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Last post Author Topic: Best method for a dead simple web site?  (Read 9632 times)

cranioscopical

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Best method for a dead simple web site?
« on: May 12, 2013, 11:22:25 AM »
Apologies in advance as  I know there are numerous topics that contain pieces of information about this subject. My problem is too much information, not too little. I wonder if some of you can help me to cut through the clutter.

My wife is an artist who needs a web site on which to display her work. 

She is wilfully computer illiterate.

She has a web site that I put together. It's (I'm) just not good enough.

I need to set up (or have set up for me) something that allows the very easiest point and drag method for her to:
  • Add pages, and add images to those pages
  • Replace existing items on pages
  • Label items with appropriate titles and descriptions (probably multi-line text)
  • Possibly re-arrange items on any given page.
  • Have visitors move easily between pages.
  • Have some method whereby thumbnails will enlarge for greater detail.

I can do this with the site that I created but my wife can't, so we're going to start again.

This has to be easy enough for a five-year-old to manage as I might be required to use it myself.

The task should be as easy as falling off a log but, no matter how hard I throw myself at the ground, I haven't reached it yet.

So, please, what's my best option?
 

wraith808

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2013, 11:50:09 AM »
Wordpress, hands down, in my opinion.  There are several themes out there that can even make it look however you want.  I did the same for my wife for her photography site, and she gets frustrated at times, but has really been able to maintain it with a minimum of help from me.  There's also a couple of articles that cut through the clutter in regards to how you do certain things; if you do want to go with Wordpress, I can direct you to the ones that I used.

cranioscopical

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2013, 11:59:35 AM »
Quote
I can direct you to the ones that I used.

I'd appreciate the links, thanks very much!

wraith808

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2013, 12:13:14 PM »
MakeUseOf: Set Up Your Blog With WordPress: The Ultimate Guide

Spoiler
Password: MakeUseOf


WPBeginner Guides

Getting Started with WordPress - from the Wordpress Codex

Simple WP Guide

And then a couple of articles from which I gleaned some of the preceding information:

WordPress for Beginners: The Best WordPress Tutorial Blogs

45 brilliant WordPress tutorials for designers

One last note: A good theme can get you most of the way to how you want your site to look.  A good theme, however, will most likely cost.  But that will come with fonts and tutorials.  It's been worth it to me.

I had usually used TemplateMonster, but I lately purchased a membership to elegant themes.  It's relatively inexpensive (the $39/yr is good enough for non-wp designers), they're updating regularly with themes, and the themes are pretty dead simple.  I actually was able to get a year for $20 through a deal, but since it ran out, I re-upped it.  Helps me tremendously with helping other people with themes, and I even use it for my own sites.

eleman

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2013, 12:56:57 PM »
Try weebly or wix or any one of the alternatives.

cranioscopical

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2013, 01:00:41 PM »
One last note...
Thanks for all of the information, much appreciated.

Try weebly or wix or any one of the alternatives.
I appreciate the help, thanks!
 

mouser

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2013, 01:28:12 PM »
I'd also say wordpress.

J-Mac

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2013, 02:48:40 PM »
You can make it as easy as you possibly can, but....

You are still going to be maintaining the site for her! Mark my words... ;D

Jim

rgdot

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2013, 04:25:31 PM »
Can't add anything that hasn't been said, just to add another  :up: for WordPress

cranioscopical

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2013, 04:25:48 PM »
You are still going to be maintaining the site for her! Mark my words...
Déjà vu all over again  :(   
      ;D  ;D  ;D

TalksToPCs

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2013, 02:37:09 AM »
I'm sorry, late to the game, I know, but WordPress is not dead simple.
Us techies may not realize it, but WordPress is relatively complex.

I've fiddled with lots of tools, and by far the simplest for computer illiterates is a web-based tool like Weebly and - my preferred option - Jimdo. Both have basic free options so you can try most of the features without paying anything.

I've helped create my girlfriend a site for her art project and she maintains it mostly without my help. She is a computer-illiterate artist, too.

(The links are non-affiliate, BTW.)

mahesh2k

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2013, 05:12:04 AM »
I found weebly and wetpaint more complex than wordpress.

I personally think tumblr is the most simple when it comes to website and blogging.

dr_andus

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2013, 06:11:27 AM »
Another vote for Wordpress (.com, not .org) for this purpose. Besides the benefits already mentioned, Wordpress sites also tend to rank highly in Google searches.

You get a lot of space for free, and the payment to get rid of the ads and add your own domain name are reasonable.

wraith808

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2013, 09:12:28 AM »
I personally think tumblr is the most simple when it comes to website and blogging.

The one thing to keep in mind with tumblr, is that it's full of porn.  Why does that affect you?  If you don't have a custom URL, you'll be blocked some places just because you have a tumblr address.

app103

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #14 on: May 28, 2013, 01:22:15 PM »
Any blogging platform that is supported by Windows Live Writer that you can set up and configure for her (Wordpress (self hosted), Wordpress.com,  Blogger, etc.)

It a lot easier than dealing with built in web based post editors and especially fantastic for inserting images.

Lot of options for resizing, borders, positioning, linking, and whether it links to full size or something else, and whether it opens in a new window, watermarking, etc. You can even set up defaults for her so it does exactly what she wants when she drops an image into a post. On the first post, just set everything on an image and click to make those setting the default.

It feels just like typing right onto your blog page (theme aware), And it supports drag & drop of images, right from Explorer. And when she is finished and has the page just how she wants it and clicks the publish button, it can even be configured to open the page she just published in the default browser so she can check it (and edit more in WLW and republish it, if necessary)

The only thing it really isn't good for is attaching files for download to posts (zip, exe, pdf, etc.) For that kind of stuff, I recommend dropbox, which one can drop the files into a folder and then right click the file to get the URL to link to, for visitors to download it.

It really is the best desktop blog editor that exists, though...so easy to use, and amazing that it's free. It's also the best way to prevent beginners and non-techies from getting themselves into trouble.  ;)

If she has plans on doing this for a long time and being serious about it, I recommend self hosted Wordpress. You get more control, can do things you can't do on wordpress.com (like use javascript, more theme options, put ads on your site, run a shop complete with shopping cart and payment gateways, etc), But most important, you can have a copy of the database and can move your site to another host much easier. If you go with wordpress.com or Blogger, there is a certain amount of lock-in that occurs, even if you use your own domain name with it. You'll never get a copy of that database for moving or restoring your site, if anything happens to it, or if you run out of the allowed storage space.

If you decide to go with self hosted wordpress and need some help setting it up and configuring it, let me know and I'll help you. (I am in the process of getting tomos set up with a wordpress powered portfolio site on free hosting, free domain name, etc., and it would be trivial for me to do the same for you, too)

mahesh2k

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #15 on: May 28, 2013, 02:32:51 PM »
I personally think tumblr is the most simple when it comes to website and blogging.

The one thing to keep in mind with tumblr, is that it's full of porn.  Why does that affect you?  If you don't have a custom URL, you'll be blocked some places just because you have a tumblr address.
Porn blogs are marked as nsfw, and can be fitlered from the stream inside the tumblr news and also never came across places where tumblr is blocked. Which are these places that blocks tumblr? I never knew tumblr porn was that bad. I guess i never come across hardcore stuff, due to my feed being bombarded with comics from "cyanide and happiness" and other comic strips.

mahesh2k

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #16 on: May 28, 2013, 02:33:49 PM »
By the way dreamwidth.org and livejournal are free blog hosting sites too. They have same interface, hard to learn but once you learn it is easy to post on them.

wraith808

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #17 on: May 28, 2013, 03:18:18 PM »
Porn blogs are marked as nsfw, and can be fitlered from the stream inside the tumblr news and also never came across places where tumblr is blocked. Which are these places that blocks tumblr? I never knew tumblr porn was that bad. I guess i never come across hardcore stuff, due to my feed being bombarded with comics from "cyanide and happiness" and other comic strips.

Most filtering companies are not known for their granularity- no one wants to be the one hit with the problem when they *don't* filter porn.  I know at work I can't get to tumblr AT ALL.  I had a yard sale tumblr, and it was blocked.  It was also blocked from several other places...and that's when I noticed that tumblr in general is classified as such, including on larger filtering sites such as OpenDNS.

It's definitely a problem to keep in consideration.

cranioscopical

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #18 on: May 28, 2013, 03:18:52 PM »
Thanks to all for the varied and helpful input.

If nothing else it's a wonderful aid to procrastination — a characteristic of mine of which I am particularly fond.
 

superboyac

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #19 on: May 28, 2013, 03:30:09 PM »
I've been around on this many times also.  In the end, I always resort to wordpress, usually against my will for some reason.

dr_andus

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #20 on: May 28, 2013, 04:02:56 PM »
If you go with wordpress.com or Blogger, there is a certain amount of lock-in that occurs, even if you use your own domain name with it. You'll never get a copy of that database for moving or restoring your site, if anything happens to it, or if you run out of the allowed storage space.

With Wordpress.com you can at least

Quote
export your posts, pages, comments, categories, and tags; uploads and images may need to be manually transferred to the new blog.

Self-hosting sounds like more work to me  ;)

wraith808

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #21 on: May 28, 2013, 04:24:57 PM »
With Wordpress.com you can at least

Quote
export your posts, pages, comments, categories, and tags; uploads and images may need to be manually transferred to the new blog.

Self-hosting sounds like more work to me  ;)

It's actually not... .and not as daunting as it may first appear.  And you definitely get a *lot* more flexibility for the effort.  If you're looking into doing it, I'd suggest taking a look at one of the links I posted earlier- you'll see it's quite easy.

barney

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #22 on: May 28, 2013, 07:21:16 PM »
Self-hosting sounds like more work to me  ;)

Only downside to self-hosting is security issues:  you have to manage that.  But, then, that's true of any Website, no?

Otherwise, you have complete control.  And if you go with WordPress - strongly recommended previously - you can pick and choose themes and layouts, many of which are free, a few of which are paid.  Or, if so inclined, you could roll your own theme.  As mentioned, Windows Live Writer is a beautiful product for adding content, and there's a Linux equivalent (the name of which I cannot recall) if you're using that OS.  There's also an equivalent for OSX, but never had occasion to use it, not familiar with it.

The only real advantage to, say, WordPress.com, is automated security updates, but that can sometimes break your site. 

All things considered, you'd prolly be much happier self-hosting.

dr_andus

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #23 on: May 29, 2013, 05:06:42 AM »
Self-hosting sounds like more work to me  ;)

Only downside to self-hosting is security issues:  you have to manage that.

I had the OP's best interests in mind: how to get your computer illiterate wife off your back, sorry, make her more independent  ;) And surely it must be less hassle to just select a log-on and password and a theme on Wordpress.com, then to have to get into the whole business of downloading Wordpress, getting server space, uploading it, installing it, and then regularly having to update it (however much that appeals to DoCo's techie audience  ;D). It's just more work.

wraith808

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Re: Best method for a dead simple web site?
« Reply #24 on: May 29, 2013, 09:19:37 AM »
Actually, speaking from experience, in the short run wordpress.com is less work, but in the long run, it's way more work, and way more hassle.

As she visits other wordpress sites and sees the cool things that they have, or her needs evolve, you're going to be hampered, nickeled and dimed, and restricted by wordpress.com.  With your own site, not so much.