tMP Exclusive Interview with Andrew Thompson Webmaster – Stocksbridge Band By way of an introduction, could you please tell us a little about yourself I'm 18, at college studying Music, ICT and Geology, going to study music at a music college next year. Are you actively involved in playing a brass instrument with any band, or do you simply undertake the web design on behalf of a band? Yes I play tenor horn in Stocksbridge and Barnsley Met' Bands and NYBBGB. How long have you been involved in web design, and how did you first get involved in it? Only been doing it a couple of years, I first started when a website manager was needed at my old band so I voulenteered, and i'm mostly self taught with a little help from studying IT at College. Do you manage/run any other web sites, if so, which ones? Yes, www.barnsleymetband.co.uk What applications did you use to build your site and why did you choose these? I use Dreamweaver to keep everything together and organise my files and to do alot of the updating and little changes to mje made to websites, I,ve picked up alot of the HTML code from watching how dreamweaver does things in design view then converts it to HTML. I use Flash & Mediator to create interactivity and multimedia for sites. I also do all my graphics in either fireworks or photoshop. Please can you explain for us how you prepared and planned for the development of the site when asked to implement this for Stocksbridge Band? After the initial meeting, I chose the colours/fonts/styles and created the CSS stuffs, then made the logo then the navigation and built it from there adding bits at a time. What content do you feel should be included on a brass band www site? As long as it stays interesting, I dont think it matters, however there needs to be some vitals like contacts, concert schedules then other things that might be important to the band, photo's are always a good plus. Do you use innovative ideas on your www site? Not really!? Apart from maybe 'The Band' page introducting the players on each instrument, which isn't finished, because I dont have any photo's or profiles from peaople in the band..... Why should people visit the www site? To find out any information about Stocksbridge Band I suppose. What do you feel is important when designing and implementing www sites…? Probably not to overcomplicate things. How long did this site actually take you to build? Not long really, not working on it solidly, just a bit after college, probably 1/2 weeks. What would you recommend as the best way to start to learn about designing and building www sites? I think that at first learning how to use Macromedia Dreamweaver/Fireworks/Flash is a good start and you can create sites with that knowledge. Do you have a favourite technical reference book for budding web designers? No. How do you see the influence of the internet assisting the banding movement over the next 5 to 10 years? It will definately allow people who may not have found about different things in banding, the opportunity to stumble upon them on the internet. It is a good way to keep fans/members up-to-date with all the things at the band as well. In most visited order, what are your 5 most frequently used www sites? 1) www.google.com 2) www.hotmail.com 3) www.stocksbridgeband.co.uk 4) www.barnslymetband.co.uk 5) www.youtube.com Can you let our members know of any other www sites you feel are interesting to visit but are not in your top 5, and why this is so. www.bravenet.com for web developers who need a helping hand with interactivity or extra features if you are unable to make them yourself. Do you use online community forums, if so, which ones do you use? Only tMP to be honest. What do you drive? My mum's car... it's a VW Polo.