PDA

View Full Version : How to Publish



Garibaldi
21-01-2008, 3:50 PM
My focus on family history is to collect and preserve the stories, the life stories and other text about my ancestors. My grandparents spent years and a lot of money to publish three hard-bound books. I have a copy of each, and I pull them out once in a while.

Today if I were to follow my grandparents' example, I would publish the stories electronically rather than printed.

Some of my questions:
Do others on this forum have experience with this?
Once published, do people actually look at the webpages and read them?
How have you encouraged people to participate?
What abou security? Should these histories be password-protected?

Any advice is welcome.

-Harry

Mike_E
21-01-2008, 3:58 PM
Hi,

I just have my tree online, but there are companies who will produce your tree in various formats either Web or hard copy. I think some of the folks who sell via Parish Chest offer these services.

http://www.parishchest.com/shop/index.php?cmd=listdepts&cat=D1681

Pam (aka Bo Peep) will be able to advise what services are offered through parish Chest, but the link is above so you can have a browse yourself.

MarkJ
21-01-2008, 4:27 PM
Several of us here on the forum have experience with websites and/or security thereof.

Do people look at web pages? Of course they do - the trick is to get your site listed in the big search engines, which is much easier now than it was a few years ago. Search engines such as the big G have excellent tools available to the webmaster of a site which allow you to see how your site looks to their search spiders as well as the various search terms used to find your site by visitors.

Not sure exactly what you mean by participate. Do you mean interact, in the sense of a forum or guestbook, perhaps even a wiki? Or do you mean participate in the creation of the site - perhaps donating material etc? Any project which attracts the attention of users is likely to attract volunteers to donate material - possibly even hands on assistance.

As far as security is concerned, all websites run the risk of falling foul of ne'er do wells. You can minimise problems in many ways, but you will not be 100% secure ever. Even the RIAA website was defaced a day or so ago - and, bearing in mind how popular they must be for miscreants to attack, they probably spend a small fortune on security!
The only safe site is one which is on a PC which is never connected to the internet, not turned on and buried deep in an underground bunker!

By password protecting, again, I am not sure of your meaning. If you mean that users would need to login with a username and password, then yes, it can be done quite easily - but unless you had a reason for that (e.g a subscription based access or some sort of forum etc) then you may find that passwording the site will lead to very few visitors.

I would start by looking into the popularity of online books. Although I have a few which I got from Project Gutenberg, I prefer real books myself. Of course, publishing a real book is expensive!
Then I would consider my level of ability as far as creating the site is concerned. Can I write a website which may need various scripting languages. Do I have the software to do this - I may need Dreamweaver, Cold Fusion ... That would be quite expensive. What format will I put the book in? Standard html webpages or pdf format? If pdf, then do I have the software to create those? More expense likely there.
Next there is the server. Do I run my own server - bearing in mind that many ISPs will not permit that, plus my internet connection would need to be always on and very fast if the site was popular. If not, do I pay for a hosting service? There are so many variations on that - shared, co-located etc, all with different rates.
The matter of security also needs to be considered - the site (any site!) needs to be as secure as possible unless you are prepared to run the risk of the site being infected with malware or defaced. Unless you (or your hosting service) have an understanding of the risks and how to minimise them, all your hard work could be gone in a few seconds.

The project sounds very interesting Harry. How you go about getting the stories out to the world will depend, as I mention above, on your level of webpage design (or amount of money you can pay for others to do the work).
One possible idea - have a look at some of the large websites who deal with genealogy. You may find that they may be prepared to publish your stories. I am sure I have seen similar things on some of those.
You may - if you wish to retain some control over the stories - like to consider speaking with a lawyer regarding copyright or whatever. Personally, all my data (and various things I have written over the years) is free of any restrictions, but there are many levels of licensing, from the free to use for anything type through things like Creative Commons which has a number of different versions to the restrictive ones often used by big corporations.

The above is just my initial thoughts on the question, but others may agree or disagree or come up with better suggestions!
I have seen a few of the hard back boooks of the type you mention Harry - and they are most interesting! There is one which relates to part of my family - so I would love to see your stories published in some way!

Mark

Neil Wilson
21-01-2008, 6:41 PM
Some of my questions:
Do others on this forum have experience with this?
Once published, do people actually look at the webpages and read them?
How have you encouraged people to participate?
What about security? Should these histories be password-protected?

Any advice is welcome.

-Harry
No experience of family history but will deal with the others:
Look and read - you can obtain a web page counter so you can view the statistics for the site/pages - whether the visitors read it is a different matter.
Participate - Have a guestbook so viewers to leave their moments.
Password protected - you can password the whole of the site, but then how will people view it. Password part (last hundred years to so). No password at all. Part of a site I maintain is password protected for members of the society, the software is free and there wasn't much extra coding to be done. Whether this would be allowed on some sites I am not sure, there is one company B****NET but I found their password and guestbook too much like hard work and felt their password system wasn't secure enough, but they seem to be on every body's site.

ChristineR
21-01-2008, 11:57 PM
Do others on this forum have experience with this?
Once published, do people actually look at the webpages and read them?
How have you encouraged people to participate?
What abou security? Should these histories be password-protected?

I am about halfway with placing my family tree on the internet, in a narrative style. I use the space provided by my ISP as part of my internet package. And I use a free version of PersonalWebKit, so I need not have any experience in programming.

Since my stories are about non-living people, I do not need to password protect it - the whole idea was to attract cousins, share my information and invite correction of any wrong turns that I have taken.

In a little over a year, I have been successful with all three purposes.

On anyone using about three keywords, the google search engine will bring my site up on the first page of results, so this has made it easy for cousins to find me. I have no idea how many people might visit who do not contact me, but the information is there if they want to help themselves. After all, it should be only relatives, or relatives of relatives even remotely interested in our lines.

ChristineR

christanel
29-01-2008, 6:19 AM
Hi
you may like to take a look at www.talkspot.com (http://www.talkspot.com) It is a free web
page(s) building site with free domain names and very easy to use (no HTML needed) with help videos on all aspects of creating a site and how to link it to search engines.
Christina

Garibaldi
30-01-2008, 9:39 PM
Thanks, everyone.

I'm more interested in how people feel about the content of family history stories. I make websites for a living, so the technical part is handled.

I have found quite a few sites with these stories.

Browneyes
23-02-2008, 2:18 PM
Ok real putting-your-website-onto-the-internet dummy here....

Can you answer these questions for me please?

I looked at Talkspot and other ones but I live in England. The genealogy site I want to sort out will be ok re the world but the other one is for my husband who only works in and around Cambridgeshire, England. Does that matter too much?


Also, I am so confused about this domain name thingy and free hosting..I understand what a domain name is but am I right that they'll publish your site to the web and you only pay for a domain name if instead of say

www(dot)Iamconfused(dot)talkspot(dot)com

you just wanted

www(dot)Iamconfused(dot)com

In other words does it really not cost you a penny and can people really link onto your site on the internet. Or am I missing somethiing here? |banghead| |sad1|

See, told you I'm a dummy!! :D

christanel
24-02-2008, 3:48 AM
Hi Browneyes
Talkspot will cost you nothing - ever, and yes, once you decide it is ready to be available to a worldwide audience you link it to the search engines. Talkspots free domain name has not prevented my site being easily found by anyone searching for the subject name. ( I am being coy about the site because I have not done too much to it in a long time).
I did look at other sites before I settled on Talkspot but of course in the end it is what you find easiest to work with and as I said earlier the creator of Talkspot is very helpful in my experience.
Good luck
Christina

Neil Wilson
24-02-2008, 9:54 AM
Ok real putting-your-website-onto-the-internet dummy here....

Can you answer these questions for me please?

I looked at Talkspot and other ones but I live in England. The genealogy site I want to sort out will be ok re the world but the other one is for my husband who only works in and around Cambridgeshire, England. Does that matter too much?
What is needed is 'mega tags' which say Cambs, Cambridgeshire, England. This is found in the 'head' part of the website that you don't see


Also, I am so confused about this domain name thingy and free hosting..I understand what a domain name is but am I right that they'll publish your site to the web and you only pay for a domain name if instead of say

www(dot)Iamconfused(dot)talkspot(dot)com

you just wanted

www(dot)Iamconfused(dot)com

In other words does it really not cost you a penny and can people really link onto your site on the internet. Or am I missing somethiing here? |banghead| |sad1|

See, told you I'm a dummy!! :D
They do not publish your site, you do using FTP software. Some web programs now have this included but I perfer to use a free one so I can also delete unwanted files on the site.

If you want a name dot com or whatever, you will pay for that, normally about 7.00 upwards for 2 years and then pay for your server space which can be about 30 a year. If you want more detailed information, drop me a PM.

Browneyes
24-02-2008, 10:57 AM
Thank you both of you. Thats very helpful and explains it very clearly.

I had a look at the helpful video on the site of T and saw that it would give web pages designed by them. So I believe the choice I have is to either use their pre prepared websites or stick to using FrontPage and upload my own designs. I'm not sure but I seem to remember reading that not every free one accepts FrontPage though and thats the prog I have on my PC.

I'll take you up on your offer to pm you Neil, thats very kind of you. Just a few things I've got to do first....must'nt get superglued to the PC today!

Mega tabs? Ok...might need to explain that one to me |blush|

Again...Thankyou so much Christina and Neil.

Browneyes x

Neil Wilson
24-02-2008, 6:54 PM
Thank you both of you. Thats very helpful and explains it very clearly.

I had a look at the helpful video on the site of T and saw that it would give web pages designed by them. So I believe the choice I have is to either use their pre prepared websites or stick to using FrontPage and upload my own designs. I'm not sure but I seem to remember reading that not every free one accepts FrontPage though and thats the prog I have on my PC.

I'll take you up on your offer to pm you Neil, thats very kind of you. Just a few things I've got to do first....must'nt get superglued to the PC today!

Mega tabs? Ok...might need to explain that one to me |blush|

Again...Thankyou so much Christina and Neil.

Browneyes x
hi Browneyes
When you do PM, let me know which version of FrontPage you have, I will be able to tailor my responses to Meta Tags to that version.