Website Questions

Hey all,

Got a few questions regarding website.
1- Does it have to be able to load on low bandwidth/slow computers? Because shockwave sites won’t be possible then.

2- If we were to make a forum/message board, do we have to make our own, like self coded, or can we use something like phpbb or vbulletin? It’s pretty obvious that even this site is using vbulletin, but one of my teammate says our website needs to be completely original, so just making sure :wink:

3- For the website design award, are they basing it on the design/look, infomation on the site, innovation, or combination of the few, or what?

4- Finally, where do you guys learn languages for web design like php or perl? Online or books? Which way is most effective?

Thanx,
David

ok.

First, is there even a website design award? - I’ve never heard of that. But… if their is, then wayyyyyy cool! :cool:

With boards, if you would like to make your own then go ahead! Whatever you make, it will definatly go with your site better, but something like phpBB has tons more features than you will ever be able to creat. (PS: Unless you want to spend $$, go with phpBB. You will need to install a few mods (like attachment), but other than that, it’s the best free BB out there. Also, in a few months phpBB 2.1-2 will be out which will be very cool)

Also, go with PHP. :slight_smile: (Personally, that’s what i use. All I knew before was vb, and i learned php in 2 months (to a very good usage).) A good book, especially for forums / db is PHP and MySQL Web Development. - Welling and Thomson. It’s a little more avdanced book, but if you are good a looking at an example and learning from that, this book is it. It has a bunch of ‘starter’ real-life examples like a shoping cart and other stuff.

With the Flash / other. Personally, i have a 56k. (We get our dial-up free, and my dad won’t pay for it, and i’m trying to save for a car, so i can’t give out $30 / month :)) But, don’t feel like you need to make so that all can view your site. All i would recommend is that you use some type of intro, with a link to skip it, and then use the rest with good tast thought your site.

I’m pretty sure that there is no website design award, but if there is there is no point in competing because Chief Delphi has it won, hands down!

yes there is a website award. I am not sure if it is at all regionals, but I know the Poofs won it last year at SVR.

Well technically your supposed to have a low and high bandwidth site according to all the books I have read.

*Originally posted by DarkDavid *
**
1- Does it have to be able to load on low bandwidth/slow computers? Because shockwave sites won’t be possible then.

2- If we were to make a forum/message board, do we have to make our own, like self coded, or can we use something like phpbb or vbulletin? It’s pretty obvious that even this site is using vbulletin, but one of my teammate says our website needs to be completely original, so just making sure :wink:

3- For the website design award, are they basing it on the design/look, infomation on the site, innovation, or combination of the few, or what?

4- Finally, where do you guys learn languages for web design like php or perl? Online or books? Which way is most effective?

Thanx,
David **

  1. The best websites are universal able to load on most computers, obviously if your using a Tandy it won’t happen, but u get my point

  2. You can make your own…I don’t reccomend it, we are getting ours free from http://www.asp.net done nicely and for free.

  3. Not sure really.

  4. Neither, learning C++ in school I found it super easy just to start using ASP.NET and C#. I used a book that was very good made by a company called Visual with the title of the books being Read Less, Lean More just the book ASP.NET

Have Fun!

*Originally posted by Cory *
**yes there is a website award. I am not sure if it is at all regionals, but I know the Poofs won it last year at SVR. **

The only webstie award I know is the Autodesk Award for Realization. This award tells you make a website the tells a story about the construction of your robot. Its highly detailed, and many teams don’t participate in this award.

There have been team awards in the past about best website design. Last year team 341 made such an award.

you can learn just about any programming language from www.pscode.com through tutorials, or if you’re a more structured learner why not check out www.about.com ? they’re an excellent resource.

High and low bandwidth is easy. You can make $@#$@#$@#$@# good php and html pages, although a flash navbar is always cool.

–Petey

Read the manual… all of the answers to these question are in the section regarding the web design award. About the originality, you can use software to create your discussion board. For bandwidth, it should load fast if you want to be considered for the web design award.

From the rules:

Are the pages equally compelling in the most popular browsers? Do pages download in acceptable speed over a standard modem?

what is considered a popular browser?

imagine if they checked everything in Netscape 3.0 to see if the stuff we build degrades gracefully.:ahh:

Well, the voting is done by a representitive from each team. They must do it prior to 12PM of the Friday of that regional, so it is whatever browser is used by the person evaluating at that time.

It is all in the rules: http://www2.usfirst.org/2003comp/Awards_03.pdf

A popular browser should be considered any browser that fully complies with HTTP/1.1. Sadly, that’s not the real definition. Most people don’t think about some of us lynx users when designing webpages. If you really want to build a decent webpage, make it fit to the w3c standards. http://www.w3.org/ http://validator.w3.org/ If it complies fully with the validator, then it should be compatible with all browsers. If theres a browser that isn’t compatible with it after the validator, then get another browser :smiley:

*Originally posted by Jack *
**ok.

First, is there even a website design award? - I’ve never heard of that. But… if their is, then wayyyyyy cool! :cool:

**

7 WEBSITE DESIGN AWARD
The Website Design Award recognizes excellence in student-designed, built, and managed
FIRST team websites. Eligible websites are judged/scored PRIOR to the competition by “student
judges”. Student judges from each FIRST team determine the winner via ballot submitted on site
at the regional competition from each FIRST team.
7.1 Submission and Deadline Information
Only team web sites that are entered into the FIRST team management information system via
the FIRST website by noon (12:00 p.m.) on February 21, 2003 will be judged. Team websites
are eligible for this award at every regional event in which the team is competing. For example,
if your team is registered to compete in San Jose and Virginia, your team website is eligible to
win this award at both events.
7.2 Finding Team Website Links
Go to http://www.usfirst.org/robotics/2003/rgevents.htm and click on “Team List” for each of the
regional events you are registered to compete in. Teams with websites have their team names
listed in blue font. These are the team websites you will need to review, score, and select a
winner from among them.
7.3 Judging Criteria
Consider the following criteria when judging the websites. The following questions will provide
a base from which to fairly judge teams’ websites.
7.3.1 Function
•Is it easy for a first-time user to find information on the site (number of clicks required
for typical navigation)?
•Are the pages equally compelling in the most popular browsers? Do pages download in
acceptable speed over a standard modem?
7.3.2 Form & Design
•How visually compelling is the site? Does the site use color and iconography in a
consistent way?
•How well does the site explain FIRST and promote the vision of FIRST?
•Does the site work to reinforce the team’s brand?
7.3.3 Interactivity
•How accessible is the site?
•Can it be personalized?-
•How interactive is the site? (discussion boards, guest books, chat rooms, etc.)
•Are links available to related sites? (school, sponsors, other teams, FIRST, useful
resources, etc.)
7.4 Judging Process – Student Judges
•Each FIRST team designates one student to review the submitted websites prior to the
regional competition the team will attend.
•She/he will cast one ballot on site by Friday 12p.m. at the regional competition. .
•Criteria to consider are the website’s function, form and design, and interactivity.
•The student “judges” should have played some role in the development of their team’s
website, and are responsible for reviewing all of the submitted team websites for each of
the regional events in which his/her team is competing.
Example: If you are registered to compete in VA and San Jose, review the team websites for
both of those regional competitions and select a winner for Virginia and a winner for
San Jose.
•Student Judges must complete all website reviews prior to the regional competition.
Review and evaluate the websites between 5:00 p.m. on February 21, 2003 and the day
before the regional competition.
NOTE: A judge may not vote for his/her own team’s website.
7.5 Scoring/Evaluation
•Weigh each of the three areas of criteria (Function, Form & Design, Interactivity)
equally; no area is “worth” more than the other. Student “judges” should seek to honor
the website which, over all, rates the highest in those three categories.
•There are no on-site interviews. If the student judges have questions about a particular
website, they are to contact the team via email prior to the competition to resolve their
questions.
•Please use the score sheet below to evaluate/score each of the websites.
•Download the appropriate number of score sheets to assist you in your review/judging.
•You can evaluate up to seven (7) teams per sheet.
7.6 Ballots
•Each Judge is to complete and submit one ballot, on behalf of his/her team, listing their
#1 selection for this award.
•Use the ballot at the end of this section.
•Complete one ballot for each event you are judging.
•Return completed ballot to the FIRST Pit Administration Station by noon (12pm) on
Friday on site at the appropriate competition.

i’d be shocked if anyone made a fully w3c compliant site.

too many people have a “good enough” approach to code.

Yeah, W3C compliant is like a blank page with words. Anything above that takes time to get done in spec.

I actually tend to disagree.

Getting things done to spec should be something that is considered in the initial planning. For instance, making a massively complex table layout will probably not conform to spec because you didn’t write in the little summary attributes in the beginning. Thus, it becomes a pain to get everything together. On the other hand, keeping in mind w3c specs early on, and working with them instead of around them… that works.

W3C standards were not necessarily created so that every web artist would go by the standards. Rather platform standards are only a guides that a programmers can use. W3C standards are good though they are slow in coming hand to hand with todays progressing Browser technology. Also if you use version 4 browsers:mad: , there is no need to bring that up as a valid argument.

Well just if you are wondering if you really need to make you team site going by the W3C standards, i would say there is no need to. Though if you really care about following the standards, Go ahead, because your will certainly not attract more visitors just by puting a W3C logo on your site.

Of course you don’t attract more visitors by putting a w3c button on your site.

Neither does flash, or even prettier layouts. People come because they want the information contained therein. Does the end user care how the code is made? Does anyone really care that you used an industrial-strength Oracle DB to make sure everything runs fine and dandy? Not really.

The point of conforming to w3c standards is not for the sake of conformance. The issue is that by doing so you are pushing toward a more uniform web (IE: my site should display the same in IE as it does in Netscape, or Opera, or Insert Name of Browser Here). Just because a browser puts up with your bad coding doesn’t mean that it should.

The reason W3C standards are not exactly hand in hand with current browser technology is that the browsers are not supporting standards. There are some crazy CSS properties that do everything but make coffee in the morning, but aren’t supported by IE/Netscape. Those features are actually useful. (min-width/max-width anyone? Or how about columns without resorting to tables?)