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Frequently asked questions

I want to provide ALISS information on my website.  How do I go about that? 

You can use either the ALISS API or the ALISS JavaScript plugin.  The API option gives total flexibility as to how you present the ALISS information.  This is at the expense of requiring web development expertise to modify your website to be able to process the information that is received from the API.  The JavaScript plugin is less flexible but easier to implement. 

I don’t have these kinds of skills, who should I approach to help me? 

You will need to engage with and usually pay for a web developer.  They can be sole traders or employed by software development companies. 

My organisation doesn’t have the funds to support this work.  Does that mean that we can’t do it? 

Not necessarily.  You may be able to find a volunteer developer who can assist.  The Scottish Tech Army - https://www.scottishtecharmy.org/ - is a volunteer-run initiative that may be able to help you locate a developer. 

What is an API? 

An API is an Application Programming Interface.  This is a method of accessing the underlying data in ALISS (or another website that offers an API), without going via the website, https://aliss.org.  Once you have the data from the API, you can display it on your site as you see fit, subject to the licensing.  Information for developers intending to use the API can be found at https://docs.aliss.org 

Is it possible to filter data displayed via API by location (postcode/service area) or category/ies? 

Yes.  A developer will be able to query the ALISS database, filtering by location and or categories.  Details of how to do this can be found at https://docs.aliss.org/#service-search 

Is it possible to display ALISS data in a map form using the API? 

Yes, you can use the latitude and longitude information from the ALISS API to locate services on a map, should you wish to do so.  However, you (or your developer) will need to utilise the location information appropriately in order to create the map. 

What is the JavaScript plug-in? 

The plug-in is a piece of code that can be added to your existing website to embed an ALISS search box.  Details of the plug-in can be found at https://github.com/aliss/aliss.js/ 

What is JavaScript? 

JavaScript is a programming language that is very commonly used on websites across the world.  JavaScript code is embedded in or included in the HTML documents that make up the website. 

I have a WordPress-based site, how can I provide ALISS information? 

Information about embedding the ALISS JavaScript plugin on a WordPress site can be found at https://github.com/aliss/aliss.js/  

Is it possible to filter data displayed via JavaScript Plugin by category/ies? 

Yes, the plugin can be configured to filter by category or a keyword search term, by following the instructions found at https://github.com/aliss/aliss.js/.  

Is it possible to filter data displayed via JavaScript Plugin by location (postcode/service area)? 

No, when users access the plugin on your website, they are prompted to enter their postcode or location. 

Is it possible to display ALISS data in a map form using the JavaScript Plugin? 

No, this is not possible at this time. 

Can I automatically bulk upload data to ALISS via API, Spreadsheet/CSV file, Google Maps, etc.? 

No, this is not possible at this time.  The ALISS team are looking into this functionality at present. 

If you have a question that isn't listed please contact us at hello@aliss.org