LOWE logic

Examples of my work

The following examples are selected to demonstrate skills in particular areas of activity. Some of the projects are quite old; I've been doing this for many years after all. I remember:

  • The Internet before the world wide web...
  • When connection speeds were measured in Bauds (300 Baud was equivalent to about 300 words per minute - the speed of a good typist)...
  • When anything other than green text on a black background was science fiction...
  • When floppy disks really were floppy...
  • When 128Kb was plenty of storage space.

Despite my ancient beginnings, I have kept pace with the march of technology, and have mostly avoided career paths which turned out to be dead ends. Throughout it all I've never stopped learning and expanding my knowledge base. There are a lot of skills shown here, and I don't claim to be expert in all of them, but I am confident that I can choose and use an appropriate tool from my kit, rather than try to solve every problem with the same formula.

Current projects and work in progress

After a short distraction taking a much more hands-on role working with home automation and assistive technologies, including getting my hands dirty and playing with power tools for the hardware installation side of things, I'm back to full time, desk based, web focussed, development.

I'm working with shiny new Apple kit, in a thoroughly modern office conversion. The team is not only highly skilled and very talented, but also manages to keep a clear focus on business value - for the benefit of clients and also for self.

Technologies in play include Ruby (on Rails), PHP, JavaScript and MySql, with an innovative twist on content management which presents the client with in-line editing facilities for just about every aspect of their web site, and full control over important aspects governing how well the search engines view and index pages.


Recent projects

cartoon robotServer to Server interaction with automatons performing extensive examination and analysis of web site structure and content to enable detailed reporting for business decision support.

Technologies in play are PHP, Regular Expressions (RegEx), HTTP, XML and MySql.

A web based system for photographers, studios and models, each with their own requirements but with enough common aspects to warrant an encompassing system.

Chilli Lime Deli logoA full CMS enabled eCommerce web site including a wide product range, multiple payment options, blog, newsletters, mailing list, events, promotions and more, for a local specialist food retailer: ChilliLimeDeli
I'll be using ASP.Net (C#) and basing the architecture on the Model-View-Controller pattern, with data managed in SQL*Server 2500 or MySql. The shop front will probably make extensive use of AJAX to give shoppers a quick and pleasant experience.

GFSB snapshotGF Sectional Buildings is a manufacturer and erector of a wide range of buildings, from simple garden sheds to massive, multi-roomed log cabins and home offices. The site displays examples of the company's products and invites potential customers to visit the extensive showrooms, or to contact the company for information.
GF Sectional Buildings is also an agent for several national suppliers for 'off-the-shelf' sectional buildings such as greenhouses and garages.
The site is structured to make content changes simple to implement, but does not extend to a full content management system (CMS).
GFSectionalBuildings.co.uk is built using W3C compliant XHTML and CSS, with a small amount of C# on the server for handling contact requests.

Technologies: XHTML (1.0), CSS (2.0), ASP.Net (C#)

Sock Horror snapshotSock Horror is a quirky concept of horrific creatures made from socks. The site offers a window on "research" undertaken by its owner, "Madame Horror" into the phenomenon and describes an alternate world, complete with back story and histories.
Madame Horror keeps an active blog and maintains details of events for collectors and customers.
The site offers a catalogue of products for sale, and uses a PayPal shopping cart for secure online payment.
sockhorror.com is built using ASP.Net (C#) and works with a SQL*Server 2005 database.
Since going live in 2007 Madame Horror has sold approaching 500 unique sock creatures.

Technologies: ASP.Net 2.0 (C#), SQL*Server 2500

Awakening Moon snapshotAwakening Moon is a craft jeweller offering hand made crystal jewellery and divination items.
The site is built using ASP.Net (VB) and allows draws data for dynamically generated pages from XML files and resources in the file system. The site owner is able to load new items for sale via FTP. The system automatically displays an item as available for sale or "sold" based on simple file system rules, giving the site owner immediate control over the on-line catalogue where items are sold outside of the web site, at events such as local craft fairs. Use of the file system enables this site to operate dynamically without the need for any back-end database.
AwakeningMoon.co.uk has been in service since 2006.

Technologies: ASP.Net 2.0 (VB.Net), XML

website thumbnailPALS is a voluntary organisation working with the NHS in England to provide patients, relatives and carers with support and information, and to help people make best use of the National Health Service.
The PALS web site is a means of publishing information among the PALS volunteers as well as NHS users and the media.
One of the key features of the site is its 4 level security model, with controls on access to menu items, to groups of pages, individual pages and items of content. A user must have the requisite permission to read or contribute content. The site is also fully dynamic, with several levels of navigation menu all drawn from a SQL*Server 2005 database tailored to the individual site visitor, and under the control of the comprehensive content management system provided to enable the PALS team to efficiently create, organise and control access to articles, newsletters, etc.
The site has hundreds of authorised users, with many of them able to contribute articles.
The site is fully accessible, meeting all of the demanding criteria for the WAI-AAA rating, and usable on all current browsers, including text-to-speech systems.
I worked with a graphic designer for the style and layout, and much of the usability, while the bulk of the production coding was undertaken by a subcontractor, under strict supervision, in order to acheive the tight project deadlines and budget limitations.

Technologies: ASP.Net 2.0 (C#), SQL*Server 2500

BDA Ltd snapshotBDA Ltd is an entertainments booking agency with a wide range of clients.
The site was originally built using "classic" ASP (VBScript) and a SQL*Server 2000 database.
Some time after it's orginal publication additional features were implemented using ASP.Net (VB), including automated production of contract documents and the facility for artistes to register and manage their own details and media files.
A second SQL*Server 2000 database is used to store very large media files showcasing some of the artistes. Use of a database reduces the load on the file system for these very large files.
The site has been in service since 2000.

Technologies: ASP (VBScript), IIS 5.0, SQL*Server 2000, ASP.Net 1.1 (VB.Net), SQL*Server 2005

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No longer current technologies but good experience

I created the database schema and much of the underlying code base for a mass market eCommerce web based application aimed at non-technical business owners.
The system allowed small retailers to establish a global web presence and to trade across borders easily thanks to its real-time translation of all descriptive text, immediate conversion of all monetary amounts and no-touch transformation of the shop front according to the language and currency preference of the shopper.
The project included supervising contractors in India.

Technologies: ASP.Net 1.1 (C#), SQL*Server 2500, Web services, XML, Offshore developer team supervision

I took a significant role in usability and user interface design and implementation for a multi-national, multi-language, multi-currency eProcurement system for Fortune 500 companies. The complete system ran to many thousands of web pages, all needing to present an appearance to which the client company could apply their own corporate brand.
The user pages were generated from definitions in XML using elaborate code generation processes in XSLT. Several levels of indirection were needed in order to transform the page defined using XML into VBScript or Java, which would create the necessary HTML and JavaScript to present a web page in XHTML and CSS.

Technologies: ASP (VBScript), SQL*Server 2000, XML, XSLT, Java, JavaScript

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