Plant DB - data & user friendly

1earth permaculture permaculture1 at
Thu Dec 20 05:00:14 EST 2001

Hi Rich and all working on the new Plant DB.

Having hosted the Australian mirror of PFAF for a few years now I can
see some room for improvement and will be joining the Yahoo group to assist where I can (ideas/beta

First up, user friendly and user pays would be ideal. I've tried the
old "please click our sponsor before entering the database" to earn a
few cents to pay for the web-hosting - less than 1% of visitors
actually click the banner, so I end up losing money as it doesn't even
pay for the bandwidth.  Also, many folk bypass the entry page by
bookmarking pages, and hundreds of hits every month actually use the
.exe files rather than any webpage (an unscrupuluous webmaster no
doubt - hehehehe good luck to them, at least the DB is being used). 

How about an advert on the DB webpages for the PFAF book - sales will
help PFAF financially.  Rich, I'll add a link to your credit card
donation scheme, and a note about the Friends of PFAF.

Suggestions to help it become user friendly: think global - have a box
asking for the user's location (country or hemisphere) on entry to the
DB so that data for seasons and planting guides will show the proper
month and season relevant to the user. We never know if the guide that
we are using is northern hemisphere or southern.  Also, if they enter
a specific location, the DB would also reveal whether the user is
temperate, tropical or whatever, and that may also act as a filter for
displaying planting guides, relevant plant types, and other data. The
user location box is a good way for the user to filter relevant data.

I could go on, but I'll save it for the yahoo user group. All the best
with it folks :))


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