The Bellows is The Forge editor’s blog. It is a channel through which we at The Forge can let you know about changes and upcoming events. We have called it The Bellow as ‘bellows’ are used in the operation of a forge, and the word also means to yell loudly.
Firstly, an introduction. My name is Mike Richards and I am currently the Acting Assistant Director of Joint Professional Military Education. I currently manage the Forge and I hope to expand our readership across Defence and into the international market. I will also endeavour to introduce many features that people have been requesting.
Before I get to the upcoming changes, I want to give my thanks to the outgoing Assistant Director of JPME, Gary Chalker. Gary was the Manager of the Forge during the very difficult Pandemic period. He identified many ways to improve the Forge, and during his tenure he transformed the Forge from a text-based platform to a visually engaging site, greatly improving the articles and pages like the Perry Group, SciFi, Ethics and War College. He also introduced the search function to make the site easier to use, and last but not least he was the producer for the JMAP Lite course which has significantly contributed to the Joint Planning education capability.
So what can you expect from the Forge going forward? During 2023:
- We will be updating the look and feel of the site, making it even quicker and easier to find content in which you are interested.
- The addition of up-voting, down-voting and comments to every article.
- Alignment to the JPME Continuum 2.0 to assist you in locating content related to your current position within the continuum.
- A revised and simplified menu structure.
- An optional ability to Log in. This will open new features on the Forge (including the ability to comment on articles). And for authors, it will allow you to manage your author page, including your profile picture, social media links, email links, the short biography to be attached to your articles and a more detailed biography for the Author page.
- New Alumni Services will be introduced.
- Additional offerings from our other stakeholders will also be forthcoming.
This is just the beginning. We are still identifying features and functionality that we want to include, so if you have any suggestions, please let us know via the feedback form.