Digital Web Services Network Q&A January 18, 2024

Digital Web Services Network: Past Events

January 18, 2024 DWSN Forum

Here are collected and shared QAs from the DWSN forum meeting chat. project ran in Agile?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
with agility yes, but not necessarily uppercase A, Agile Which CMS is this?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
This is static html site that is generated by eleventy node framework

[] Is that site (using eleventy) the site data is scraped from?

DWSN member:

  • it’s using JSON data that is stored in the azure storage.
  • We use both the downloadable xlsx data as well as the publicly available geojson data from for our site. Is that helpful?
  • User Question: Add rotating Spotlight section? If user doesn’t click on the dots, they do not see any of the spotlights.
  • Table of projects seems like what users would use most – should it be higher on the site?
  • What happens to the
  • table/map as projects are completed? In progress versus completed

Table accessibility question: all detail links appear to have same text--is there a way a screen reader user tabbing through links can determine which project the details link references?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
A screen reader will read the label fore each “All” language
example: the Topic dropdown will read “All topic selector”

Why can't make the design system like CSS Zen Garden instead?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:

Easy answer is because you have to upgrade your whole site

Web Components, only add what you need.  Works with whatever version of whatever you have running.

How will the shadow DOM impact accessibility?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:

Thank you! I think I mean more will there be accessibility testing with diverse users to ensure there are no unintended consequences. 

How do I give feedback back to the design system team?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:

Digital Web Services Network Q&A January 19, 2023

Digital Web Services Network: Past Events

January 19, 2023 DWSN Forum

Here are collected and shared QAs from the DWSN forum meeting chat.

Is there a cost to use Google Translate?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
No, it is free. We use GTranslate. If you use Drupal CMS; there are free and paid services.

Is there a way to restrict Google site translation to displaying only languages that have had content reviews?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
You would have to hack it, but it can be done.

For content that is heavy in jargon (i.e. scientific language, taxes, etc.), human reviews are super necessary.

DWSN member:
One best practice I learned was to translate to Spanish first and use the Spanish translation to translate to all other languages. Automated translations do exponentially better start from a language other than English!

AWS has a free translation service tier, right?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
AWS translate free tier: Amazon Translate pricing

Is the AWS translate solution developed by ODI code available for other agencies to use?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
ODI does not offer standardized translation services, however, AWS, Google, and Microsoft offer cloud-based automated translation services that work better than the free Google translate widget.

For template web standards, would this require third party libraries like jQuery or PrimeFaces?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:

Yes, this version of the template has a dependency on Bootstrap (which has a dependency on jQuery).

No, Bootstrap 5 is not dependent on JQuery. The template is not dependent on JQuery by design; we’ve been working to remove JQuery from the template for years.

Are there any CA style names that are also used in Bootstrap causing conflicts in case it is also used?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
There isn’t a bootstrap conflict because it’s built on it.

I know you have a .NET core MVC sample, has anyone tried to adapt the new template to the .NET Blazor templates?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Not yet.

Poll Question: Which type of content would you find most useful when implementing a template or design system?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Poll Results: 70 Responses

Get started guidance14%

Usage content for components and patterns20%


Source Code23%

Implementation notes for components and patterns10%

Is there somewhere we can get the non-minified css and js code?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
If it’s not in GitHub, you can use a free tool like:

What does 11ty stand for?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:

Have you checked to see what frameworks all the different State Departments are actually using?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
We have looked at that, HTML and .NET were at the top outside any CMS implementations.

What about WordPress template?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
That’s on the docket.  This is in the works and being tested – more info coming soon!

Don’t some teams need special permission to look at GitHub?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Any public GitHub repository can be viewed by anyone, even CDT staff.  Some CDT resources require special authentication to view.

Poll Question: Which type of repository are you more likely to use?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Poll Results: 55 Responses

Robust repo (full page examples of all components and patterns)50%


Simple repo (minimal)23%


I do not use repos31%


What do you mean by repo?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
A code repository. What GitHub and other version control tools call the place where the code set is stored.

Anyone going to try the template with nextjs?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
The template has a React version, which would be a good start for someone to look at Next.js.

Poll Question: Do you write content for websites or digital content?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Poll Results: 83 Responses





Poll Question: Have you used the content design principles on the Design System website?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Poll Results: 83 Responses





What is the website link?

Poll Question: Would you like being part of a network like this?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Poll Results: 83 Responses





Poll Question: How interested are you in getting short content design tips?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Poll Results: 79 Responses

Not at all interested1%

Not interested1%

Not sure10%


Very Interested13%

What was Michael's email for the content design group?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:

Does anyone know of a training consultant for ADA Compliant documents?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
CDT has accessibility training: Workforce Development – Course Schedule

Universal Analytics’ sunset date is currently July 1, 2023, with the sunset how does the roadmap look for analytics capability in future? We are interested in gaining insights for our web-estate to make key on-going decisions around content & design.

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
I am sure GA4 can do whatever you need it to do. Google analytics isn’t going anywhere.

Would you please provide Google Analytics 4 links?

Should I use a carousel?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:

Which design system component is good to use in place of banner carousels? Managers demand advertising their latest campaigns on the homepage.

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Comm strategy + containers (like a news area, etc). be intentional with the content.
A standard banner, but it really depends on your content and audience: Template WebStandards.CA.GOV / Patterns

Think page geography and scale to make things important. Callouts, etc.

Could a news / what's new feature (with an archive if nec.) work?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter:
Yes! A news or blog ‘pattern’ can be an alternative to a carousel if the content is regularly updated and time sensitive. Check out a few different ‘newsrooms’ on for inspiration:

However, if the content stays relevant over time, it should also live outside of the newsroom—somewhere within your information architecture, so it’s easier to find (both for people and search engines).

Here are collected and shared poll responses from the community members.

Share reasons why departments should provide website content in languages other than English.

    • More English as second language
    • So everyone can access legal information
    • Understanding the topics for people who don’t speak English
    • Serve all Californians.
    • There may be people from outside of the U.S. that may want to use the website and are not fluent with English.
    • Accessibility, better communication and understanding, education, effective information
    • For many of our customers English is a 2nd language. We want everyone to get the same information.
    • CA state provides services to all people in CA. This includes people who don’t speak English or are more comfortable reading in another language.
    • Respect
    • English is a hard language and should not be the barrier between accessing services and not. We have to meet people where they are.
    • Accessibility and inclusive
    • Meet people’s desired language of use
    • It is important to provide services to all Californians
    • Content is for all people
    • Dignity
    • Because informing people in the language they speak includes them in the process and shows them we respect them as they are.
    • Based on our analytic data, a good portion of our users default browser language is set outside English domain.
    • To meet people where they’re at! Which includes English as a second language and non-English speakers.
    • To make it more comfortable to the user to get the information!
    • To ensure that diverse communities can understand what services are available to them.
    • Because Cali is a diverse state!
    • Civil rights
    • THE LAW
    • Equitable service to customers
    • We serve all Californians and we should meet them where they are, including the language they prefer.
    • Inclusion
    • Accessibility: Our job is to serve all Californians, not just those fluent in English.
    • For better dissemination of information to the public
    • Because of the diversity in California
    • To more effectively represent the diversity of California
    • For accessibility
    • It’s more accessible, makes the site more inclusive and equitable
    • Inclusion and engagement
    • We are meant to serve ALL Californians
    • Serve more Californians!

Responses total: 56











What tools or services do you use to provide website content in languages other than English?

none at this time CAWeb still uses the Google Widget Coworkers dept staff contracted translators Department translators Humans whenever possible certifed translators Staff Old Google translate sad face Humans do our translationst Google Translate Person/employee to translate for the Spanish pages dept Depends! Best case is a vendor doing human translation. Next best is an automated service checked by humans. face i18n javascript NPM package Friends and family (unofficial) Contactors Google Contract out Still using Google translate Smartling Votes No, much needed! npm Translation team

Responses total: 56

Google translate 4%

None at this time 1%

CAWeb still uses the Google Widget1%


Dept staff 1%

Contracted translators 1%

Department translators 1%

Humans whenever possible 1%


Certified translators1%


Old Google translate sad face 1%

Humans do our translations 1%

Person/employee to translate for the Spanish pages 1%

Depends! Best case is a vendor doing human translation. Next best is an automated service checked by humans. 1%

i18n javascript NPM package 1%

Friends and family (unofficial) 1%

Contactors 1%


Contract out 1%

Still using Google translate1%


No, much needed! 1%

Translation team 1%

Digital Web Services Network: Past Events October 19, 2023

Digital Web Services Network: Past Events

October 19, 2023 DWSN Forum

Event questions and answers

Does Google Analytics now track media files even if with no local referral link?

DWSN Member:  Mark Urquhart

DWSN coordinator/presenter: Linda Tracy

Unlike Universal Analytics, Google Analytics 4 (GA4) collects media file (i.e., PDF, word, excel) download information without the need of any extra script. When our team sets up Data Streams for agencies, the File downloads enhanced measurement is automatically turned on by default (by Google). There are a few other “new” measurements GA4 also tracks, we just haven’t had too much time to explore them all yet. Here is the list of “new” measurements GA4 tracks:

  • Page views
  • Scrolls
  • Outbound clicks
  • Site search
  • Form interactions
  • Video engagement
  • File downloads

Here are also some references to read a little more on each enhanced measurements:

Event poll responses

My department creates an environment that enables developers to do their jobs well?

Polls: 55 responses

Strongly agree 15%

Agree 45%

In between agree and disagree 20%

Disagree 7%

Strongly Disagree 4%

Does not apply to me 9%

How would you use the starter site? Check all that apply:

Polls: 60 responses

Check out the state web template 31%

Test the template 22%

Create a website 17%

Use the page patterns 24%

I wouldn't use it 3%

Other 3%

How do you / your department prototype? (select all that apply)

Polls: 53 responses

Figma 32%

Sketch 6%

Adobe XD / Photoshop 29%

Adobe XD / Photoshop 0%

MS Word 14%

MS PowerPoint 6%

Whiteboarding tool (Miro, Mural, etc) 4%

We don't prototype 8%

Digital Web Services Network: Past Events July 20, 2023

Digital Web Services Network: Past Events

July 20, 2023 DWSN Forum

Event questions and answers

Do you prefer to use the desktop app or in the browser for Figma?

DWSN Member: I personally prefer the desktop app, but there’s no significant difference between the desktop app and in-browser.

What departments currently use Figma or are in the process of switching?

DWSN Member: The Office of Data and Innovation uses Figma a bunch. We’re fans!

How does the state template differ from the forthcoming “design system”?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: The last version of the state web template is meant to be a bridge to the Design System as well as a research opportunity to help inform the design system.

What contrast and color blind testing/simulators are used?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: We use Colour Contrast Analyser

ADA compliance, how do you check your design? EI, which tools, what level of compliance? A, AA, AAA?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: We check our design by using these automated tools and meet WCAG 2.1 AA compliance:

Automated Testing

  • Lighthouse
  • Siteimprove
  • Jaws Inspect
  • Colour Contrast Analyzer

Additionally we do Manual testing meeting our checklist requirements using these tools:

  • Jaws
  • NVDA
  • Voiceover

How does the state template differ from the forthcoming “design system”?

DWSN Member: The Design System is more about building a community, a shared language, nomenclature, aligned purpose, and better collaboration across the state. The Design System is going to replace and expand on the state web template as the very latest CA Design Standard including a new technology approach. Also, the DS will drop the bootstrap dependency. V6 of the state web template is going to be the bridge to the DS, providing continuity while the DS is being built and matured

Are these being tested on mobile devices?

DWSN Member: Yes, we do a quality assurance check on these devices.

Training on google analytics? can you help?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: We do have some resources on our Help with analytics page: If you can’t find what you need, we are always available to help.

Any recommendations on the best way to backup the UA data, in a way that will make it easy to retrieve useful historical data if needed?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: We used excel for the data and pdf for the user flows and graphics.

Event poll responses

How do you feel about the approach of decoupling the State Web Template from its’ website? 4.3/5

Excited with the new approach 50%

Interested in using it 27%

Undecided 19%

Not interested in using it 0%

Do not like the new direction 0%

Would you use a NuGet package for the State Template if it existed?




Are you interested in using the Starter Website?

Yes 74%

No 0%

Undecided 26%

Are you interested in using the new Page Patterns? (1-5) 4.3/5

[ ] 1 (not at all) 0%

2 3%

3 14%

4 22%

5 (very much) 56%

Select the top three, page patterns you would find most useful.

Homepage 25%

Landing page (+ variations) 24%

About us landing page 7%

Careers 6%

Contact us 10%

Newsroom 13%

List of articles 5%

Legal pages 4%

Sitemap 4%

404 page 2%

Digital Web Services Network: Past Events April 20, 2023

Digital Web Services Network: Past Events

April 20, 2023 DWSN Forum

Event questions and answers

If you provided us with a UA property to use, then is it the optimized paid one?

DWSN Member: We have them running side-by-side at FTB. We noticed the real-time data was far more accurate on GA4 during Tax Day this week. 

DWSN coordinator/presenter: If CDT manages your Google Analytics, yes, it is the paid 360 version.

Anyone know how to move/export custom views from the Standard (free version) to GA4? or know where to get information on this?

DWSN Member: If you’re an admin for your account (e.g., not a sublet from CDT), you can use the migration guide that Google has provided. It’s linked from the “This service is going away” banner when you first open GA. 

Does the broadband initiative happen to dovetail with a smart device/computer distribution initiative?

DWSN Member: Not specifically. But some kind of perfect fit for the state digital equity data system mapping. Talking about what organizations are sharing the initiatives. Departing of aging shared similar program sharing smart devices. 

Are there any plans to produce a pattern for About Us pages?

DWSN Member: Our accessibility team have raised several concerns about how we currently display our Board and Executive Team…but the template doesn’t have anything that quite fits our need…  

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: It is just the starting point. CDT wants to create a whole library that is useful (for web site project or new initiative to grab different legal sets).
We were exploring the executive profile component and would request an executive profile pattern. I know most organizations usually have a dedicated page.

Have these been tested on mobile and devices with less resolution? This screen looks way higher res than the device I have.

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: Larger Font, increased usability and accessibility. We want people to present forms in sequential order. We will be looking to add more web standards/guidance. We are thinking about Form initiatives. We would like to collaborate with you on how you are doing that and opportunities on Forms and Data Collection. 

What does “sequential” mean? 

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: 

Presenting chunks of content to the end user. TurboTax does sequential form design nicely. 

    • Like a form wizard kind of. 

Does it have comment instructions like in the old State Template 5 or is it just code?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: Yes, we are adding more of that in with every release.

What’s the best way to contact your team if we have further questions or want to establish a partnership with your team?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: You can contact us at

Is CDT testing template accessibility using a mobile device?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: We aren’t there yet testing with mobile device. We are trying to integrate. 

Is this certification template available somewhere?  

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: Once we get the updates, we will communicate with you.

What are you using to test the cert?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: FTB is using HTML version. It doesn’t have to be a pdf. 

Are we required to use the new ADA certification language or is it recommended?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: You are not required to use CDT information. We are posting the one that CDT is using. But, it is recommended. 

We went from v5.5 to 6 and not the Design System. Any reason?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: There are different reasons for that. The Design System is in the early alpha stages. Moving to a Design System is a comprehensive approach. V6 of state template is an attempt to fill the gap between when the Design System is fully ready. It will take several years for the departments to adopt a new framework or update the current site.

I would like to see a site where we could share our digital strategies or working documents? 

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: Hoping to create a dedicated Teams space to have async conversations, create different channels and topics.

How do you organize discussions topics in a Team’s channel? And what software do you use?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: For accessibility, we do it by topic. We use Teams, we have a bunch of different channels.

What does the new Design System use instead of bootstrap and jQuery?

DWSN Coordinator/presenter: Design System uses web components and vanilla JavaScript instead of jQuery.

Tableau and Esri have accessibility, privacy, and performance issues. I wonder if anyone is doing anything with D3 or any other lighter weight tools.

DWSN Member: Tableau Server and Desktop can become accessible by customizing the color palette and they have the tab feature for screen readers.

Event poll responses

Would a DWSN Teams “Team” be helpful?

Polls: 84 responses




Rank these topics for open discussion (1 Highest to 8 Lowest)

Polls: 75 responses

1st Choice: Accessibility46.7%

2nd Choice: Analytics and Insights16%

3rd Choice: User Experience Design9.3%

4th Choice: Content Strategy8%

5th Choice: Agile (Iterative Practices)8%

6th Choice: Change Management and Governance8%

7th Choice: Digital Innovation (Emerging Technologies) 2.7%

8th Choice: Cybersecurity and Privacy1.3%