I’m always interested in how business and individuals set up their websites. It’s that “how did they do that” thing, so, I have included some information here about mine.
Once upon a time I would build a website from the ground up – why would you do it any other way? I have extensive skills with which to do so, but… because there are so many options out there, I’ve used several different platforms for my own web space. This decision is about professional/skills development but more importantly, if I am going to recommend a particular solution for you, I need to know that it will work for you and that I can support you once the various elements that make up your web space are released and handed over to you for the day-to-day management (or if I continue to provide that support for you).
After extensive research, reading, and test sites in a variety of content management systems etc, I’ve arrived at using:
- A hosted WordPress site for this site (wordpress.org). I’m impressed that it doesn’t look like a blog! The theme I’ve used is heavily customised, as are the plugins, and in the end, doesn’t really look like the original at all! The ability to be able to customise is one of the big plus points for using a hosted WordPress site.
- A “free” WordPress (wordpress.com) space for my design blog (currently being reinvented!). I used this because I wanted to see how easily it could be customised. And of course, because I did want to customise some elements, it wasnt completely free! It was however, very straightforward to set up, but then it’s what I do for a living, so it should be! It is likely that I will move this blog to wordpress.org in future.
- Blogger (blogger.com) for my personal blog which was the perfect choice and I will continue to use it for the time being.
- A “from the ground up” hand coded option for my CV site (using Dreamweaver), although I have just recently moved it to WordPress.
- Facebook – straight “out of the box”. I may add a couple of apps at some stage. LinkedIn is also a standard setup, as is Twitter.
- For my eNewsletter, I currently use MailChimp (mailchimp.com). I’ve been using this for some time, and have found it to be a great resource and excellent for both email list management, and newsletter production. I do, however, create custom templates to fit with websites and blogs.
My gallery, and other images
My gallery/portfolio images have been created from screenshots taken at the time individual sites were released. These sites might look different now and some do not exist any more. Unfortunately I have no control over that!
I’ve tried to use my own photos where possible, but these are complemented by images sourced from image libraries. If you’d like more detail about any of them, send me an email.
Site validation and other bits
I try to always achieve validated html and css. Unfortunately, when you use different CMS/blog tools, and third party plugins, you don’t always have the control you would like. So, I’m constantly working towards valid html and css, it is a work in progress! The site is however, good across all modern browsers.
The site is secured by SiteLock and I use a web host that provides energy efficient “green” servers.