The header area of a top-level page shows its own link in this color.
For safety, all consequential commands —
such as Delete and Signup, display either a confirm-it box or a form.
A phrase that is a link switches to a black
background and white text if you hover the mouse pointer over it.
The Top-of-page Menus
The top-center menus and their MORE sub-menus provide commands for
designing the current event (e.g. Make Signup Schedule), for managing its signups
(e.g. See/Do Signups), and for sharing info (e.g. Email Announcement).
Also if a command works on the current event or makes use of it
(like Email Announcement does for its TO-list options),
there is a set-current-event menu above the top-center menus.
Additionally on the top right:
Admin Home's has group admin commands.
Self-Signup Home's has personal commands, like Change Password.
The Logout button's has commands related to login shortcuts.
Dropdown menus ()
are mainly used in 2 ways.
In forms, you use them to choose input values.
When they are right on pages, they perform actions. For example,
on many admin pages there is a dropdown menu to change the current event.
How to use them:
Click on a dropdown menu to see the available items.
Click on the desired item to select it -OR-
click anywhere else to close the menu without making a change.
You can also arrow to an item and press the Enter key.
A dynamic menu is used for selecting from potentially large lists,
in particular people.
In appearance, it is a text box followed by a bluish down-arrow icon:
When you do not know the name you want,
click on the down-arrow to display the list's first 50 items.
If you know the name you want, simply start to enter it —
only the names matching what you typed will be displayed.
Usually entering 3 or 4 letters narrows the menu to a small list.
As with a regular dropdown menu,
you select a menu item by clicking on it or arrowing to it.
As with a text field, ctrl-Z undoes edits so far.
(Note that ESC does that too, and also ends editing mode).
Match vs. Phonebook View, and Phonebook Order
Match View applies when you enter something (except 1 capital letter) and
simply means displaying all the names (up to 30 at a time) that match what
A phonebook is all the names of some sort of thing.
Phonebook View means 50 consecutive names of a menu's phonebook:
The A's and forward if you click on the menu's down-arrow icon;
the entered LETTER and forward if you enter a single capital letter.
Both views present menu items in Phonebook order:
people are sorted by last name, and other things are sorted by 1st
part of name.
Ways You Can Identify a Person
A registered person can be identified by first name, last name, some of both, or
email address. You can enter some of both using either first last
style or last, first style.
If you enter only letters, multiple name-parts might match. For example, if you
enter JOH in a person menu, it will match Joh* *and* Joh*
(i.e. everyone whose 1st name starts with Joh and everyone whose last name starts with Joh).
Ways You Can Identify Other Things
This depends on what the menu is for:
An activity can be identified by
base name, location, or some of both (i.e. base, location).
In a menu that can select multiple activities at once, activities can also be
identified by project name.
A report name that has comma-separed parts can be identified by starting
to type any of its parts.
The ways you can identify an event are described here.
All other things are 1-part names.
Any name part you enter
has a * appended to it. In other words, entering s is equivalent to
An entered name may also include explict wildcarding. For example:
If you enter sc*t, the menu will list every name starting with sc
and containing a t somewhere after that.
A people-specific example is m * (i.e. m space asterisk).
This would list everyone whose first name started with m. (m by itself
would list last names starting with m as well).
An activity-specific example is ca*, *. This
would list each activity whose base name begins with CA — including
those that do not have a location.
Special Menu Items
Some dynamic menus include special menu items.
Factory-installed choices are in UPPERCASE. For example, the Location field
in the Update Schedule Item box is a dynamic menu that is only processed when it is filled-in.
To allow you to set a Location to blank, a NONE item is included in the dynamic menu.
A menu that can select multiple activities at once may display
some menu items that themselves contain wildcarding.
Choosing such a menu item selects all the activities
whose name (or project) matches the wildcarding.
Admin Home Event List and Event Dynamic Menus
You control the events listed on Admin Home via the List line's radio buttons:
When the first radio button is on,
the events selected by the Stages dropdown menu are displayed.
PLEASE NOTE: these events set the initial scope of all event dynamic menus.
For example, if you have chosen Development
Events in the dropdown menu, clicking the arrow of an event dynamic menu will
only popup your group's Development events.
When the YYYY+ button is on, events starting in the current year and later
When the SEL button is on, only the current event is displayed. Identifying
an event in SEL's dynamic menu both chooses the current event and turns the SEL
As with any dynamic menu, you enter characters in its text field when you
want you reduce the size of its menu. For events, the basic rule
is: what you enter will match any phrase in an event name. For example, if some
of your event names include "Book Sale", entering b or s would match such events.
Conversely if that still matched too many events, you could continue typing (say "book sa")
to further reduce the number of matches.
Event dynamic menus are special in that the starting menu may not be
all events. In the example above for instance, the starting menu was Development Events.
To both refine what matches and/or match events not in the starting menu, you can:
Start what you enter with a *. If you do this, all stages can now match
the additional characters you enter.
Start or end what you enter with a 4-digit year. If you do this,
all events starting in that year will be matched against the additional
phrases you enter. (So the matches can change alot after entering the 4th digit).
Entering Field Values in a Form
Optional vs. Required Fields
If a field is required, an asterisk (*) is appended to the field's name.
M/D/Y, Y-M-D, and Month Day, Year are all accepted.
If a year is omitted, it is defaulted. In the context of an event,
it is set from the event's start date. Otherwise it is set to the current year.
If only two year-digits are supplied, 20 is prepended.
For example (during 2000),
1/25 and 00-1-25 and Jan 25 and January 25, 2000 are all the same date.
Hour:Min and Hour are
both okay. For example, both 8am and 8:00AM mean 8 o'clock in the morning.
24-hour clock times are also accepted; that is, 23:00 is the same as 11PM.
When both AM and PM are omitted, PM is assumed. However if AM can
be inferred, it will be (e.g. 11-1 is treated as 11AM-1PM). When AM or PM is entered,
it can be either upper or lower case, but just A or P is not accepted.
A 12 or 12 noon is how to enter 12 noon. A 0 or 12AM is how to enter 12 Midnight.
(Thus 0:1 is the briefest way to enter 12:01AM).
A start time of 0:1 and no end time
says that a background task can be completed any time during the day. In a schedule,
such an item's time is shown as "Anytime".
Conversely when an item's activity is a background task and a blank
start time is allowed, Start Time defaults to 0:1.
Although you may enter a time range that
ends midnight or later (e.g. 9PM-1AM), its end time is set to 11:59PM in the database.
When creating a schedule item whose activity does not yet exist, the time-info you enter
controls the type that the new activity is given.
Entering both times sets Type to Main Task, and only a start-time sets it to Background Task.
For Add On-site Item, entering no times sets Type to Background Task. For Add Planning Item, it sets Type to Planning Action.
Creating Links to Web Pages
Insert Link to: a web address
You can put a link to a web address into an email message, forum message, or description
A user will see link text underlined, and a click on this goes to the specified
web address. But in the edit box, you will see LINK(link text=web address).
For example, LINK(Example PRESTO site=prestogem.com/vo/example)
would lead to a user seeing
Example PRESTO site.
Entering no link text is okay. This generates
LINK(=web address) — which is equivalent to
LINK(web address=web address).
The actual link automatically contains http://
if the web address does not contain protocol://
The web address may contain a ? and arguments.
To un-insert a LINK(...), manually delete it like any other text. If you ever manually
insert LINK(...), note that the LINK must be all caps.
If a group's About Us contains only
a link, a click on About Us will itself display the web page you identified
(rather than a little box containing the link).
This save-a-click feature also applies to activity descriptions and event instructions.
link text is not applicable in this situation, you should leave it blank.
Insert Link to: your group's home page (Email only)
When you insert a link to your group's home page (i.e. Self-Signup Home),
you create a login-able link. Login-able links work as follows:
When a non-privileged user who allows automatic logins goes to Self-Signup Home via
a login-able link, she is logged in if necessary.
When other not-logged-in users use
a login-able link, the process of login is simplified:
Self-Signup Home will include a Login form and the user's email address will be pre-filled in.
Note: when a non-privileged user clicks on a login-able link for the 1st time,
an explanation of Email Logins is displayed.
should include a home-page link as a matter of course. More generally,
whenever a user might want to use PRESTO as a result of a message (e.g.
cancel a signup after receiving a signup reminder or signup confirmation),
it is a good idea to include a home-page link in the message.
Directly Entering a Link
You can also insert a web link by entering a simple full web address.
For example, if you typed http://prestogem.com into an announcement,
would be what each recipient would see when the message arrived.
If you create something containing HTML, rather than just plain-text,
you can also encode links in the usual HTML way. For example, the HTML for the prestogem.com
link above is: