The pay-per-view family history website Durham Records Online has been completely re-designed.
Durham Records Online says: “This has been done, partly in response to display issues that some customers reported after our early July update, and partly to pack in a bunch of new features we’ve wanted to add for some time now:
“Top-mounted menu creates more screen width for your search results: All of the menu items that used to be displayed vertically along the left side of the screen are now concealed in a short row of drop-down menus across the top of the page. Removing the menu from the left side allows the search results table to expand all the way across the screen, and removes the need for the Hide Menu button (which accidentally went away in the last update). We tried to organize the new menus logically, but if you feel strongly that a certain task or menu item should be under a different heading, feel free to explain why, and maybe we’ll move it. Note that “Home” is at the bottom of the About menu, and also in the footer of every page.
“Always-accessible menus and buttons: The entire top area with the menus stays on the page all the time and the contents below scroll under it. This means the menu items and buttons are always accessible, no matter how far down the page you are. The buttons for New Search, Edit Search, Last Results, and View Cart are a little higher and to the right of where they were before, but are also in the always-accessible zone.
“All login-related information is in one place: The login boxes are now in the upper right-hand corner, and when you log in, this area changes to show your user name, credit count, and links to My Account, Buy Credits, and Log Out (actions that are available only when you are logged in).
“Everything about your account is now accessed from the My Account page: The menu items My Previous Orders (now called My Orders) and My Matches are now accessed from the My Account page, which has tabs for them, and for Hidden Records if you have any hidden records.
“Print a record without the logo, menu, color, etc.: When you view a record, there is now a “Printer-friendly version” link that will redisplay the record on a white background with no colors or pictures, for easy printing.
“New contact form on the Customer Support page to make it easier to email us.
“New accounts require confirmation of email address: When you create an account, you will be sent a confirmation email, and you have to click on the link in the email to finish the account setup. Clicking on the link returns you to our site and logs you in. (We made this change because we get many accounts set up with incorrect email addresses, with Match Service turned on, so every time 2 people view the same record, the email announcing the match bounces and the poor customer who was all excited about a match can’t contact the other person because of the invalid address – and we have no way of contacting that person either! Forcing customers to confirm via email proves they have typed their address correctly and that they can get e-mail at that address.)
“There are more explanations about how to do things (register, search, find other records) all over the site, especially before you log in.
“Navigation in footer: A new footer on every page has links to these pages: Home, FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions), Policies, and Customer Support. Please let us know if there is another link that you find yourself wishing were in this line-up.
“The “Literature” section is now called “Local History Library” and has been converted to use WordPress for visual consistency, better navigation, and to make it much easier for us to add articles. When you click on Local History Library in the new top menu, you will be taken to a page that displays the table of contents – all the articles in the Library. We will be adding more soon!
“We have added a collection of customer-donated wills from Durham and Northumberland in the Library.
“The “What’s New” section has been reformatted slightly for easier updating and now has the same header menu and footer menu as the rest of the site.
“Fixed display problems: Most of the underlying code has been re-written to take advantage of changes to the language and database system that we use, so the site may perform a little faster, and we seem to have gotten rid of all the annoying display problems that occurred during our last update.
“Mobile-friendly: The screen now reformats itself for smaller screens such as tablets, Kindles, and phones so buttons and menus don’t overlap each other.
“We hope you like all the changes, and please let us know if you see any problems with the site, or just drop us a line to say what you like or don’t like (we’re hoping for more likes, of course!).”