Freepages-Help-L ArchivesArchiver > Freepages-Help > 2010-09 > 1284575314
From: "J.A. Florian" <>
Subject: Re: [FreeHelp] What are the great individual genealogy websites?
Date: Wed, 15 Sep 2010 14:28:34 -0400
On Tue, Sep 14, 2010 at 8:53 PM, Bill Allen <> wrote:
> I've looked on rootsweb freepages for 'great sites', and I haven't found
> lot of great examples - not a complaint, just an observation.
The above comment is likely to seem offensive to many people, even if an
Freepages offers space to people at *whatever* level of experience they
might have. As such, most people were or are learning HTML or CSS.
Overwhelmingly, most people have one primary goal at the beginning:: to
share information, research, and/or their family's info. Many (me included)
didn't know just what was involved in "making a website". We had heard it
was easier than it turned out to be! Over time, a large majority of the
"many" (but not all) decide they'd like to have a site that is 1.
prettier/nicer 2. navigates better 3. more organized etc.
Most places that people think of as "great sites" are (1) commercial or
(2) created by another party or (3) made by persons more experienced with
HTML/CSS/Scripts but not necessarily a commercial site. If commercial, the
site may have teams of people who do nothing else than content additions,
upkeep, troubleshooting, etc. Ancestry.com has such a team. "Freepages",
however, are typically maintained by one person in his/her little corner of
If you Google "great sites", you will NOT find lists of URLs. Instead,
you'll find articles that talk about ease of use, navigation, and the "top"
things to avoid. Luckily, though, this list discusses the issues commonly
discussed in "great site" or "bad site" articles. As people learn the
how-tos, more people using freepages try to implement those measures. But
all of us are at different stages of learning all this.
Let's see how many I've learned and can remember for this listing....
Great Sites have:
1. A DocType
2. A title tag instead of "New Page".
3. Meta Tags so the bots read the pages better. (Title; Description;
4. Little java
5. No Flash
6. No Frames
8. No intrusive music
9. Fewer "bells & whistles
10. Good contrast between background colors and font
11. A common font vs. a special font
12. A title used on the page.
13. Use of H1, H2, H3 as appropriate
14. Easy navigation; navigation from every page that is consistent.
15. On-site search.
16. Appropriate keywords on the page and in the Meta Keywords
17. Short content vs. many "page downs"
18. good organization of content
19. Clear links -- and clear difference between Not-visited link and
20. Contact info
21. Quick loading with stream-lined code versus "heavy" code (such as from
MSWord). This means thinking differently about what people have heard that
programs will do, and seeing examples of how the code looks so much worse in
MS Word vs. if the code is written differently.
And the biggie, that they validate. But many people are happy to do "most"
of the 21 points and to "work on" the rest.
Validator isn't always easy to understand, so it's a steep learning curve
and many people learn validation in stages and often by accident.
Luckily for people on this List, Pat G. and others have made free templates
that address the above points.
Luckily, this List also has people willing to explain, show, and even
re-code so a webmaster can "learn while using".
I think most freepages webmasters would say "I'm proud of what I've
accomplished, even if it isn't perfect."
"Great sites"? Maybe not "great". But great endeavors? Yes. Great
willingness to learn. Yes. Great tests of patience? Yes.
Great in the eyes of someone who just found the piece that broke through a
brick wall? Better than "great", that site is terrific!
|Re: [FreeHelp] What are the great individual genealogy websites? by "J.A. Florian" <>|