|LinkedIn Profile||Web Blog|
I am a web developer based in Suffolk, UK with over 13 years experience in developing websites and exploring the internet.
I am a keen learner and traveller and I love music and meeting new people.
I grew up in the west midlands and started making websites at around 15 years old when my parents first got the internet. Back then my sites were a little messy, built using MS Frontpage Express, but you have to start somewhere!
I decided to study sciences at college and then went on to Keele University and attained a BSc Hons in Physics and Information Systems (most of Keele's degrees are Dual Honours).
My first job was as an Asset Management Systems Analyst at Stoke-On-Trent City Council in a small team helping to build their internal web-based asset management system.
After three years I decided to take a year out to teach English in central China through http://www.teic.co.uk/
I taught at Hunan City University in Yiyang City, Hunan Province. It was an amazing experience and it gave me chance to explore and get to know the real China and understand the culture.
When I returned, after a short spell doing email support for schools, I moved to East Anglia and started to work for Aluminati Network Group .
I was a Systems Developer at Aluminati for two and a half years, developing alumni services for some major UK universities and maintaining "Email For Life" services.
I am now working as a web developer for NetXtra , a leading design agency for the 'Not For Profit' sector based in Bury St Edmunds.
In my spare time I help to run a Code Club at a local primary school helping to teach young children how to code. It's pretty awesome!
I think it's important that coding is taught in schools, and it's a way for me to give back :)
Games and programs are created using Scratch which is an MIT Media Lab project and is a great way of programming visually by piecing together logic.
I have been keen to continue to learn about web development and follow the industry.
I use Twitter and newsletters, read blogs and listen to podcasts to keep up to date with new ideas and technologies.
I also frequently buy .Net magazine and I have an active subscription for PHP Architect .
I try to keep up with PHP Women and join their IRC chat as it is a friendly way to get help and tips. The PHP Women I have met have been great inspiration for me.
I have made an effort to attend various developer conferences over the last 18 months.
|October 2011||February 2012|
|October 2012||November 2012|
|Including Mobile Web Apps workshop.|
I have experience crossing a multitude of languages and systems as I adapt quickly and I like to try out new things.
I have done my best below to outline my skills and experience. I have split it up into categories to try to make it more accessible.
I have been using both languages for personal and academic projects since university in 2002 and I have been programming in them professionally for the last two and a half years.
I am extremely comfortable scripting in HTML and CSS and have been using both since I left school!
I have three years professional experience developing in Classic ASP (2005 - 2008) and subsequently a training course in .Net and personal projects using C#.Net
I have developed projects using Flash ActionScript and more recently Ruby (on Rails) out of personal interest.
I teach kids how to code using Scratch ;)Top
I have many years experience querying relational databases using SQL, either in MySQL or MS SQL.
I have a strong background in relational database design, both professional and academic.
I have some experience with NoSQL and it's advantages and practical uses.
I have used MongoDB in personal projects and researched into it's uses as part of my job.
I have a lot of professional and personal experience in using and interpreting data in JSON format. I have personal interest and academic knowledge of XML.
I also have a lot of experience writing reports and processing data into graphs and tables.Top
I am most comfortable using a Windows environment and I have been using Windows 8 since it's release preview (to many people's disgust!).
I also have many years experience with Linux based systems, Ubuntu in particular, and I am comfortable using both a GUI and Command Line interface.
I am familiar with both Subversion and GIT version control, using them at work and home respectively.
I have a lot of experience running Apache web servers, mostly LAMP (in a Linux environment) and setting up scheduled CRON scripts.
I currently run my own Ubuntu VPN for experimenting with development ideas.
I have also used PaaS hosting for PHP (Pagoda Box ) and have experience deploying code using GIT.
My IDE of choice is PHP Storm but I have previously used Dreamweaver, Visual Studio, Frontpage and Aptana.Top
I have done multiple projects using the PHP framework Codeigniter . I found it very easy to pick up and use and it is light weight for smaller projects.
I have some experience using Wordpress . My web blog is powered by it and I have supported a designer using it at work.
I have also done some experimental personal projects using Ruby On RailsTop
I am comfortable programming using OO techniques and understand the importance of re-usable modular code.
I am very familiar with MVC architecture and use it frequently at work and for personal projects (although some legacy procedural code will always exist!)
I am familiar with consuming REST APIs and I have recently been experimenting with API driven development, creating my own JSON API interface.
I have recently started to use PHP Documentor at work and in personal projects and I always try to write readable commented code.
I know I should start writing Unit Tests for my PHP code! But at the moment I have only written tests for Ruby on Rails. I am aware of the concept of writing testable code, and test driven development, which is something I would like to investigate in the near future.
I have knowledge of user interface design, focusing on user experience. I also have a good awareness of W3C Accessibility Standards
I am aware of security concerns affecting web systems, including SQL injection, XSS, invalid form submissions and data and password encryption.
For personal projects I have had to research into the basics of SEO and I am aware of the importance of meta information, page content and relevant links, and I have used Facebook Ads and Google AdWords.Top
I have professional experience writing Facebook applications, and consuming data through their Graph API .
For the same project I consumed data through the LinkedIn API
Both of these involved setting up developer accounts and requesting permission from the users involved.
I have also used the Twitter API to gather tweets and re-post on other sites.
At work I have used the Go Cardless API to integrate a Direct Debit payment option into our existing system. This involved setting up and processing payments and receiving status updates from the Go Cardless "webhooks".
I have also helped to support the SagePay card payment system.Top
Below you can find some information about what I have been working on whilst at Aluminati, as well as projects that I have been working on in my spare time.
The projects are in chronological order, beginning with the newest.
When employed at Aluminati as a systems developer I worked within a small team of developers and designers creating and maintaining applications for university alumni services.
I was recently commissioned by Finn Pathologists to create a system for them to collect quality assurance data.
Users log into the system each month and submit their readings. The administrator can download an excel file of results and manipulate them as they need to before uploading the finalised readings back onto the system. The users can then view their results in comparison with others and download a report in PDF format.
The system is built using the PHP Codeigniter Framework and a MySQL database.
SCR+ is a project I worked on with a friend, it was his concept and design and I built the system.
An establishment can track the CRB records for all staff that work with children. The system provides alerts when checks are expiring and holds an up to date, exportable Single Central Record which is required by OFSTED for schools.
The system is built using the PHP Codeigniter Framework and a MySQL database.
Teach In Hunan was a side project that I became involved with after returning from teaching English in China in 2008. It is no longer running, but it was partnership between me and another English teacher that I met whilst I was there. We provided assistance to UK graduates who wanted to spend a year abroad doing something different!
I used my web background to get our presence online straight away. Developing this website gave me good experience of SEO, integrating with Facebook and Twitter and using Google AdWords and Google Analytics.
Travacker is a project that I've been developing and re-developing for a long time, I use it to try out new ideas. It is designed to let you plan and share holidays with other people.
It's current iteration is written in Codeigniter (PHP), but it has also had re-development in Ruby on Rails and and C#.Net
I have not worked on it recently as I have been busy with other projects, but I intend to do a fresh development of it in Symfony2 when I next work on it.