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Stuff to be getting on with

September 8, 2010

Funny how sometimes the internet creates more work than it saves. We have all become used to being able to buy tickets / consult a dictionary or encyclopaedia online and find any bit of odd information without a trek to the library. To go to the library for anything more than borrowing books seems odd today – and even borrowing books (though saving a fortune for a keen reader) involves fitting collection into the schedule. Thanks to my local library closing on a Wednesday, I won’t now be able to pick up a much-anticipated read (the new Sloane Crosley essays) until next week. Looking forward to that, though.

Anyway, back to the point. The amazing and unique Dress Circle shop have just re-launched their website following more than a year of struggle to get it perfect. It is now outstanding, but it has thrown up one of those internet issues that nobody outside the web world anticipated… for those of us whose sites link to it, some of the links just don’t work – and it takes ages to change them all. Normally it is easy enough to stick a CD on the stereo and plug away at whatever happens to need doing. Making links, though, requires concentration. And it is amazing how huge their stock is and how many links my site has made. Three hours has seen 40% changed so far, so I’m in for another fun packed afternoon.

The changes that Dress Circle made to their site did help me think about the alterations for my own. Finally, I think I have the vision of how I would like it to look. More important, I also know how I want it to “navigate” – the path guests will take to find the information they need – and it will take far fewer “clicks” then it does now. There’s also much editing of text to be done, but that’s another story. For the moment, though, just knowing I know is enough. Strange how solutions to problems do emerge given time, isn’t it. Something you have to learn by growing up, I think.

A reader this week asked me how the site survives and how long it takes to keep it going. The answer to both is that it does take ages, but with automation at least a few of the duller tasks will go. It should also mean the monkey office machinery won’t take such a pounding either, but we shall see. Freeing time to do other things is something to look forward to, which brings me back to my original point. Funny how sometimes the internet creates more work than it saves.

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