrange everything. Just a note about my logo on your site, I will be changing the subtitle as I will no longer be supporting gadgets. I will send you an image when I get this done. All my gadgets are dead links since Microsoft retired the gallery.

zappman
12-15-2011, 03:09 AM
@zappman
I will link back once I rearrange everything. Just a note about my logo on your site, I will be changing the subtitle as I will no longer be supporting gadgets. I will send you an image when I get this done. All my gadgets are dead links since Microsoft retired the gallery.

Jorge, when you send your new logo, I will put it on my links page, its easy for me to do. I am looking forward to seeing all the changes yo make to your site.

softcon
12-15-2011, 01:58 PM
@softcon
I will check some settings on images, but this may be beyond my control. If I can't alter the alt tags, I will raise an issue with support regarding this, Microsoft is usualy good with accessibility.

Hmm. You must know a different microsoft than I do then. I've never known them to be good with accessibility. Even their flagship html editor front page made it almost impossible to add alt tags to pages. It was possible, but not with the standard tools, you had to dig several layers deep, and even after you added them, if you used their wizard to regenerate the page, they'd all disappear again, and you'd have to readd them all back manually. Not my idea of accessibility. I've seen nothing to change my opinion on that front. But, perhaps you know something I don't. Anyway, if you can fix it, it'll both search engines, and accessibility, if not, the site will still work, it just won't be quite as usable for some.
hth.

Jorge P
12-18-2011, 10:13 AM
I was referring to the developer options in their Visual Studio editions. Their are several options for accessibility but I have never used them, nor do I really know how. I have tried to get a copy of various screen readers to test my programs and websites but they are outrageously priced.

softcon, When in my website administration menu, I find that the only way to add alt tags is by using pure HTML when adding links and images. Not difficult for me since I started HTML programming with notepad, but it is a bit more time consuming. I have a question about what I should put in these alt tags for a better description of what the images and links portray. How detailed should they be? and, What words an punctuation should I avoid, if any?

I'll check my local phone directory for any clubs and organizations that deal with visually impaired to see if they will be willing to let me have or borrow some equipment to test with. Quite a while ago, I was creating books to audio cassettes for the blind in my community so maybe I can offer that service again in exchange for some equipment.

softcon
12-19-2011, 02:02 AM
In general, a very specific description isn't necessary, something like:
A link to a page where you can purchase items from our local store
is probably too much. On the other hand, something like:
store link

is probably not very descriptive, unless you've already mentioned the fact that you're running a store elsewhere on the page.

On most images, something like:
stack of books
will probably be enough
unless there's some specific reason to draw attention to something else on the image such as:

stack of books with redemtion code on book spine

(in that case, you might want to put the redemtion code elsewhere if it's not specifically in the alt tag.
I think the w3 folks state that a link text should be enough to describe the link, but not more than necessary.
This gets stretched a bit most of the time, especially in places where blogs are present or posting boards (depending on whether title tags are used or not)
However, you can test all of this for free with the nvda screen reader.
NonVisual Desktop Access is an opensource screen reader that works fairly well (though it has some rather severe limitations, it is improving) and it can be downloaded from http://www.nvda-project.org
That will let you check your pages without having to spend funds for the high-priced commercial alternatives.
hth.