News

New Pope, New Website: #1 Ranking or Bust

Written by - Posted 2013-04-02 20:01 in News

The PWL officially launched a redesigned website this week in advance of the upcoming 16th Season which kicks off April 14th.

The website is the third design in league history. For the inaugural season in 2005 the site was generated using Microsoft Excel, which was extra crappy. The second design, which had a blog feel, was launched in 2006 and was used for the next 14 seasons. The old website, crappy as it was, was nationally ranked as the 10th best wiffleball website in the country.

“As the premier league in Washington, DC, and probably in the country, if not planet Earth, it was important that the PWL website reflect that, and represent us well,” Commissioner Gallaway said at the announcement.

“We needed a site that felt more like a league website, less like a blog, and showcased the content people care about in a manner that’s easy to find. I think we’ve achieved that goal.”

Since early 2012, Commissioner Gallaway has been overseeing a restructuring of the content on the website as it relates to stats and results driven information. The old stats tables, standings and leaders were generated manually by the office, and were hard to sort, group and compare, rather than being dynamically served and linked to league databases. It took over a year for all the coding (SQL/PHP) to get in place to generate the content in the proper manner. This includes not only the stats, leaders, and standings, but also player and team profile pages for all league participants.

“We had to get the back-end of the website in place first. People always came because of the content, because of the data and videos. We had all this great information and we weren’t making it easy to access. We needed to solve that problem, so that the content could be generated dynamically, and live updated. There were a lot of off the shelf products that just didn’t work perfectly for us. So, I knew we needed to build it custom, exactly how we wanted it. It took over a year, we got some stuff done right away, but the final touches on the stats pages really just came online at the end of the 2012. Once we got done with that, it was time for a facelift to make it look pretty,” Gallaway said.

The new website is also responsive, and should be much more friendly for mobile devices in addition to web browsers. This should allow players to more easily pull up their stats on their smartphones from barstool when all other pickup lines are rejected.

There are still more improvements coming over the next few weeks and into the Spring Season now that the main redesign has been launched.

The new site also has an upgraded commenting system, and built in links to share news stories on social media networks. Please take a moment to do that now and help spread the word about the new potomacwiffleball.org.

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