142013Oct
About Our New Website

About Our New Website

Welcome to the new county website!  This project has been about 2 years in the planning and has given me, as the county webmaster, and our content providers throughout the departments a challenging couple of months worth of moving our data over from one site to the other.  I sincerely hope you enjoy the changes here at the site.  I’d like to take a couple of minutes to point out some of the big changes you may encounter here.

First, our website has a new, cleaner design that we believe gives a more professional, less cluttered experience to our users.  A big shift in this design is that our subpages that have menus will now have them on the right side of the screen, meaning that the most important information will begin on the left-hand side of the screen.  This is a big shift from the way we’ve done navigation in the past, but we have done it in hopes of improving our site’s usability for you.

Our website on a smaller-resolution browser.

Our website on a smaller-resolution browser.

One of the biggest changes, however, is in the way our site behaves.  If your browser’s resolution is at least 800 pixels wide, you’ll see our full site with the convenient menus that scroll down the screen with you as you read our web pages.  This is exactly how you’d expect the web to work on desktops and laptops, but what about smaller devices like cell phones and tablets?  Well, if you squeeze your browser down to less than that, you’ll likely see something like the image to the right.

This is called a responsive design, and it’s one of the biggest new features here at Alamance-NC.com.  Basically, the website tailors itself to your personal browser.  In this case, it turns that nice, big menu you see at the top of your desktop or laptop into a fully-functional blue button that becomes a drop-down menu that allows you to navigate everything on our site.  Most of our images and embedded features are re-sized to your browser, meaning that our website should be friendly to everyone from big-screen users to iPhone and Android surfers.  And while not every feature at our site is responsive (there are some elements that are beyond our control), we believe that this design change will make your use of our site easier and more convenient, regardless of what kind of device you’re using.

Tabbed Browsing via a TourOne other big change at our site is what we’re calling “tours”.  Some of our pages, such as our home page, are cleaning up the clutter by moving their information to convenient tabbed navigation.  These are simple-to-use features that allow you to click on a tab and get information, including maps, news, videos, and other features available here at Alamance-NC.com.  This allows us to keep information more cleanly organized and makes it easier for you to find exactly what you’re looking for.

Finally, there are a few other changes that you may need to be aware of.  Many of our website addresses have changed, so you may want to re-check and update your bookmarks.  We are also changing our FTP addresses like our GIS FTP site and have updated our links accordingly, so if you use that service, please check and update your links to the new address.  County e-mail addresses should remain the same.

These are just a few of the changes made here at Alamance-NC.com.  We hope that you’ll take the time to explore our new website and let us know what you think in the poll below.