[aprssig] ARRL Web Site Propagating Out-Of-Data APRS Into

Steve Dimse steve at dimse.com
Thu Mar 30 17:50:28 CST 2006

On Mar 30, 2006, at 5:22 PM, <scott at opentrac.org>  
<scott at opentrac.org> wrote:

> Saw that the other day.  Just because some websites manage to make  
> money
> DESPITE being ugly doesn't mean you should have an ugly site.

That isn't what I took away from the article. What I read is that  
pages which are ugly (BTW, not grotesque, just without any  
beautification) carry a subconscious message gives the content more  
credibility (hey, I spent my time on the content, not the wrapper).  
This is not a unique concept, talk to a few professional women, and  
you will hear it said that beauty makes it harder to be taken  
seriously. Sure, lots of makeup might get them more attention, but  
not the kind they want!

The article does not advocate intentionally uglifying your page,  
rather it points out efforts spent on beautification can be  
> Yes, information is more important than looks.  And how the  
> information is
> presented is also critical - I've seen plenty of pages with tons of  
> good
> information, but all in a single block of impossible to read text  
> that's
> sure to turn away readers.

There is a difference between functional and beautiful (except to an  
engineer that considers functionality beautiful ;-) Graphic artists  
make things beautiful, functionality (as in how the information is  
organized and presented) comes from elsewhere.

>> As to aprs.net, I'd be glad to give a domain name (for example
>> info.aprs.net, or any other you'd like), but I don't want to host it
>> on my server because of security/time concerns (I don't want to have
>> others with accounts on the servers, and I don;t have time to upload
>> changes myself).
> What about www?  That's the one that's already up there in the Google
> rankings - and no, I won't put any ads on the site if it's going to  
> be the
> official, vendor-neutral APRS info site.  I have no problem with it  
> being
> pointed at my server - I've got plenty of bandwidth there.

www.aprs.net is used by the javAPRS pages, still gets lots of traffic.

Don't sell Google short. If you create a good site, you will get many  
links (including one from www.aprs.net and most findU pages --  
believe me no one wants this more than me, a good site could save me  
a hundred emails a week), and you will find yourself near the top of  
the Google listings in no time. Bob's page is at the top not because  
he has been there the longest, but because more people link to him  
than the others. Google's secret algorithm is really pretty good, and  
the crawlers move fast. For example, there were hundreds of pages  
about suitsat out there for a year or more. My suitsat.org went live  
a few days before the release, 24 hours later it was number 2, only  
NASA's page stayed above it. No doubt having the search term in the  
domain name helps in the secret algorithm, which is a reason to  
consider the offer of info.aprs.net,

On the other hand, were I to put some garbage up on www.aprs.net,  
links would disappear, and the page would move down the listings.  
That's what Google is all about, harvesting communal wisdom. Create  
the best site, and it will move to the top of the listings.

Steve K4HG

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