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Amusement Parks and the Satisfied Customer

Submitted by Will on April 30, 2012 - 3:18pm

The summer of 2003 I worked at what is commonly known as an “amusement park,” where I was in charge of operating the park’s newest roller coaster. Unfortunately, this new coaster was powered by new technology, and it quickly developed a bad habit of breaking down - sometimes as much as ten times a day.

Now, because the ride was brand new, it was popular. And, because it broke down frequently, the wait to ride it was even longer than normal. This created a situation where we had people waiting two, three, even five hours to ride our thirty second roller coaster. What’s worse is that sometimes these poor souls, some who’d been waiting for the aforementioned three or four hours, would have to be told that they couldn’t even ride it at all, generally because the ride had finally broken down for the last possible time that day.

How to move the position of the featured content slider

Submitted by Will on April 26, 2012 - 6:55pm

In NationBuilder, almost every page has an option to add a slider at the top which features images and links. These content sliders are nice and easy to set up through the Settings>Featured Content Slider tab on the page.

Unfortunately, they can be rather difficult to customize beyond the content you include, including where on the page it's placed.

Luckily, though, my colleague, Padma, told me how to move it on the template level:

To move the position of the featured slides on a given page, you must do these two things.

  1. Normally this code: {% include "features" %} lives in the "columns_1.html" and "columns_2.html" files, and this is what displays the featured slides on the page.

    If you want to move the location of the slides on a given page, or pages, put this code in place of the original {% include "features" %} in the columns_1.html and columns_.html template files.

How to Bump Up Your Donation Thermometer in NationBuilder

Submitted by Will on April 6, 2012 - 7:42pm

updated 7-19-2012

So you know how to make a donation page in NationBuilder? It’s pretty cool. It’s got a donation goal and a thermometer. But let’s say you want to start your donation drive with some money already donated. Or if you want your progress bar to take into account offline donations given outside NationBuilder.

How do you adjust your donation page so it’s not starting at zero donations? Well, that’s when you have to get down to adjusting your template using “liquid.” Don’t worry it’s not too complicated.

Okay the first thing we’re going to do is going to look a little convoluted, but that’s because of the way NationBuilder works and the way the liquid templating language works. In the template, both the donation amount number and the donation goal are formatted to look like currency (with a dollar sign and commas) so we’re going to want to remove those. The way to do that is with the “remove” filter and “capture” tag, and adding some code to our template right under <div id="content">.

How Nation Builder's "Legacy" Function Can Save You a Lot of Time

Submitted by Felicia W. on March 30, 2012 - 12:15pm

For sites that have a lot of older, outdated content (like blog posts and press releases) NationBuilder has a "Legacy" solution that will keep the pages intact, without you having to go to the trouble of recreating everything.

On NationBuilder, before you shut down your old site, you can do a "Legacy import" that recreates all of the pages and content from your old site in kind of a 'frozen' state (meaning that you can't edit these pages like you would a normal NationBuilder page).

After you bring your URL over to your new NationBuilder site, if someone tries to go to one of your older posts directly, it will still be there. However, it will look exactly like it did on your old site.

Any of the links that are on the legacy page that happen to have the same slug on the new site will work. However, any of the links that have changed slugs or no longer exist will not work.

Dynamic Social Media Fields

Submitted by Kate on March 27, 2012 - 1:21pm

Setting up dynamic social media fields will let users craft their own messages to share links with their friends and family. It has the added benefit of letting organizers duplicate a form without worrying about a lot of code. With this tutorial, we’ll create a form with three share fields — email, Twitter, and Facebook — where users can customize the text shared.

The end result looks like this:

Advocates celebrate 2nd anniversary of Affordable Care Act

Submitted by Kate on March 21, 2012 - 4:09pm

Cross-posted from the Progressive Pulse

This morning, legislative proponents and advocacy groups gathered at the NC General Assembly to discuss the benefits of the Affordable Care Act around the 2nd anniversary of its passage into law. Felicia Willems of NC MomsRising shared her experience with the new law and spoke of how it improved the quality of life for her family, literally overnight. Watch the video of her remarkable story below.

Fundraising with Nationbuilder

Submitted by Meredith on March 16, 2012 - 4:30pm

We love NationBuilder and all the built-in integration it offers its users. One of the places where it shines is in the donation department. For those candidates and organizations that would like to accept donations and other payments directly through their NationBuilder site, there are a few different options for integrated payment processors.

For those folks in the US, NationBuilder integrates with Authorize.net, as well as Democracy Engine. We like Democracy Engine a lot for our clients - the interface is straightforward, and you don’t need a merchant account at your bank to start accepting donations right away. Authorize.net offers a very nice integration as well.

Reflections from SXSW Interactive 2012

Submitted by Meredith on March 15, 2012 - 7:12pm

For a long time, many people didn't know that South by Southwest (SXSW) included a technology component. But SXSW Interactive has grown exponentially since its inception, and word is that this year brought close to 25,000 techies flooding into small town Austin, TX to share ideas and showcase innovations over 6 days of panels, meetings, parties and other events. This year, Richir Outreach was in attendance, and had a front row seat at the circus.

Momma grizzlies: Rise up!

Submitted by Felicia W. on March 8, 2012 - 12:00am

Mothers are considered to be among the most revered members of our society. Celebrities publicly thank their moms for helping them to achieve their dreams. Politicians wax poetic about valuable childhood lessons bestowed upon them by their mothers. Even female politicians talk about how their motherly instincts give them some sort of special insight into public policy.

"... Moms kinda just know when something's wrong ... I always think of the mamma grizzly bears that rise up on their hind legs when somebody's coming to attack their cubs, to do something adverse toward their cubs ... You don't wanna mess with the momma grizzlies." - Sarah Palin

And everyone knows, you never make a joke about someone else’s mom, unless you want to stir up some trouble.
But is all of this talk and rhetoric just lip service? Does our society truly value mothers – all mothers – and the challenges that come with motherhood?

What is ZOHO?

Submitted by Meredith on March 7, 2012 - 6:26pm

We were curious ourselves, so we did a little bit of research.

Turns out, ZOHO offers a comprehensive suite of web-based office applications. Their portfolio includes the standard set of productivity tools such as word processor, spreadsheet and presentation capability which, coupled with their Email and calendar platform, seems to put them on par with Google Apps. But Zoho also reaches to include more sophisticated tools such as CRM and an online Accounting platform.

The India-based company has apparently been offering cloud-based collabortaion tools since the olden days of 2005 and seems poised to present a challenge to its main competitors Google and Microsoft.

Intrigued? Us too! We're going to continue to keep our ears to the ground to learn more about this platform.

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