In the beginning...

There was the idea that a collaborative of web developers could produce a greater good together than they could in separate efforts - that's right, we're talking synergy. evolt.org is a community that serves itself. You become a member by posting content to the site, taking an active role in promoting us, or simply signing up for the mailing list.

But, as is the case for the whole web, content is king - which is why we need you to share your wealth of knowledge with everyone who reads the site, the list, or stumbles across a link to us on another site or mailing list they are on.

Creating Content for evolt.org

Creating content for evolt.org is as simple as writing a couple lines about something you find interesting, helpful, provocative, or just plain relevant to anyone who develops for the web. Graphics design, copy writing, scripting, server maintenance, operating system tips, product reviews, book reviews, etc. are all valid subjects, as are legislative issues, taxation, trends, or anything else that has an effect on professional web developers.

In short, if something interests you in a professional way, it may interest many others who read evolt.org, and we'd love to have you share it with us.

Posting Content to evolt.org

Posting content to the site is a fairly simple affair.
Just follow the links on the right to "Submit articles, news, reviews or whatever" where you will either be asked to log in (if you aren't already) or you'll be presented with a text field to fill in. If you haven't yet, now is the time to register.

Registration is a simple process. It just tells us all who you are and gives us a way to keep track of the articles you have posted so that anyone who would like to read more of your writings can easily do so.

At the submission page (if you had to log in the first time, just follow the link to the submissions page again) you have a choice - you can either compose your message in the text area or compose your submission in an external editor and cut and paste the content into the text area. I wrote this in BBEdit and copied it into the text box.

You can use simple formatting tags like <a href>, <b> <P>, etc. but leave out all of the header and <BODY...> tags. Your copy will be entered into the database and brought into a page that has all of that. You also don't need to have any font definitions, since our style sheets take care of all of that. If you have code snips you should put them in either <code> tags or <pre> tags so that they don't get rendered by browsers.

Above all, keep it simple - worry about the message and not the form. Please do pay attention to spelling (another reason to use an outside editor if you spell the way I do) and grammar though. Don't worry too much about proper formatting and such - we'll check it in the next step.

Choose a good title and select a category for the submission and you are done. Hit submit and look for e-mail.

The Approval Process

All submissions are reviewed by our editorial staff. They check to see if the page works, if the markup is correct, and if the content is correct for the site. Who are these people? Here they are. Basically, it's a volunteer organization that takes a little time to help evolt.org run smoothly and take care of all of the little tasks that an undertaking like this requires.

The submission is reviewed, and if there are any questions, the editor will contact you (you did put a valid e-mail address in your registration, didn't you??) to clear them up. It could be anything from fixing a typo in a link that causes a 404 to making sure that the code you submitted doesn't get hosed in the web page. If the formatting isn't quite right, or something looks odd with our style sheets, it'll be fixed here. Your copy won't be changed without your consent - it's yours, and you are the only one who can allow that. Which brings up another point.

Your work belongs to you. You retain the copyright to all of your submissions to the site and to the list.

After all is done, your article will appear on the front page of evolt.org. The whole process can take anywhere between 5 minutes and a day or two, depending on how busy the editors are and the length or complexity of the submission. All in all, it's pretty painless.

Adding Input to Articles

If you don't have time to write a whole article, but have something to add to an existing article, you are encouraged to do so. Registered members of the site who have logged in are given the chance to add comments to the articles. It's a good way to use your knowledge for the greater good when you have something to add to an article. If you have chosen to be notified in the registration process, you will receive an email whenever someone posts a comment to your submission.

That's pretty much it. We'd love to hear what you have to say and we want you to add your knowledge to the site so that we can be better and serve our community of members better. So, sign up for the list, visit the site, or submit your thoughts soon!

Thanks,
Bob Davis
bob@members.evolt.org