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Our new look

POSTED June 27, 2009 6:09 p.m.
There are always those who obstinately cling to technology of the past. Like that one person in line at the grocery store who whips out their checkbook to pay the bill while the impatient debit card users roll their eyes. Or the final few Americans without a cell phone who don’t want to be reached by others 24/7; and, I must admit, the Turlock Journal can also be called technology sluggish. Our current Web site is more reminiscent of 1999 than 2009.
But the present has finally come the Journal! Beginning Wednesday, when you visit www.turlockjournal.com a more modern and user-friendly Web site will greet you.
The new Web site is not only more visually attractive, but also gives visitors a better look at what the Journal has to offer. Instead of one top story, at least six top stories are highlighted in the center of the page. Another update is the number and variety of media — pictures, video and audio clips — that can be featured. Our old Web site did not have the capability of supporting video clips. Now, we can augment our stories with live-action video, giving the reader more details than ever before.
Polls will also be a permanent feature of our Web site, rather than an occasional feature as before. There will be a current poll on the homepage every day and look for polls that are story-specific as you browze the site.
But the best feature of the new Web site is its Community section. In this section readers can post a blog, upload personal photos for all to view, comment on a story, send a message to another Journal Community member, and add a listing to the event calendar.
I know there are dozens of Journal readers out there who still mourn the loss of the Red Phone. The Community section is the perfect way for Journal readers to voice their opinions through blogging and become more involved in local news and events coverage through commenting.
Other new additions to www.turlockjournal.com include Ask the Expert and the Dining Guide. Ask the Expert is like a personalized advice column. Have a question about pet care or when to replace your air conditioning unit? Then send one of our experts a message and see your answer posted online.
The Dining Guide is not only a way for newcomers to the area to find a good place to eat, it also gives Turlock old timers a way to find some place new as well.
Making a change is always hard, even when it’s for the better. I hope our switch from the old Web service provider to the new goes off without a hitch. But if there is a bug or two, please send me an e-mail about the problem and we will get it fixed as soon as possible.
I see that upgrading our Web site is a long past due necessity. Maybe I should look at a few other modernizations. I know the cost of keeping carrier pigeons is getting high.
To contact Kristina Hacker, e-mail khacker@turlockjournal.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2004.

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