March 2009 Archives

Many Collage users don’t realize that they themselves can create new pages for their websites. Often, tasks come through where users have deleted all the content from an existing page and replaced it with new unrelated content, as a means to create new page. This creates problems because the original file name (URL) is still the same, yet the material on the page is of a completely different topic.

How to Create Your Own Webpage

To create a new page in Collage,

1) Create a task

2) Open a task

3) Navigate to the folder where you want the new page to live

4) Click on the “New Document” icon on the top toolbar
new-doc.jpg

5) In the New Document text box, add a name for the asset (something related to the page's subject matter) in the "Name" field

6) Click "Okay"

The page will refresh and your new page will appear, ready for you to populate it with content.

 

Please let us know in the notes section of your task that you have created new documents so we can make sure they function properly and are linked appropriately.

Formatting content in Collage can be tricky. Many Collage users have trouble particularly with actions like indenting text, spacing text or creating soft returns (single line breaks). Their solution has been to hit the space bar multiple times to create the desired effect. Trouble is, this method causes the page template to collapse. Here's what a collapsed page template looks like (notice the content area has dropped below the left-hand navigation):

 


collapsed-page.jpgFor the record, hitting the space bar repeatedly creates a string of unbroken code (“     ”) that extends beyond the page template dimensions of 550 pixels maximum, which breaks the template causing the page to collapse.


Point being, using the space bar to format pages is not a viable solution and can cause more problems than it solves. Fortunately, there are alternatives.


Solutions to Avoid Using the Space Bar for Formatting

Indenting

If you’re trying to indent text, rather than bang at the space bar, you should use the “Indent” feature. To do this, use your cursor to highlight the text you want to indent and click on the "Indent" icon on the toolbar (see image).


indent2.jpg


To undo this action, highlight the same text and click on the “Outdent” icon. This works for a sentence, a paragraph or multiple paragraphs.

Soft Returns

To create a "soft return" (single line break), refer back to a previous CMS Blog entry, "Stop Mousing Around: A Handy, Dandy Guide to Helpful Keystrokes," and go to "Soft Return" section: https://blog.uml.edu/cms/2009/02/helpful-keystrokes.html

Multiple Line Item Indents

If you want to indent multiple line items, you can use the "Indent" tool, but I'd recommend creating a list, either ordered (numbered) or unordered (bullets). To do this, use your cursor to highlight the text you want to indent and click on the "List" icon on the toolbar (see image).


list4.jpg

Clicking the "List" icon prompts a drop down menu. Use your cursor to select the list type you want: "Ordered" numbers and letters, or "Unordered" choose from three different types of bullets. To undo this action, highlight the "bulleted" or "numbered" text and click on the "Outdent" button.

Spacing Items on the Same Line: Use a Table


I often see users trying to create spaces between items on the same line that span multiple line items. For an example of what I'm talking about, look at the staff list at the bottom of the Financial Aid Contact Us page. When the page was created orginally, the content was not in a table and was arranged in rows and columns using the space bar. This made the text stilted, uneven and awkwardly staggered. In short, the formatting looked a mess. The solution was to create a table to present the content in neat columns and rows. 

To create a table, click on the "Table" icon on the toolbar (see image).

table4.jpg

Once you've opened the table editing feature. You have the option of creating a table with as many or as few rows and columns as needed. What's more, you can choose to show or hide the grids, by entering a numerical value in the border field (as shown  below).

insert-table-line.jpg

By selecting 1 or above (grid line thickness), you'll create a table with grids:

table-grid3.jpg

Or you can choose to have a cleaner look and create a table without grids, by keying in a value of "0:"
table-nogrid3.jpg

In closing, all of the above examples should help you with your page formatting by weening you off the space bar crutch. And remember that good page formatting is a key component of web usability and help website users discover important information on your page faster and more effectively, making for a better Web experience.






When a padlock icon appears next to a file, it means you have a file “checked out.” Typically, this occurs while you’re working in a file. But occasionally the padlock icon remains even after you’re done working in a file and you’ve closed it. See the example below for reference.
padlock-icon3.jpg

The presence of a padlock icon means Collage thinks you’re still active in the file. This presents a problem for us with task approval. Since Collage does not allow us to approve or access files you’re still active in, we must override the “check out” to approve your task. However, if we do this, Collage disregards all changes that were made during that session, which presents an obvious problem. So the solution is to check your file back in.

Here’s how you do it.
 
Checking In Files that are Checked Out


1. Click on the padlock icon.
2. This prompts a text box. There’s no need to type a note.
3. Hit “Okay.”

The page will refresh automatically and the padlock icon will disappear. Once the icon is gone, the file is checked back in.
 
Occassionally, a file gets stuck as checked out. If you tried the above steps and your file is still checked out, give us a call and we will override the check out.

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This page is an archive of entries from March 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

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