Dentaltown April 2013 - (Page 20)

professional courtesy column » Three Cheers for IT by Thomas Giacobbi, DDS, FAGD, Editorial Director, Dentaltown Magazine The Information Technology (IT) department is often the unsung hero of most businesses. Think about your dental practice. If your computer software is not operating or you lose your Internet connection, it can make delivering dental care very difficult. The IT department that keeps Farran Media running knows that the phone will ring off the hook if the website is down. Keeping the website up and running is only a small part of its contributions to our success. The bulk of its time is dedicated to ongoing improvements in the form of better design, streamlined navigation and new features. This month I would like to provide an introduction to some of our newest features. In February we rolled out a completely redesigned navigation and a cleaner look for the site. The new design is easy on the eyes with easier-to-read font styles and sizes. One of the most frequently asked questions about our site design is, why is there empty space on the sides of the pages? This exists because of the wide variety of monitors in the marketplace. Many dentists are already using widescreen monitors on their desktops and laptops but the statistics point to a plethora of standard-sized monitors still in use. The width of the active part of our page is the current design standard and we have checked this against many of the popular mainstream sites on the Internet. My favorite aspect of this redesign is the improved menu. The single green bar across the top of every page is organized with the key sections of our site, and each one of those headings drop down into a detailed list of the items in that section. The old design was suffering from menu confusion as we had important items listed on both the top and side of each page. In addition to this streamlined menu at the top, we have a detailed site map menu at the bottom that can provide single-click access to anything on our site. Spend a few moments exploring the menus and you will quickly discover the wisdom of this system. There are two new functions on our site that are particularly worth a look. The first is called Groups. This feature lives in the message board section of our website and it was created to provide our members with two new options for having a discussion. A Private Group is completely invisible to the rest of the community and the person who starts the group controls membership. Example: You have a local study club of 15 dentists who meet once a month for dinner and a lecture, and you want to provide a private message board to discuss local issues and the next study club meeting. The second option is referred to as a Semi-Private Group. The Semi-Private Groups are visible to everyone on our site but access is still controlled by the person who started the group. Example: You are in the alumni office of a dental school and you want to create a forum that gathers all of the alumni from your school. This group will be visible to all in the list of public groups. The main message boards will still be the single-best location to discuss any clinical or management issue, but we wanted to provide a mechanism for smaller groups to interact in the same location. The second new feature is Blogs. The term blog evolved from the words “web log” and it is simply a type of discussion often led by a single person or company. For many years, we have received member requests for a blog section, and this project finally made it to the top of our list. While there are many different dental blogs on the Internet, we expect this new section to become the number-one repository for dental blogs in front of the largest online audience in dentistry. Any registered member of Dentaltown can create his or her very own blog. The primary goal of our efforts is to provide a platform where people from every country on the planet can interact with their fellow members of the dental profession. If you have a suggestion for improving the experience online, please share it on our message boards or drop me a line: ■ 20 APRIL 2013 »

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Dentaltown April 2013 Highlights
Howard Speaks: What Winners Do and Losers Don’t
Professional Courtesy: Three Cheers for IT
Continuing Education Update
Dentaltown Research: Lasers
“Funny Feeling” on Lower Right Jaw
Missing Laterals, Bonded Maryland Bridges, Ribbond or Something Else?
Corporate Profile: Henry Schein
New Products
Office Visit: A Giant in Dentistry
Do-it-Yourself Finance, Part V: Insurance
Two Techniques to Make a Bite Record for a Full-arch Case
Team Strength: What Drives Your Team to Do More?
Living by the Golden Dozen
Diagnosing Aesthetic Disharmonies
Cosmetic Case Presentation
Using Tetric EvoCeram Bulk Fill to Easily and Predictably Place Direct Posterior Restorations
Continuing Education: Utilizing Laser Procedures for Restorative Access
Product Profile: Imaging Sciences International’s i-CAT FLX
In This Issue: Preparing for the Future
Perio Reports
Ad Index
Profile in Oral Health: The RDH’s Approach to Periodontal Therapy: Past, Present and Future
Perio Maintenance
Dentally Incorrect
Dentaltown Special Supplement
Product Profile: Zimmer Dental
Full Lower – Converted to Immediate Load
Immediate Placement #19 and 20 with BSB
American Academy of Implant Dentistry 62nd Annual Meeting Preview
Raising Your Denture Patient to a Higher Standard
Back to the Future – Extractions and Small Diameter Implants for Overdentures
Continuing Education: Top Implantology Breakthroughs for the GP: Part 2

Dentaltown April 2013