Dunning Parish Historical Society in Perthshire Scotland has local Dunning history data including dunning village census and grave yard geneaology records Dunning history society logo text

Members' Pages

This page is reserved for contributions from members and school pupils.
However, this page is by your webmaster.

The (Technical) History of
the Dunning Parish Historical Society Web Site.

Dunning Parish Historical Society was formed in October 1992. The principal founder was the late Lorne Wallace, a retired journalist and film maker, who was adamant that the fledgling society required both a magazine (which became The Dunningite) and a web site. Web sites were then a very new idea and the cost of the required equipment proved prohibitive until it became possible to create a site on a home computer using space on a server provided by an ISP. This enabled the DPHS web site to go live on the internet with its first few pages in June 1998.

At that time the majority of computer screens were very small – only 600 pixels (dots) wide by 480 deep. There was no such thing as broadband, only very slow (14.4Kbps) telephone dial-up access, and because this took so long to load a web page the total page size had to be less than 30kb (kilobytes) including any images which therefore had to be very small.

There were then three main browsers in use: Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator for PCs and another for Apple computers, and each required different variations of HTML code. Our coding was therefore kept to a limited subset of HTML commands which was compatible with all three browsers as well as the ISP’s Linus Servers. In addition a site had to use a very limited set of (so called web safe) colours which would display correctly in all these systems.

DPHS Office

Our pages were all hand coded (in HTML version 2) on Notepad – a simple text editor. Each time a new page was added all the pages which connected to it had to be manually updated, and perhaps the worst job was making sure all these links were correctly maintained.

There's little we can illustrate this page with, but here is a photo of the office where it all happens, taken in 2009.

In June 2000 we registered the address www.dunning.uk.net and moved the site to a new host: Freeola. Dial-up speeds (on a good phone line) had doubled to 28.8Kbps and larger screen sizes of 800x600px had become common. We upgraded all our web pages to suit this screen size. (There it has stayed to this day. It does sometimes look slightly lost on a modern computer monitor, but in fact still looks well on other devices such as smartphones).

In March 2005 we purchased the relatively new web site editing software “Dreamweaver” which looks after most of the “housekeeping” for us including checking spelling and the links between pages. It also allowed us to make a template to use for new pages and hence provide a consistent look throughout.

The last major update was in November 2011 by which time the HTML standard had passed through version 5 (which we never used) to XHTML which it was hoped would be more compatible with devices such as tablets and smartphones. We converted the complete site to XHTML, with Dreamweaver making this a relatively simple process.

Today the code is starting to show its age. However, the site still works well on smart phones, which is probably how it is most visited these days. Given the current number of pages and wealth of information there, upgrading to more modern coding and graphics to improve the appearance would be a major undertaking which we hope will not be required for several more years.

 
 

back to index

 

menubutton
menubutton
menubutton
menubutton
menubutton
menubutton
menubutton
menubutton
menubutton
menubutton
blank menubutton

 

COPYRIGHT
DPHS
Home St Serf's What's Available Members' Pages Crossroads and Characters History Now
Events Evacuees Favourite Links Dunning Surname Graveyard Survey Parish Census