Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Building a better website

NPI is all about positive, progressive change – working toward the ultimate goal of building a better region and a better nation.

And change is in the air. We’re always hard at work figuring out how to build you a better website, and today, we’re excited to unveil significant changes to this blog and new useful features at Pacific Northwest Portal.

Let’s start with Pacific Northwest Portal:
  • The Blogs & Websites directory has received a major update. When you have a large directory, you realize sooner or later it needs maintenance as blogs are moved, renamed, or ended. We’ve removed four blogs that have passed out of existence from our directory and edited the URLs for several others that had moved. But we’re also adding fourteen new blogs – seven from Washington and seven from Oregon. This brings our grand total to 106 progressive blogs on Pacific Northwest Portal – a significant milestone.
  • New Highlights Section. The brand new Highlights section showcases the best media and content in the Northwest. Find links to important blog posts, articles, and columns within the last couple of months. Browse the Topic Hotlist to discover what northwest voices are saying on a variety of hot issues. And check out the Blog Feature Awards to see what unique features characterize many progressive blogs in the Pacific Northwest.
  • About Us section updated. We expanded the Portal history section as well as the page-by-page guide to reflect new sections that we hadn’t covered earlier – including the new Highlights section.
  • Knowledge Base update. Viewing problems on Pacific NW Portal? Check the updated Knowledge Base on our feedback page to find help with your problem. If you still can’t fix it, send us a screenshot!
But we’re not just rolling out changes on Pacific Northwest Portal. This blog has also received a significant update. The changes:
  • Expanded Blogroll. Our blogroll has been expanded to include more blogs, drawing from Pacific NW Portal’s lengthy Blogs & Websites directory, which, as you read above, also got a major update.
  • Introducing the Topic Hotlist. The Topic Hotlist is a new and unique tool to read what many progressive bloggers throughout the region are saying on a variety of hot issues. This tool is now on our blog sidebar. As we mentioned earlier, it can also be found in Pacific NW Portal’s new Highlights section.
  • Sidebar Improvements. In Mozilla Firefox, some of the buttons and text on our sidebar had an annoying habit of drifting off of the edge of the screen. This problem has been completely resolved.
  • New Archives Menu. You can now access our archives using a dropdown menu. Just mouse over the month you want to go to and then click. You’ll be transported to our blog archive for that month.
  • Audioblogging. We’ve added a nifty new feature called audioblogging that allows the NPI team to post audio files on the blog from any phone. In the future, look for short audio clips to occasionally be posted on the blog, especially if we’re in Olympia covering the Legislature or a news event.
We feel these changes represent significant progress in our never-ending challenge to build you a better website. Tell us what you think of the changes! Post a comment below or click here to contact us. Your feedback is important to us!

UPDATE: Be sure to visit the diary I've posted on Kos- Netroots in Action - Uniting A Region of Progressive Bloggers!

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