nothing but 'net... internet, that is
alan's web pile

alan's web

Note... This web site is pretty dated, in both content ("that is so, like so, 20th century") and technology (awful <font> tags and such) and not even that maintained much any more. See what is more current over at the new CDB weblog...
Here is a small sampling of differnet webs I've woven that live under MCLI Web Site along with an description about what was special about that site. We're web old-timers-- we established our beachhead in November 1993. Our one millionth hit was in August 1995! two millionth in December 1995! three mil in Febraury 1996!, four mil in March 1996!, twelve mil in May 1997!, 16 mil in September 1997! but who is counting? Well, we have a perl script that is... You can see some of our recognition from the collection of badges and other sightings. You'll find us all over the web.

We've been very fortunate to get an early start on the web. You just cannot beat good timing. Luck helps as well as well as what my grandmother calls chutzpah (use the back of your throat when you say that!).

But don't think we sit around sitting on our web laurels. The whole landscape is shifting fast beneath your feet-- by the time you have mastered this HTML gig, everyone else has added Java to their sites. By the time you start to do some Java, and VRML is almost passé. By the time... you get it.. keep moving. But we don't just rush after every new thing that comes along... like a true, that is non-virtual, surfer we patiently scout the waves, the wind, the currents, and then pick our best hunch. .

The web is a MESS! And its getting worse. Thanks to the battling browers, there is no longer a standard. And as it gets more and more corporate the web will be less interesting as a frontier for individuals. You can bet your Microsoft stock on it.

We've done a trmendous amount of manual page building. Over the years and with the help of some eager part-time student workers (Kurt Leinbach and then Derek Cline) we've been able to build a number of automated systems for updating pages and making entire web systems that are searchable and can be administered without touching any HTML.
Webs re: the Web
The web is the best info source about itself. In fact, I rarely purchase books about the web as they are, by nature, obsolete as soon as the ink hits the paper. "Everything I've learned about the web is from the web".

As a service to our organization and the world as well, we use the web to provide information about using it better. We have gotten way from trying to be a warehouse of links (a ridiculuous task anymore).

Writing HTML
This began as a workshop for faculty at one of our colleges, way back in the Spring of 1994. Were you thinking web then? We were. The tutorial has grown to include more HTML as it has evolved. Most so-called "tutorials" on the net are merely reference guides ("This is the <blah> tag..., this is the <gork> tag) with no sense of rhyme or reason how and why you use them. Ours truly leads you through a structured series of lessons with clear explanations, detailed examples, and humor (I hope). The feedback we receive is phenomenal (all over the world, 8 years old to 88 years old). In January of 1997, a fan provided a version that was translated into Spanish. The design is simple but consistent, and is set up so anyone can download the whole shebang and work in it locally and even off-line. One of the nifty features is a place where our graduates register as alumini of Writing HTML (when you go to view some the elite list of graduates, a server script randomly plucks 10 from the many hundred of entries). And you can also see what people write to us about the tutorial.
How to Be a WebHound
So you want to find something on the web? Good luck just "browsing". Again, like the Writing HTML tutorial, those arose from the need to provide a workshop on web search techniques. And likewise, most "tutorials" online were only links to search sites. The Webhound actually helps you learn how to structure and direct a web search so that you do not end up with results like "1000000 sites found" or "0 sites found". It also includes a guide for those that may wish to lead their own workshop using our materials. Design-wise, the hound is pretty simple, with minimal graphics (just that dawg). For the exercises, the lessons include a worksheet page that should be printed out (sometimes the best technology for learning is still paper and pencil).
Web's Eye View
An infrequent look at the web. Who has time to kep up? Oh well. Several of the issues illustrated the newer design styles. We try to do a little better with providing every month a fresh Bag of URLs for your clicking pleasure. This collection is searchable.
Highways, Webs, and Rodent Holes
our web slide show for preaching the Gospel of Internet. This was one of the very first examples of a web slide show -that is a series of pages meant first for presentation from a local computer and then later access from the web by the audience. This was been used successfully for several other web presentations.
Information SuperHypeWay
Do you even remember the hype? Where is Al Gore driving these days? Near my home I discovered the Information SuperHypeWay. Wow.. this web page is an oldie-- first appeared in January 1994 with just a bit of later tweaking when background colors and font attributes came on the scene... I am also perfecting a recipe for Internet Soup.
Oh how the lines between multimedia and the web are blurring. Hey, that is good! The web can offer what static CD-ROMs cannot- dynamic updating, current data. CD's can still provide the rich media that suffer from the limitations of the networks.

Since we've been active in both, we have set up a few resource-related sites.

Multimedia Authoring Web
This site contains a searchable list of authoring languages, links to listservs, a searchable list of developers, and resource lists organized by subject. Several of these areas use perl scripts for searching databases... The commercial programmers list has a form for adding new sites and we dont bother even checking that site to see what is being added. The MAW has gotten some good notice and
Director Web
Since we have done a great deal of our multimedia work in Macromedia Director, we began compiling resources on this web site almost a year before Macromedia got around to setting up a site! The gross majority of the content comes from the fiery exchanges of the Direct-L listserv. DirWeb includes a searchable archive of demos and Xtras/XObjects, the Director FAQ, Shockwave, a searchable archive of Direct-L digests, a searchable collection of tips, and the most comprehensive set of links in the universe. Maybe. Director is the best but the learning curve can best be described as cliff-like. But what a view when you get there! This Lingo script outputs typical feelings when using Director:
   on directorMantra
     repeat forever
       put "I love Director"
       delay 2 seconds
       put "I hate Director"
     end repeat
Probably the most sophisticated piece is that our web server subscribes to the Direct-L digest, and daily a script moves that digest to the correct directory (creating a new one if it is a new month), places a copy in the link for the most recent issue, and, re-indexes the entire collection for searching. The search script, written in Perl by Kurt Leinbach, takes keywords and returns individual mail messages from a digest that contain all of the keywords.
Education Resources
This is our business! We have created numerour sites for our various projects and agendas. The web serves as a great tool for getting information out in a timely and inviting manner
Community College Web
We began compiling links to other community colleges as a single static web page, plus a list of resource links of related sites. Then we made it a searchable site using the magic of perl and CGI. It is set up so that anyone can send us a new site. An administrative system allows us to preview and edit all entires. Now it is one of the most extensive and cited resources of its kind, with a listing of over half of the communtiy colleges in the USA. The resource list too is now searchable.
Ocotillo is a Maricopa faculty-led organization for advancing the use of technology for learning. It has been in existence and has gone through many evolutions. Ocotillo has been the process by which many of our technical innovations get their start. The site includes information about the current activities as well as reports back to 1993. The site for the 1997 retreat contains a shockwave puzzle, RealAudio of our keynote speaker, and the results of the different discussion sessions. A search tool allows you to search anything in the directory.
Service Learning @ Maricopa
The central site contains general resources and links to different programs at the Maricopa Community Colleges. It's fairly ordinary HTML, but I think a clean/clear layout.
Problem Based Learning (PBL)
a new project for teaching in a very practical and solution-driven method. This was one of our first sites designed from the ground-up using a colored vertical stripe and tables for everything.
Teaching & Learning on the WWW
A searchable archive of several hundred examples of places on the web where teachers are using it with their students. This is a collection that is dynamic-- anyone can send us a site via a web form and our server scripts can process the new information.