Archive | 23 May 2010

What the heck is a .htaccess file (and why is my blog messed up?)

Nothing is more frustrating for a fledgling designer than a 404 error on a newly created blog. The experience quickly causes the euphoric feeling of mastering basic web principles to plummet to earth faster than a 747 colliding with a flock of geese.

This happened to me last week. The homepage looked exactly as expected, but trying to view individual posts or pages returned an error. In examining my permalink settings, WordPress indicated that the issue lay with my .htaccess file (or, in the case of the image below, Kathy’s .htaccess file):

Huh? Read More…

It's Not a Partnership Without You

The Puget Sound Partnership website has many positive elements for not only engagement but also updated news on saving Puget Sound. The clean look of the site is simple and clear including;

  • minimal main header links – five
  • oversized logo that is welcoming and points a visitor towards clicking and entering site in order to engage.
  • doubles up on the maim messaging of ” Puget Sound Starts ” using active font to draw a visitor into seeking more information and promoting interactivity.
  • has a good site map which outlines in detail how to become involved and volunteer in the partnership through events listing when and where via site map.
  • a simple site location for signing up and providing the Puget Sound Partnership an individual’s information for furthering communication.
  • social media sites such as a Flickr Photo Challenge for participation and encouraging social interaction.
  • predominantly placing action wording – Puget Sound Starts Here – link, stay informed – newsletter, get involved – event calendar, photo viewing and submission – flickr, multiple social networks (flickr, Facebook, think, myspace, twitter, YouTube)
  • personalizing webpage with ” Photo of the Week with direct tie to interaction.
  • use of huge images to draw visitor attention
  • topical information listing in a minimalist way on the left side in easy to read and providing drop down informative links.
  • video production through storytelling, factoids and encouragement to become involved.

The Puget Sound Partnership definitely provides multiple levels for interactivity which are on leading edge in trends in web design with their intro boxes as an alternative to the normal “About Us”, a real enlightening feature.