Calgary Scrabble Group


Technical Improvements

Posted by Paul S on Sun July 22, 2001 at 0h00

Here are some of the technical enhancements to the site:

  • Total Restructuring - If you watch the URLs in your browser you'll see that the site now has a much nicer organization. Instead of jamming just about everything into the site's base directory, each section has its own directory and, when necessary, subdirectories for subsections. All sections and most subsections have index pages, which means you can access the sections by using just their directory name (e.g. http://www.calgary374.org/tournaments/). You'll also notice the filenames are longer and more descriptive of the page.
  • Automation - As you've no doubt noticed, over the last couple of years the amount of time I've been able to put into maintaining this site has declined sharply, and this has hurt the overall quality of the site. The new design of the site puts a heavy focus on automation. This kind of automation is something I've only been able to do since the site moved, so it's time to start taking advantage of it! At the moment the most notable automation is that the Club Results Index is automatically generated by a program each time you visit that page. So whenever I add new results I simply have to upload them and that's it - the program will detect them and show them to you next time! This also eliminates the chance of typos as well as the forgetfulness factor; there has been more than one occasion on which I forgot to update an index! Another notable automation is that the Last Modified date, seen at the bottom of every page, is automatically inserted when you view the page. Lastly, automation was used to convert every page of the site to use the new design, even the old archive pages from 1997!
  • Maintainability - Along the same lines as automation, the site is now much more maintainable. The navigation bars you see at the top and bottom of each page are loaded into a page each time it is displayed. This means that if I want to change them, I only have to change one file and everything else gets updated. Similarly, all of the links on the site now use absolute addresses. This makes it easier to move pages around, spawn new subsections, and generally keep the site more well-organizes. Because the URL is always the same (no relativity to worry about) it's a simple matter of doing a site-wide search-and-replace to move a page.