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Purpose

The purpose of this site is to act as a resource for editors of the main site, demonstrating features and options, and providing guidance on layout and content choices.

Additionally, this site provides a place where the web team can adjust and work with the core layout and theme for the main web site, without effecting the main web site until updates are ready. 

Introduction

The York College web site runs on a Content Management System (CMS) called DNN (formerly DotNetNuke). DNN supports editing pages directly in the browser using familiar WYSIWYG tools that resemble traditional word publishers. You don't need to know HTML or CSS to edit pages. However, a very basic understanding of HTML or CSS can be helpful, especially for some of the advanced features. Training in HTML and CSS is outside the scope of this site, but if you want to know more there are countless introductions available by searching Google. Again, this knowledge is not required, but even a very limited introduction can greatly increase what you are able to do.

Each editor only has permissions to edit pages within his or her specific area of responsibility. When you find something you need to edit, look for the "login" link at the bottom of each page. After logging in, if you have permissions to edit the page there will be a black bar across the top of the page with a button on the right side that allows you to put the page into Edit mode. This mode will allow you to modify or add to the various content on a page.

Beginning Concepts

In DNN, a web site is broken up into pages, just like with any other site. Within each page there are a number of Panes. Panes are aligned into a Grid. This grid is what makes multi-column layouts possible... things like a left column for navigation links. It is important to remember that the Grid is always 12 units wide. Every row in the grid will have panes set widths, and those widths always add up to 12 units. If you add content to one pane in a row, you should add content to all panes in that row. You can use as many rows as you need, but each row has a different layout. Most pages will only use one row in the grid. There is a handy grid reference here.

Panes do not host content directly. Instead, to add content to a pane you must first add a Module. There are a number of different kinds of modules available, but 95% of the time or more you will just use an HTML/Text module. This module provides you with an easy-to-use text editor, similar to Microsoft Word, that you can use to format a page. As a side note, it's worth mentioning here that it is very poor style to try to fit an entire page into one module. You will have much more attractive and readable pages if you can break up your page into groups, with each group in it's own module. There are also some advanced modules available. You can find out more about them by looking under "Modules" on the menu.

Modules also have Containers. Containers are the decoration and formatting that appear around and behind your content. There are a number of different containers available to you, but several of them have a specific assigned purpose, and you should only use those containers for that purpose.