The UTMB Web Blog Tips, tech and news for the UTMB web community

  • Save the Date: Introduction to the Sitefinity CMS planned for Aug. 4

    July 27, 2015, 16:27 PM by Pep Valdes
    On Tuesday, August 4 at 1 p.m., members of the Internet Technology Committee will be presenting an introduction to UTMB’s new web content management system, Sitefinity. The session will offer an overview and demo of the tool and target anyone involved in web site creation or web management at UTMB. Details are coming soon…
  • Update on the Sitefinity CMS

    June 18, 2015, 16:21 PM by Pep Valdes

    It’s been a busy few weeks since we introduced the Web Reboot last May. In this post, I wanted to provide an update on where we are with one of the key tools of the project, the Sitefinity content management system.

     We’ve been working to build (and then optimize) the multiple installs/instances that will serve www, intranet, academic and .com. That work is finished, and we hit a major milestone last week when we started (on a limited basis) building actual pages.

    We selected a few developers to help us kick the tires and do some initial development. Part of the goal is to stress test the tool, but we also want to help inform the development of the training. So far it’s been going well. One of the sites being built is a user reference for Sitefinty users and developers, and that will likely be one of the first items we share with you.

    We will be working to push our first Sitefinity pages live in July; we are looking at dates in August for some classroom training sessions (on top of a decent amount of online content that exists or is being developed).

    The sandbox/playground we’ve set up for the Web Reboot introduction is still available for you. We are using it as the starting place for people interested in the tool, to give them a chance to get a feel for how it works.  

    To get the credentials to access the Sitefinity playground,  contact us at

    There is a good library of Sitefinity-related material online; not all of it applies to every user or to our implementation, but it’s a good way to scan what some of the capabilities are:

    More coming soon…

  • UTMB web outage scheduled for Sitefinity CMS software upgrade: What it means

    June 9, 2015, 09:45 AM by Pep Valdes

    Hopefully many of you have seen the alert that’s posted for this evening:

    UTMB and home pages and other select sites hosted in the UTMB Sitefinity Web CMS will be unavailable on Thursday, June 9, 2016 starting at 10:30 p.m. for scheduled Siteifnity CMS software version upgrade.If you have any questions please contact Mike Cooper, Marketing and Communications at

    Upgrades are nothing new, we’ve actually rolled out about five since we launched the tool. However, we’re actually pretty excited to be rolling this upgrade out, as it brings some nice performance enhancements and adds some features that many have been waiting on. The Sitefinity event calendar widget is part of this upgrade, and we’ll be developing templates/styles, training and communication around these new features in the coming days and weeks.

    If you are currently using Sitefinity, there is one thing you need to know: it’s going to look a little different the next time you log into your dashboard. We’re a house divided in our shop on whether the new look is better (OK, maybe I’m the only one that preferred the old look). It does look cleaner and fortunately the functionality is all still there and in the same place, so I don’t think anyone will struggle much once they get adjusted. Not even me. Here’s a screen shot of the old vs. the new:

    Old Sitefinity administration area screens

    New Sitefinity administration area screens

  • Project update: Razuna access and Sitefinity playground

    May 26, 2015, 16:19 PM by Pep Valdes

    It’s hard to believe it’s already been two weeks since we introduced the “Web Reboot.”  

    Of the projects mentioned on the project cheat sheet, Razuna, Siteimprove, the templates, Google Search, Site Inventory and Angelfish  are ready now. We recently fleshed out somebasic “how to” documents for the digital library (Razuna). We’re building them into a website, but you can get a PDF preview below:

    We’re still building out the content management system (Sitefinity), adding some features and developing the training. There is a programmers’ group meeting weekly on module and application development. And, there is a “digital playground” in place for those eager to get a peek at the tool and its functionality. This playground is shared; swim at your own risk and be advised it will be wiped. It’s really just a sneak peek. If you want to try it, contact us at and we’ll send you instructions and the credentials.

  • Web Reboot video stream now online

    May 13, 2015, 16:15 PM by Pep Valdes

    We were thrilled to welcome and engage about 100 colleagues in Levin Hall on May 12 for the introduction of the 2015 Web Reboot. We had some great questions and discussion, and are looking forward to hosting additional topic- and tool-specific sessions in the future. If you missed the meeting, materials are below, and you can watch the webcast now:

    We’ve placed the meeting materials online for your review:

    Our thanks to videographer Raymond Curran and Classroom & Technical Services for their support, and to all who were able to brave the looming rain to attend.

  • Hope you can join us today for Web Reboot introduction

    May 12, 2015, 16:12 PM by Pep Valdes

    We’re watching the weather and hoping our 10 am meeting doesn’t coincide with a deluge; we’re looking forward to a great discussion.

    The Reboot will introduce new tools, including a simple-yet-sophisticated web content management system, mobile site templates, link and spelling validation, a digital image library, new guidelines and page requirements, social media changes, and training and tutorials to support the web development community and those they serve. The meeting is today,

    Tuesday, May 12, 2015
    10 to 11 a.m.
    Levin Hall North Auditorium

    The meeting is being hosted by the Internet Technology Committee and will be recorded and rebroadcast.

    We’ve placed the meeting materials online for your review:

  • Meeting to introduce “Web Reboot” set for May 12

    May 1, 2015, 16:10 PM by Pep Valdes

    It’s time. After more than a year of work by a team representing every entity at UTMB, it’s time to share the project widely. Are we totally ready? No. We don’t have all the answers (we don’t have all the questions), which is why this is the perfect time to engage the larger community of campus web developers.

    If this is the first you’ve heard of this, the “Web Reboot” is a multifaceted project a year plus in development. The project was developed and is being presented by the Internet Technology Committee (ITC); it was endorsed by the university’s leadership earlier this year.

    The Reboot will introduce new tools including a simple yet sophisticated web content management system, mobile site templates, link and spelling validation, a digital image library, new guidelines and page requirements, social media changes, and training and tutorials to support the web development community and those they serve.

    The meeting is set for Tuesday, May 12, 2015, from 10 to 11 a.m. in Levin Hall North Auditorium.

    We’ll be providing an overview and starting a discussion. Some of the tools are ready now, some are close, others are still in development.

    The meeting will not be streamed but it will be recorded and rebroadcast. The meeting is open to anyone at UTMB with an interest in Internet technology or development. Hope you can join us.

  • What is the 2015 Web Reboot and how will we learn about it?

    February 24, 2015, 14:32 PM by Pep Valdes

    Led by the ITC, the “Web Reboot” is a multifaceted plan consisting of revamped tools, resources, training and policies designed to elevate and enhance UTMB’s Internet presence. At the heart of the project is an approach that emphasizes collaboration, coordination and shared governance to introduce new efficiencies to the institution’s web development teams, and a better, higher-quality experience for the users of UTMB’s web sites.

    A communication plan maps out the strategies to share the plan, introduce the tools and new policies, and engage participants.

    Communication about the Web Reboot will target three primary audiences:

    1)      Leadership, Managers: Will be offered a high-level overview emphasizing the objectives, strategies and capabilities of the project and its components, the opportunities and potential impact on their respective areas. Will be asked for input, and asked to support implementation. (Mike King and Pep Valdes)

    2)      Web Designers, Authors and Content Contributors: Same as above, although this group will also be shown the actual tools in action, be invited to test and use them, and will be the subjects of more focused and targeted outreach and training around the tools and changes. (Multiple members of the ITC, coordinated by Pep Valdes and Matt Havard)

    3)    Web Developers and Programmers: This group will plan and develop the “back end”: they will install and implement the tools, develop the programming to create functionality, develop modules to be shared with designers, authors and contributors. They will also maintain code and set and maintain programming/development standards. (Mike Cooper, Mark Schultze)    


    Communication about the Web Reboot will take place throughout 2015, starting with leadership and managers. (Jan. – Mar. 2015). Communication to our other two key audiences (designers, authors and content contributors plus web developers and programmers) began in February 2015 and follow parallel, continuous tracks. The bulk of the detailed communication and messaging will be in place and launch by spring 2015, with the implementation/adoption of many the key “Web Reboot” tools, templates and guidelines under way by December 2015.