Wednesday, July 18, 2007

changeover blues...

The great thing about technology is that it's always changing... that's also the downside... so I haven't posted in a while. Here's what's been happening, in case you were curious:

  • CEN & IT Support put in the new fiber connex - great work, guys, much improved bandwidth!

  • the staging server was setup & new web process (that we sure hope works out) was revealed. Said process includes a development (sandbox) area where materials are gathered and initial work is done. A staging area, where editors/approvers can publish work that's made it out of the sandbox phase or where these editors work live on the server to update existing webpages. There is a web request form - like an online help desk - on the intranet - when a page is ready to go live (it's been reviewed on the staging server & found to be ready for primetime), the editor sends me a request, then I roll the page(s) live.

  • we've changed all sites to host headers on the production box & dealt with domain name and ftp issues that were a part of this new way of doing things (releasing lots of extraneous ips and ports)

  • reduced number of users on production box

  • we've moved intranet from the production box, which is externally accessible, to its own internal server; along the way a couple of things broke for me that I'm still fixing (CDONTS for auto emailing of web request forms simultaneous to posting info to db; our existing MediaWiki installation)

  • created a means for one of the org's directors to map directly to the root of the intranet site per her request and gave her rights to everything there

  • getting new production box ready to go - need an ASP component hit counter for ccard db program - didn't come native with new sys - ? how to get it going

  • install & run AWStats at new box

  • set up website monitoring

  • deal with all residual issues - usually people stuff - lots of phone calls, meetings to smooth things out

And then there's the website stuff - actually, collaboration is much harder on the webmaster than just doing it themselves - much, much, much harder at the outset. and more time-consuming. But in the end, it makes a better product/site, particularly if everyone communicates and follows the rules and standards set up. I want to facilitate collaborative development, but sometimes that's harder than developing on one's own!

What else? I'll hand over the new museum site to the education curator on Friday. Have to make sure it's all set for that switch, that I've documented some basics. They'll only publish to staging anyway, then do the web request to get to live. Should reduce chance of errors. Then I have to arrange training for various people on web authoring - basic skills. Have to have templates ready for all of them.

I'm exhausted writing about it all. It's all good - job security, eh?

No comments: