LDSTech
Newsletter: November 2009

LDSTech Talk 2009 Now Available

The recording of the LDSTech Talk is now availabe. Go to the LDSTech Talk page to watch it.

Submit any feedback to the LDSTech Forum.


From the Archives

An Introduction to the Clerk Wiki
by Robert Lindsay

The job of a quality assurance engineer is to constantly be looking for ways to improve quality, including setting targets for metrics or setting criteria that must be met before we consider it a quality product.

At a recent gathering of Church quality assurance employees we discussed the idea of how truth affects the quality of our work processes and lives.

We may be really good at setting goals and envisioning the future. However, our ability to achieve those goals depends on having a true understanding of our current state of being— how we’re doing right now. This is the point: often we are not truthful with ourselves about the reality of what our current state actually is. We think (or believe) we know where we are, but in reality we may be far off.

Read full article.


LDSTech Developers Conference

We are planning an LDSTech Developer Conference in Utah this spring and are considering options for the date of the conference, what topics will be covered, and more.

We need your input. Please visit the LDSTech Developer Conference poll and answer a few questions. This will help us gather information that will help us put on the best inagaural LDSTech Developers Conference.

More information is forthcoming.

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The History of LDS.org Shows God's Hand - Part 1 of 2 PDF Print E-mail
Written by G.C. Duerden and Ben Groen)   
Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Many advances in technology have been embraced by the Church to help the gospel fill the earth. This two-part series of articles tells the story of LDS.org, the Church’s flagship website.

The Church had always made extensive use of the telegraph to send and receive messages, but the first foray into a public arena was on May 6, 1922 when President Heber J. Grant delivered the first Church broadcast message over the first radio station in Utah, KZN (now KSL). This message was given for the formal dedication of the station.

In October 1924, general conferences began to be broadcast, by radio. Early the next year, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir began performing, via radio, with rehearsals on Thursday evenings. Their weekly broadcasts started July 15, 1929. The program, known as Music and the Spoken Word, is now the oldest continuous broadcast in American radio.

In April, 1941 the 111th General Conference was broadcast for the first time by radio and TV stations outside of Utah. Prior to that, KSL TV and Radio had undertaken to broadcast conference within Utah.

It wasn’t until April 1952 that the priesthood session of general conference was carried by telephone to stake centers and other buildings outside of Temple Square. (In 2013 the Priesthood Session was broadcast on KBYU-TV and streamed over the internet as well as through the Church Satellite System.) In 1963, languages other than English and Spanish were broadcast (German and Portuguese) as WRUL broadcast the 133rd Annual General Conference.

In 1979 the broadcasts of general conference was taken into space as the first satellite broadcasts were used. But it wasn’t until 1997 when the Church really established its first official website, LDS.org, with real content.

A Church employee bought the domain name “LDS.org” before the Church considered an online presence. The first official site rolled out in December 1996, consisting of just two pages (one was a media guide from the Public Affairs Department of the Church, and the other was a page where users were directed to call a toll free number to get a free copy of the Book of Mormon). 

The Church’s first official LDS.org website.

By April of 1997 content was added to celebrate the pioneer sesquicentennial, including an interactive map. Until it was taken down in 2012, this was the oldest content on the website.

Interactive map celebrating the pioneer story. Up until sometime after 2012, this was the oldest content on LDS.org.

December 1996 version of LDS.org. The first real LDS.org website with content.

Later in 1997, the Church added content about Joseph Smith and published general conference talks (from the 167th General Conference). General conference addresses were first made available (in English) on LDS.org in late 1997. Other languages followed in 1998.

General conference addresses first published on LDS.org in 1997

In 1999, the Church started making plans to deliver a live broadcast of general conference over the Internet. The Church developed a spinoff company, MSTAR.net, to develop the site and worked with Real Networks to broadcast general conference. It was the biggest event ever for Real Networks, and the second largest Internet broadcast at the time.

The first session of that 1999 October General Conference surpassed all of Real Networks’ expected traffic and overloaded the whole network. Thankfully, the IT staff added more servers and fixed the issues by the second session. Feedback was tremendous and came from all over the world. Many people wrote about the great joy and privilege of being able to listen to the prophet live for the very first time.

Also in 1999, LDS.org was redesigned. A splash screen was added, and the content reflected the missions of the Church. 

At this point, all website content had to be approved by a member of the Quorum of the Twelve, a process that limited the Church’s ability to publish material. An Internet task group was organized to provide leadership and direction to the future of the Church’s websites.

This is the end of part one covering the development of the Church’s public face via technology, from the radio to the LDS.org website (1996 to 1999). Part two picks up at the turn of the 21st century and brings us up to date.


 

 
Upgrade: Help Test Beta Site PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cassie McDaniel   
Monday, 06 April 2009

The LDSTech site is undergoing an upgrade. The upgrade will not affect the LDSTech Wiki or the LDSTech Forums. The upgraded site will have improved navigation. Irrelevant or outdated content will be removed. Before we release this change, please view the beta site. Check for broken links, formatting, and other bugs throughout the site. Report any problems to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 
Employee Spotlight: Jim Greene PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cassie McDaniel   
Thursday, 22 January 2009

Jim GreeneQuestion

What is your current position at the Church and what are your responsibilities?

Answer

I am the product manager over the FamilySearch Research Wiki and the Family History Library as well as the new FamilySearch’s interface with Membership and Statistical Records. This involves gathering user requirements, writing user stories for engineers, and prioritizing stories.

Question

What is one of the exciting projects that you are currently working on?

Answer

FamilySearch Research Wiki. We believe that by involving the worldwide community of family historians in a collaborative effort, we can create an encyclopedia of unparalleled record sources that will greatly assist the work of redeeming the dead. More people will easily find records with data about their ancestors, resulting in more saving ordinances.

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May Broadcast Second Chance PDF Print E-mail
Written by Greg Duerden   
Monday, 12 May 2014

A Second Chance to See the Colemere Broadcast

Are you interested in the latest techniques used by the Church to spread the gospel message? The Church uses sophisticated and media-savvy marketing methods to contact as many people as possible, no matter the type of media they prefer.

Michael Colemere, managing director of Communication Services for the Church, spoke about the four elements of a successful communications strategy the Church is using at the latest LDSTech broadcast, which was live streamed and recorded on May 2, 2014. This insightful presentation revealed many aspects of the Church’s digital messaging plan.

At the broadcast, Brother Colemere gave details of direction he received from General Authorities of the Church as well as the four elements his department has developed for the Church’s communication strategy:  1) Who we are trying to reach (the audience); 2) What we want to communicate (the message); 3) Where our audiences consume information (the channel); and 4) How we can best format the messages (the packaging).

Each broadcast is recorded, so if you missed this one, or any other, you can re-watch the recording at any time. In fact, if you tuned in late to the broadcast, you could rewind and play it from the beginning. See this broadcast, or any other, in LDSTech’s Broadcast Archive.  Here are a few recent ones:

Date Stream Presenter & Topic
2014-MAY-02 

Michael Colemere - Four Elements of Successful Communications Strategies 

2014-MAR-14  Mel Broberg - Church Directory of Organizations and Leaders (CDOL
2014-FEB-07  Jim Byer - Windows 8 Gospel Library 
2014-JAN-10  Hal Rushton - Gospel Content on the Feature Phone 

 


 
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