To build a website is quite a challenge, especially if you are novice. I like to give credit to the people that have been essential, and list the hosting site, programs, and plugins that we have chosen.

© Antonio Machado Carrillo

DESIGN

Elena Machado

Elena is my second daughter and a very talented mind in Art & Design. She studied at Slade School of Fine Arts (UCL) and at Central St. Martins College of Arts & Design (UAL) in London, and does many interesting things, among others, helping her father to set up a modern website. Of course, if you are interested in her services, feel welcome to contact directly (email). To see samples of her work visit Creative Services at:

www.elenamachado.com

HOSTING

There are many hosting sites offered in Internet. We selected IPage after a not very thorough analysis of all possibilities. It looked good, big capacity, upgrading possibilities, a reasonable price, and… what else? Oh yes, online chat – customer service & technical support: handy! So far, we have no complaints. It is running smoothly and backup settings are satisfactory.

www.ipage.com

WEB COMPOSER

You may suffer a lot if you select the wrong tool to build your website. It is a question of matching the tool with your own capacities. I considered other options (price was not the key), but Elena convinced me about the easy-way of using WordPress. The millions of users, was also a solid argument. My only complaint is that being so popular, when you have to look for a special plugin, the offer is enormous and it takes a lot of energy to fish the one that fits your needs and is compatible with your theme. On the other hand, support via open forums and WP community is excellent. We are very pleased with our choice. We opted for the English version because my previous website was in English, but WordPress is also available in Spanish.

www.wordpress.com

THEME

FACULTY – Responsive Academic Personal Profile

When I searched for a theme focused on personal webpages for researchers or other professionals, I was astonished to find almost none. Most academic themes were designed for institutions and not for individuals. Finally I selected “Faculty” Theme which suited more or less my needs. The main problem was the simple and single way in wich it handles publications. So, I found a way around to have the many publications (with pdf) split in different menus, by just using ordinary text-blocks. It misses some little issues, like a nice print-application. But in general, it is fine and elegant.

Faculty theme

PLUGINS

Plugins are a double-edged sword: they can be a real life-saver or become a real nightmare. They can do incredible things that are not provided by your web-composer basic add-ons, or do it just better. On the other hand, there are so many, so many, so many, that it takes you ages to find the best suited for your case, your version, or your pocket. But once you find it, then it is like a happy marriage. Here is a list of those that we have selected, whereas we are still struggling for some better ones in a few cases.

List of plugins used

MULTILANGUAGE

My old website (ca. year 2000) was in English and therefore I started the new one in the same language. The good news is that now you can run a site in as many languages as you like, using special plugins to manage the translations.  Thus, having my ‘digital headquarters’ in English and Spanish, was a must. We selected WPML because it is one of the best scored in Internet, and it does the job. The bad news is that it is not easy at all, and the manual provided is complex and unfriendly. Fortunately, we found the website of a very helpful lady, by name Irena Domingo,  that explains almost everything much better and logically. If you use WPML, we recommend you have a look at Rusalia, it will save you time.

www.wpml.org