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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Website Development Tool?

    I am a photographer who has a Website. I hate my Website. It isnít how my Website looks that bothers me, it is how difficult it is to maintain. I have a few ideas how maintaining my Website could be made a lot easier. I have bounced these ideas off a number of local Website developers and they all tell me that what I want doesnít exist and nobody beside myself would ever want these things. I donít believe them. However, if they are correct, I think I have some ideas that will lead to the most popular product since the machine that automatically slices bread.

    My first thought is that the content on my Website should be separated from the structural look and operation of the Website. The content is the text (titles, prose, header, footer, etc.) and, especially in my case, the images. The structural look and operation are things like how things are positioned on a page, the fonts used, and the links between pages on the Website or to off-site pages. I want to focus on the content and, as much as possible, ignore the rest.

    Specifically, once my Website is created, I want to be able to add pages and images without having to do any of the structural things. If I add a page it could be into a tree structure. Once its position in the tree is established all links to and from the page immediately above and the home page should automatically be created for me. I also want to be able to dump a bunch of jpg image files into a page and have the page updated to include them. The name of an image file could be used as its caption and can be used to determine the order for the images to be displayed. I can always go in and improve things later using a page editor if I want to (e.g. add more links, enhance the captions).

    These things do not seem to me to be unusual. Website design has been around for decades and there are hundreds of applications out there. These things should exist. Similar things have been around in assemblers and compilers for over half a century. Why do people tell me they donít exist, or worse, shouldnít exist?

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  3. #2
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    To me the closest thing to what you are looking for is WordPress. That is the one from WordPress.org, not the one from WordPress.com I can't say it would do everything you wanted but it would come close.

    Adding pages or changing their position (making them a sub menu) is a breeze, it is pretty much just drag and drop. There are some good photo gallery plugins but they won't automatically re position a photo based on date added, at least none I know of. With many you should be able to drag and drop the photos into any position you want. You can bulk load files and depending on the photo gallery plug in you are using it would load them all into the photo gallery and resize them to look even if needed.

    Your requirements don't seem that strange to me.

  4. #3
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    Thank turboguy,
    Your comments are welcome and interesting. At first I thought the same thing, that WordPress might be an answer. But a couple of local WordPress people emailed me that they didn't think WordPress could do what I wanted. I think maybe my issue is I need to find a quality WordPress person to work with. I know nothing of WordPress other than very high level Web stuff. So like a roofer or plumber I can find a good one or a bad one. Of course part of my problem is this is not a real money making site and I don't have a ton of money to throw at it. Some people say they can't really talk with me unless I'm willing to spend in the $1k+ range. So I may need to get some help but will also plan to do a lot myself. But I didn't want to even head down a road (WordPress?) only to find I was ending up at a dead end. If I know I can get something similar to what I want, I am willing to put up some money and time to get it. I just don't want to waste my money and time.

    Thanks again.

  5. #4
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    I would suggest you go to YouTube and watch a few videos on WordPress. Tyler Moore and NYC Tech club are pretty good ones but there are a lot of good ones. That will give you an idea what can be done with WordPress.

    Then do a Google search for Gallery plugins for Wordpress and check out a few to see which might fit your needs. I would not totally rule out using a table plug in for the photos if it is important for you to be able to order them by date added and they could also be sorted various ways. I would particularly look at the League table plug in. I am not sure if that could be made to work or not but if sorting is important it may work. There are some great gallery plugins however that would not sort.

  6. #5
    Junior Member
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    I wasn't very clear. Sorting is not a big deal to me. I suggested alphabetical based on image file name as being a good default. I can always change the order later if I want. The only two things that are important to me are ease of use based on my laziness. I want to be able to easily add a new page in a location of my choice without having to build all the necessary links. And I want to be able to add a bunch of new images to a page without having to annotate everything. I've already been looking at themes online and there seem to be a number that will work as far as looks are concerned. I'm trying to learn enough to be able to try to find someone locally to help me get started.

    I will check out some of the tutorials. I first need to understand what WordPress is; it's funny how much sites don't talk about things like that. In fact it was the constant reference to blogging that initially turned me off. I think WordPress is a program that I load on my Web server (hosting site) and then run by accessing a Web page on my site. I then use it to create a Website on the same server that visitors can view. So there is my WordPress program and my Website on my Web server both running in parallel. At least this is what I think it is. I'm pretty sure it isn't like Komposer that I have been using running on my PC.

    Thanks again for your advice.

  7. #6
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    The things you are talking about are about as easy as could be with WordPress.

    When you log in you have what they call a dashboard on the left side. To add a page you just go down the where you see "Pages", click that and select "add new" A window opens and you give the page a title and click publish.

    To add a page to the menu you go to that same dashboard and go to the line that says "Menus". Click that and it pulls up a box with all your pages and another box that shows your menu structure. You can just drag the new page onto the menu structure. Or select it and click "add". If you want to move to a different main menu item you just drag it. If you want it to be a sub-menu you just indent it and it automatically becomes part of a sub menu.

    If you have a gallery plug in installed you just add that to the page and there will be a box that says "add photo" You just click that and it brings up a page with all your photos. On the top left will be a link to add new photos. You can even do bulk uploads and upload as many photos as you want and it will automatically insert them on the new page. If you want to change the order of the photos you will most likely just be able to drag them into the position you want.

    WordPress started off as blogging software but changed over the years. Now 27% of all web sites are based on WordPress and many don't have blogs.

  8. #7
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    OK, I'm sold. Time to start learning WP.

    Thanks Again.

  9. #8
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    http://www.mrare.co/variant/


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  10. #9
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    Simple solution for you


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  11. #10
    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    What do you take pictures with?

    In my head, I'm thinking that you could send photos to your website via sms (texting them). In that case, you would never need to upload them manually.

    Any smartphone can text photos, but perhaps only really high-end digital cameras have that feature? The camera probably utilizes a SIM card with a digital texting service?

    That method would not be free though. You already pay for the cellphone service, but to text to your website would require a Twilio account, which costs money per text or a monthly fee. You are given a Twilio phone number that you text to. From there, Twilio uploads to your website database automatically.

    Just some thoughts.

    WiFi cameras are another choice, but the photos don't get uploaded until you get into a WiFi area, which doesn't happen all the time as a photographer.
    If there was a camera with a SIM card (SMS digital texting), that would be able to upload just like a cellphone.



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