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Sea Scouts on the Internet. Bruce Chr. Johnson Commodore, Sea Scouts Northeast Region, BSA. Internet Communication: Why do it?. Improve communication with our members Promote Sea Scouting both inside & outside of Scouting. Remember to ask this question: What are we trying to accomplish?.

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sea scouts on the internet

Sea Scouts on the Internet

Bruce Chr. Johnson

Commodore, Sea Scouts

Northeast Region, BSA

internet communication why do it
Internet Communication: Why do it?
  • Improve communication with our members
  • Promote Sea Scouting both inside & outside of Scouting
  • Remember to ask this question:
    • What are we trying to accomplish?

Sea Scouts on the Internet

types of communication
Types of Communication
  • Websites
  • Resource servers: File Transfer Protocol (“ftp”) sites
  • Discussion groups: Seascout-Europe-Net
  • Electronic journals (“e-journals”)
  • Mail reflectors
  • Instant Messenger
  • Chat rooms

Sea Scouts on the Internet

publishing without the expense
Publishing without the expense
  • Training manuals
  • Administrative guides
  • Short press runs
  • Too expensive to print
  • Distribute via ftp
  • Distribute document ONLY in Adobe Acrobat PDF format

Sea Scouts on the Internet

get indexed
Get Indexed
  • Your goal is to have your website used
    • To make that happen, it must be found
  • Include metadata, esp. “Dublin Core”
  • Get index on at least Google & AltaVista & Yahoo
    • Each service uses different criteria

Sea Scouts on the Internet

example of dublin core metadata
Example of Dublin Core Metadata
  • www.dublincore.org

Sea Scouts on the Internet

indexed on google
Indexed on Google

Sea Scouts on the Internet

get linked
Get Linked !!
  • Exchange with as many Scouting websites as you can in your country
    • Follow up with them to confirm that they link to your site
  • Exchange links with country, city, state, etc. websites
    • Follow up with them to confirm that they link to your site

Sea Scouts on the Internet

focused themes
Make sure that the user comes away feeling that Sea Scouting is FUN

Add Adventure!

Sea Scouts do exciting things

Pictures should show youth enjoying themselves

Sea Scouts like to do things with other young people their age

Spend some time picturing the boats

Spend a little time discussing adult leadership

Focused themes

Sea Scouts on the Internet

website design principles

Website design principles

Make your website as “user friendly” as possible

They should be able to find what they’re looking for

design principles
Design principles
  • Assume 800 x 600 screen resolution
  • Don’t use dark backgrounds (tough to read)
  • Don’t use servers with mandatory ads and popups (user hostile)
  • Don’t participate in banner exchanges
  • No more than one animated graphic / screen (less is better)

Sea Scouts on the Internet

design principles1
Design principles
  • Use a consistent graphics style
  • Develop a standard look for all pages on the site
  • Stay away from cute – focus on your message
  • Pictures are worth 1,000 words – 1,000 pictures communicate nothing
  • Avoid clutter – clean lay-out
  • Use terms outsiders will understand

Sea Scouts on the Internet

design principles con t
Design principles (con’t.)
  • Check for html coding integrity
  • Regularly check for link integrity
  • Unit websites: make sure that information about where & when you meet is easy to find on the website
  • Don’t use Scouts’ full names, particularly with their pictures
  • DO include adult names

Sea Scouts on the Internet

know your website resources
Know your website resources
  • Internet Policies of your Scout association
    • Youth protection must be an issue
  • What web resources are available
    • From your Scout association?
    • From other sources (like SSIS)?
  • Website accessibility
    • Be sensitive to accessibility issues
    • Bobby Scan

Sea Scouts on the Internet

focus on a usable website
Focus on a “Usable” website
  • Web Development Resources for Sea Scout Webmasters
    • <www.seascout.org/general_resources/for_webmasters/index.html>
  • Research-Based Web Design & Usability Guidelines
    • <usability.gov/guidelines/>

Sea Scouts on the Internet

usable websites
Usable websites
  • Usability is the measure of the quality of a user\'s experience when interacting with a product or system — whether a Web site, a software application, mobile technology, or any user-operated device.

Sea Scouts on the Internet

usable websites1
Usable websites
  • Usability is a combination of factors that affect the user\'s experience with the product or system, including:
    • Ease of learning
    • Efficiency of use
    • Memorability
    • Error frequency and severity
    • Subjective satisfaction

Sea Scouts on the Internet

getting started planning the site
Getting started – planning the site
  • Planning is critical because it helps you focus your objectives. It also helps you plan for usability activities that are part of the process of developing a successful site
    • Why are you developing a website?
    • Who should come to your site?
    • When and why will they come?

Sea Scouts on the Internet

developing prototypes
Developing prototypes
  • What are prototypes and how do you create them?

Sea Scouts on the Internet

collecting writing revising content
Collecting, writing & revising content
  • Easy-to-use content is critical
  • Stages and guidelines for preparing easy-to-use content
    • Select only what your audience needs
    • Organize content logically for your audience

Sea Scouts on the Internet

organize content logically for your audience
Organize content logically for your audience
  • Break the text into manageable pieces
  • Put in many headings
  • Write useful headings
  • Use the headings as introductory hyperlinks
  • If the information is sequential, put it in that order
  • For non-sequential info, put what users need most first

Sea Scouts on the Internet

write content visually
Write content visually
  • Use blank space well
  • Cut out words
  • Keep paragraphs short
  • Keep sentences short
  • Use fragments
  • Use bulleted lists
  • Give examples
  • Meet users’ expectations for how the information should be displayed
  • Include pictures & graphics when appropriate

Sea Scouts on the Internet

promoting the site and keeping it up to date
Promoting the site and keeping it up-to-date
  • Promotion tips
  • Site maintenance
  • Occasional redesign

Sea Scouts on the Internet

contact information
Contact information
  • Make sure that the website provides contact information
    • Email address
    • Telephone number (if for a local unit)
    • Web response form
  • Be sure to provide more than one way to contact you

Sea Scouts on the Internet

software
Software
  • Page layout
    • Macromedia Dreamweaver MX <www.macromedia.com>
  • Graphics
    • Paint Shop Pro <www.jasc.com/>
    • Adobe Photoshop <www.adobe.com/products/photoshop/>
  • Documents
    • Adobe Acrobat <www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/>

Sea Scouts on the Internet

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