Category: Pooja’s website


I have finally finished my Capstone Project and consequently the Emory Web Development Certificate program – we got the grades a month back  ( and the certificate too!) – great job Pooja!  I was also personally satisfied with my process and the research I did which I would not have if it was just a professional job. Sometimes we miss the how’s and why’s that get involved as a learning process – after all this is not just a job, I now understand why it has become a passion for some people. The grades confirmed that my efforts were not in vain 😀
I launched Raltec Corp’s official website at http://www.ralteccorp.com/ I also incorporated an SEO/SEM strategy for Raltec Corp website and am working on seeing progress by the day.
As Norman Lear quotes,

Life is made up of small pleasures.
Happiness is made up of those tiny successes.

My blog restarts my journey in process documentation of the virtual world once again. This time the structure is no certificate program but more of my self-taught/already self-learned endeavors of seeking knowledge of the web world. I hope to have a method to the madness as I had in the ten week Capstone project. It may not be as structured but it does hope to be more info and process friendly.

I am hoping to cover topics like SEO/SEM, CMS, web development, web design, DBMS, latest industry trends, blogs, and other related ideas/articles/seminars.  I hope the Emory faculty incorporate some of these topics in their certificate program.

Wish me good luck .   🙂

We presented our final website last week and it was exciting to see each others’ work. There is always so much to learn and since our Capstone class has a varied bunch, there were a few tips to pick up from each of the website process. There were a variety of websites created, one designed a website for her own PR/marketing firm. Another website featured a contemporary tea house called Tea Fuse. Another colleague based her website on creating a web identity for her artist mom.

Mine was designed for the corporate organization, Raltec Corp offering software & technology solutions. I also incorporated the use of Google Analytics in the website. please visit the following link:

http://www.ralteccorp.com

Cheers to Capstone! We now await for results from the Capstone evaluation team who will be grading us on this ten week project.

We also discussed the below topics in our last visit:

I may have missed other pointers. Feel free to leave your suggestions.

Thank you to all of you that made my Capstone project, a great and enriching experience….truly appreciate it.

This week is testing time. We’ve worked on our website sufficiently enough to give it a test. Also, as Adam noted, we’ve looked at our website enough to get the third person give it a try! Sometimes the third eye helps 🙂

By Adam’s notes, we have to test the website in three areas: accessibility, functionality, and usability. Here are short descriptions of each:

  • Functionality – Does the website’s functionality work? (hyperlinks, images appear, forms can submit, registration or login features function, etc.)
  • Accessibility – Does the site appear correctly on various operating systems, browsers, monitors, etc. that you expect your audience to use?  (I did talk a little on this in one of my previous posts)
  • Usability – Can the website be used by your audience to accomplish their goals? Can they find what they search for? Are there clear answers to questions they are likely to have?

Links from our instructor, Adam:

http://www.adobe.com/devnet/articles/usability_testing.html

http://www.experiencethread.com/articles/documents/article45.pdf

http://techdocs.tamu.edu/webspace/websitetesting/?searchterm=testing%20checklist

I’ve sent the testing plan document out to a variety of people, different backgrounds, different tech backgrounds, different perspectives. Let’s see what the test results bring in.

It’s been a long and ongoing effort learning the ropes on PHP and MySQL. This week  I concentrated on a few aspects of my website.

  • I wanted existing clients to have their a simplified version login
  • I want them to change a form to their most current info – e.g.  company website, phone #, email address, etc.
  • I want them to access their exclusive page to review their in-progress images with a comment box which would send comments right to the company email inbox.
  • And of course I want them to logout.

Like CSS, only more intensive – PHP needs hours of research and implementation. Plus, to preview pages containing server-side code, you have an extra step to specify the server. It was fun to see how other websites used the PHP script. You have a question: the answer is on the web…somewhere!!! You only have to keep looking! 🙂

I am still in the process of tweaking my website but I got the website workable to submit for this week and good enough to get a jumpstart on the tweaks. Hopefully I should be able to get some tweaks done before I hand out the testing plan to my eager testers!

I did mention in one of my previous emails that I would review the book, Build Your Own Database Driven Web Site Using PHP & MySQL, 4th Edition
http://www.sitepoint.com/books/phpmysql4/?historicredirect=phpmysql1

I think it’s a good book if you have some experience with PHP. For beginners, I would recommend Head First PHP & MySQL for some general concepts or techniques (http://www.headfirstlabs.com/books/hfphp/).

The major chunk of learning the language comes by searching codes on the internet and looking through web links, articles and blogs. Below are a few links for PHP/MySQL :

Please feel to add-on if you have links to share.

Have fun celebrating July 4th – have a great long weekend!

It’s been a long silence on my side, I apologize. We’re halfway down Project Capstone (50% of 10 weeks done) and now it’s crunch time!

I anticipated this taking a lot of hard work, but I guess I was mistaken when I thought it would take this long. I worked hard on the wireframe and the main composite of the design. A design background helps you there. I was happy to have the design ready by last weekend….piece of cake!

Now the fun begins! How does this “design” translate into HTML –  that’s still doable.
How does this translate into CSS?

Quoting Adam after bugging him with my in-progress templates:

Alignment w/ CSS is definitely one of the more challenging things with layout out a page.

So true. My tryst with CSS has not been the greatest experience but after a string of online tutorials and trial-&-error testing helped. Long hours trying to work with different properties and values do get the results you want eventually but I’m still searching for an effective way to resolve the CSS issue. There has to be an easy way…….

On a positive side, I am learning and discovering how presentation in CSS makes a whole lot of difference.

This week we looked at analyzing Keywords – below are the links for keyword research tools

Free: https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal (very useful)
Free: http://tools.seobook.com/keyword-tools/seobook/index.php
Free: http://www.digitalpoint.com/tools/suggestion/
Paid Service: http://www.keyworddiscovery.com/

The challenge was the placement of your keywords in your text content. A fine line between whether you’ve used too many/very little of your keywords. The title tag is your heading provides the additional extra benefit for your keywords from search engine optimization.

Text content: Very relevant, yet cumbersome to gather and even more tough to get those keywords you shortlisted into it.

Her are some fun links I encountered on my adventure of writing my text content:

http://www.clickz.com/3623058

http://www.whydev.com/blog/how-write-good-web-content – This one was very relevant as it talked a little about content, keeping a company website in mind.

It is also important to know how a user read on the web platform, hence the below links:

http://www.useit.com/alertbox/9710a.html

http://www.sensible.com/chapter.html

http://websitetext.com/

Generating the text content is slowing putting the pieces of the puzzle together. I have already started designing my template and it now makes sense to sit down and composite the collage – you now have the text, you’ve gather a range of images (you may/may not use) and you have the functional requirement document in front of you. This should be easy, right?  :)

The challenge now lies in design. I have an art background, but my goal is not to have the best looking site here. These are baby steps for me and my objective is to gather my knowledge and make this a workable website – using my web development knowledge and skills. Not that the beautifying does not matter, functional and presentable are the words I am looking for, for the first take. I’m sure I’m going to be tweaking this even after Capstone is done!!!

Hop, skip, …………. JUMP onto Template-Design !!!!!

I am using this post to talk about my website and my first impressions on what it needs.

Raltec Corp offers software solutions to clients and needs a web presence.  So a small corporate website is my Capstone project :).

We filled a preliminary questionnaire as also the competitor analysis as a part of homework for week 1 which gave us some clarity on the few basic aspects of the website.

Questions like who will take care of content and images, what market and target audience are we looking at (for web essentially) and where do we want this website to be in another 2-3years were good starting questions besides the others. The other aspect of actually studying your competitors and how they do business also gives a great insight to what you want your company website to be.

A generic scope to the project also helped as all cannot be achieved in ten weeks. What challenges will be faced on the development side was another interesting discussion we had.

I think this initial conversation with client/friend/person who you’re making the website for is essential. Some of the basic concepts and issues are better resolved earlier in the game.

Hello World!

Hello world! I liked the way WordPress used this 🙂
I am using this ephemeral “so often used statement” to make my grand entry to the virtual web world.
I am Pooja and I am one of the millions who has opened “yet another blog” and yes, this one has a purpose.
I am taking up a challenge (something I’ve procrastinated over for years!!) to create (guess what??)….
……………………. A WEBSITE!!!!
Yes, the uppercase says it all!
The website creation is essentially a part of the Emory Capstone project, a project (rather website) you create from A to Z after taking the courses leading to your Web Development. Adam is my instructor for this project
But why a BLOG?
The blog will help me document my virtual roller coaster adventure along the way. I want to document my findings (articles, blogs, etc), successes and challenges (I refuse to call those failures) in this ten week period.
More importantly the blog will help me keep a check on “the method to my madness”. I am interested in looking back at the whole process that made my website happen. I would also encourage my friends, teachers, colleagues and the other crazy people who know me to contribute and make this ride more memorable. It is your experiences, knowledge-sharing and encouraging comments that is the objective of the blog.