Saturday, 19 September 2009 14:15

Getting the Most Out of the New Site

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Here's a few tips for getting the most of the new site:

Register: Registering for the site is simple, easy and free.  If you are just browsing news, you are missing a wide range of additional interactive features.  Registering a profile unlucks a wide range of interactive features in the Community Section.   Also, Registered Users can maintain their own Recruit profile in the Recruitables database.   If you have a Facebook account, the registration process couldn't be simpler.  The Facebook Connect feature will pull key information from your account.

Community:  The Community section not only includes profiles, but Walls, Groups, Group Discussions, Twitter Integration, Instant Messaging, Chat, Chat Rooms, Event Calendar and much more.  If you are a member of a Booster club, team or team parent group, a special group can be reserved for you.  Volunteers are needed to moderate each group.

Four Types of News: There are four types of news -- they appear on the front page in summary form but also have a dedicated section in the News section:

  • Featured News for in depth, original content.
  • Today's News for quick reports on recruiting, meets, and other general news.  These are now enhanced with multiple links and embedded photos and video.
  • News for the Web for select stories published regarding the sport of college gymnastics
  • Latest Releases from NCAA Teams are update hourly, automatically.  Unfortunately, not all schools provide feeds and some feeds are giving our new site a few problems.  We'll have them all sorted out in a few days.

Search:  You can now search on any of the News, except for external news linked from the web.

Customizing:  You can customize the layout of the pages.  Each square section of the site has handles in the upper right hand corner that allow you to drag and drop the modules in a number of different ways.  Thus, you can prioritize the content that you want to see at the top part of the page.   Use the link link "Restore to Default" to put the modules back in their original position.

Recruitables:  The Recruit Database is now fully searchable, and offers expanded options for each athlete, including a summary of key meet results and skills competed.  Plus, video can be directly embedded in each profile or simply linked.

Help:  Help with the site features is available in the FAQ section (with more articles on the way).  Also, you can head to the Site Forum for information on planned upgrades, bugs/fixes, and how to use certain features.

Site Forum:  The Site Forums are primarily for support of the site.  Please use the existing message boards for general conversation.  However, there are classifieds and notices available in a new section.  And, if you wish to create a moderated forum for specific purposes, just ask.

It's important at this early stage to report feedback on what you would like to see different and what problems you might be having.  Through the fall, the site content will be updated, and the automation of certain features will enable for expanded, more in-depth coverage.

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