Web Development Office
Immaculata Hall, 90
Visit our office
Mon. - Fri. 8:30a - 4:30p
570-348-6211 x2340

Below you will find some definitions and explanations of terms we regularly toss around in the Web Department. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact us! 

How do I make my website work on a mobile phone?

Good question! Our recent redesign makes most of your webpage content automatically look nice on a smart phone or a tablet. There are some advanced techniques you can use to make your site work better on a phone. Or, if you notice something doesn't look quite right, contact us using the form at the top of your page when you're logged into the CMS. This will send us a report so we know what to look for.

What is a "Smart" Template?

We are working on the conversion of all the websites within our CMS to what we call a "Smart" Template, which allows us to maintain, update, and roll out features to our content editors more quickly and easily. Read More...

What is the "Show on Menu" checkbox for?

When working with pages or folders, you have the option of showing them on the menu, or not showing them on the menu. Folders by default are not shown on the menu, but pages are.

Folders

Don't select "Show on Menu" for folders that are storing files, such as your images, docs, or files folder. Do select "Show on Menu" if you are creating a folder for all the pages in the Academic Programs section of your site. If folders are not shown on the menu, none of the HTML files within it will be visible, even if you've selected to show these individual pages on the menu. Remember that each folder within your site will require an "index.html" HTML file to be created as the landing page for that folder.

HTML Pages

If you'd like to work on the page without having anyone else be able to see it, you can uncheck the "Show on Menu" option. Once it's ready to be seen, you'll need to edit the Advanced Page Properties and check the box.

If you are making an "index" page, or a landing page for a particular section of the site, we recommend not showing this page on the menu.

What Exactly is a Content Management System (or CMS)?

CMS is short for "Content Management System" and is the program that handles building and displaying webpages. There are several CMS systems, ours is dotCMS. Other content management systems you made have heard of are Wordpress, Joomla! or Drupal.

We typically use the phrase CMS to mean our specific CMS at Marywood, which is dotCMS.

Velocity? What does physics have to do with being a content editor?

Velocity, or more specifically Apache Velocity, is the programming language in which our website is written. It's also referred to as 'Macros'.

Velocity is what makes our website so dynamic. It handles advanced things like news pulls and auto-generated content. If you see lines in your page that start with a #, it is Velocity Code.

What does it mean when you refer to the "Backend"? Is that a joke??

We refer to the backend as anything you see once you log into the Marywood CMS using your username and password. Content editors and the web team use the backend to change content, write code, and manage the server, permissions, and users of our CMS. When you see the folders of your site on the left side of your browser, and the pages on the right side you are in the "backend".

Does my site use a template?

Yes! The entire Marywood website is designed within a template, or a pre-designed 'cookie-cutter' webpage layout.

Within the Marywood template, we also have other templates for department websites. Choosing your template defines whether your page will have a left-side menu and 2 or 3 additional columns (containers) for content. We also use templates to assign the color of your navigation menu. See: Template Sampler.

In some cases, individual sections of the Marywood site require custom templates to position page elements in a special way. You may even have one for your department page that was created just for you!!

Containers... Contentlets... Content... I'm confused.

Containers refer to the 'windows' or 'columns' that comprise a dotCMS 'webpage'; these are the 'picture frames' that you fill with a Contentlet. Typically in the backend containers are marked by "add content" buttons that allow you to fill the container with your content.

A Contentlet is the term for referring to a chunk of content, particularly one stored or accessed by a container. These are the pictures you put in the frames. Or, the text and images that you put onto a specific page of your site. Contentlets can be reused throughout your site, such as your department contact info at the bottom of each page of your site.

Content is HTML-encoded text that is similar to old HTML webpage material. The content of your site is all of the copy text that you write explaining what your department does, or what your academic program is about.

What is WYSIWYG (wiz-ee-wig)?

WYSIWYG is an acronym for What You See Is What You Get - meaning code-free viewing of HTML material that shows bolded text as bolded rather than marked <strong>I'm Bold</strong>. Also, in context, it means using the content editor in WYSIWYG mode, with tools that you are familiar with from programs like Microsoft Word.

I was told that my content is using a Structure. What does this mean?

Usually short for 'structured content' - this is a more advanced way of handling database-like material.  We use structures to make it easier for our web content editors to add or change information on their sites. Instead of editing the page directly, the content is changed or edited through form fields (located in the backend under the "Content" tab. We write code that will make this content display on the page.

For example, using a structure for your Faculty list would allow you to enter the name, phone, email, office location, bio and photo of each individual faculty member into form fields, and our code would alphabetize and display the faculty on your webpage so they are all formatted the same.

What is CSS? Is that the same as CMS?

CSS is VERY different from CMS.

CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets - A way of formatting HTML that uses the <style> tag. It allows for more thorough, consistent, maintainable and adaptable ways of designing pages.

CSS can be used to define a style for all paragraphs, such as the color of the text, the font, and the size. Instead of having to write code to display each individual paragraph as 12px black verdana, a stylesheet allows us to apply this style to EVERY paragraph on the entire Marywood website.

CSS styles CAN be overwritten in necessary circumstances. We recommend contacting a member of the Web Team if you need help overwriting a style.

What is Javascript?

Javascript is another scripting language that was designed to add interactivity to HTML pages. JavaScript is usually embedded directly into HTML pages, but might require some tweaking to work within our CMS.

P.S.: The spider walking around on this page right now is using Javascript.


Haven't found what you're looking for? Try our troubleshooting section for answers to common CMS issues.