“Unleashing the Web”

A couple of posts ago I mentioned that I had gone to Toronto and attended FITC Web Unleashed. While it has been just over a month since then, I’ve been so busy lately that it seems like it was forever ago! But, I mean, I haven’t really been super productive busy… but that’s another story!  But anyways, today’s blog post is all about my portfolio site eventual redesign (see point 5 on my Goals’ List)

In other posts, I also talked about the whole process of networking and giving out your business cards, and how people can (and will) judge you on the spot based on your cards alone. But what about the follow up? Is your phone number no longer in service or has it changed? Do you regularly check your emails if your address is provided?

Because I was at an event that specifically focused on front-end web development, you can bet that people there have a knack for checking up on people’s website links. So, you can almost guess that whenever I handed out my cards, I’d always provide a disclaimer “please don’t judge me based on my site” or “I haven’t updated it in a really long time” (the latter being true of course… I think close to a year since the last time).

And those are both sentences that I know I shouldn’t use! You should never start off with a negative, or defend your work before someone’s even had the chance to see it. It’s stuff like that that gives people a sour taste in their mouth and could taint their overall feelings with whatever it is you’re introducing to them. And common, if you don’t support/believe in something 100%, why do you expect anyone else to?

But enough on the nitty-gritty of self-depreciation. Why don’t I like my site you ask? Well, it’s not that I don’t like it… in fact I do really like the overall design I went for; it’s just that I know that the code (specifically the JavaScript) is NOT optimized at all, repetitive, clunky, and it is definitely slowing down my site load speed.

So what should I do to fix the website? Well, for starters, I think I will try to narrow down the work I have in my portfolio, or at least organize and categorize it better. I also want to re-introduce some of the elements (notably the diagonal bars) from Version 2.0 of my site because I think they are unique (and part of my overall rainbow branding!). And ultimately, I’d like to probably put all my graphics and images into a database, so that I could just grab the info from there – and then once I need to update my work, I would just add it, and it would dynamically update on my website (and I wouldn’t have to write new code each time!). I’d also like to add a home/about page so that the first thing people see is a quick blurb about what I do, and they’re not inundated with lots of (currently, slowly) downloading images.

Other nice to haves would be a sticky header, so that if they are ever on a page with a lot of info (ie: the main portfolio section), then it is always at the “top of the fold” and people don’t have to scroll up constantly to go to a different page. I’d also like my portfolio squares to move around when another one is opened, right now I had to add all the content and info in html and then put four squares, then more info, four more squares, etc.   Which is also more frustrating for me to do updates, as the squares are all “hard-coded” in – so I would need to add 4 new projects at a time OR rearrange the code so that there are always 4 squares per line.

But anyways, this is just a reassuring post, if ever someone visits my website and is like ugh gross, I’m all over here like “Hey, I know it’s not the best… but I made it all by myself and I’m kind of cool…” (oh and I didn’t have to copy and paste other people’s stuff either…)

Until next time!

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