February 15th, 2019
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05/31/2002 - IT Academy Students Develop SPOKANEX.NET

Check out www.spokaneX.net, a web site by and for the younger generation. Its creators are a group of nine juniors at the Information Technologies Academy, and each individual brings a unique set of skills and talents to the project. The group as a whole chose the general look and feel of the web site, then the group subdivided so each student could specialize, using their own particular skills and talents.

As you look at the home page, part of the background includes an “alien.” The “Alien” is just one of a number of original artworks that were created the old fashioned way for use on this web site. The hand drawn graphics were then scanned into Photoshop 6 and perfected for use in digital media. The IT Academy multimedia curriculum uses Photoshop 6 and Adobe Image Writer as just two of the tools for multimedia teaching. Keep an eye on that “alien” as you look through the web site. It goes through some subtle changes. On the home page, a group of letters follows the cursor around reminding one of puppies following a string. You may call these “little dudes”. There are others scattered through the web site to test your powers of observation.

All IT Academy students are required to learn HTML. Some students choose to pursue programming beyond this, and they are the ones who really make SpokaneX happen. IT programmers are also taught Visual Basic and VBScript/ASP. The web site also uses some JavaScript.

For those who believe that there is “nothing to do in Spokane,” take a look at the events calendar. Currently the calendar contains only events available through the ticketing agencies, but that will be changed to include all manner of theater, music, public and school sponsored events. The web masters need help with this and welcome contacts by e-mail from other schools and organizations.

Also desired are contacts to help with movie reviews, game reviews, music reviews, and car photographs. Reviewers of all categories are welcome to send e-mail to the address on the contact page. The web masters will filter the submissions for appropriate language, etc., then post the review on the web site.

The ‘Auto’ section is of personal interest to one of the students. Like young people of many generations, he has a passion for “cool cars”. The section is still under construction, but the intent is to have a photo gallery of Spokane teen-owned cool cars. The web master will be out with his camera taking pictures of cars for the gallery, but car owners are welcome to send in pictures as well.

Also in the ‘Auto’ section will be ongoing photos of the SpokaneX project car. This is a 1977 Toyota pickup truck that is badly in need of restoration. As restoration evolves, pictures will be posted so site visitors can follow the progress from beginning to end. This is a fun project, but may inspire others to share their experiences.

As a whole, SpokaneX is a work in progress. The web site project team meets once a week, but they will scatter when school closes for the summer. They hope to keep the information on the site current through the summer months, and to make some progress on the unfinished portions. They have plans for an art gallery page that they hope to have posted by the end of summer.

To further the web site, the project could use some community partners. The students urge any company that wants to reach out to teens in a positive way to consider a partnership with SpokaneX. Use the information in ‘Contact’ to get in touch with the SpokaneX creators.

By the way, click on the “sweetest game ever” at you own peril. It is addictive, and the computer doesn’t always win.

Billie Moreland
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