Jun 29, 2010

Website and Blog Changes

I'll bet you've noticed some changes going on with our website and blog during the past week or two. Here's the story of what I've been up to.

Over the past 3+ years our website (www.tdhoch.com) has been the focus of our online presence. It included a total of four pages (front page, links page, about us page, and a maps page), and a menu that included links to our online photo albums and our blog -- The RV Sabbatical Journal. It worked well, but the downsides are that it involves a monthly charge for the web-hosting service, and requires a separate software program (an HTML editor) on each computer that I used to update the site.

Our blog, The RV Sabbatical Journal (tdhoch.blogspot.com), has always been generated with simple online blogging software -- which is out there, somewhere, on the internet, on a server owned and operated by somebody else -- which means a lot less work and expense for old Thom when it comes to keeping the software up-to-date and functioning. It also means I can do the blog from any computer that's online since no specialized p.c. software is needed. What's more, the blogging service I use costs us nothing. I don't know how or why they can do it, but it's literally free.

Recently, the blogging software has gotten much better. It now includes features and capabilities that make it a viable alternative to our simple website. Over the past couple weeks I've been adding those functions to the blog with an eye toward eliminating the need for both the website and  the blog. And, as of today, being satisfied with the way it seems to be working out, I'm pulling the plug on the old website. From this point forward the focus of our online presence will be the blog -- The RV Sabbatical Journal.

Functionally the biggest change is the line of tabs that stretch across the page just below the header and title. They include a page "about" us, a photo page, pages for videos, maps, and a FAQ (frequently asked questions) page.

Another thing that's making this change easy for us and our readers is that the old website address (www.tdhoch.com) will now automatically forward to the blog. That is, regardless of which address you use, you'll end up at the blog -- The RV Sabbatical Journal.

Let us know how this change is working for you... if you see any problems... if something isn't clear... or if you like the change.  It's a work in process and will continue to evolve as time goes along.

Thom

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