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ALS News for Fall 1999 | Return to ABOUT ALS

ALS on the Web
New site at www.pbs.org/als will maximize usability

ALS is currently in the process of redesigning the ALS Web site in order to serve you better. While the site, expected to launch early this fall, will feature a new look and feel, the true focus of the redesign has been to improve usability. This means providing a variety of ways to access information quickly, such as a pull-down menu of shortcuts to information for experienced site users; consistent and predictable navigation that integrates color coding and visual cues for different audiences; and quick access to critical elements such as search, licensing, and ALS contact information.

The site will be the most reliable and up-to-date source of information about ALS programming. It will also offer related content and distance learning news. Technicians will find a new source of support online, and adult learners will discover more extensive avenues through which to contact local colleges or universities to fulfill their educational goals.

Looking to the future, the next phase of our Web site development will be to provide dynamically generated pages that draw from a database. This will allow even greater flexibility in searching and sorting program information—you'll be able to look at program listings almost any way you want.

We also would like to provide special services for members online. Do you have any requests? Let us know what member benefits would be really useful to you by sending an email to als@pbs.org.

ALS introduces video streaming programs
Desktop learning on demand

ALS now offers individual, self-paced learning programs right at your fingertips. These video streaming programs use the latest technology to deliver video programs directly to an individual's computer. Now faculty and students can sign-up and learn from the convenience of their home or office, 24 hours a day. (Streaming means feeding the video file bit-by-bit over the Internet, which allows learners to view it as they receive it rather than waiting for a large file to download.) For more details on these exciting new learning programs, please visit the online learning section of this site.

New Oracle System for ALS
Business system promises improved service for customers

A new era began for ALS with the move of its business administration and customer database from its former computer system to an Oracle ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) environment. A number of other departments at PBS also became part of this enterprise-wide system, including the PBS Finance and Accounting areas. As a result, there is now a closer tie between your business with ALS and accounting functions such as invoicing and credits.

You may have noticed a number of changes over the past several weeks, most of them cosmetic, because of the cutover to the new system. Some of our license forms and invoices now look different. Also, most of the materials sent to you by ALS have been accompanied by a packing slip, with the "ship to" and "bill to" points of contact listed. Some of these forms, new to ALS, may look familiar to you because of the large number of other companies that use Oracle applications.

As always, we are committed to providing you with the highest level of service. Our move to this new environment will allow us to serve you better, tie ALS to other areas of PBS, and ensure ALS of a Y2K compliant computer system. If you have any questions about these changes, please call toll free 1-800-257-2578 or send an e-mail to als@pbs.org.

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