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  1. #1
    I'm baaaaaaaaaaaaack! Fluffykins's Avatar
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    Right, i've finally done it. I've finally decided what i'm going to do with the pithy domain name I spent weeks choosing and just left to sit there. I've picked a pseudo colour scheme, and even decided what the site was going to be. Then I got stuck.

    The site (http://www.silicon-world.co.uk) is going to be a portal site for classic 80s cartoon enthusiasts, as well as maybe science fiction enthusiasts etc. I've had a look round loads of portal sites, and have some ideas as to what i want to put on it. For example some discussion forums, weekly polls, directories of sites etc. I'd also like to make a little money in the long term by selling advertising space on the site, but plan to build up traffic first. I also want to add some of my own content, submitted by viewers, as well as linking to other sites.

    The killer question that struck me, having never designed anything remotley similar before (all the sites i've ever done where for colleges and things of that ilk!), was where on god's purple earth do i start?

    It's a huge job, but i think ultimatley worth it in terms of my portfolio and experience (and hopefully pocket).

    Any of you people had experience designing this type of site? Any ideas, tips, help etc would be really appreciated, as well as maybe giving me some starting points?

    Thanks!

    Ady
    v-technologies - Freelance Goodness.

  2. #2
    Your Lord and Master, Foamy gold trophy Hierophant's Avatar
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    I suggest looking at existing portals and finding out what works and what doesn't.

    Check out the big ones like Yahoo, Excite, Go and Lycos but look at little niche portals as well. A couple of nice portal-like sites run by SitePoint members include FilmBug(A Movie Site), Article Central (Web and Hardware Articles, and AnimeBoards (Anime and General Discussions).

    AnimeBoards started out as a simple message board but has since grown into a true community with a lot of nice features. All based on the same forum software used here at SitePoint. I think what is done there could be expanded very easily into a true Anime Portal with links and news. (Hint Hint Prequel )

    As some starting software I recommend checking out ODP++. It is available in both ASP and PERL formats and has a nice range of features including pulling links from dmoz.org, the open directory, news from moreover, and books from Amazon (if your an affiliate), It is highly customizable, expandable through modules and is free with a link to their page or $49 to use without the link. You can find it at:
    http://portalscripts.com/Commercial_...sion_3_x.shtml

    I am going to be using it this weekend to start a religious portal as well as using it on a couple of other sites in re-development.

    [Edited by wluke on 09-08-2000 at 06:10 PM]
    Wayne Luke
    ------------


  3. #3
    SitePoint Enthusiast emke's Avatar
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    Wayne mentioned some portal software solutions. I would just like to add PHP Nuke to the suggestions, it's a portal written in PHP/MySQL.
    It's great and you can customize it really easy.
    It's free, it comes with a lot of different themes and a lot of other goodies.
    Check it out, it's located at: http://sourceforge.net/projects/phpnuke/

  4. #4
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    Interesting idea. I actually just recently have started up a portal site as well. Your focus all depends on what you want the main focus of the site to be. Do you want it to be centered around a directory of links like an information center? Maybe you want to concentrate more on community building. In any case, start with what your main focus is.

    In my case, http://www.schedulebay.com , our original focus was to create a directory for schedules of anything, anywhere. So we basically focused on link gathering first.

    Portals are tough and they don't always take off. Think about what you really want it to provide for the end users and go from there. Good luck!
    http://www.schedulebay.com - for all your scheduling needs
    owen@schedulebay.com

  5. #5
    Idea Developer
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    If you make it like existing things it wont work, you need to make your site unique, so people stay.
    Professional PHP programing / Hosting
    aim: downtoi3iz icq: 74637813

  6. #6
    Your Lord and Master, Foamy gold trophy Hierophant's Avatar
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    Originally posted by necrominator
    If you make it like existing things it wont work, you need to make your site unique, so people stay.
    You can still have a unique site even with looking at how other successful sites are set up. The most popular sites on the net have features that work, why not learn from them?


    <edit>Just testing something</edit>

    [Edited by wluke on 09-08-2000 at 05:22 PM]
    Wayne Luke
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  7. #7
    SitePoint Zealot
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    Originally posted by wluke
    A couple of nice portal-like sites run by SitePoint members include FilmBug(A Movie Site), Article Central (Web and Hardware Articles, and AnimeBoards (Anime and General Discussions).
    The URL's don't work for me. It looks like they need the http:// added.


  8. #8
    Your Lord and Master, Foamy gold trophy Hierophant's Avatar
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    Originally posted by adam_shep
    Originally posted by wluke
    A couple of nice portal-like sites run by SitePoint members include FilmBug(A Movie Site), Article Central (Web and Hardware Articles, and AnimeBoards (Anime and General Discussions).
    The URL's don't work for me. It looks like they need the http:// added.

    I fixed them in my original post and in this post.. It looks like Filmbug.com is down though, too bad it was a good site.
    Wayne Luke
    ------------


  9. #9
    I'm baaaaaaaaaaaaack! Fluffykins's Avatar
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    Thanks for all your help guys.

    Unfortunatly my webspace doesn't support PHP or anything clever like that, so i'm starting the good old fashioned way and using everyone.net for the communities and similar services built into the site.

    I'll keep you posted as to how it goes!

    Thanks again.

    Ady
    v-technologies - Freelance Goodness.


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