Megan Taylor

front-end dev, volunteacher, news & data junkie, bibliophile, Flyers fan, sci-fi geek and kitteh servant

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Hyper-local Gainesville

I’d really like to see more from the Gainesville Sun.

As RSS feed of community events.

Hyper-local coverage. The next time I see a homeless person while walking home from school, I’m going to interview him (or her, but they tend to be male, I wonder why that is, someone should do a study or write an article about that) and write an article for the Newsies.

There is so much about Gainesville that I don’t know because I am fully immersed in the college scene.

I live literally one block east of campus. I go to restaurants, stores and events that are within walking distance (1-2 miles). I only know about The Fest (an annual, mostly punk-rock show that turns Downtown Gainesville into a roiling mass of people, mosh pits and noise for three days in November, and yet no one seems to notice) because I hung out with a music journalist.

I want to know about the holes-in-the-walls, the hidden deli, the place with the best burgers, the cheapest food. What bar suits what personality and which serves the cheapest drinks?

I want to know the town characters. I want a Web site where people post about odd things they’ve seen or done in Gville. So far, none of the mainstream sites that supposedly cater to this have caught on here.

I’ve lived here for three years, and I know none of these things.

Have a seat Gainesville, and tell me about yourself.

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Newsies and CMS

The UF Newsies are moving from The Undertone to our own blog on the Gainesville Sun site.

This is great, because the site will be geared towards what we write about rather than just filling in space.

However, I’m already seeing some problems with the CMS (content management system).

Rather than uploading a full-sized image into the blog post, the best you seem to be able to do is add a thumbnail to the post which people have to click on to see the full sized image. While videos, podcasts, and photos can be uploaded to the blog, they are not
integrated well with the blog posts themselves.

The photos at least, show up nice and big in the RSS feed. (That’s right, we have an RSS feed now!)

I don’t know what program is powering the site.

I’ve seen this a few times now, where the CMS that a company is using just doesn’t lend itself to facilitating the use of multimedia. It makes me want to go back to old-school HTML editing. (Not just because it would increase my own marketability.)

I even have trouble with WordPress occasionally, though to be honest some of that is because I haven’t had a chance to go through my CSS and PHP with a microscope yet.

Is there a favorite CMS among media companies that makes this easy?