This new website is finally done!!! It took me a lot more time than I planned :S I was hoping this could be done in more or less a month, but in the end it took me 3 months in total. I felt really guilty not making any progress to the real important project for these 3 months :(
You must think “Come on, it’s just a company website, why it took you so long? Just make some static pages with an open source blog and it’s done!”. The truth is in the real world it did took me this long… Making a website is the kind of thing that “You do a lot behind the scene but only very little can be seen“.
Although I now build sites with rails, things should be really simple and fast. However I end up with using php for this company site because I chose wordpress as my blogging tool and I didn’t want things to be too complicated if I mix other pages using rails with wordpress. With other pages I used a light weight php framework call Codeigniter because I didn’t want to “reinvent the wheel”. Codeigniter is very light weight but in other words it means lack of some functionalities. Especially when I tried Symfony with other projects a while ago. It has a very powerful “view” system that I really enjoyed as a frontend developer. In the end I still wrote this view library for Codeigniter which simulate the functionalities of Symfony.
While writing css for this site I was really annoyed by fixing some cross-browser css3 and css sprites. Again I end up learning some new technics which are sass and compass to solve these problems for me. After that I notice my share hosting account was due for renewal, so I moved to linode VPS and learned how to setup a LAMP server. That was another painful period of time…
All of the things above were not the most time consuming parts. What took me really long were the layout and the content of the site. When I planed to write a new site for my company, what came up in my mind wasn’t the visual layout but some raw HTML code, not to mention how I was going to introduce my company and myself. In this two year I really did turn myself to a programmer, I hope there wouldn’t be a day that I only talk to people in APIs :S
As for the content, I have never been a good writer, therefore I decided to write some open source projects to make my site looks not that empty. Not until I start writing my own open source projects I didn’t found myself have a really bad habit of writing code. “I never comment my code, nor I ever write documents”. Yeah, you didn’t hear me wrong. Since I started programing 2 years ago I’ve been working along. I wrote all the code for myself only, therefore there is no point to write documents. Now I learned my lesson :3 No matter how magically your code works, without a proper document it worth nothing for the users. Eventually It took me more than 3 weeks to document 8 projects.
Anyway I’ve done all the hard works, it’s time to move onto the next step – “recruiting hackers” and launch the application ASAP!!!