Visual Digital Presentation – Simple websites and portfolios using Google Sites

Visual Digital Presentation – Simple websites and portfolios using Google Sites


Google Sites is very quick way to create a basic website so you go to sites.google.com and use your google account and then you can create a site so here is my Google Sites page at the moment, I’ve got some examples but let’s create a new one go to the Create option on the left side there the create button now you can either find a template that’s available in the gallery or you can start a blank site which is what we’re going to do here so I’m going to put in MC Test Site for Video Demo. You can see here that the title of the site is prefixed with sites.google.com and because we’re part of the University of York it’s also added that in and then it puts the title the name of your site in as the rest of the web address that’s fine for me i can then select theme at this stage or i can do this later on I’m going to do that later on and I’ve got more options here for example putting in a site category or description again look at any of those options bit later on as well so once I’ve chosen that I’m going to have a blank template, got a name for my site I’m going to click Create and then the Site will be created so when we start a Site we’re in viewing mode we need to switch into editing mode every Site will have a Home pages as one page that the Site begins with the first page of your Site so to edit this page you go the top click the Edit Page icon and this loads up the editor and this has got quite a simple page structure we’ve got a title space the top and then this bit here is for all the other text that you want on the page in this space you can add in for example weblinks so that’s just add in a quick link to the University of York and I make that open a new window and if I want to change that I can click on it and click Change. You can also drop in extra things go to the insert menu at the top you can add images so I’m going to upload an image and select that when you add an image on its website you should provide a text description this allow disabled users using screen readers to be able to understand what the image actually is because they can’t see the image they might be useful for them to know what the image showing particularly there’s text in the image you definitely need to include text in this case it’s a an image of autumn leaves and that’s going to provide a little bit of atmosphere to this page I just put the alt text as ‘autumn leaves’ and when it’s added on you can see how big it is here and that’s too big for my particular website so I’m just going to click on the image and reduce that to a medium sized image just to make it easier to to fit on the page I also want to align that to the center so I’m just using the extra options available here when I click on the image take my alignment back to left and I’m going to insert in this case we’re going to add a YouTube video and again you just paste in so i use my video of how to set up skype audio and again i’m going to change my mind video size is pretty small at the moment is going to make that little bit bigger to make it easier to view on the page I’ve got a title there so ‘How to set up Skype audio’ and I include a border just because it might make it look prettier so here’s my video now the moment in the editor that’s not going to show that’s you don’t have to worry about that, when you save your page it will come up so that’s the video and there are other options as well we can add in tables we can put in formatting and we can do other bits and pieces with the insert menu too. So let me just save that you can see how it appears so here is my Google Site at the moment is quite a simple site with one webpage it’s got a link, it’s got an image, it’s got an embedded video there on YouTube. Let’s create a new page now I’m just going to create a new page using the icon at the top and in this page we’re going to try a different layout so I’m just going to call this ‘different layout example’ and I put that at the top level and click create. By placing this at the top level then it appears on the left menu navigation menu for the Site. We’ve got the homepage and then we’ve got the different layout example. At the moment there’s nothing on the page so I’m actually going to change the layout here to be a two-column layout so i can put stuff on the left column and put stuff on the right column. OK, so when I click Save and there we go that’s our page that. Now if you notice at the bottom there, there’s an opportunity to Add Files, so I’m just going to go back into Edit mode here so if you want to add any attachments to your site you go to the Add Files link at the bottom of the page and i have here an example word document and that’s added to the bottom of page there, sometimes you might think well actually I want these links to be within the main part of the text. What I’m going to do first, we save the page just so that that file is definitely online and then i’m going to copy the link by right-clicking, copy link address, and now go back into edit the page and if I want to I can create a link to the file i’m going to select the text click web link, go to web address and paste in that web link there ok save that so now when I view the page i can click the link to the file and that will show me the word document now at the bottom of the page we have a link to the file as well. So there is a very simple way to create websites and there are further options if you go to the More Actions pane at the very top that you can see and the revision history of the page you can even add in additional editors to the site, so the sharing and permissions option there you can set this to have other collaborators. So if you’ve got the email address of other people with a Google Account they can become editors on the Site as well and you can let them be editors or viewers or transfer ownership which might be useful for example if you’re creating the Site with a University account you can transfer ownership to a personal account afterwards if you want to maintain the Google Site. This might be useful if you’re using the Google Site for a portfolio. You can also on the Manage Site area access all the attachments that you uploaded and you can remove those particularly if you’ve uploaded something maybe that shouldn’t be made available you can go in and delete that from the site as well. I mentioned previously about themes and fonts and colours, that’s also available within the manage site option and you can change all the different aspects of the Site all the different colours of different elements on the site as well or you can just use the theme option and change the entire theme in one go so i’m just gonna click Save and that will not update the Site to look a little more blue So I’m just going to return back to my site so you can see how that looks like a lot smarter now anyway doesn’t it? One of the other options is to think about the site layout so at the moment we have a menu on the left we’ve got our titles at the top and then the page titles so if i’m going to go to the more actions icon and then edit site layout so these options at the top here will turn off and on different aspects of the theme so i can take away this header at the top if I wanted to I can also had in horizontal navigation these are little icons that allow the navigation display so i can add in extra menu items if I wanted to let me just add in different layout examples and click that ok so now that will appear in my horizontal navigation here, I can change the sidebar and I can add extra bits and pieces to my sidebar So at the moment we have the navigation but I could add some text into this, recent site activity, site owners, page authors but i just got some text now and this creates a new box on the side bar, I’m going to hover over that click it to edit so you can put a little bit of a bit of ‘about’ blurb on the side and just like all the other options you’ve got linking there, you can change the font style and click OK and that will save that text that I’ve now added, so that’s going to be on the sidebar. You can also drop in a custom footer as well, and that will appear in the space at the bottom of the page. I’m just going to close now the edit site layout options and this is how my Site would appear to viewers. I’ve still got my sharing settings so the Site is private only to me. If I click the Share settings I can now change the Site so that anyone with the link has access. A good way to test this is to copy the site address from the top of the page, so I’m just going to do that now. Open up an ‘in private’ or an ‘incognito window’ within your browser, this will log you out of everything that you’re currently into, so it’s a really good way to check to make sure that can be accessed by people without an account. Paste, and then we can see here this Site can be accessed by anyone without logging in as my own account. So lots of different uses for Google Sites and although it can be quite limiting there are certain things you can’t do with it, it does enable you to pull together a quick website that will showcase your work

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