Portfolio Site

Introduction

This site itself has been somewhat of a project. I have designed it to showcase my work, to provide me with some useful functionality, and to be expandable. I have also used the opportunity to experiment with new web technologies.

Frontend

I first became interested in HTML5 through my HCI capstone work. I did not have the luxury to focus on it at the time, but I have been implementing more and more here. This site leverages semantic elements quite liberally (almost no generic "divs"!), and thanks to the HTML5 Shim by Remy Sharp (visa vi Paul Irish's HTML5 boilerplate), it all works in IE.

Unfortunately, the more dramatic aspects of HTML5 (and of CSS3), are not so easily "shimmed" into place. I have found Modernizr to be a fascinating tool to gracefully include fallback content/functionality to the less fortunate browsers.

And there is always Flash. Video for Everybody! gave me the confidence to begin working with HTML5 video, viewable within various other project pages.

Backend

I wrote this site in PHP and MySQL, using the CodeIgniter framework. I taught myself CodeIgniter last year after seeing how much nicer development can be with MVC. I like CI specifically because of its speed.

When completed, the site will allow me to post updates on my projects. Visitors will be able to leave comments on these updates. My motivation for implementing this functionality is to facilitate useful technical discussion. I will also implement a private to-do list keeper to help me track my goals.

Design

This may go without saying, but I am not a designer. My formal training is very limited--a smattering of course work in high school, RPI, and CMU. I maintain an interest in design, and I have made a conscious efforts to improve my abilities in this area. I challenged myself with this site design by attempting a three-column layout. I am still not quite satisfied with the results (a dramatic change is likely), but I feel it has been a good excersize nonetheless.

Updates

I never wanted a blog. But more and more, I have desired a formal way to log project work I am doing. I designed the project Updates to allow me to track and share my progress without feeling too "bloggy".

I do not expect to give updates on every project (some are more or less complete at the time of this writing), and it may be some time before I get to explore other projects more thoroughly (especially while I look for a job). In the end, I hope that the Updates feature will motivate me to finish up old projects and explore new ideas.

@ a Glance...

  • Duration: 2 months
  • Team mates: none (personal project)
  • Responsibilities: graphic design, back-end programming, front-end programming
  • Technology: PHP, MySQL, HTML, CSS, JavaScript