What is GO?
GO is an aliasing and redirection application. An alias is an assumed name, or a false name, that conceals a true name. In this way, GO shortcuts provide an assumed name for a URL. This "false" name is normally something short and easy to remember in place of the "real" name that may be long and difficult to remember. Hence they are often called "GO shortcuts". Additionally, when the web server encounters "go/XX" in the address bar (where XX is a go shortcut) it checks the GO database for a corresponding "real" name and redirects the user there.
GO can also be called a "permalink" application. Even if content is moved to a new URL, for instance "http://www.middlebury.edu/documentation/" is moved to "http://wiki.middlebury.edu/documentation/", if the GO shortcut "go/documentation" is updated, any links using go/documentation will point to the new location. There is no need to change the link go/documentation as long as it's destination is updated, therefore it can be considered a permanent link.
GO has become quite central to the web infrastructure of the college since its launch. It eased the launch of the new site by allowing links in content to be easily updated en-mass. GO has also become central to our search strategy as GO shortcuts are now provided as suggestions and automatic-redirects when you enter search terms on the main site.
Why use GO?
GO is great for making short, easy to remember, links to college resources to be used in print media or simply for convenience.
Additionally you'll want to use a GO shortcut rather than a direct link for any resources you are linking to that could change location. As long as the shortcut admin updates the shortcut when content location changes you won't need to update any of your links.
If you'd like to visit a go shortcut directly, simply type it into your address bar in your web browser. For instance type "go/liswiki" and hit "enter" to get to the LIS wiki page.
Chances are you will use a go link without even realizing it by clicking on a normal anchor (link) in a web page. You can use a go shortcut as a URL in a link on a web page for any page internal to middlebury.edu. Example: <a href="go/liswiki">LIS Wiki</a>. Be sure to use GO shortcuts to information on the Middlebury site when available.
If you'd like to see a list of shortcuts that are currently available in GO simply type "go" into the address bar, or "go.middlebury.edu". This will bring you to the GOtionary where go links are listed alphabetically.
Creating GO Links
If you can't find the shortcut you're looking for, or want to create your own, you can! It's easy and fun. If you have a Middlebury web account, just visit the self-service shortcut creation interface and log in. Choose the "create" tab and go to town.
Shortcut is the name of the new GO shortcut.
URL is the destination