Some of the ideas we have for this website are finally being put into place today, taking it from a static sort of website to something with a lot more up to date information and a better degree of interaction.
Up until now the sites content has mainly been served by radio related articles which is OK, any site with a solid base of information will always be of interest to readers (we hope) but as most of the hobbies practiced on the shortwave bands involve at least some level of interaction we thought it was about time we joined the party 🙂
You’ll see a few extra social buttons up in the left hand corner of the site, these allow you to follow us on Twitter and Google+ where we will be dishing out as much information about this site, whats happening on the shortwave bands along with links to news from the world of shortwave radio either going to this site or the best the web has to offer.
Up to Date Information
We spend a fair amount of time using radio at static locations or out and about and will start posting the details on this site and out to our social media accounts. Having had an automated SSTV setup running for a while now the best pictures received are being loaded into the SSTV Gallery which can be found either in the top menu or via the logo in the top left hand corner. Still playing around with the format of the gallery pages and will most likely have the 20 or 30 SSTV pictures on the front page then archive the rest by month or week?.
There is also a text feed on the left of the screen that will be used to inform site visitors of what we are actually hearing. Everything in the feed is time and date stamp to avoid searching for transmissions that may have ended hours ago, the feed will be bundled up every so often and sent out to Twitter etc. We hope to automate this process at some point provided we are sure whatever system we use wont go wrong and start annoying our followers.
More Use of Social Media
With the ability to be connected almost anywhere via the use of our (almost flawless) mobile technology, social media is a perfect platform for delivering those juicy little bits of information about sudden band openings or those interesting transmissions that pop up on the emergency or utility channels now and then.
Having not got as much mileage as we could of from the social side of the internet in 2013 we have spruced up the ShortWaveOTG accounts across Facebook, Google+ and Twitter getting them ready for increase use in 2014.
And for the Future
Along with our other plans for this website our ultimate goal is to have a lively forum attached to it, while this may seem like a fairly simple task, some of the options available have been deemed unsuitable for a long lasting forum. There are a number of plugins for WordPress available but they are not designed for large complex forums and if we don’t set off on the right track with such a big project at the beginning it will be hard (and messy) to change the forum platform later on.
A stepping stone to a full forum could be integrating a simple chat feature into the site and as long as it can be properly moderated you should be seeing this soon.
With our minds set on a full forum and unbelievable stubbornness its only a matter of time before the dream becomes reality 🙂
With a year of running this website under our belts now we are all looking forward to what 2014 is going to bring.
All the best