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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

About our new look

As we launch the new Washington Technology Web site, I'm reminded of so many highway construction projects I've driven through or other renovation projects I've walked through.

We probably should have a sign up that says, Pardon our dust.

This project is long in the making, and I'm grateful we are finally here. Click here for a more detailed explanation of what we've changed and what we've added.

As I write this on the eve of the launch, I know not everything is going to go smoothly. You are going to find broken links and missing stories. There may be some initial confusion on where a favorite feature or column is now located. That, unfortunately, is the nature of these things.

In some ways this project is like building a house and then moving in, except you have to move in at the same time the foundation is being laid. You are surrounded by boxes and furniture that you have to move around to avoid the wet concrete. Then the timber framers come in and the drywall guys and then painters, not to mention the electricians and plumbers. Oh yeah, you need to pick curtains and appliances and landscape the lawn.

I want to stay with the foundation analogy, because that is really what this is -- the laying of a foundation. This house hasn't been completely built yet, and it won't be for quite awhile, if ever.

We've migrated from the content management system that has powered WashingtonTechnology.com for several years to a new, more customized system. The exciting thing about the new system is that it will allow us to change and grow more easily. We'll be able to add and take away features as their demand comes and goes. The site is more interactive and adaptable.

However, that doesn't mean we won't have glitches. While I've always tried to be supportive and enthusiastic, I've walked out of more than one meeting thinking, 'We're doomed.'  I don't think that anymore. We have a lot of work to do, but I think we've done a good job of being true to our core mission -- delivering news and analysis that our readers rely on.

Now, we can apply more resources from across all of the 1105 Government Information Group to serve our readers. Kudos to our Web development team who gave up evenings and weekends and even the holidays to get this off the ground on time.

As I said, the new system is built for flexibility, but we won't know which way to flex unless we hear from you. I encourage you to use the comment features on this blog and our news stories to let us know how we are doing, what we're missing and where we can improve.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Jan 05, 2009 at 7:22 PM


Reader Comments

Mon, Jan 5, 2009

Much easier on the eyes. Good job Nick and team!

Mon, Jan 5, 2009 Christopher Hanks Milwaukee

Yep - broken links, apparently no more access to past stories and letters (which hurts readers trying to do research), archives now even more buried... "That unfortunately is the nature of these things." Sort of captures the problems the government has with IT "improvements" doesn't it?

Sun, Jan 4, 2009

Like it. It has "snap" and fits WT and it's mission better. Especially like the broader snapshot of your columnists. Congratulations to you and the team.

Sat, Jan 3, 2009 Guy Timberlake DC Metro

Not too shabby Nick! Nice new digs. Good luck with the move! Guy

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