Problems with St Augustine’s Church Website

 

This is a page for anyone having problems using the website of St. Augustine’s Church, Scaynes Hill, at http://sash.org.uk.

It is designed to suggest explanations and solutions for problems with the website, and to do so without fancy formatting — in case the formatting is what was giving the problem.

If the problem you have is not described here then it is probably not one the webmaster knows about. Please e-mail John at webmaster@sash.org.uk with as full a description as you can give of the problem, of the web browser you are using (this might be Internet Explorer 6, or Firefox 2, or some version of Safari, or …), of your operating system (possible operating systems are Windows XP, Windows 98, MacOS 10.3, …), and if possible of your screen resolution (this might range from 640x480, through 800x600 and 1024x768, up to very large values indeed) and colour settings.

 

Problem: When I increase the font size, the layout looks wrong

Explanation:

Yes, it does. It mostly affects the title at the top of the page and the navigation box. Part of this problem can be avoided using tables for layout, but these are being phased out in favour of CSS (see below), because of the screenreader issue described below and because tables make websites harder to maintain.

Solution:

There is currently no solution planned. Unfortunately, if you have large fonts then the layout will suffer.

 

Problem: The website is too wide for the screen

Explanation:

This depends upon your screen resolution. Once the standard PC display resolution was 640x480. The website will not fit into a display this small. However, it will fit into 800x600, a display resolution introduced in the early 1990s, and into larger resolutions.

Solution:

There are two possible issues here, one for those using conventional computers, and another for users of mobile devices such as web-enabled telephones. For the first group, the answer is simple: if possible, change your display settings to a larger value. Very many modern websites expect at least 800x600 resolution, and many, such as that of the BBC News, now expect 1024x768 as a minimum.

The second group will not be able to follow this advice. The webmaster is monitoring mobile device use on the site, which at the time of writing is minimal - perhaps because it produces an almost unreadable screen. If use of mobile devices rises materially, a version of the site for mobile device users will be produced that is more effective than the current, frankly half-hearted, approach.

 

Problem: The colours look wrong

Explanation:

This depends upon your display settings. Over time the number of colours available has increased considerably, from monochrome, monochrome plus three colours, 16 colour displays, up to over four thousand million colours on most modern computers. The colours used in the body of the site used to display correctly on any computer displaying 8-bit colour (sometimes described as 256 colours), but analysis of visitors to the site showed none, over a long period, that were using less than 16-bit colour. The current colour scheme expects at least 16-bit colour. The photographs have always required a wider palette; 16-bit colour (sometimes described as Truecolor) should be enough, but higher settings would be better.

Solution:

If possible, change your colour settings to a larger value. It is generally necessary to have at least 16-bit colour to get the best out of photographs

 

Problem: The map does not display on the Location page

Explanation:

The map requires javascript to display. Most modern browsers are capable of running javascript, but most have the option of switching it off.

Solution:

Whether you enable it is your own choice. In Internet Explorer the controls can be found via Tools, Internet Options and the Security tab; in Firefox Tools, then Options will enable to switch javascript use on or off.

 

Problem: The website looks disorganised

Explanation:

The website uses cascading style sheets (CSS) to display. Most modern browsers are capable of understanding CSS, but some have the option of switching it off.

Solution:

Whether you enable it is your own choice, though it is hard to think of arguments against it for most people. Some partially-sighted people may, however, wish to use their own stylesheets when viewing web pages in general. In Firefox you can use View, Page Style to select how to view any website. However, if the website still looks disorganised, even with the stylesheet, then the webmaster apologises but you are on your own.

 

Problem: My bookmarks or Internet Explorer Favorites have stopped working

Explanation:

The nature of this problem has changed. There are now two possible outcomes, that of a page indicating that you have not reached a valid address, or that of a valid page different from what you had been expecting. In the former case, it means that the bookmarked page has probably been deleted, having reached the end of its life. Many pages are inherently ephemeral, and when they stop being useful they are removed. In the latter case, it would normally mean that a page has been rewritten, possibly as more than one page, and you have been directed to a reasonable equivalent page. For example, there used to be a page on the history of the church building, at http://sash.org.uk/history, but the content of this has been divided amongst several other pages. If you follow the link, you will get to a General Information page about the building instead.

Solution:

The easiest solution is probably to bookmark http://sash.org.uk, and then to use the navigation menu to find your page. However, some pages, such as the calendar of services, are likely to remain in place indefinitely, and could also be bookmarked.

 

Problem: The “www.” disappears from the site address in the address bar after I have typed it in

Explanation

Originally “www.” was used as a marker for world wide web pages, but in many cases it is unnecessary. This site is one of those cases. You can type in either www.sash.org.uk or sash.org.uk

Solution

There is no solution, because there is no actual problem. If you wish to type in the “www.” then you can, but whether you do or not, you will get to the same places.