Sunday, July 31, 2011


probably the happiest thing about running my blog through a site I maintain myself (rather than simply using blogspot, or livejournal or Facebook or....) is that when I periodically overhaul the place I'm reminded to look over the ever-growing archive of old posts...

Thank you past-me for recording things to help me remember them. I'll endeavour to keep that up.

Saturday, July 30, 2011 v5.5


That was an uphill struggle... but we're there - welcome to v5.5.

Yes. March's update was the shortest lived version of the site I've ever had. I got all excited about Rapidweaver's clever abilities, and that was amplified by a certain post-Gecko lack of confidence in my own abilities. After freelancing for a few months though I was increasingly embarrassed by the bloated code and slightly tatty layout I'd been able to create just using RW. I know I could have sorted the latter - I'm working on a really exciting project for a client using Rapidweaver, building them a customised Theme. I could easily have done the same for myself... but why? The whole point of RW is that it offers powerful web development tools for people who don't like coding... which is great, except that I frickin' love coding!

I'm not an expert at it, and there are things (like this blog!) which I'm still driving with RW plugins (they're all credited for anyone who's interested) but there's plenty I can do myself, and more neatly. Part of me is giddy that this new version of the site is less than half the size of the previous version, while having the same content.

Those of you not reading via Livejournal or RSS might have noticed the old "work" section has gone, oddly enough this marks a shift in the site's emphasis towards my work, you'll see what I mean if you look at the home page...

There are (of course) still a couple of minor rough edges to polish (biggest of which being the contact form's bad behaviour - it works, it just spits out ugly code instead of a nice neat response saying that it worked...) but most of the site's working as I intended... unless you find otherwise in which case please say. Hopefully I'll manage not to pull it all apart and rebuild it again in another four months!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

quick update


I'm doing that thing again where I forget to blog aren't I? Sorry.

So a quick blog update. Mostly this last week or so I've been working on a(nother) site overhaul. Yes yes yes, I just did that, but that was in March and four months on I find that overhaul doesn't remotely represent me or what I'm doing work-wise. It's like I dipped my toe in the water, which was appropriate then... only now I'm swimming (not drowning) and the shot from the side of the pool doesn't cut it.

Plus (much as I do love Rapidweaver) the more code-ey I get, the less happy I am with the site's guts and structure as generated by Rapidweaver so end of this week (hopefully) it's all change again. But I'm not moving the blog this time so no need to change your bookmarks (those six of you worldwide who have me bookmarked) and I won't be calling on Liz (hi Liz) to move my LiveJournal syndication again.

Away from my personal/corporate navel gazing* work part II is progressing well - [gawr-juhs] is picking up new and exciting clients, and getting lots of positive feedback on what we've done to date. If you're short of things to read we have a blog there too (equally hit and miss on the timings of updates, less rambling, more design focussed) and a bunch of other social medjuh bells and whistles all sitting at

Away from work entirely life in Edinburgh rocks more than ever now I'm my own boss. We seem to have summer (however fleetingly) and it's wonderful to be able to decide I'm going to go for a walk in the sun mid afternoon, and work later instead of wistfully looking out of the window while I'm fulfilling "office hours" for no apparent reason other than to placate my boss and meet the terms of my contract. Best of all the work's fun so when I get back from the walk in the sunshine I'm eager to get back to it.

Along with (unreliable) sunshine of course, the summer here in Edinburgh brings the Festival. I have a splendid weekend of music events booked with my parents, and am making plans with my aunt for theatre... oddly no comedy as yet this year though I suspect that'll change... and I'm plotting to drag some brave friends along to the Laramie Project at some point because I've wanted to see it for 11 years and been haunted by the topic ever since a face - which seemed eerily like my own at the time** - looked out at me from under a horrifying headline 13 years ago. Rest in peace Matthew Shepard.

Before the Festival kicks off in earnest though there's the last pub quiz of the season to enjoy next Monday. Wish us luck!

* I am also doing some actual paid work you understand. Just I feel I might be in a position to do more if this place was less shabby

** Now of course there's no resemblance at all. I wish I could find the newspaper picture I saw back in '98 which hit me that way... chances are though that it was just a combination of early 20s egotism blended with overwhelming sorrow, shock, and basic human empathy.