Re: Website and Newsletters

M0XYF Berni

Thank you Steve.

I've received some positive feedback on the new approach so far, and whilst I understand that some members are slightly nervous, it will be more sustainable in the long run. None of the valuable history will be lost and it will all be incorporated.

Once up and running, the new site will enable us to potentially add additional features in the future. My main focus for now though is just to copy all the existing content over, which will be very time consuming and tedious. That could take me a month, and so I'll be avoiding any unnecessary updates to the existing website. Baby steps. I'm not going to fall into the trap of over-promising at this stage. Phase one is simply to replicate and stabilise.

The most exciting part for me is that we will now be able to optimise the website for search engines. I'm hoping to drive much more traffic to the website than ever before, thereby promoting the club to a whole new audience. We definitely need new members and hopefully some younger ones too.

I'm so encouraged that members like yourself are interested in getting involved and creating content. I've read with great interest the many pieces you've submitted in the past, and these would be perfect for generating interest in both existing and prospective new members. Amateur radio really has so many fascinating facets and interrelated topics, and there is a whole torrent of new technology on the horizon. If the government wants to promote STEM subjects to our young people, what better medium than through the existing family of radio amateurs? Us oldies still have plenty to learn too!

I will be more than happy to provide a supportive environment to members interested in website access. It can be as straightforward or as challenging as you like, and it can also be really good fun.

I'm probably going to use Joomla, as it's more powerful, although more work for me to set up. There is a Joomla documentation site here: for anyone who wants to get a head start on how it all works.

When I have something semi-stable to show members, I'll be sure to let everyone know. The existing website will continue to be available until I make the final switch, and there will be plenty of warning of that. Until then, both sites will be maintained in parallel.


Berni M0XYF

On 06/01/2021 01:24, GJ6WRI Steve wrote:

Good morning Berni.

Thank you for this comprehensive description about the way forward for the club web etc.

Often,  you don’t appreciate how much things have changed until someone knowledgeable drags you in to the 21st Century!

I’d certainly like to know more about how the website is constructed, and how to post items that will hopefully be of interest to members.

Thank you for taking on this mammoth task!

TU 73

Steve GJ6WRI


From: <> On Behalf Of M0XYF Berni
Sent: 04 January 2021 14:52
Subject: [Msars] Website and Newsletters


Hello everyone.

It seems my offer of managing the website and newsletters going forward has been accepted, and so things will be changing somewhat in the near future.

I offered to take on the role only if I could streamline the whole process, as it's just too onerous to manually handcraft every webpage and every newsletter. It's just not fair to ask one person to commit to all that effort.

I'm sure we would all like to thank Tony for what has been a marvellous contribution to the club for so many years. I'm not sure many of you realise just how many hundreds of hours he must have spent delivering your digital content over that time. He did look very relieved when I saw him this morning! Well done Tony, and happy webmaster retirement.


Change is a constant so they say, and there are now more efficient ways of working. What this means is basically two things:


Firstly, a redesign of the website. I'll be utilising either the Joomla or Wordpress platforms to host all the content. Not sure which yet. It depends on what our web host can best support.

It will mean me manually converting many of the articles on the current website over to the new platform. In this regard, I'll probably only copy the 'current' stuff, and just 'wrap' the historical stuff. It means the website will look very different, yet appear to contain the same content, albeit completely re-organised. Please note, that this is absolutely necessary to significantly reduce the amount of effort required to maintain the website in the future. I'm not looking for a new full-time job. I just want to give Tony a break and to do my bit for the club.

Secondly the newsletters will change. Rather than assembling the submissions I receive into monthly newsletters, I will post the individual articles as I receive them. That way you get your news faster, and it's way more manageable for me. I will manually post each newsletter article from any member who wishes to submit one, including the monthly copy from the likes of Ken and Russell. If they send them monthly, they'll be posted monthly. Hopefully we will also enjoy the continued flow of articles from the creative and innovative members who have submitted such interesting features in the past. News will become the focal point of the website, with static content taking more of a back seat.


I'll commit to performing this one-time setup and supporting the ongoing posting of news articles to the website for now. However, I would very much encourage you to submit your own articles directly to the website, and I will help and enable you to do that. I will be offering training to whoever needs it. I foresee my future role as simply supporting and extending the platform. The content, as ever, will be down to you!

Please contact me if you would like to have access to the new website and help create the next generation of MSARS online presence. There will be absolutely no expectation or pressure to contribute anything. There will be no possibility of you 'mucking it up'. Everything will be subsequently checked and moderated by me. If you can use Word, you can post an article online. Get to learn Joomla or Wordpress. The training will be available for free, and let's face it - what else are you going to be doing in Lockdown 3.0?


Berni M0XYF

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