We looked at how to set up a mobile web site and decided to keep it simple and choose the easy option each time. That does not mean we did not work hard to include what we wanted but from the code to the interface we wanted it as simple as possible.
Decisions you need to make:
Make your whole site mobile web compatible OR Make a set of dedicated mobile web pages
We tried this for a while and gave up because it would require:
- Take your current web page add CSS and scripting that make the whole thing mobile compatible.
- Applying a whole new layout to our entire site
- Finding and removing all fixed widths even from images
- Finding alternative ways to display tables of data
- Creating whole CSS Style sheets just to negate the styles sheets we were using
- Everyt page was too long and wordy to use easily on a mobile device
- FINALLY the content just looked terrible
- Make a new set of pages dedicated to mobile uses from the start
- This method could be done fairly easily
- You could make sure your content fit properly
- You could choose just the content people need on the go
- Maintenance could be slim we figured we could do it in 20 pages or less
We chose easy- Make A new set of pages dedicated to mobile uses from the start
Choice – Do you use a folder or a sub domain for your mobile content?
The letter m is the common name for a mobile web folder or sub domain so we went with m
|Sub Domain||http://m.library.newpaltz.edu/||NOT EASY|
- A subfolder on your web server is very easy just make a new folder under the root of your web server and go to work.
- A sub domain starts the same way but then you have to add a series of directives to the web server config files and have your mobile site registered in your DNS servers as a sub domain. You would need to consult you campus server support to have this completed.
We pick easy every time
This is all about EASY mobile web set up so we chose simple subfolder. We could do it ourselves without bothering anyone.
Choice – What devices to support on your mobile web site?
- We decided that any device that will not fit in your pocket can use our full site
- Also any pocket sized device that did not have a good touch screen would have a hard time with any web page so we would support these to a lesser degree
- So we decided the best devices were pocket sized touch screen smart phones & mini-tablets: iPod, iPhone, Android Phones, and mini-android devices, Windows Phone, etc.
Choice – What content to put in your mobile web site?
- Find a Model of a good site
- For content we looked to find a good college library mobile page to use as a model starting point http://m.library.oregonstate.edu/ Oregon State University Library mobile web site is a great mobile site. We are still looking to their site for the way they organize their home page and sub pages
- Find out what are your most visited pages are
- Decide on what pages are useful to access from a device you carry in your pocket
This turns out to be a nice small set of useful library pages.
NOTE: You do not have eliminate more in depth mobile content if you have it just put the quick and simple content first and link to in-depth pages below that.