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Archive for the 'Tools' Category

Thursday, September 7th, 2006

Domain Hosting Fee - WTF?

“If you’re paying AUD$330 per quarter (for web hosting)… then ditch their sorry ass”

Its been a sheltered life for me I’m afraid and when I was doing a hosting comparison report for a client this week I realised a biggie on their current bill - its called a Domain Hosting Fee and at Netspace it was $220 per year. Now that’s not domain registration for a .com.au at $140 for two years - its an extra service applying to every single domain name existing on the account. Telstra Bigpond also have the same fee but at about $120 per year.

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Tuesday, April 4th, 2006

Government CMS Found Lacking

“The average manager isn’t going to be able to output good content for the web”

Roger Johansson has posted an article dear to my sensibilities today - Content Management Systems used by public sector websites found lacking - which discusses the findings of a Swedish report into Swedish public sector websites. I think a lot of what is said there is directly applicable across the board so I thought I’d reiterate some points.

The people in charge of many public sector websites do not necessarily understand the marketing of these companies and can buy substandard products not of their own fault.

Its imperative to hire client side web developers who do know how to create accessible, web standards compliant solutions. Invest in the knowledgebase of your staff - upgrade in-house skills in these areas. I’d say the content management system developers and public sector web units should paste it onto an office wall.

My two cents to add to this is the basic content management system issue itself. Don’t let any old manager write pages, even if they’re edited later they’re going to want to do dippy stuff with jargon and mightn’t appreciate an alt attribute from a proper heading. Ultimately, in my solid advice, have a dedicated group of specialised (non-jargonised) individuals working as a team on the same gameplan to create a solid site which is both accessible and usable. Politically I can see this as a challenge but professionally to create a high quality product its a no brainer. I can’t fix sports cars, I can’t ride race horses, and the average manager isn’t going to be able to output good content for the web.

Roger’s parting line is another solid one

Knowledge of web standards, accessibility, and usability is a must for CMS developers in the 21st century

And for those empowered with making the CMS content. Also, writing for print and the web are two different things so don’t make the mistake of hiring the policy writer or pedantic office clerk to do that writing without some serious re-education. The web is its own beast rather than turning it into a public sector document storage facility for its own sake.

Recent on Pig Pen

Peter Brock Dead

September 8th, 2006

Peter Brock Dead in the same week as Steve Irwin - now that's spooky. Another Australian icon has passed. Rest in peace Brocky.

Guerilla Advertising

September 8th, 2006

Guerilla Advertising - I like the madness in their methodology.

Melbourne Pixel Magazine #5

September 8th, 2006

Melbourne Pixel Magazine #5 pre-launch edition is up.

Chico Jofilsan

September 8th, 2006

Chico Jofilsan - and watch the reel. Rocks.

Design by chico jofilsan, 2006

Breed Magazine

September 8th, 2006

Breed Magazine has some great content.

Gnome 2.16

September 8th, 2006

Gnome 2.16 is the latest version of the popular, multi-platform free desktop environment.

Defects In Firefox

September 8th, 2006

Defects In Firefox might be sacreligious to some but that which man codeth woman can exploit (or vice versa). Interesting article on the state of the codebase at present.

Windows Vista RC1

September 8th, 2006

Windows Vista RC1 is available if you want to check it out (I take no responsibility for any trashing of your system a Microsoft beta might perform though so be forewarned).

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Recent on Norty Pig

Business Issue #1: Silos

September 8th, 2006

Fast Company asks Do you suffer from silo dysfunction? We all live in silos and so its natural they exist inside organisations but if you know they're there you can break the down the barriers. Ken Yarmosh's article Why Web 2.0 Matters To Your Business - Knowledge Sharing is worth a read too.

Businesses Should Know...

September 1st, 2006

Roger Johansson's article 10 Things Businesses Should Know Before Building a Website adds to some others on the subject. If you're hiring or building a web site you should read this.

Gov't Work Postponed

August 30th, 2006

After a phone call with the relevant manager the public sector work will be postponed, so if anyone needs to use my services for 2 half days per week you need only use my contact page to reach me.

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