Monday, January 28, 2008

Better Looking Chess Websites

And now for something different.

Thanks to WebWorkerDaily, I've just discovered 3 services that will hopefully usher in new and better looking chess websites. I think we can all agree that this, this and this (ugh, frames) definitely need a few enhancements. Although, to be fair, all these have had minor improvements. CV's site, for instance, is now actually over here.

Still, we can do better. For FREE! No techie skills needed; just a little time, some content and commitment.

Over the last few days, I've been test driving Weebly, SiteKreator and Synthasite. Here are the results: the Sydney Chess Society, Test Chess Website and Chess Society.

(Note that the Sydney Chess Society is just an imaginary organisation).

Each one took me about an hour or so to set up. If you can use Microsoft Word, you should manage just fine. Creating pages, editing and publishing are very easy to do. Literally, "point and click". And while you can opt to have your pages hosted by these 3 services, it's also possible to download your page files and host them somewhere else.

The free package offered by these guys are perfectly OK for modest needs. On the other hand, if you have larger requirements (depending on what you want to do), then you can upgrade for a fee.

My preference? After a few days of use, my pick is Weebly. Weebly's user experience is the easiest and most intuitive to handle. Plus, their available templates were certainly the most appealing.

If you're a state body or a chess club, then all these are worth a look.

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