DoddemaGen growing pains

The site has been operating for the past couple years and quite well.  I’ve received hundreds of names and other information regarding Doddema’s and their relatives.  My database went from 600 to 3000 in little over a year.  That’s amazing!

Unfortunately, that’s only one part of what I wanted to achieve with DoddemaGen.  I want this to be a family portal…where Doddema’s and Dodde’s can congregate…exchange information, plan reunions, share photos, recipes and newsworthy items.  What’s a newsworthy item?  Almost anything.  There’s family all over the world..most that I’ve never heard of or know anything about….so anything to me is newsworthy.

I’m under the impression that the site is difficult to use and I agree that to a certain extent it is.  My genealogy software and WordPress don’t play nice with one another and I’m not a web guru that knows how to manipulate HTML/CSS.  Otherwise, I could give the impression that everything is integrated together.  Another downside is that you have to have a username for both WordPress and the genealogy software.  While most browsers allow the storing of this information so you don’t have to remember it all the time, I can understand why it would be a pain.

What do I plan to do about it?  Here’s some ideas:

  • go back to my original CMS–Joomla
  • use the Joomla-TNG bridge to allow Joomla to control user access.  One username and password
  • one theme for everything giving it an integrated look.
  • recipe plugin.  While the forum is OK for storing recipes, this plugin will give it a very professional look and easy to print out as well.
  • Photos–currently we’re using Gallery2.  As I’m the only one availing myself of it…I might go with something as simple as Flickr.
  • Forum–I’d still like to keep a forum especially  for research purposes.  Fireboard seems to meet that need as it’s a module that nicely plugs into Joomla

I will gladly take any suggestions and/or constructive criticism that you might have.  I’ve said it before and I’ve said it before…it’s not my site but ours.  We all have a say in it.  I look forward to hearing from you.

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