Current projects

So why did I even make this website? There’s no shortage of places online to place content, and…well… I do spread content all over! I split my efforts so thought it’d be nice to have a central place to bind it all together.

OngoingWorlds.com

A roleplay website I created. It’s been going about 5 years now, and has plenty of active users (there’s some stats here).

Recently I’ve added 3 site moderators who help to manage other players and games. Which has been enormously useful!

I’ve just finished a fairly large re-skin of the site, focussing on frontend only. This is part 1 of planned changes & I need to get into the next part now which is to give more features to the members who’ve donated. Yes I take donations from players but don’t make a profit, it all goes back into the hosting cost.

Warhammer 40k

So for about a year (I think) I’ve been playing 40K with @CadianShock, & enjoying it quite a bit. I struggle with all the rules (there are a LOT!), but enjoy painting the models & scenery. There’s a battle report for our most recent game here.

3D modelling/Game dev

This is a recent resurgence of an old hobby. I used to love making Flash games, and recently started learning Unity the free game dev toolkit. I sidetracked myself quite a lot though by making 3D assets for the game first, and uploading them to Turbosquid for instant gratification! I’ve been writing about the development on an IndieDB blog here.

I’ve completed some games, and uploaded them to Newgrounds.com (see them here), which includes some very old Flash games. My most recent is Starbug Thruster, themed around Blue Dwarf, a Red Dwarf themed game on OngoingWorlds which has been going for almost 15 years!

Silktide/Haystack

Without a doubt the project I’m spending most time on is Haystack for Silktide. This is because it’s my full time job. More about Haystack here.

SciFi Ideas podcast

We haven’t done one for a while but I regularly record a podcast with my brother who runs SciFiIdeas.com. I’ve contributed several articles there in the past. There’s a YouTube playlist of all the podcasts here.

All media queries in one place? That’ll be confusing surely?

image

I downloaded HTML5 Boilerplate today to use on a new project. In the CSS it has a section titled “Media queries”, I assume encouraging developers to put all their media queries here.

All media queries in one place?! I think it makes sense to put the media queries as close as possible to the rest of the styles. I don’t want to go hunting somewhere else for a media query about the navbar, keep it next to the styles for the navbar, surely? That way you’re keeping all relevant styles close together.

Does image Alt text get used in Google’s rankings?

EDIT – March 21 2015 – This article is really old now, so please take what it says with a pinch of salt!  

Alt text in a browser

One of the questions I’ve often been asked about SEO is this:

“Does the wording we put in image Alt text get used in Google’s rankings?”

The answer to this question seems to have changed over the years, where first it seemed to be a really popular place for web developers to sneak in a few additional SEO keywords into their page. Continue reading Does image Alt text get used in Google’s rankings?

Stock images that have been done to death

Tree growing in handsGot a product or service to advertise that can’t be photographed? Are your workforce just not pretty enough? Then you should use stock photography!

Or should you? In my last article I highlighted the dangers of using stock photography when I saw a photo I’d uploaded to a client’s website on TV. I’ve had to search stock photography websites many times for clients, and I’ve seen the same faces popping up time and time again all over the place (and all over the world in some cases!): on websites, billboards, posters, leaflets and packaging designs. Continue reading Stock images that have been done to death

That time I uploaded a fictional criminal to a client’s website

warning stock photographyI’m a frontend web developer. My job is to turn a web designer’s creative layouts and mockups into working HTML & CSS webpages to the best of my ability.

This is the story of how I ended up uploading a fictional criminal to the homepage of a client website without even knowing! Continue reading That time I uploaded a fictional criminal to a client’s website