Monday, November 2, 2009

Virtually Fresh

Vol State’s new website brings a fresh look and feel to the college’s virtual world.

Derek Pennycuff is Vol State’s onsite webmaster. “The new website has been a work in progress for two years,” said Pennycuff. “I tried to approach it from the point of view as a current or potential student because if I do something that is hard for a faculty member, I’m going to hear from them. I don’t hear from students as often. Student needs come first,” said Pennycuff.

Pennycuff said, “The biggest changes are going to be the way things are organized. The idea is that anyone can pick which user category you belong to.” The user categories are located on the left hand side of the new website’s main page. Whether you are a current student, parent, or member of the staff or faculty, it is categorized so that you can easily find what you need.

Why did it take two years to get everything up and running? “Part of the reason is because the hard drive had the equivalent of 22 copies worth of text of the ‘Complete Works of Shakespeare’ that had to be deleted. We have removed junk code, etc. This new site is simplified in every way. It is a cleaner site,” said Pennycuff.

Links at the bottom of the page can be found, and link directly to Vol State’s Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace pages, and the blog.

Check it out for yourself: www.volstate.edu

Volunteer State Community College

1 comment:

Derek said...

I'm still not sure I was clear on the code comparison.

The old home page used about 33,000 characters of HTML. The new home page uses about 18,000 characters of HTML. That's a difference of around 15,000 characters of code.

The complete works of Shakespeare is about 5.6 million characters long. It's available from Project Gutenberg as a plain text file, that makes these kinds of comparisons easy.

If you add up the savings in characters of code across the several thousand files on our site, you end up with the equivalent of just over 22 copies of the complete works of Shakespeare less code.

From the point of view of the server running all this code, and your browser downloading all this code, it's like being allowed to use the Cliff's Notes. I'm probably gonna get in trouble for saying that. :)