After months of effort, ALMA has a new website for the public, http://www.almaobservatory.org, released on October 30. This task was achieved by the Joint ALMA Observatory (JAO) EPO (Education & Public Outreach) department with the support of the Executives’ (ESO, NAOJ, and NRAO) EPO departments. The support of ALMA scientists was also instrumental in ensuring the accuracy of the scientific and technical information available on the website, both in English and Spanish.
The new site contains four main sections: “About ALMA”, “Newsroom”, “Multimedia” and “Resources.” Additionally, it contains a section on job opportunities with ALMA and gives the user the possibility of getting the latest ALMA-related news, events and multimedia material by subscribing to RSS feeds.
The “About ALMA” section covers a range of information about ALMA’s universe: the timeline, science and technology, infrastructure, geographical location, internal structure and management and a guide to the acronyms used in ALMA.
The “Newsroom” section, mainly designed for the worldwide media, is a repository of all press and web releases related to ALMA from its beginning, classified in chronological order. This section also contains a list of main scientific events in which ALMA will be represented as well as useful information for journalists planning to visit our facilities and EPO contact information in Chile and the regions.
The “Multimedia” section gives a global view of ALMA’s universe through images, 3-D animations, videos, and webcams. The images are divided into specific sections, which make the searches easy, and are downloadable in different resolutions. ALMA-related videos, produced either by the JAO EPO Department or the EPO Departments of the Executives, are visible in streaming and also downloadable.
The “Resources” section contains free downloadable publications on the project, such as the beautifully illustrated book on biology in the ALMA area, and easy-to-build paper models of the antennas and the transporter. A radio astronomy FAQ and an astronomical glossary offer a good introduction to radio astronomy and ALMA to people who are completely new to astronomy, as well as to those who have a greater acquaintance with it.
The "Internal Links," which were formerly located under "ALMA Resources" at the bottom of the www.alma.cl webpage, are now accessible from a link located in the footer of the www.almaobservatory.org domain. Since these links are for internal purposes, they are visible only inside the private networks of ALMA and the Executives.
The architecture of the website was designed by professionals, following the requirements specified by the ALMA-related EPO departments. Designed to be user-friendly and easy to navigate, the website also possesses a flexible content management system. Last but not least, the website aims to be dynamic and constantly updated with new tools, articles, resources, pictures, videos, etc. This will be one of the priorities of the JAO EPO department.