Weekly Web Development Round-up September 11-16, 2011

To give our colleagues a better idea of what’s changed in our web applications each week, we’ll be preparing this quick list for publication each Friday. Not all of the details of each change are included below, but we’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have in the comments.

The pages for Current Students and Faculty & Staff have been changed to use the Kurogo framework that we’re also using for the mobile website. These offer two “presets” of information that we think is relevant to those visitors, replacing pages that were previously little more than lists of links. This is particularly important for the Current Students page which in the last year received 50.13% (91,912 of 183,363) of its visits from off campus, likely from prospective students curious about what life is like for current students. A version of the page for Parents is being developed.

MiddLab

  • The MiddLab homepage has been redesigned so that we can feature a whole category of projects at once, instead of just a single project. On the left you’ll see a cross reference of all the other categories that relate to these projects.
  • There is a new Course Blogs page that lists any of the publicly accessible blogs that have been assigned to courses in the Course Hub. We’ll expand this to include other types of public course resources in the future. If your course’s blog doesn’t appear here, it’s either private to the course or the instructor hasn’t added it to the Course Hub.
  • MiddLab posts now contain Open Graph markup so that when they’re shared on Facebook or Google+ relevant pieces of content are also shared, like a thumbnail from the post. You can also follow MiddLab on Twitter or check out MiddLab’s Facebook page.

Drupal

  • Lists of non-image File Uploads now work better. The document type graphic is placed to the left of the title, the title is linked directly to the document rather than the node, and caption text describing the document can now be added. Try it out by uploading a PDF to one of your pages.
  • Dates in emails created by Webform are now in MM/DD/YYYY format instead of YYYY-MM-DD format.
  • We’ve improved the performance of the Office & Services page. If you’re missing the big lists of links that the Current Students and Faculty & Staff pages offered, try the faster Offices & Services page.

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