Weeknotes 5

  • I’m creating a new WordPress site based on a classic ASP site.  The old site still works and I’m importing the data from the .mdb database.  The old site is showing its age as the layout and images are all tiny.  It’s not responsive either.  Although the design is so narrow it probably looks fine in a modern mobile.
  • I love starting a new website (see above).  Especially one with lots of content types and templates.
  • I do not love the final stages of a website.  Feedback from the client, and time consuming niggles are my least favourite thing to manage.
  • I guess, for me, the measure of a successful website creation is the lack of feedback/changes from a client, as this shows clear requirements understanding and execution.
  • I’ve returned to using a Pomodoro technique to try and increase my productivity and reduce my distractedness.  I’m using the Be Focused Mac app, mainly because it was free, but might change to something else.  Im finding the break time especially good for clearing off small non-work admin tasks,
  • With just a few weeks to go until the Brighton Half Marathon I did a 10 mile run this week.  I don’t have my form of a few years ago, but I’m happy to be outside running in the fresh air.  I’ve switched to daytime runs this year, rather than nighttime, and it’s allowed me to enjoy it a lot more.  A great perk from home working.

Weeknotes 4

  • I started using Bitbucket Pipelines to deploy projects.  I’m a great fan of Gitlab due to their awesome CI system, but have only just started to use Bitbucket Pipelines to auto deploy my sites.  I’ve setup several sites this week on Bitbucket to deploy.  Check out my Gists for some example CI scripts.
  • I have only worked with one new client in perhaps the last year, with all of my work coming from existing clients.  This means I can add more value to this projects I’ve worked on in the past.
  • A had an enquiry from a company who are currently having a new website built and enquired if I would support it and providing training after it was delivered.  I find this an odd situation as I provide all of the support and maintenance for every website I have ever made.  I thinks it’s odd that a developer wouldn’t off this, and I find it stranger than a client would accept this from a developer.
  • The Gift Project that I worked on in 2018 and 2019 is presenting at more Museums.  This is a fantastic project and it makes me very happy to see it adopted by more Museums.

Weeknotes 3

I’ve been watched the BBC’s Severn Worlds, One Planet. The production quality is astonishing, as is the human impact on the planet.

I’ve enjoyed working on several different projects this week. I do this every week, sometimes working on several in a day.

I’m very keen to finish a long winded web project I’ve been working on.

I’ve started my half marathon training.

I’ve started eating mince pies and chocolate.

Weeknotes 2

This week I did a bunch of updates on the optilabs.com and listenandlearnresearch.com websites.  These are both sites I have worked on for years.  I really value continued relationships with clients, as it’s good regular work that takes little time and investment to win.

I was contacted by a travel agency owner who needed to update an ageing Drupal 6 site as it has come to its end of life, and also their only member of staff who knew the site was leaving.  I had a long call with him, and expressed my opinion that Drupal is hard to use and develop for.  I put together a fixed price to incorporate all the required work to migrate to WordPress.  This was brave for me as the brief was minimal.  He decided to stick with Drupal, going with a different freelancer/agency. He seemed to realise this was perhaps the wrong move, as Drupal had not served them well.  Price so often drives peoples short term decisions, even when they know they are facing the same problems long term.

I created a new freelance WordPress developers guide website.  This is a site I had toyed with several years ago, but then it got archived in a server move.  I’ve found myself with lots of tips to journal and got the site back online.

I’m finding more time to focus on my long overdue side projects, which feels very satisfying.

Weeknotes 1

Inspired by Mark Boulton and others I’ve decided to try writing weekly notes, as a record of things I’m working on and other little snippets.

I worked on DKIM signing outgoing emails for the itvworkplaceservices.com website.  A little outside my normal wheelhouse, but aways nice to learn new things.

Last week was the Spit Spreads Death parade in Philadelphia.  This wonderful parade was a memorial to the 20,000 people that lost their live in 1918 to a flu pandemic.  The parade was created by Blast Theory, who I regularly collaborate with.  I worked on a React and Node.js app to allow people to choose who they will represent in the parade. I also contributed to another React app used during the parade.

I discovered a client was using a website that they never paid me for. Long story, but basically I was to develop sister websites for sister companies. One client pulled out at the end, but eventually just took a copy of the other website. I’ve emailed the client but haven’t heard back yet.


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