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[General] Appeal for design help

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#1
OK folks - please bear with me and keep in mind although I am a coder I am no PHP nor XHTML whizz ATM.

I am really sort of hoping folks at the forum will do a little handholding if I do this but of site design from scratch, or maybe recommend something like googlepages as appropriate. I have a friend who introduced me to a good friend of hers with MS, that is the background. I am aiming to help her in some fundraising - see below:-

Exeter woman needs help to raise fee to pay for MS treatment in Holland

Agneta Mills is hoping that the revolutionary stem cell treatment will help repair damage caused by multiple sclerosis.

She read about Jan Wilks remarkable stem cell treatment in Rotterdam for her MS in the news, who had been wheel chair bound, but within days of treatment was walking again. Since then several stories have appeared in the national papers about people with MS who have traveled to Europe for the treatment, with fantastic results.

Diagnosed in 2001, her condition has deteriorated to the point where she now never leaves the house without elbow crutches, wheel chair or her mobility scooter.

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, unpredictable neurological disease that affects the central nervous system. Damage done by scarring (sclerosis) can slow or block the nerve signals that control muscle coordination, strength, sensation and vision.

The treatment, which cost £14,000, is not available in the UK and uses stem cells from otherwise discarded umbilical cords which are injected into the blood stream. These have a remarkable potential for both self-renewal and differentiation into cell types with a specialized function, such as muscle, blood or brain cells. They replace the diseased cells with healthy cells taken from stem cells. The umbilical cords have been donated by mothers of healthy new born babies.

Agneta has been accepted for the treatment, at the private clinic in Rotterdam in September 2006. The company Advance Cell Therapeutics (ACT) has offered Agneta the stem cell treatment at a reduced rate of £8,000, as she has had to give up work due to MS and is now unemployed.

The treatment is not a cure, but it has a good chance of giving her a better quality of life.

ACT is a biotech company specializing in stem cell therapies. Their clinic in Holland has already relieved the symptoms of dozens of MS patients.

Agneta's family has set up the Agneta Mills Appeal Fund to help raise the £8,000 needed towards the cost of the treatment. A number of fundraising events are in the pipeline including a sponsored 5 mile walk, music evenings, a letter box event and a 30 mile roller blade marathon across London.

To make a donation or take part in the events, please send cheques – payable to The Agneta Mills Appeal Fund...
and thus far I have simply replied with the following....

Agneta

....I'll try to get back to you with a link to something for you to tell me if it looks about right. I'll try to find a way to make it for your eyes only at first, then when you say OK we could transfer it to a place to be online.

One thing you might wish to do in the meantime is think about if you want to register an (internet) address. I have used https://registerfly.com/index.php myself and have had http://www.namezero.com/index.php recommended to me (I have some troubles with registerfly's redirection service and they got my details wrong on first registration which was annoying to fix!). Either site has the easy option to search, so you can simply see, say, if www.agnetamills.net is already "taken". Once you find one that is as suitable and "catchy" or easy to remember as you can manage, it is straightforward to buy it. This is something I cannot do for you even if I wanted to, there are strict laws about it because of identity theft and web squatting issues. Let me know how you go with this or if you have any questions or problems. This part does not take long to do and eventually we shall make your name point to where I have put your pages with (hopefully) a link for people to donate directly (I really have not looked into that part yet!).

Another thing you may or may not want to consider is if you want any pictures or cross linking in whatever we do. Pictures need not be of you, could be of your son roller blading for example. Links I am thinking about could be to the place offering treatment, or to research and case studies in public domain that explain a little of what you are undertaking, perhaps? I know it has had media coverage, but we probably need to take the base view of someone coming along who is totally unawares, that way we hopefully may appeal at some level to every visitor.

Hopefully from here on our email communication will be straightforward now - notice that this address is (yet again) different to the one Wendy had also! Best to make this the primary one probably - so long as it works for you also. Hope this has given you something to stay busy with for additional input to the eventual page(s). Feel free to pass my email address along also to anyone who may wish to submit anything on your behalf....
I wondered what input folks here may have? I'm especially interested in pay links and the simplest ways to set them up - having often seen them on various pages for charitable purposes.

Who knows, maybe OSNN could design a really nice page for her with all the info and linkage needed and pimp it a little and put out logo and a link in a corner for some good Karma? But I do realise co-operative design has it's limitations. I'm no designer - you can see the level I am at when you check my homepage :eek: :rolleyes: :s
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#3
Bumpage.... honestly thought there may have been other posts on this one. Or are some people suspect as to the veracity of this? I've been here in read mode since XPerience days and can vouch personally this is a genuine situation.
 

madmatt

Bow Down to the King
Political User
#4
I, too, can offer hosting but I have no time available to help design it. I will pass the word onto some guys that I outsource to.
 

kcnychief

█▄█ ▀█▄ █
Political User
#5
MFG -

I could help with the design. And since it's for a good cause I wouldn't charge you anything. However, I'm not sure that I can commit to any type of strict timetable....
 

Jewelzz

OSNN Godlike Veteran
#6
My brother in law has MS and would love to help out but I'm very VERY new to site coding and stumble along. If there's anything else I can help you with let me know.
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#7
Anita calld me last night - good to find a couple of posts here too :)

The only deadine we have ATM is that the sooner she has the funds the sooner she can try the treatment and anything I can do to help that is better than nothing (so nothing to lose and all to gain).

Her son is meant to be getting in email contact and she was checking out what to ask other places with web presence abotu linking to them - any comments on that here? They have been looking at domain registration (I think her son is helping) but have not taken one yet so far as I know. Until they do we have kinda "free time" in this....

Any comments on the linking question? Is there any normal protocol for that? Anyne aware of any MS "rings"? And of course this is not MS in the way we usually say M$!
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#8
We have a domain registered and hosted - I just slapped up a quick bit of the stuff I had been given to put something there.... Have also sent out some enquireies at charitable places fishing for any linkage....

www.agnetamills.net is the domain - no need to be linking or building to it yet since it is just a sketch draft at the moment - I have been given the admin access for ftp, SQL, PHP etc and set up an email for enquiries. That's about it for now - any input welcome to improve from here.... I've asked Agneta to look into merhcant services and hopefully getting a good deal from the likes of WorldPay and NoChex etc...

One of the first things I'll want to do is maybe add some sort of guest book, maybe an appeal indicator that shows what has been raised and the target.... right now I just wanted to put something up there before I call her and try to explain or check out if she is going to be able to handle POP3 configuration for the account I set up.
 

kcnychief

█▄█ ▀█▄ █
Political User
#9
Not a bad start MFG, you should check out Bravenet for lots of free stuff. Guestbooks, mailing lists and lots of other goodies. It should help you spice it up a bit. I have used their stuff before, pretty easy to implement and use. :)

http://www.bravenet.com/
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#10
Thanks Derek - I added a guestbook and Agneta is going ahead through paypal validation now I have set up sales and enquiries emails.....

I know one thing I am going to want to have is an illustration of funds raised versus target - and I know some places have the option for folks to post their donations or somesuch.... so that they ar enot anonymous - not sure how that works - must be outside paypal, which seems to be the option Agneta feels most comfortable with ATM.

But before all that I'd really like to get this to look a little less ancient and first generation - think I'll be wanting to find my own way a bit and I know I have already got links to some resources - but any pointers in a design sense appreciated.

[EDIT] If you use bravenet you shoulda made that a referal link and claimed your dollar!, ah well - too late now since I signed up ;)

oh and I know I said pointers in a design sense - but if anyone just wants to send me code or post it I am happy to go with that also - I do not feel any driving need to do this all myself and I am technically competent enough to follow high level instructions without much (if any) handholding...[/EDIT]
 
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Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#11
Jewelzz said:
My brother in law has MS and would love to help out but I'm very VERY new to site coding and stumble along. If there's anything else I can help you with let me know.
if he has a site we should interlink them, no doubt... and maybe share more across the pond linkage? Feel free to pass site details along to him, there's contact stuff there now..... and guestbook (sorry it's ad-bloated though)
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#12
madmatt said:
I, too, can offer hosting but I have no time available to help design it. I will pass the word onto some guys that I outsource to.
depending on their reaction, because I truely do understand about folks being busy, you may or may not judge it worth passing the link to the site in it's present primitive state to them - esp. in context of my earlier post - if they can just take tiny amount of time and send code fragment with overview of what it is aiming to do design wise I can do my best to take that and run with it to do the donkety work....
 

kcnychief

█▄█ ▀█▄ █
Political User
#13
Mainframeguy said:
Thanks Derek - I added a guestbook and Agneta is going ahead through paypal validation now I have set up sales and enquiries emails.....

I know one thing I am going to want to have is an illustration of funds raised versus target - and I know some places have the option for folks to post their donations or somesuch.... so that they ar enot anonymous - not sure how that works - must be outside paypal, which seems to be the option Agneta feels most comfortable with ATM.

But before all that I'd really like to get this to look a little less ancient and first generation - think I'll be wanting to find my own way a bit and I know I have already got links to some resources - but any pointers in a design sense appreciated.

[EDIT] If you use bravenet you shoulda made that a referal link and claimed your dollar!, ah well - too late now since I signed up ;)

oh and I know I said pointers in a design sense - but if anyone just wants to send me code or post it I am happy to go with that also - I do not feel any driving need to do this all myself and I am technically competent enough to follow high level instructions without much (if any) handholding...[/EDIT]
I thought about providing a referral link, but I could have sworn I read somewhere posting links like that is against forum TOS. No big deal either way, just hope it helps you :)
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#14
Getting close to receiving a paypal link.....

Came across www.charge.com for credit card process, very unsure how they operate or where they take their cut and how - anyone got any input for me?

Although many aspects of site may evolve and that is just the way it wil need to be it is getting close to where we'll make a first "push" on getting some traffic for the site. So if anyone really still did want to make any input whatsoever then please be in touch soon - input wil be apprreciated at any time, but is more valuable now
 

kcnychief

█▄█ ▀█▄ █
Political User
#15
I would go with paypal if at all possible. IMO, they are the best out there, have un-matchable support and protection for your funds and against fraud, and is the most used currency site in the world, I think.
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#16
PS to earlier post - I have just realised we really should ahve a logo for anyone wanting to put in a link to our site - if anyone with some graphc design skills cared to knock up something quickly , anything cheap and cheerful might be better than I can do with my pitiful graphics skills....
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#18
I'm just going to say that certain noticeable exceptions to one side I am kinda disappointed on this thread.... maybe I left it too open and should just have started a host of threads for each issue as I met it, but that did not seem right to me.... I had hoped for a little participation. Guess everyone is kinda busy with their own thing.... seems sad to me though.
 

kcnychief

█▄█ ▀█▄ █
Political User
#19
:(

I'm sorry you feel that way. Can you make a rough list of things you still want accomplished? I'll try to help out if I can
 

Mainframeguy

Debiant by way of Ubuntu
#20
My feeling that way has nothing to do with you - it's just I kinda had high hopes of the forum pulling together on this one, I'm not sure if I have been impatient or what. Also you have been helpful and thanks to bravenet there's a guestbook. And I am still hopeful your intro via PM will make a big difference. It is quite possible I have just misjidged the site membership and there are not that many skilled web builders who are OSNN members. Maybe I should be over at DevShed more.

Anyway, back to your question - you know I need a progress tracker, since I made another thread for that knowing it should involve some PHP and SQL the way I envision it.

Apart from that the main things I was hoping for are a little graphic design input and general web design. I've tried to tidy up within raw HTML and my initial abilities, but I suspect stylesheets would be the next thing. I am not even getting posts telling me what to learn about you see man!

So I have asked Agneta to try to come up with some raw source images for a logo and a wallpaper kinda things - I believe her partner Ray is an artist so I hope something may come, he'll likely work off computer then I'll get a picture I guess. I'm hoping this will give some raw material for the OSNN member you introduced me too (keeping them anonymous until they decide if they want to post on thread).

List is about four long then:-

1. Contributions/progress tracking (see here)
2. Home/Link to us Logo
3. Wallpaper/Design theme
4. General site critique and overhaul to unify it and give it professional/genuine/trustworthy look and feel.

If there is any more or people see holes I am missing (EG the security angles) then by all means tell me needs I have missed - but that is where I feel I have got to. It is kinda frustrating 'cause it feels like so close and yet that last bit makes all the difference.
 

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