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Introducing COPIM's new website

COPIM is pleased to launch our newly redesigned website

Published onApr 14, 2022
Introducing COPIM's new website

This month we’re pleased to launch a new website for the COPIM project reflecting the advances that the project has made and highlighting the accomplishments of the team since the project started.

Our original website was set up when the project launched in 2019 and focused on the aims of the project, the structure of project management, and an outline of our seven work packages. When I was asked to look at revamping the site shortly after joining the team, I knew we should aim to showcase the many accomplishments that the project has made, the ongoing progress of its work packages, and the publications we’ve put out along the way.

With these aims in mind, the new site offers a modern design with a focus on the homepage as the key page for the majority of users. This landing page gets across in brief how the project aims to build community-owned infrastructures to enable open access book publishing and highlights core outputs—including Opening the Future, the Open Book Collective, and Thoth—while providing a clear navigation structure for users who wish to go more in-depth on the project. The content for deeper pages has been revamped to reflect the status of the project and work packages have been updated with ‘frequently asked questions’ or a similar structure to clearly answer users’ questions about what we’re doing.

Our site’s new theme is a fork of Themefisher’s Kross theme (open-source licensed under the MIT License). Kross offered a very fast page speed and a strong responsive design for mobile and tablet users. Our development work on the theme involved adapting the look and feel to match our project branding and resolving some of the accessibility issues to ensure a site that is not only WCAG compliant but is as open to as many users as possible. Our fork of the Kross theme is available here.

Under the hood, the new site retains the open-source website infrastructure devised by Marcell Mars for the former site. At its core, the site is a collection of files—Markdown files for content, CSS files for styling, and HTML files for page templates—turned into a website using Hugo static site generator. All the files for the site are stored as a repository on our Gitea (an open-source self-hosted Git service). Git hooks are set up on that repository to trigger the Hugo static site generator when certain trigger words are placed in Git commit messages. The resulting published site is then served through our NGINX web server. This innovative site infrastructure offers the benefits of Git’s powerful version control, the speed of Hugo as static site generator, and the flexibility and control of self-hosting.

We hope this new site will offer users a new way to connect with COPIM as we move towards the end of the project and that this site will offer improvements in clarity and accessibility.

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