Content is King!

According to a Craig Bailey's article, the above phrase has its origin to a 1996 essay, written by Bill Gates. Today, Google Search returns about 832 million results, for the same keyword.

But what is (web) content, anyway? In its broader sense, content is “anything you use a web site for”. It can be text (~documents), images, videos, applications, templates, e-mail messages, discussions, etc. Just about anything that can be digitally transformed and transmitted over the web.

No matter what its primary content type is, a web site needs a way to present it. The dominant way, or concept should you prefer, is a “page”. If the content fits in one page, then it will be a single-page web site, the analog of a printed flyer, leaflet or brochure. Usually, the content is big enough to be divided among several pages, linked to each other and accessible through some mechanism such as a navigation bar, sitemap, search box, filtering, etc.

What's in a web page?

Traditionally, web pages consist of the following, vertically oriented, areas:

  1. A top area, which is called “header”, containing the site's logo and the primary navigation menu.
  2. A middle area, which is called “body” and it is where content is presented.
  3. A bottom area, which is called “footer”, containing less significant links and copyright information.

The body can be further divided into columns. Depending on the page width, it may have 2 or 3 of them. It is not unusual for some pages to present their content on a single-column body, even if the general site design calls for a multi-column one. That may be due to the fact that a certain content is to wide too fit, or other aesthetic considerations. No matter what, columns - whenever exist - are named as following:

  1. The widest one, where content is presented, is called “main”.
  2. The other ones are called “sidebars”.

A sidebar can be on the left or the right of the main column. This depends on the content. The general rule of thumb is:

« in order of significance, content should flow top-to-bottom and left-to-right »

Well, at least for Western left-to-right written languages, that is... Anyway, according to that rule:

  • If a sidebar contains a secondary navigation menu, like the product categories of an e-shop, it should be placed on the left. That is because what is in the main depends on what was selected on the sidebar.
  • If a sidebar contains less significant or irrelevant information, like what is usually the case in blogs and forums, it should be placed on the right, instead. That is because people come into your site for what is in the main.

Obviously, on 3-colun layouts, the main one goes in the middle.

Working with your ...body!

It is only natural that most of your online time at your site will be spent in writing and/or updating content. The one that goes into the main column. Fortunately, zoglair makes it an extremely easy and pleasant experience: all you need is to click the icon on your toolbar. Without leaving the page. Right there where you are. A popup form will appear, willing to accept whatever you have to say write.

But, wait! It get's better... Why mess with a form when you can do it in place? Just Ctrl+Click on your content, to transform it into an editing area! After you finish editing, press Ctrl+Enter to save your changes, or Esc to cancel them.

You can't edit a page faster than this, can you?

(C) Nick B. Cassos - All Rights Reserved
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