EdWeb comes alive

The first site went live in the new EdWeb CMS this week. As it’s the beta version of the CMS we didn’t want to have a huge launch with a fanfare at this point. But it’s still a major milestone for us.

Getting this first site live all started with a simple click of our auto-migration button, which ran a script to pull the content out of Polopoly. Next up was to run a migration module in Drupal to bring the content into EdWeb. This was followed up by some manual editorial work to finish off the process and launch our very first site. The process will be honed over the next few months so that we have as little work to do post-migration as possible.

Homepage of the University Website Programme website with some images of Old College and students at a laptop and in the library

Screen shot of the University Website Programme website in EdWeb CMS

There wasn’t much time to stop and gaze at the site functioning beautifully and responsively on our mobile phones and tablets before we were back developing to hit our next deadline. This will be when we launch our next version of the CMS software in late November. It’s what we call our ‘Minimal Viable Product’ and we are looking to make a number of improvements in the back end of the CMS before we’ll be rolling this out to a small number of Schools and business units around the University in December and into January 2015.

The only downside of this pace of software releases, is that our developers are working absolutely flat out and just don’t have the time to launch the beta version of the EdWeb Distribution. There are a number of people around the University who are very keen to get their hands on this, have a play with the actual code and check out how we’ve put things together. It’s great to have this support and enthusiasm so it’s a real shame to have to say that we are delaying this until the end of November.

One thing we’ve learnt is don’t underestimate how long it takes to select your images! Our advice would be to start early and get sourcing your images now. The new banner images for example need to be 1500 pixels wide by 275 pixels high. This is much bigger than the current design and gives you the opportunity to show off some stunning imagery of the University or Edinburgh itself.

We hope that you’ll have a look at what we’ve built so far. The link to the site is currently from our main Polopoly website.

Temporary link to the beta University Website Programme website in EdWeb

We are allowing a few weeks to make sure that everything beds in properly and then we’ll be going fully live the week beginning 3 November.

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