Wondering what you've been missing? View a description some of our past events below.
November 14, 2006
SEO and SEM Tips, Techniques, and Resources
Speaker: Abby Krumel
An overview of search engine optimization and search engine
marketing, the scope of this presentation will be “a mile
wide and an inch deep”
- Define site's purpose
- Identify target market or audience
- Design site with marketing goals in mind
- Find the right keywords
- Write copy for search engines and site visitors
- Build quality inbound links
- Employ pay per click ad campaigns, or not
- Track, measure, analyze, refine, tweak
Abby Krumel is a professional bookkeeper and perennial
student who has been active in volunteer organizations
since age 15. Currently the Treasurer of Sonoma County
Web Developers, Abby enjoys working in groups to further
A student of web design since 2000, Abby recognizes that
successful websites are more than just a pretty face.
Abby will be speaking to us about how to turn websites
into marketing tools that help businesses reach their
October 11, 2006
Ruby on Rails and AJAX... an Overview of Two Web Technologies
Speaker: Les Nightingill - stillpoint
of the turning world
A high-level overview that will give you a feel for what's under
the hood of these emerging web technologies, including their
capabilities and strengths and weaknesses.
Les' presentation should be of interest to all flavors of web
developer, from graphics & design specialists who want to
see what can be accomplished using this powerful client-server
communication mechanism, to programmers who are looking for a
jump-start in working with Ruby, Rails and AJAX.
Les Nightingill is a silicon valley escapee. After 25 years in
various engineering and management positions, none of them
web-related, he now designs websites mainly as a volunteer,
August 8, 2006
Legal Issues affecting Web Developers
Speaker: Jonathan S. Storper, Partner Hanson, Bridgett, Marcus, Vlahos & Rudy, LLP hansonbridgett
Jonathan will introduce these topics, and then tailor the discussion to the interests of attendees.
Topics will include:
- Legal structures to house your business
- Reducing liability
- Major contract issues
- Intellectual property
Jonathan S. Storper has over 19 years of experience counseling corporations, partnerships,
limited liability companies and nonprofit entities in connection with business and
intellectual property transactions, corporate finance, including initial public offerings,
and general corporate law. Jonathan often is called upon to provide business as well as
legal advice based on his years of experience and expertise. He regularly advises clients regarding complex general corporate matters, contracts and licenses, joint development agreements, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, e-commerce, and technology related matters.
Jonathan is licensed to practice law in the State of California and is admitted to the
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the District of Columbia.
July 11, 2006
Image Revolution: Flash 8 and the BitmapData Object
Speaker: Marc Tanenbaum
Flash 8 rolled off the assembly lines last September with a raft of new features aimed at “improving expressiveness”. This was a build aimed at artists, and kudos to MacroDobe for remembering the important role artists play in the Flash community.
But some of these expressiveness features are targeted not at artists per se, so much as at developers who work with artists. Such a feature is Actionscript's new BitmapData Object. This highly-powerful but poorly-documented feature fairly well blows the lid off of Flash image handling as we've known it. Imagine being able to implement highly complex Photoshop-like filters on-the-fly. Imagine being able to capture webcam photos back to your server (with nothing but basic tools like PHP and MySQL). Imagine image-warping, Doom-type 3D engines, picture analysis, FlashVR, motion detection and more. All thanks to the death-defying acrobatics of this amazing little object.
We'll spend the evening walking through some of the more useful aspects of the BitmapData Object, look at exciting modifications some enthusiastic developers have made to it, and show you a few of the ways we've employed this tool - including several of the techniques mentioned above.
Marc Tanenbaum is Staff Programmer at Red Hill Studios, a Larkspur-based educational multimedia firm. He specializes in Actionscript development, and is currently Lead Programmer on several Red Hill projects, including FF56!, an educational adventure game about the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. He has taught Actionscript through his Actionscript Salon series and was until recently an officer with the North Bay Multimedia Association. examples and Flash source files
June 6, 2006
eMarketing: Advertising, Search Engines, Email Campaigns
Speaker: James Foreman
If you want to tap the full potential of your website no time is better than
now. The Internet of 2006 has the tools, and proven technology, to deliver
the business to your inbox. The success of your website though will be determined
through the decisions you make and the website tools you use.
Making the best decisions within the type of business you run and implementing
them are two separate phases of the process. James Foreman will present to
both business owners and web developers alike how to make those decisions and
implement them for online success. Any type of website can fulfill its full
potential, so all are welcome for this important presentation.
Topics will include:
- Advertising: how to attract, place and price advertisers on your website
or advertise on other sites.
- Search Engine Optimization: attracting the visitors who match your service.
- Email/eNewsletter Campaigns: sending email without spamming, and then building
your base of clientele.
- Scripts, Software and Tools: using web technology to deliver
eMarketing success easily and thoroughly.
James Foreman is the co-owner of Feather River Productions, originally named
SubtleFx and located in Sonoma County, but now based in Waitsfield
Vermont. James has extensive knowledge as an SEO and Website Designer/Developer,
working and creating for over 10 years, and has had the opportunity of starting
many businesses and designing numerous websites for a variety of businesses
throughout the U.S.
April 11, 2006
Web 2.0: Opportunities to Make it Big While Keeping it Small
Speaker: Tony Stubblebine
"Coined barely a year ago, the term 'Web 2.0' quickly turned
from a container for good ideas, to buzzword quicksand. One of
my favorite themes in Web 2.0 is the ability to make big gains
from small investments. Harness the value of your users. Join
smaller pieces through web services. Market yourself with a
blog. The personal investment to integrate one of these ideas
into your site is often less than a day." - Tony
Tony will tackle the following red hot topics:
- User-Generated Content - tools that enable users to contribute
- Web Services/Components - other companies' free services that
can be incorporated into your own web applications.
- Blogvertising - how free recognition and visability are
generated through blog postings.
Tony Stubblebine is Director of Engineering for Odeo.com,
a podcasting company. He's also the author of Regular Expression
Pocket Reference by O'Reilly Media, a consultant specializing in
Web 2.0 development, and former Lead Engineer for O'Reilly's
In his spare time Tony writes a blog, stubbleblog.com, builds Ruby on Rails applications, and plays with Ajax. Tony also likes to ride bikes and watch movies.
March 14th, 2006
Taking The Leap Into CSS
Last month we presented why all sites should be developed with Web standards. In this session we leave the theoretical
behind and jump into addressing the practical issues involved in moving to CSS-only designs. We will cover:
- Making the change
- Developing back/forward browser compatibility workarounds
- Keeping a balance between text and graphics
- Understanding IE bugs and workarounds
Developing an efficient work methodology This is a roll-up-your-sleeves session that will get into the tricky details you need to understand to become a CSS web developer.
Greg Sterne and Abby Krumel will address the practical application of CSS through demonstrations, examples and useful
Greg is a writer, photographer, trainer, student of web design and organic gardener. He started out in life as a gluepot and
x-acto knife graphic artist and now enjoys commuting to his pixel mine each morning in his PJs. On the topic of Tables vs CSS-based design, Greg says, "We are in the midst of a paradigm shift towards greater use of quality
standards across the board as the world becomes one economy. Web designers who today embrace web standards as a basis for
design decisions, will have a larger competitive advantage as browsers become more compliant."
February 14th, 2006
10 Reasons to Learn and Use Web Standards
Speakers: With Jeri Hastava, Principal Leap of Faith Web Design and Brent Wrinkle, Principal Webflavors Design, SCWD webmaster
An information-packed session on what are web standards and why you should
use them. The presentation will cover a brief history of Web standards,
their importance in Web development as well as browser support issues. An
abundance of book suggestions and Web resources will be shared. There will
be plenty of time to address audience questions.
Inspired by their attendance at the recent WOW Web Design and Project
Management Workshop, Jeri Hastava Leap of Faith Web Design and Brent Wrinkle Webflavors Design , SCWD webmaster will introduce you to 10 good reason why as Web
developers, if you're not already, you should consider learning and using
Web standards.The evening will also include a display of relevant books for
you to browse during the break, and a brief introduction to WOW, the World
Organization of Webmasters.
Bring your questions--as well as concerns--about Web standards so we can
facilitate an enthusiastic discussion on the theory as well as the practical
issues of web standards.
If you missed it we have the slide show presentation available for you with all of the resources.
October 12, 2004
SONOMA COUNTY WEB DEVELOPERS PRESENTS A PANEL DISCUSSIONTHE STATE OF WEB CONTENT MANAGEMENT
Managing Your Web Presence:
In the old days, when web content needed
to be updated or archived, you made a call to your webmaster or website developer, described
what you needed, submitted instructions, new text, graphics, or other files to replace the
old content-and waited. Just when you thought your new content was in jeopardy of becoming "outdated,"
the changes would be ready for your review and approval. Finally.your updates would be live,
just in time to start the process all over again-and pay the bill for services rendered of course.
Save Time, Save Money, Improve Communications, Strengthen Business Relationships
Today, content management systems (CMS) empower organizations, allowing non-technical individuals to
create, edit, manage and publish web content, and to organize and archive information in a timely fashion.
Learn from our panel of experts how to identify your content management requirements, what content management
options are available, and how to choose the best content management system (CMS) for your needs.
Tom Negrino - Author of Macromedia Contribute 3 for Windows & Macintosh: Visual Quick Start Guide,
and contributing editor for Macworld Magazine.
Dan Fruchey - Senior Programmer/Analyst, County of Sonoma Internet Services Department,
currently researching CMS for the county.
Nigel Hall - Community Servers, Inc., developers of a wide range of information management
applications including complex multi-site content management applications for clients such as The O'Reilly
Networks and O'Reilly Conferences.
Catherine Thorpe - Online Manager, The Press Democrat Online, what the PD uses their CMS,
what they don't, and the problems of integrating miscellaneous streams of content.
Greg Desmond - Freerun Technologies, developers of a suite of interactive tools that enable
clients to manage their on-line messaging, marketing and information management, including content management,
E-commerce, digital asset management, file sharing and e-mail campaign applications.
Marcelo Gachet - Senior Web Developer, Planeteria Web Design.
September 14th, 2004
Creating Web Video
Speaker: Thomas Luehrsen, Founder and Principal, Elmwood Studios Media Production
Thomas Luehrsen, founder and principal of award-winning Elmwood Studios Media Production
presents the ultimate Web video boot camp for practicing Web developers and designers, and
trainers who want to include video in their Web projects.
Luehrsen will provide step-by-step instructions on the process of shooting, editing and
encoding video for the Web. Choose the right camera, microphone and other production gear
for your project. Shoot video and record sound so that your movies look good and sound good.
Shrink your video masterpieces done to the size of a sticky note and send them through the
Internet without sacrificing playback quality and sharp, crisp detail. Luehrsen will share
his hard-won tips and techniques for optimizing video for the Web.
Biography- Media producer, Thomas Luehrsen, has more than 15 years experience in video
production, and a unique combination of expertise in both interactive multimedia and
traditional film and television. Luehrsen is an acknowledged expert, author, and lecturer on
interactive multimedia design and digital video, particularly Web video.
Through his production company, Elmwood Studios, Luehrsen has produced, edited, and
compressed hundreds of digital videos for multimedia projects and Web sites. Clients
include: PeopleSoft, Inc., Macromedia, Inc., San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, NBCi/C-Net,
DIRECTV, Ripple Effects Software, Bluelight.com, Mondo Mundo, the San Francisco Fine Arts
Museums, and Cinenet (Cinema Network).
Luehrsen is considered a pioneer in the field of interactive multimedia. He was the first
full-time producer of interactive media at the Voyager Company, best known for its acclaimed
Criterion Collection series of DVDs and laserdiscs. His CD ROM production, Exploring the
Lost Maya, is an interactive documentary showing the majesty of ancient Maya civilization.
Other award-winning projects include I Photograph to Remember, a CD ROM which redefined the
use of the personal computer as a medium of expression. Rolling Stone magazine called it "a
universal work." Both CD ROMs were rated in the top ten CD ROMs of the year by PC World and
Luehrsen is the author of Creating Web Video (Peachpit Press), a comprehensive primer on Web
video. The book offers conceptual information and step-by-step instructions to guide readers
through the process of shooting, editing and encoding video for the Web. Luehrsen teaches
digital video and multimedia classes at the San Francisco State University Multimedia
Studies Program, the University of California at Berkeley Extension, the San Francisco State
University Cinema Department, and the Bay Area Video Coalition.
August 10th, 2004
Flash to PHP to MySQL Roundtrip
Speaker: Marc Tanenbaum, Principal, SF Multimedia
PHP is a very popular open source server-side scripting language
for backend interaction. MySQL is a powerful open source database product.
Taken together (and owing to the fact that they're both free),
the PHP + MySQL setup is probably the most common backend for small websites.
When Flash is able to pull information from and post information to the
database, the possibilities for dynamic websites and Rich Internet
Applications (RIAs) really take flight. We'll learn a bit about moving
information back and forth and perhaps build a simple RIA.
As part of his presentation, Marc will show off a Flash blogging tool,
a content management tool for database-driven websites
(loosely modeled on Macromedia's Contribute software), and a website which
draws the same database information to drive both Flash and HTML versions.
Marc believes strongly in the 'multi' side of the multimedia equation.
He couples expert Flash/Actionscript coding skills with abilities in design,
writing, film-making, photography and editing. Through sfmultimedia, his
independent website firm, he's developed dozens of websites, presentations
and games, and played key creative roles in several short-subject films.
As much as he enjoys creating, Marc is equally eager to teach and share
his expertise with others. He began doing this while still learning Flash:
before the end of his first semester, he became de facto teaching assistant,
helping his fellow students understand the ways of Actionscript. Since then,
he has taught Actionscript to hundreds of students through the classroom,
the web forum he moderates, and through private tutelage.
With NBMA for three years, Marc worked first as Web SIG leader, and later
as head of the Actionscript Salon (working the two simultaneously for almost
a year). Through the Salon, Marc charts the sometimes treacherous waters of
Actionscript by delving into it one aspect at a time, drawing parallels
between these aspects whenever possible.
July 13th, 2004
Building a Brand Online
Speaker: Jamie Spooner, President
Planeteria Web Design, Inc.
To brand or not to brand? Everyone knows the answer to that
question, right? I bet you can answer in the affirmative
that "branding is necessary part of any successful marketing
strategy." But how well positioned are you to take the
client further, into that murky territory of identity,
audience and purpose? Can you help them construct an online
brand that gets results? Of course you can! We'll start with
your own brand and go from there to discuss some case
studies in detail.
Web developers and designers are routinely called upon to be
marketing consultants. Knowing more about building a brand
online will also help you refine the role of marketing as a
competency within your own company.
Before starting Planeteria, Jamie worked at Microsoft for 7
years as a Design Program Manager. Her accomplishments there
include the design of the Windows Media Player interface,
the design of Microsoft.com's second home page, the design
of the Windows 98 site launch (over 1000 Web pages), and
several marketing presentation designs for Bill Gates.
Previously, Jamie held positions at two Boston advertising
firms and was fortunate to gain a great deal of experience
in marketing and branding with clients such as American
Express, Digital Equipment Corporation and The Boston
Symphony. She also taught design for one year in
Switzerland. Jamie is a graduate of Smith College.
Jamie is President of the Sonoma Business Networking
International chapter (BNI), a Marketing Consultant with the
Redwood Empire Small Business Development Center in Santa
Rosa, a member of the Santa Rosa Chamber Marketing
Committee, Communications Director for the Connections women
in business networking group, and Secretary for the Smith
College Class of 1987.
June 8th, 2004
Managing Your Website Project
Speaker: Brian Petro, Principal,
Productions Website Design
Project management is one of the trickiest aspects of running
a Web development company. It requires knowledge
of all of the technical aspects of a project,
PLUS very solid people skills. This presentation
will cover practical tools
to help guide the management of technical
aspects of Web development, and the
relationships that are an integral part of
A popular speaker, Brian will use examples
from past Bright Productions website development
projects to demonstrate how to avoid some of
the lessons he learned the hard way.
- Goals of project management
- Keys to project management
- Project management software
- Managing contractual work
- Contract scope-creep
- Working for Time and Materials
- Red flags and how to handle them
Brian Petro founded Bright Productions Website Design (bpwebdesign.com)
in 1995 to capitalize on the expanding commercial
possibilities of the Internet. With his special
interests in sales and promotion, he conceived
Bright Productions as a more effective, marketing-focused alternative
to companies that only considered the technical aspects of Web development.
During the past nine years, Brian has built a solid reputation for
helping his clients develop and implement powerful, integrated online
Experienced in a broad spectrum of Internet technologies
and systems, Brian has collaborated with such
diverse companies as Chevron, Redwood Merchant
Services (National Bank of the Redwoods), Dey,
LP (Merck), and DMG World Media. Brian earned
his Bachelor of Science from the University of
Nevada, Las Vegas, in 1992.
An accomplished public
speaker and writer, Brian has participated in
numerous public forums and panels regarding
Web development and curricula for teaching its required skills. He
frequently donates his expertise to local charitable organizations
on pro bono projects. Brian was a founding member of the Sonoma County
Web Developers Special Interest Group.
May 11, 2004
Creating Beautiful Interfaces with Cascading Style Sheets
Speaker: Douglas Bowman, Founder and Principal,
designs with Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) is no longer a fringe activity
practiced by standards evangelists and early-adopting web geeks.
Creative pioneers everywhere are bringing CSS to the mainstream.
Its popularity explosion brings a new wave of possibilities for web
design. It provides greater design control, allows more flexibility,
and enables sites to become attractive, accessible, and faster loading,
all at the same time.
This session will not serve as an introduction to CSS. Many
books and online resources are available for learning the basics.
Rather, this session serves to empower, by providing real-world
examples of beautiful interfaces, and by reviewing practical
tips and advanced techniques that anyone can begin using immediately
to build better-looking sites. We’ll examine how and
why these techniques work, so we can envision more applications
and uses relevant to other projects.
- Cinnamon Interactive
- Fast Company
- Adaptive Path
- Lee Jeans
- Adobe Studio
- Gossweiler Media AG
Where to Look for Other Examples
- Stylish <hn> Headings </hn>
- White Space is Good Space
- Better List Bullets
- Line-height for Legibility
- Tables Can Look Good Too
- The Good and Bad of Image Replacement
- CSS Rollovers: The Single Image
- Style Switching
Use CSS to control overall layout, create a more flexible
design,and simplify the markup we used to create with tables.
Set up a style sheet to allow the entire layout or structure
of a page to change simply by applying a different <body> class
Technique that uses pure text, simple markup, and 2 background
images which “slide” back and forth to create the
illusion of expanding images.
- Expansion of Sliding Doors
Push the technique to create rounded-corner boxes and solve
other design challenges, like styling liquid layouts.
Douglas Bowman is an influential designer whose highly publicized
and hugely successful redesigns of sites like Wired News (wired.com)
and Adaptive Path (adaptivepath.com)
have pushed him to the forefront of standards-compliant web
design. Bowman’s consulting firm, Stopdesign (stopdesign.com),
proves daily by example that beautiful, easily maintainable
interface designs can exist alongside simple, standards-compliant
Prior to founding Stopdesign, Bowman led the creation and
implementation of design process and standards for an international
network of high-traffic sites within Terra Lycos. As Design
Director for Wired Digital, he designed and oversaw numerous
trend-setting, industry-leading sites under the Wired umbrella.
As a member of the Web
Standards Project, Bowman helps spread the gospel through
examples, articles, and tutorials covering design, web standards,
and the confluence of the two.
He believes the
presence of design should simplify and facilitate our everyday
April 13, 2004
Rising Above the Shopping Cart
Speaker: Brian Kreck, Kreck
There are several different ways to
engage in e-commerce depending upon
the needs of the business and the budget
available. The goal is to make it as
easy as possible for the consumer to
place the order and to ensure there
is a solution for every comfort level.
In this presentation, you will learn
how to choose the right shopping cart
solution for your customer, and how
to implement that software on your
Where D o I Start?
What is a Shopping Cart?
- Shopping cart types
- Different technologies
- Shopping carts and the ISP
- Own cart vs. outsourcing
- The flow of information
- Different types of delivery
- Matching client’s business
- Accepting different types
- Understanding credit card processing
Choosing a shopping cart
- Common shopping cart features
- Matching the client to the cart
- Strengths/weaknesses for each cart
- Integration with other marketing
- Know the industry
Brian Kreck is President
Design Solutions. He was born into
an entrepreneurial family that has
owned its own businesses for many generations.
His experience with computers began
when his father purchased a Radio Shack
TRS-80 Model 1 in 1979 for use in the
family winery. After high school, Brian
attended the University of California
at Davis specializing in computers,
wine, and business.
Brian founded his first computer company
in the summer of 1995 to train UC faculty
and students on the use of personal computers
and the Internet. He graduated from the
University of California, Davis in 1997
and immediately joined the family business
fulfilling duties in marketing, sales
and management. The experience in both
industries gave Brian the intimate experience
necessary to profitably integrate technology
with modern business to achieve administrative
and marketing goals.
In early 2001, the company was restructured
to focus on the most successful component:
web site design. Appropriately, the
company was renamed Kreck Design Solutions.
The list of design related services
have continued to grow to encompass
many areas but in every case the core
foundation of providing economic solutions
The offices for Kreck Design Solutions
are located on First Street in Santa
Rosa, California and open Monday through
Friday, 9 AM to 5:00 PM. We offer complimentary
consultations and would be honored
to be considered for your next design
March 9, 2004
Writing for the Web
Speaker: Anne Marie Smith, President of InfoPros
online successfully so that your message is read and understood requires
applying specific online information principles and using effective, proven
techniques. In this presentation, you will learn the knowledge and techniques
necessary to write effectively for online readers. Specifically, you'll learn
Identify unique characteristics of Web users and the Web medium
Plan and organize online content
Say more with fewer words in less space
Label information effectively for easy access
Transform your writing into "scannable" content
How to write the critical first paragraph
Marie Smith is President of
InfoPros, a technical communication and staffing firm started in 1995.
InfoPros offers a range of technology services, including Web site design and
hosting, information architecture and usability consulting, and Web-based
training and multimedia development, and technical writing services. InfoPros
was listed on Inc. magazine's Inc. 500 list of Fastest Growing Private
Companies in both 2001 and 2002.
With over 17 years in the technical communication field, Anne Marie's
expertise is in the areas of usability, user interface design, information
architecture, and content development for hypertext systems. Anne Marie leads
the InfoPros team of analysts and developers in the creation of effective,
user-focused Web sites that elicit a positive user experience.
Anne Marie holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from California State
University, Chico and earned minors in Computer Science and Technical Writing.
She is a frequent speaker at in the areas of online information usability,
Information Architecture, and Web-based training. In addition, Smith is an
instructor for the California State University, Sacramento, Regional and
Continuing Education Program and the University of California, Davis, Extension
February 10 th, 2004
Best free Software and Services on the Web
One of the remnants of the dot-com boom and bust is the concept
that, given that the Internet was made possible by hundreds of
hard-working technologists who weren't paid much by dot-com standards,
the lucky software programmers who benefit from it should "give
back" to their community. In addition to the minor fame that ensues
from producing and giving away software for free, a lot of programmers
genuinely feel rewarded by contributing their labor towards software
applications that are distributed for free on the Web. In this
spirit, thousands of software applications and services are given
away for free on the Internet, many of them specific to web developers.
Stephen Fraga of AcademyX will look at some of the free services
on the web, and install and demonstrate some of the best web-related
free software applications for Windows, including:
- GIMP for creating GIF and JPEG
- Text Editors (HTML Kit, Textpad)
- Apache web server
- MySQL database server
- PHP scripting language for dynamic web sites
- Perl programming language (used in CGIs)
- MS Internet Information Server and ASP
- Creating MS Access databases without MS Access
- PDF_Writer to create PDFs from any application for free
- FileZilla free FTP client
- HTTTrack offline browser
- Mozilla Composer (like Dreamweaver)
- Mozilla Messenger (email client with anti-spam features)
- Putty SSH client
- OpenSSL server plugin for Apache to allow https connections
- Linux (learn the operating system used by web hosting companies,
- Brinkster, a free data-driven-sites
- W3 Validator / Net Mechanic for checking your HTML syntax
- Atomz search-your-website service
Attendees will receive a CD-ROM
with most of the software listed
Come early to take advantage of networking opportunities and
January 13th, 2004
Using the New Adobe Creative Suite
Robert Dougherty, master illustrator and designer, presented design tips and solutions for the web showcasing features of the new Adobe Creative Suite:
- Shadow/highlight correction
- Integrated digital camera RAW file support
- Text on a path
- Comp layers
- Support for Flash SWF format
November 11th, 2003
Designing for Users
A look at recent redesign and development initiatives at The Press Democrat,
where the online department deploys usability testing, research, surveys and
persona building to help structure and shape the newspaper's large information
sites. The team's work with persona building was featured in a July 2003
article in Online magazine.
As The Press Democrat's online manager, Catherine Thorpe heads the newspaper's
family of Web sites, including pressdemocrat.com, northbay.com, and
savorwinecountry.com. She started her career at The Press Democrat in 1999 as an
online news producer, and before that worked as a reporter and project editor at
the Sonoma Index-Tribune. She first learned HTML at technical publisher O'Reilly
& Associates, where she was editorial assistant to founder Tim O'Reilly.
Come early to take advantage of networking opportunities and refreshments.
October 14th, 2003
Web Developers Forum
A small but enthusiastic group attended our informal Web Developers Forum on October 14th. It was a worthwhile evening of "free consulting" from our talented members and guests. We covered a lot of topics including shopping carts, Flash, DHTML, and web-based newsletters.
September 9th, 2003
User Interface Design using DHTML
with Dori Smith
Web sites often have no UI, or they have a UI unlike any their visitors have seen before, requiring a learning curve to navigate their sites.
Learn how to take UI elements from traditional applications and recreate them using DHTML. A discussion of what does and doesn't work, and how to take advantage of the latest browsers without losing functionality in older ones took place in this meeting.
August 12th, 2003
Tools and Resources for Building a Successful Web Business
with Jamie Spooner and Lorraine DuVernay
Building any business takes planning, organization and good business acumen. This months presentation gave information on what tools you have locally or will need to utilize or develop in order to build a strong foundation for your web business.
July 8th, 2003
Tips and Tricks From The Pros
with the SCWD Board and Members
The SCWD reviewed web development tips from professional peers from database security to cheap and easy icon design.
Presenters demonstrated how you can put our tips into practice for your next project.
June 10th, 2003
Improving Online Search to Create Optimal User Experience
with Craig Scull and Kristen Brennan
Craig Scull and Kristen Brennan are User Research and Usability Specialists with SBI and Company in San Francisco. Their primary responsibilities involve overseeing and conducting qualitative and quantitative research with users to inform product development and enhancements.
They discussed and reviewed user experience factors driving web search successnamely web site search features for an organization (as opposed to web-wide search engines).
May 10th, 2003
with Jeff Johnson
Jeff Johnson President and Principal Consultant at UI Wizards, Inc., dicussed his latest publication Web Bloopers: 60 Common Web Design Mistakes and How to Avoid them.
His vast experience in the field of Human-Computer Interaction since 1978 and Ph.D. degrees from Yale and Stanford Universities made this event an enriching experience.
Mr. Johnson has worked as a user-interface designer and implementer, engineer manager, usability tester, and researcher at Cromemco, Xerox, US West, Hewlett-Packard Labs, and Sun Microsystems.
April 13th, 2003
State of the County
A Panel Presentation
A panel of prestigious professionals will discuss different aspects of the various web technologies being used. These include:
- Programming and scripts?
- Graphics and design
Our panelists included:
- Le Nguyen -- AFC
- Michael Estigoy --Petaluma Online
- Dan Fruchey and Bob Mandel --Sonoma County
- Nancy Abila and CJ Rayhill -- O'Reilly
- Jim Rosaschi -- Sonoma County Library
- Yannick Wets -- Legacy Marketing Group
March 11th, 2003
Building Intranets That Matter
with Joseph Michiels and Anca Mosoiu
Two seasoned web development professionals from Razorfish cover the whys and hows of intranet design and implementation. By showing examples and best pratices we will provide a practical overview of intranets for various types of businesses. Topics covered will include:
- What are intranets?
- Why would you build one
- Common features and intranet types
- Knowing your users
- Choosing technologies
- Handling access & security
Anca Mosoiu As a Functional Team Lead and Project Manager, Anca Mosoiu ensures that the business requirements of Razorfish clients are translated into scalable, integrated technical architectures and user-centric interfaces.
As an Information Architect at Razorfish, Joe Michiels provides clients with user-centered solutions. Clients that Joe has worked for include Cisco, Genentech, and PriceWaterhouseCoopers.
He has also been published on the topics of gesture recognition and informal collaboration tools.
Before joining Razorfish, Joe was a part of UC Berkeley's Group for User Interface Research.
February 11th, 2003
How to Start and Run a Small Web Development Company
with Brian Petro
Join the Sonoma County Web Developers and Brian Petro of Bright Productions Website Design for an informal evening discussing how to be successful in the web design business. The web has changed quite a bit over the years and the companies that integrate knowledge, talent and good business sense will do very well in the long run. Prepare to learn, dialogue and ask questions. As time allows, topics will include:
- Professionalism / Ethics
- Licenses / Taxes / Insurance
- Steps to close a sale
- Billing / Collections
- Working with difficult clients
- Working with subcontractors / 3rd party vendors
January 14th, 2003
Creating a Dynamic Application in Dreamweaver MX
with Matt Brown
Watch and learn how to use the new dynamic data features of Dreamweaver MX. In this presentation we will create a simple application to get records from a database, display the results, go to a detail page, edit the records and create new ones.
We will also do some discussion of best practices for developing an application and briefly talk about the larger issues of getting started with dynamic data in Dreamweaver MX.
Examples will be given in PHP, ColdFusion, and ASP.NET.
This is the first in a series of great programs that the Sonoma Web SIG will present over the coming months. Join Matt and others for a night of learning the new features of Dreamweaver MX and networking with local Web Developers.
Matt Brown is a Community Manager for Macromedia and technical editor of more than a dozen software books.
Matt has taught courses at Foothill College and San Francisco State's
Multimedia Studies Program and is a regular speaker at conferences and