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First steps

Getting started with Content Curator

What is Content Curator?

Content Curator is the software which stores the content for your website. It allows you to add and change pages, choose what format individual pages have, upload pictures, audio files and videos, amongst a host of other options. It's technical name is a Content Management System (CMS) for online content.

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Is Content Curator something for 'techies'?

No! The aim of Content Curator is to allow you to easily edit your website. If you can book a flight online, you'll be able to use this software.

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What do I need to know to get started?

That depends on you! Some people like to simply pick things up and learn by doing, others prefer to read the handbook first. There's no single 'best way' to get started, but these guidelines aim to provide all the technical background you're going to need in practice, as well as a series of common 'How do I ...?' questions. If you have a 'how to' question that isn't answered in this guide, just contact us with your query and we'll answer it and add it to the guidelines for everyone's benefit.

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How do I get into Content Curator?

  1. First of all, go to your own (Content Curator- generated) website. For the purposes of these guidelines, we'll be using 'http://www.contentcurator.org' as the example website. What you see here is a website generated by Content Curator. All of the words, images, and even the layout of the pages come from Content Curator. As this is what the visitors of your website see, we will call this your public website.
  2. The public website is edited with the Content Curator admin area. To get there, open a new window or tab in your web browser and go to http://www.contentcurator.org/admin. You might find it useful to keep both of these windows or tabs open.
  3. Now you need to log in. Enter the username and password you have been given to log in to the admin area.
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What should I do first?

Different parts of the admin area
Different parts of the admin area

Before you begin editing, it's worth having a quick look at the different parts of the admin area.

Left hand side: Navigation structure (A)

On the left hand side on the screen, you can see the navigation structure of your website.
The number of pages you see here depends on the size of your website.

Each page can have sub-pages. If a page has sub-pages directly belonging to it, it is called a 'parent location'. If a page has sub pages, a small 'plus' symbol in a circle appears next to it. Click on the page title in the list, and it's sub-pages will appear beneath it .

Left hand side: Admin tab (D)

Clicking on the Admin tab in the left hand column will take you to various administrative functions for your website. In this area, for example, you can set up new users for Content Curator and access a lot of technical settings for how your website works. We will be looking at this later on.

Right hand side: Page settings and content (B)

The main part of the screen is where you can edit the settings and content of the pages on your website. This area is made up of four main sections, which you can access by clicking on the tabs at the top of the screen:

Location setup (B1): This is where the basic information and settings for the page can be altered, e.g. the page title, and whether the page is published or not.

Block A, Block B, Block C (B2): These are the three content types which display content on the page. Each block can display different types of content, e.g, an image gallery, a block of text or a link list. Each block has a different position on your webpage – for example, Block A might be your main content area, Block B might be a narrow column full of short information on the right and Block C might be the page footer. The positioning of the blocks will depend on the design and setup of your individual website. (See examples here).

NOTES:

  • You don't have to use all three content types on each page if you don't need them.
  • Some content types cannot be combined on the same page, for technical reasons.

Top of the page (C)

At the top of the page, you can see some links which allow you to log out, or preview the page which you are working on. Clicking on this will allow you to see what the current page would look like to the visitors of your website. Alternatively, you can open the page directly in separate browser window or tab.

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What is the Easy Editor?

Content Curator's Easy Editor in use

To make it easier to use, we've designed two interfaces for Content Curator. In most cases you can choose which system for editing you prefer.

The Easy Editor (or 'inline editor')

This allows you to edit content on your website itself, so you never need to log onto a CMS interface! When you are logged into the system, controls appear on screen, allowing you to edit content onscreen.

NB: At the time of writing, not all sites powered by Content Curator have been set up to support the Easy Editor. This is usually because they were commissioned before we developed it. However, it is usually straightforward to 'retro-fit' this functionality.

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How does the Easy Editor work?

Content Curator's Easy Editor in use

Clicking one of the buttons on the Easy Editor will bring up an Editing screen allowing you to make changes to copy, add links, files, images, audio etc. This is the simplest way of using Content Curator to edit your site and ideal for the non-technical user.

NB: Your site needs to be configured to include this Easy Editor functionality In many cases, it can be retro-fitted. For more info, please email info@surfaceimpression.com

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What is the Advanced Editor?

A view of Content Curator's 'advanced editor' intro screen

As well as the Easy Editor, all Content Curator sites can be edited using the Advanced Editor. Despite the name, we've tried really hard to make this system as simple as possible to use. Most of the content on this support site deal with functions of the Advanced Editor - for example, Creating A Page, Moving a Page, Uploading new images etc.

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Comments

09/12/2009

Robin Price

If you're not sure whether your site has got Easy editor as well as Advanced editor - just drop us an email to info@surfaceimpression.com and we'll let you know.

09/12/2009

Robin Price

This comments area is actually pretty handy with it comes to leaving messages or thoughts about a particular piece of content or page that you are working on.

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