Changes in the new version of the site
Site navigation & information
View photo gallery statistics
You will find (I hope!) that navigating through this site is quite easy. I tried to make the site
structure as clear as possible, which was necessary because I have a fair number of photo categories
online. No-one should have any difficulties finding his or her way around.
The navigation menu will appear on top of every page, and allows you to browse other sections or go
The labels will bring you either to the main page or to the main index pages of any of the five gallery
categories Atmospheric optics, Lightning, Clouds, Astronomy or Miscellaneous. Depending on where you
are in the site, one of the six labels will be selected.
The galleries are subdivided into categories, which in turn are subdivided in subcategories. Each
subcategory has one or more galleries. You can view previews of the galleries before actually going
to a particular gallery, which would load all the photos. The preview thumbnails in the preview list
generally contain the best or most clear image (or least unclear, if you will) showing a particular
phenomenon (featured galleries).
You can go to a gallery by clicking a link from the list in the middle column. The gallery will
show you a description of the phenomenon, along with (in some cases) some information on how to observe
the phenomenon (sighting opportunities), and one or more photos showing the phenomenon.
I was forced to reprogram this site completely into PHP, which is a script language which interfaces easily
with an SQL database. All the photos are in such a database now, and the work involved by changing the site
outlay has been reduced from having to edit about 1500 HTML files back to about 10 files. The PHP
allows for a dynamic content, and the galleries as a whole are dynamically created as you load them.
The site reprogramming was one of the reasons that this site had not been updated much for over a year. The
other reason was my graduation in Physics for M.S.; being a PhD student in Physics now leaves me little time to
work on my site, so I had to make a site which would essentially update itself. But making such a site took
many months with the little spare time I had at hand. I am sure that the framework the site is in now will
prove to be useful throughout my studies for the coming years; the site can now be expanded indefinitely with
no trouble whatsoever.
Viewing & browser compatibility
I recommend you to use a screen resolution of 800x600 pixels at least, to make this site easily viewable.
However, the whole site can be viewed on a 640-pixels wide display, as this is the maximal page width I
have put in the design. The photos will not look good unless you have a true-color display, i.e. 24-bit
color depth or more.
This site has been optimized for Netscape 4.x / Internet Explorer 5.x, or newer versions. Note that this
site may not display correctly if you use custom font-sizes or colors.
All script processing is done on the server and the visitor only receives text (HTML) and graphics.