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Discussion Starter #1
I've started work on some new features for the site and am looking for other ideas. What features would you like to see added to Ford-Diesel.Com?

The following are on the to-do list right now:

<UL TYPE=SQUARE>
<LI>Move static photo pages into a database (almost completed)
<LI>Setup online chat system for general use (software is setup, waiting for registration codes)
<LI>Events section (not started yet)
<LI>Offline forum browser (alpha version in testing now)
[/list]

What else?

Jason


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Ford-Diesel.Com Webmaster
1997 F-250 PSD 5-speed Banks Stinger-Plus
 

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Jason,
Grate sight, butt eye wud luv spel chek. Thanx.

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'95, F-350,CC,4x4,5-speed,chip,downpipe and gutted cat.
 

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Jason, amen &amen on the spell check. I am begining to think "edited by--" is part of my sig.:d
P:S: Sent donation the other day-sorry it was late-added some extra, if thats ok.

LOVE THE SITE and the SMILES.


Ed

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Early 99-F250SC-PSD-LAR-numerious other goodies.
NRA-LIFER-TX.ST. RIFLE ASSC.LIFER-NRA/ILA AND MEMBER-GUN OWNERS OF AMERICA MEMBER-I DO VOTE!

[This message has been edited by H ED S (edited 03-02-2000).]
 

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New ideas??

Well not really not a new idea...but expand and expound the "FAQ"'s into say..a welcome to the world of Ford-Trucks/Diesels primarily meant for newcomers to the site.
The present sidebar FAQ listing is easily overlooked resulting in many re-hashed topics?
More comprehensive TSB listing??
Frequently "quoted" links area?

Hizzy
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by HIZZY:
New ideas??

Well not really not a new idea...but expand and expound the "FAQ"'s into say..a welcome to the world of Ford-Trucks/Diesels primarily meant for newcomers to the site.

(snip...)

More comprehensive TSB listing??
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

1. I can do that


2. What do you mean by more comprehensive? If you mean filling in the blanks, I am working on it as I find time.

If I wasn't at work all day, and back in College, War and Peace would be considers a short story compared to the FAQ


If any of you guys want to see something in the FAQ, slap me up the side of the head or send me an email and I will do something about it (Latter method preferred...)

SP


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Ford-Diesel.Com Moderator
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1999.5 F250 PSD CC 4x2 LWB Black over Tan, Built 3/08/99
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The forum software is a commercial product, so there's not much I can do with spell check, navigational changes, etc. Also, spell check would be tough to do with online forums. I guess it would be possible, but probably not worth the amount of time it would take to write the code.

As for site navigation and the left side menu, I don't know of a way to make it better. I hate frames and have tried it with the links at the top. We just have so much content that it's hard to make it easy to get to everything. I personally think it's very easy to get to the different sections since they are all listed in the menu which is available from every page except for the forums (and only one click away from them).

BD's new site doesn't even work in my Netscape browser. All the links are garbled up and written over top of each other. It looks horrible in my opinion. I've always tried to design websites to older specs. I could make a whiz-bang java CSS HTML4 site that would only work in IE 5.0, but that would alienate many users. Sure it might work on your new Win98 machine, but what about Bob on his 486 with Netscape 2.0? This site works and is usable in everything from Lynx (a text browser) to Netscape 2.0 to IE 2.0, to the newest browsers. I think that is more important than lots of eye candy that just use up valuable bandwidth.

Jason


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Ford-Diesel.Com Webmaster
1997 F-250 PSD 5-speed Banks Stinger-Plus
 

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Dittos on the unnecessary eye candy. It slows things down and for me, speed is important. As long as it looks fairly decent, my main concern is getting a page to load quickly, so I can post replies in the Other forum faster. Oops - maybe that is a good reason to chew up the bandwidth with eye candy after all!

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Kevin
 

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KEVIN;

AMEN AND AMEN


AS ALWAYS GOODN' TO YOU AND YOURS.

Ed

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Early 99-F250SC-PSD-LAR-numerious other goodies.
NRA-LIFER-TX.ST. RIFLE ASSC.LIFER-NRA/ILA AND MEMBER-GUN OWNERS OF AMERICA MEMBER-I DO VOTE!

[This message has been edited by H ED S (edited 03-02-2000).]
 

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This is perhaps not a "site" suggestion, but more bandwidth outgoing would really help the response time. I know you are increasing it based on the donations, but more bandwidth is always better. It is like sex!


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99.5 250 SD 2WD PSD SuperCab Lariat LB 3.73 Bright Amber/Tan build date Jan 99
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Powerstroke2000:
I'm not sure how most go from post to post...but I find after reading all the posts...that I always have to scroll back up through all the posts I've read to get to the top..where the folders are, where I.... <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Hi, Dale-

If you are using Windows and IE, then when you are thru reading in a thread, move the mouse pointer up to the top-left of the screen and click on "Back" - which gets you back to the index page for the current forum. If you are finished with the current forum, then click "Back" again and you'll be back to the Forums index screen where you can change forums.

That works fine when you are reading and not posting. When posting, you must click on "Back" a lot more.



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Ford-Diesel.com is a member-supported website, for more info: Click here. ........ Ole retired guy in west Texas with Darling Wife and Sierra Blanca - the white mountain of a '99.5 F250 diesel-powered CrewCab.
 

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Don't forget the Alt-Left Arrow key combination that might be simpler than click on the back arrow. It works in IE and I suspect in Netscape too.
 

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I think this place runs GREAT and I can only think of minor changes.

#1- A couple of pictures of some Ford PSD trucks (old and new) on the front page would be nice. (yeah somebody said that already)

#2. Make the site go faster!! - at least as fast as my PSD!! I know that this has been discussed before in other post, but some nights the site is slow and some nights its fast. Why can't you put a PSD under the hood of the forum computer?? (Tim the Tool-man would)


Jason- thanks for the site!!


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99 F250SD - PSD 2WD LARIAT CREWCAB SWB, AUTUMN ORANGE, ROLL-N-LOCK, UNIDEN 538W W/ 48" FIRESTIKS
 

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Troutly is just mad because I unknownly tried to get him to retype a loooooooong answer he had done earlier
FAQ and a spell check would be cool.Thank 95th

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2000 PSD F-350 4X4 hubs locked, in my garage 2/15/00 now the work begins :)
 

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I believe Hizzy has some great thoughts in his post! I realize that we all want the pages to load as fast as possible...and not all of us have a cable connection (like me) but a fancier MAIN page would be nice. Possibly some checkerplate background...you know..something that makes it look like a TRUCK site. Possibly a couple of pics...of both bodystyles of the trucks that Powerstrokes came in? Possibly Jason, you could take a look at the new BD website, and get some ideas from it? You know right away they deal in trucks...albeit ALL trucks with Diesels. I'm in agreement that the side links on the left of the main page can be overlooked, as these days there are side links on the majority of good websites, but people want to get into the meat and potatoes of the site...so they tend to just start scrolling. I've found the same to be with the DIS site...that they're links are at the top of the main page, which are often overlooked. So...spiffing up the site sure would be nice!
I'm not sure how most go from post to post...but I find after reading all the posts...that I always have to scroll back up through all the posts I've read to get to the top..where the folders are, where I can then choose where I want to go to next. I sure would be helpful if the folders and subfolders where at the bottom of the page as well as the top...which would make perusing the next wanted posts easier.

Thanks for the opportunity Jason..

Dale

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[email protected]
'95 F250 XLT SC LB 4X4 PSD E4OD 4.10 Tru-cool 18,000 aux tranny cooler , K&N, standyne performance additive, BB upgrade, BD downpipe, Superchips 2nd stage chip, A-pillar-pod, boost, pyro & trans temp Isspro guages.
 

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Jason,

I have a couple of issues with the content section:

There are a few articles in the content section that are either out of date or factually incorrect. Especially things concerning 94-97 trucks. There are also some items that are feature articles that should be broken down and placed into easier to find categories. Such as suspension and driveline areas for the warn hub feature article. Some things like the glow plug test article which only appears in the 6.9 7.3 IDI content topics. There is no current glow plug article on either of the DI engine tips section. Also the Content section should be a Tips section and you should have another section for Reviews. What you have now is somewhat cluttered and disorganized section for both. I am very willing to help in any way I just need some wherewithal. I am sure that some of the articles will cross model lines and one article would be necessary that would be able to be linked from all the tip categories.

I can understand you not wanting interlopers on your site meddling with the pages but there is a lot of work to be done on this site to keep it current and fresh. I am of the belief that it is beyond one person’s means.

I wouldn't mind putting together a more comprehensive FAQ similar in content to Shawn's 99+ for the 94-97's something that is living and that I could update on a regular basis. I will work with Shawn if necessary and we can butt heads together.

Whacha think?

BTW thanks for using my Excel spreadsheet modification. I am constantly modifying it and should send you my newest modifications.

If you want to contact me in regards please feel free.


Keith


[This message has been edited by Carpentractor (edited 03-03-2000).]
 

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I have been thinking about this for a long time, but the "dealer won't sell me my truck" thread points out the need. A simple dealer database would be tremendously useful. It could be as simple as users giving numerical ratings for sales and service (separate), to more elaborate descriptions/opinions of the dealer and the users’ experience. Searching by state or dealer name is probably sufficient, but it could use one of the fancy “search within XXX miles of zip code YYYYY” engines.

BTW, I composed this in Word to spell check, then did a cut and paste.
 

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Jason,

I think, if this were my site, I would most likely want to organize it into two groups both accessible using links from the home page. I would change Contents to “Truck tips” or something similar. I would place another link for ” reviews”.

I would then organize it by model much like you have the forums setup possibly inclusive of General Diesel and Other if you so desired. I don’t know if you would want to do that as it would take away from the purpose of the Ford-Diesel site. Attempting to mirror the forum organization would allow the users a familiarity to the format that is already what they use most. The object is basically just to allow users to find exactly what they need in less than a half dozen clicks.

Once you have the models nailed down you can subcategorize each by putting in links like this:

<UL TYPE=SQUARE>
<LI>Engine
<LI>Transmission
<LI>Driveline
<LI>Sheetmetal/ Interior
<LI>Chassis/Brakes
<LI>Modifications (or make modifications its own category from the home page)
[/list]

Then under each one of those you can have the articles that would pertain to those specific areas of the truck. The crossing would not be a big deal it would really only involve links to a single article wherever applicable.

My experience is that I know that I have looked at every article on this site and sometimes when I am participating in the forums I like to link certain topics on this site. The problem is that the way they are now requires excessive amounts of work to find what you need. You know you have seen the thing and it ends up that either you have to do a site search and hope that you can find it or you have to mechanically go through all the contents that you have there in order to find what you need. I believe the crossing would be ok and if organized as above it would be neat and there would be no clutter. It would be more user friendly even though there is more work involved. I believe it is to the benefit of the membership to make this site user friendly so that any given novice to computers would be able to find the information he needs within a few clicks. You made similar mention regarding those who have computers of yesteryear the 486 with the Netscape 2.0. Well I believe the same would apply with those who may not be so keen with these things or those who even have trouble navigating their TV remotes.

Like I said I would be more than happy to help out.


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Keith
1994 F-250, PowerStroke Diesel, 5 Speed, SC, LB, 4x4, with a Limited Traction Differential, Warn Premium Manual Hubs and a Happy Driver.

[This message has been edited by Carpentractor (edited 03-03-2000).]
 

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Discussion Starter #20
It's a good idea, but I don't see an easy way to make articles available in more than one area. It would require more fields in the database for each article that fits into more than one section. It could be done that way, I'll have to think it over...

Just as an example, the new Brakes article applies to all models. It would require a field for every section.

The database layout is like this:

Section:
All the sections you see when you click on Contents. Three fields, unique ID, shortname, and description.

Main:
All the info on the article itself. Currently has 8 fields: unique id, foreign key to section (what section it goes with), title, description, author, e-mail, dateadded, and short description.

Items:
All the paragraphs for each article. Currently has three fields: unique id, foreign key to article (which article this text goes with), and text.

I could add several more section foreign key fields to the Main table so the query that builds the list of article for each section would work correctly. We could then go back through the database and make the articles available in all the sections they pertain to.

Another option might be an additional table with only section ids and main ids. The queries could be built from it and then grab the correct information from the main table. That might be the better solution. Fewer queries on the database server and better performance.

I don't want to get too many levels of topics though. I think the fewer the categories, the better. In fact, my first thought was to put all the articles in one place .. guess not, huh?

Jason


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Ford-Diesel.Com Webmaster
1997 F-250 PSD 5-speed Banks Stinger-Plus
 
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