Firstly I’ll admit that I’m starting to feel a bit like a fool. I’ve been close to getting the new ISTC website launched for several weeks now, only for an subtle twist or unforeseen working process to scupper my plans.
I realise now, of course, that what I should’ve done was revisit the usage models of the website and finessed those first, rather than trying to shoehorn a somewhat antiquated set of processes into what is a fairly standard membership model. Oh well, live and learn.
That said, it’s not been the legacy processes that have really slowed me down, “life” hasn’t been particularly helpful either although quite how I’m sitting here in January when I’d hoped to have the new website launched in September last year is beyond me. My sincerest apologies, and please trust that I’m hugely annoyed by these delays.
The main reason for the delay has been making sure the membership functionality work, making sure that the processes for applying for membership, as well as renewing existing memberships, has been tricky, as has considering non-member access. The latter is something that only came to light at TCUK (in Sept) this year, Area Groups are not attended only by ISTC members so the website needs to be mindful of that as it will have, in the future, specific areas for Area Group attendees.
As such, there are essentially five levels of users for the new website:
- Administrators – essentially myself (webmaster) and the team at ASL
- Editors – anyone with the ability to post new content to the website
- Members – access to content for ISTC members only
- Attendees – for those who attend Area Groups but aren’t ISTC members
- Guests – anyone visiting the website that isn’t logged in, or isn’t a member
It’s a more complex setup but in the long run it will make the new website much more flexible. A lot of the ground work I’m doing at the moment is in the background, with the hope that, this year, new features will be much easier and quicker to roll out.
And, just to prove that the new website does actually exist, here’s sneak peek of what will be launching soon: http://18.104.22.168/
Thanks for all your patience.