Site News – Commentary Reorganization

You know how it goes. You’re looking for a 16mm socket wrench in the workshop, and you end up cleaning and reorganizing the whole basement.

Commentary is one of Summitlake’s oldest departments, with articles posted every year from 1998 to present. This spans not only html code “ports” through at least three or four web design applications, but several theme changes over the decade. The older departments (in particular) have suffered loss of that prized page-to-page “consistency” so valued by web developers and so welcomed by eye-weary readers and surfers.

Moreover, if you know a little about coding HTML, you’ll know that porting a page through several successive design applications can result in code that ain’t a pretty sight.

I found some old pages that badly wanted reformatting. The code was ugly and hard to work with; the visual layout was poor and in some cases broken. Hence my remark about the 16mm socket, and the decision to clean up the whole basement.

Similar to what has already been done for “Astronomy” and “Miscellany”, all the HTML articles are gradually being moved into WordPress (like this article you’re reading now). In most cases, this involves stripping the original text into raw “plain text”, in NotePad, and reformatting each page manually. So it does take a while.

WordPress More Searchable

WordPress articles can be searched with the WordPress “Search” box in every right-hand margin. They are archived and indexed by month/year. You can click the “Articles” page and see a breakout of all department contents broken out by category. And, we’ve added “tags” support, so you can search for all articles having to do with the keyword “holidays” — even though that’s not a Category.

Major articles that were compiled into “books” of multiple HTML pages (using Frames technology) will not be converted into WordPress, but WordPress will be responsible for taking over their indexing. You’ll find a listing for each major publishing project under “Pages”, for example “Kansas Board of Education” (1999).

When the conversion project is done, you’ll see that the blue “Index Commentary” button has gone away. This is what we used to use to compile automated listings of HTML pages in a directory. With WordPress, that dual functionality will no longer be needed.

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