WISE OLD OWL
INFORMATION PORTAL

ALL ABOUT WOO

WHAT IS WOO ?



WOO is the Swiss Army Knife
of desktop shortcuts 


a hub of collated Information,
advice, links to many other useful sources,
ALL AVAILABLE IN ONE PLACE!

USEFULL TOOLS

Calculators; Converters;
Calendars; Live Travel; Map; Timetables; Weather;
Job Searching; Parcel Tracking;
Recycling & Money Saving ideas;
TV & Radio links; How to fix it videos.

EMERGENCY INFORMATION

Hospitals; Doctors; Dentists; Vets; Crime; Flood information;   Disaster & Emergencies; Missing People; Police Information Requests; First-Aid advice; Medical information & videos, Family Safety; Home Support.

LOCAL SERVICES

Contact numbers and websites for your local Schools; Colleges; Council Departments; News; Local Businesses and services.

SPECIAL SECTIONS

WOO is all about keeping you & your family safe.
Medical advice, First-aid,
household advice, Fitness for those who cannot attend a gym, Tips for  motorists, 
WOO-KIDS helps keep the little ones amused and helps them learn.

VISITOR INFORMATION

Electric charging points; Places to eat and stay, Things to see and do; Camping information; Online TV & Radio, Maps.

WOO's Ethos & Values.

WOO wishes to be as environmentally friendly as possible, by reducing the use and need of paper leaflets and directories. And by promoting recycling ideas and practices.

WOO wishes to give back to the commuinity, by providing the helpful information they may need all in one place, by creating awareness of local events, and involving the local community with its specialist sections of interest.

WOO wishes to be non-political, unbiased and non-disciminatory.

WOO wants to promote worthy businesses, groups, individuals and events, and to support where possible the many worthy charities and non-profit making groups, that give so much to our local communities, by providing free advertising space to help promote awareness.

And as we are based in Wales, to promote Wales as a whole, showing off our beautiful scenery, many interesting places, extraordinary talent, heritage, history and it's culture.


Watch the WOO Videos

Describing WOO in a few words is not easy, the best way to find out how useful WOO can be is to explore it and see.

The Woo pages are always being updated and where possible improved, and new sections of interest added.

HOW WOO CAME ABOUT.

Before the Mobile and Internet age, most households had both local telephone directories and advertising directories to find out local contact information, there were also 'Pink Cards', A4 size printed advertising sheets that were put through the door which displayed local numbers to local businesses, but all these have now ceased to exist.
I wanted to not only replace these and once again have the information you need close to hand, but to greatly improve on them and have something that is easy to access whether at home, work or outside in the street, with much more than just telephone numbers. Woo has quick and simple access to Emergency information and contact numbers of Hospitals Doctors and Dentists, Schools, along with adverts for numbers you may need quickly such as plumbers or electricians.

There are many useful tools such as converters and calculators always at hand for when you need them, and many special sections that enable you to access TV, or offer advice and help, some even show you how to do things by video.
The webpages go much further than the old printed directories, they utilise videos and pictures, and nearly everything you see is a clickable link that will give you even further information, Click on a name and it will take you directly to the contact number or even to a website.

The WOO Portal is not just a simple list of information, it is a place to trust,
it is an experience, it is a place to go to, and a place to be involved.

Aware that people are wary of, and do not want to download memory hungry 'apps' or use up valuable computer or device disk space, I decided to create it purely as a website, giving the user the option of creating just a small (2kb) shortcut on their desktop, or saving the website address to their favourites list to instantly bring the information to view. Nothing is downloaded or placed on your phone or computer!
Some of the video content used in the creation of the site was made and is owned by others, Woo takes no credit for this, and all credit is given to the original creators.

WHY A WEBSITE ?

Many have asked me why I made a website and not followed others in making Facebook pages, the answer to this is simple. On facebook style pages the information and data scrolls down as each new entry is made, gradually it is scrolled so far down it is impossible to find again or even deleted.

I wanted to provide the information in a static form, where users can rely on it always being in the same place and at hand when needed, without having to search endlessly for where it has now gone.

HOW WE ONCE SEARCHED FOR INFORMATION

PINK CARD

Basic information of local services through paid for adverts. Put through door once a year.
NOW CEASED

YELOW PAGES

Bulky and often out of date. once issued to all owners of landlines.
Now not issued in our area

THOMPSONS LOCAL DIRECTORY

Often out of date. Selectively issued to households.
NOW CEASED

SHOP NOTICE BOARDS

Jumbled information outside town shops & outlets.
Not available in the home.

192 DIRECTORY ENQUIRIES

Available to households with a landline. charged for set amount of telephone number information.

PRINTED BOOKLETS

Small printed directories are sometimes available, but often discarded or lost.

The modern trend is to use Social Media to advertise or present items of interest, but  Social media has a very limited lifespan when it comes to holding and displaying information.

A web site will continuously display the same information indefinitely, making information easier to find

WERE THEY EFFECTIVE ?

At the time there was no alternative, at home we had a large pile of heavy directories that were often out of date, the Pink card that only gave a few basic numbers, or the ability to use directory enquiries to get a maximum of three phone numbers at any one time. The shop notice board was of no use when you were sitting at home.

As the internet arrived we now have Google, it's a great search engine but can swamp the user with many pages of information that are not relevant , including many paid for advertisements,  The required information still has to be searched for from large lists and is not automatically defined to your town or area.

BUT NOW WE HAVE WOO !

MAKE A TINY 2KB DESKTOP ICON

To keep Woo always to hand and save having to search for your town, create a tiny (2kb) shortcut on your desktop. First go to the menu page for your nearest town, highlight and copy the full address shown in the address bar at the top of the page, then using the right mouse button click on a blank area of your desktop and choose 'New' and then 'shortcut'. Use the right button to click in the box, and Paste in the copied address, press OK. Another box will open for you to name your shortcut eg 'Woo', then press OK again. Tuck this new icon away in the corner of your screen and you will have instant access to your own local information at a click of the icon. Alternatively, goto the menu page of your town and click to add it to your list of Favourite's / Bookmarks.

GDPR COMPLIANCE

General Data Protection Regulation.

WOO ensures that only the minimum information is recorded and stored safely, this will include the necessary Customer Data for those paying for advertising which includes :-

Business name, business address, contact name, business phone number, business email address, dates of advertisement periods and dates of payments.

No tracking of visitors or insertion of cookies is used by WOO

WOO HAS CHANGED AND GROWN

WOO NOW, AND THE FUTURE DEVELOPMENT OF WOO

I started WOO as a personal project and with just one town in mind, Welshpool the town where I live. The original site over its years of development had many rewrites and style changes. Many new ideas were added and tried out and gradually it took its current form.

I was soon approached by other viewers asking if their town could also be included, soon Newtown was added and then later followed by others. The interest grew and I had to decide on where I would take it to in the future.

With the ever increasing development of its 'Special Sections', which covered and provided information on a wide number of subjects, Woo began attracting a wider base of viewers.

Over the last five years I noticed that I was being viewed and receiving messages from many viewers that were not based in Wales, many from the United States, Australia, and all across Europe. Some from Universities and groups that were requesting to use the site and its wide and varied content as part of their curriculum and as recommended viewing. This brought me to the conclusion that the site needed to be broadened, changed from being a 'Local' site to one that included everyone.

I still wanted to retain the 'Local' element, so the information pertaining to Wales was restructured into a Special Section of its own, while opening up the site to a much wider audience. Doing it this way will enable me to continue to build Woo as a trusted source for information and to develop new sections of interest as the need arises, for a much wider viewing base.

Woo has been since its inception, and is still currently financed out of my own pocket, and it does not produce any income. Spiraling living costs are making this very difficult for me as I am not working due to illness, and I want to find a sponsor/sponsors that will at least cover the annual costs of domain registration and site hosting, and perhaps some of the day to day charges that I incur for electricity / computer maintenance / phone calls etc.  

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