WOW Slider is a free program that makes sliders or carousels for your non-commercial website. It features multiple templates, a simple point and click interface, and even a WordPress plugin. Available for Windows and for Mac, WOW Slider is one of the best ways to create great visuals for your personal web pages at no cost.
There’s been an absolute flood of new trends in web building.
One could liken these trends to certain consumer fads, where a particular thing becomes popular among a select group and then spreads to the general populace before slowly fading into history and having its place taken by the next one.
Gone are the old, boring, static pages that sit and display their images placidly. Now the big trend is to have motion on your page, everywhere possible, it seems. One of the latest of these trends in web building with motion is called a slider or carousel.
A slider is, basically, a banner image that automatically changes its displayed image at specific intervals. Usually the change is accompanied by a snazzy looking transition effect, buttons to manually shift the image to the next in the list, and an indexing strip where you can select an individual image on demand. Many websites use these sliders to offer multiple headlines or topics in a single space. The advantage in that case is saving space while cramming more data into the page. Fewer clicks is always a good thing, to those of us who live on the internet, and I imagine the average web viewer feels the same way, if to a lesser degree. Sliders have become popular with everything from news sites to art galleries to forums of all kinds.
The biggest issue with sliders so far has been that they require a knowledge of web construction, as well as expensive software, that the average person doesn’t posses. Contrariwise, the average person these days does have at least one personal web site that they would like to bring up to speed in the latest visual and data trends. Enter: WOW Slider.
WOW Slider makes the process of creating, modifying, testing and publishing sliders or carousels fast, easy and effective. What’s more, WOW Slider has a price tag of zero, as long as you’re not using it for a business site or other commercial endeavor. So how does something like WOW Slider work its magic? There are three basic steps that you’ll take to create a great looking visual for your page or site using WOW Slider.
Step one is to add your images and place them in the sequence you want them to appear. This is accomplished either through the “Add” button in the WOW Slider toolbar, or via the standard drag and drop procedure where you pull images from a folder on your computer and dump them into the main window of WOW Slider. Either process is simple and almost foolproof, and the sequencing of the images is just as easy. You can drag an image from one spot in the rotation to another, as well as have the program automatically sort them according to criteria you set. You also have the option to rotate any individual image if you want to, which can create a nice ‘faux animation’ effect if you repeat one specific image.
Once you have added all the images you want to put in the slider, you can then edit the ‘tag’ and other data for each image. You can add a link to a specific web page to individual images, as well as setting up alt text and descriptions. Also available are options to edit metatags for each image for indexing or database operations, but that kind of thing I leave to the more advanced web creators. Additional options can then be selected for your slider, such as transitions, quality of images (to save on storage space if needed, as well as cut down on CPU load and lag), duration and speed of effects. There are also a number of ‘templates’ that are pre-loaded in WOW Slider that will determine the overall style or theme of your slider that have snazzy names in keeping with modern web slang, such as “Chrome” or “Crystal”.
Finally, when you are satisfied with all the work you have done to create your slider, you have a number of options for saving and publishing it. You can save the end result to your hard drive for later use, upload it to an active web page, or even an FTP site. Some of the best news here is that WOW Slider’s developers have added support modules for popular web tools like WordPress and Joomla, with more to come in the future, I am sure.
The verdict: WOW Slider is a great tool for adding that modern look and feel to your personal web page, as well as bringing extra functionality and visual interest, all at no cost! It’s worth noting that WOW Slider does have options for purchasing licenses to use it on commercial or business sites as well, but for those of us who just want to pretty up our blogs, WOW Slider is 100% free and easy, just like all the best things in cyber-life. Until next time, my friends!
Get WOW Slider for Windows or Mac OS here.