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ScoutSprout Glossary

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For those of you new to ScoutSprout, or website hosting in general, it might be helpful to familiarize yourself with some of the terms that are used on your site and in our documentation. If there's a term you don't see on here, let us know so that we can add it!

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One advantage of ScoutSprout is the ability for your users to create accounts for themselves to customize their site, and to more fully participate in the interactive features of your website, such as chat and private messages. If you're logged in, you'll see a personalized welcome message at the top-right corner of your screen. If you're not logged in, you'll see a generic one with a link to either log on or create an account. The administrator is a special type of account. More information is available.

Administration Menu

This is the yellow bar at the top of your site, which has drop-down menus which allow you to update your site. This is not available on older sites, who instead have a pop-up menu. If you don't see either, be sure that you're logged on as an administrator.


An administrator account is a special account which has rights to update your website. When you created your website, you were given a default administrator called "admin". You can also assign administrative rights to other members of your site using the "Administrators" item of your User Manager menu.


Blocks are the boxes (or modules) on your front page. You can create custom freeform and rotating blocks, along with customizing the order and content of these blocks using the "Front-Page Layout" item of your Content & Layout menu.


For larger organizations, real-time chat is a good way to encourage people to visit your website. You can add this under your main links if you'd like to use it. There is both a front page block available for casual chatting, along with a PowerWall for more real-time chatting.

Domain Name

A domain name is a unique name to identify your website on the internet. For instance, "". Your default domain name has "" at the end of it (such as "abcd."), but you can purchase a real name for your site for $25/year using the "Domain/Email" item of your Features menu.


Your domain name can have email accounts. More information is available.


A discussion forum is a place for your members to post messages. Your site may have a number of forums, these are very general topics. By default, your site has a General forum and a Prayer Requests forum, but you can create others. Each forum contains a number of topics, and each topic contains a number of posts. Since it is common to mix up these three ideas, here's a concrete example to help:

Your site has a forum called "Prayer Requests" where all prayer requests should go. A user can go to this forum and add a new topiccalled "Please Pray for Bill Malone" to request prayers. This topic will automatically contain the one post that the user added when creating the topic. Another user can come to this topic and reply to the original message with words of encouragement. Now the topic of Bill Malone's prayer request has two posts.

Freeform Blocks

There are a set of default blocks available for the front page, but you can also create your own. See the link at the top of the "Look & Feel" item of your Content & Layout menu.

Freeform Page

We try to do as much of your site for you as we can. This involves many templated pages, which are filled in with your information to save you the time of having to create these pages from scratch. Sometimes, however, you'll have a page that you need to add that won't fit any template. For this, we provide freeform pages. These allow you to add pages to your site with anything you want, whether they are HTML pages or files such as images or audio. See the "Freeform Pages" item of your Look & Feel menu.

Front Page

The front page of your site is usually the first thing that your visitors will see. It serves as a launching pad for the rest of your site. The key part of your front page is the series of blocks which contain information. You can customize the order and content of these blocks using the "Front-Page Layout" item of your Content & Layout menu.


A group is a special part of your site, dedicated to a special interest area of your organization. It behaves much like a mini-site within a site. Your members can join a given group and participate in it. Each group has its own front-page, forums, photo galleries, chat areas and more. You can create an unlimited number of these under the "Subgroups" item of your Features menu.

Headers and Footers

In order to maintain a consistent look and feel for each of your pages across your site, your pages are generated using a layout template for structure and a stylesheet for color and font information. These are controlled using the "Look & Feel" item of your Content & Layout menu.


HTML stands for Hypertext Markup Language, but all you need to know is that it is the computer language that web pages are built with. You don't need to know any HTML with ScoutSprout because of our HTML Editor, which takes care of this for you.

HTML Editor

When we refer to your HTML Editor in our documentaion, we're referring to the boxes that you'll see at various forms on your site which look like miniature word processors. This is what they look like. They allow you to create rich web presentations without knowing HTML. We have some support documents which talk about how to use this editor. Note that you will not see the editor unless you have Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 or above.

Instant Messenger

Instant messenger allows your users to have a private conversation on your site in realtime. It's essentially a private PowerWall, and is similar to private messages, except that it's meant for two people online at the same time.

Layout Template

The site's layout template, part of its Look & Feel, determines the layout of its headers and footers, along with the layout style of the front page and its Blocks.


See main links.

Look & Feel

In order to maintain a consistent look and feel for each of your pages across your site, your pages are generated using a layout template for structure and a stylesheet for color and font information. These are controlled using the "Look & Feel" item of your Content & Layout menu.

Main Links

The row of links at the top of your site are called the "Main Links". Only the most important links should go on this; the links that you want your users to be able to visit from any page of your site. You can edit these links using the "Main Links" item of your Features menu. Be sure to keep the titles of your links short, and to keep the number to a reasonable limit to ensure that they all fit on one line.


See private messages or instant messenger.


See Group.


See Blocks.

POP Mailbox

A POP mailbox is an actual mailbox at your domain name. More information is available.


A post is a single message posted to a given topic in a given forum.


PowerWall is a real-time form of chat. There are two forms of PowerWall. The default, the refresh-based wall, works for most browsers and refreshes every 5 seconds. You can also choose a faster wall, called the streaming wall, using the Config button on the PowerWall. Not all browsers and internet connections support this, but it's the best option if yours do. Instant messenger uses a similar interface.

Private Messages

Private messages can be sent from one user to another. They will show up on the front page when you receive a new message. It is similar to instant messenger, except that it works well for two users who are not online at the same time.


A form of streaming audio.

Rotating Blocks

This is a form of freeform block which allows you to add several different content options to a block on your front page Each page view will display a random option from your list of possible values.

Streaming Audio

Normally, when audio files such as MP3s are added to your site, your users will be able to download them, and then play them. You can also set your website up to allow for RealAudio files to be streamed to the user in realtime, rather than waiting for a download. This isn't a default feature for websites, but we can install it for you for a one-time $50 fee. See the "Domain/Email" item of your Features menu.


Your site's stylesheet, part of its Look & Feel, determines the colors and fonts that are used to format all of your pages. We provide a number of default stylesheets for your site, and you're free to add more if you like. This does, however, require a knowledge of the CSS language. See the "Look & Feel" item of your Content & Layout menu.


See Group.


When adding a freeform HTML page, you'll be given two addresses which you can use to link to your file. One of these is a templated file, which means that the page you added will be automatically wrapped in your site's headers and footers.


A topic is a single thread of discussion in a forum. It contains a number of related posts.


A wall is another name for a chat room. See chat.
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