[Loscho_enews] Google Apps has added new services

Web Manager webmanager at gfhistory.org
Mon Nov 22 17:04:02 PST 2010

In that Google way of always being in beta and surprising people with
updates, I discovered today that you can configure searching on Google Sites
to use Google Custom Search in order search multiple sites.  You can also
give your users access to other search engines.

I plan to add a custom search function in the Research section of the
Granite Falls Historical Museum Web site.

You can also now use scripting in Google Sites (and Google spreadsheets).
You do this not by just cutting and pasting a javascript into the HTML view
of a page, but by writing and storing scripts in a "gallery" and inserting
them from the gallery. I suspect this allows Google to make sure no script
is malicious, affects the Google servers, and so on. They liken the feature
to macros, which I am sure the spreadsheet crowd will feel more comfortable
with. I look forward to all sorts of script writers with too much time on
their hands to start sharing scripts we all can use.

One thing I am considering a script for is to create user assistance (help)
for each page of the Web site or for specific elements on a page that people
may have problems with, such as writing good search statements. I will play
with it and let you know how it turns out.

The default layout now also includes a footer area into which you can enter
the usual footer links, rather than just the footer of Google stuff.

And layouts now include horizontal navigation. This makes it easier to have
primary categories across the type and then page links within a category
along the left side.

These changes make Google Sites an even more attractive option for
non-profits with no budget and no technical staff.

Mary Deaton
Web Manager, Granite Falls Historical Museum Web Site
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