Well I have just moved my blog here on downton.me.uk, from blogger…
I shall be updating the style to something more “me”, as soon as I can get around to it.
It’s about time I moved away from blogger, onto something more professional
After a long time away from the Blog I have finally come back !!!
I have taken the plunge and gone for a reseller hosting package, this means that not only can I host Sarah’s Jewellery and lampworked Glass beads site www.sarahdownton.co.uk but I can now also host many other sites, as I seem to be getting into web design, I can now offer hosting as part of the design package.
Not only is Sarah’s site now all fully PHP and database driven, but also includes a blog (beadlog as Sarah likes to call it), which Sarah seems to be keeping more up to date than mine… Then again that’s not very hard is it.
I will shortly be taking over the hosting of the GBUK society web site.
I have great plans for this, including integrating the members forum, which is currently running on MSN, and perhaps adding member editable pages for them to put up their own pictures and information about themselves… There is so much that CAN be done, and yet so little time. (Hmmm.. That old chestnut, anybody got any spare time they can give me? )
Well I will try not to be away for so long next time…
Right… a bit of an overhall on Sarah’s site tonight… new pictures for the “Spring Collection”, plus prety much every page was updated in some form or another.
I am looking into how I can make this all automatic. Hopefully we will shortly be moving over to a new host that supports PHP and mySQL so I can automate a lot of the boilerplate work, plus let Sarah add her own news items and pictures into a gallery (possibly Simple PHP Gallery) as they come up. Also thinking about maybe using word press so she can keep a blog on the site too… maybe I can even run the whole site off it… (I will have to see about that).
The best bit will be the automated gallery, as at the moment adding all the descriptions multiple times for the alt and title tags and the image title is a pain in the bum. Plus I have to create all the thumbnails by hand, and make sure all the thumbnails are linked to the correct images.
Ahhh well, now just got to work out a way to give her an admin interface that she can use easily, but is also powerfull enough to do what she wants.
Well…. after a final push I finally managed to find the time to finish off (so far) Sarah Downtons new web site.
There are still things we can (and indeed will) add, and that is all part of the fun really.
Keeping a website fresh is really hard, but please take a look (and keep coming back).
For the techies out there the design is now fully XHTML/CSS and is also XHTML 1.0 strict compliant (it validates from W3C) the CSS also validates. (Please let me know if that is not the case, Note: unfortunately, the site uses URL forwarding for the domain name, and therefore the site will NOT validate from www.sarahdownton.co.uk as is… I have no control over that wrapper frame, and guess what… it fails !)
Question now is… have I broken it for other browsers, I have tried it in Firefox 1.0PR IE6 and Opera7, but I do not have a copy of IE 4/5/5.5 to try. (They probably fail completely).
Well I hope you like the new site let me know what you think.
I have made some progress with Sarah’s new website design… I have overcome some of the CSS incompatibilities that seemed to be causing me so much grief.
So given a bit more time.. There seems to be less of it these days… I should have something new to put up soon…(sorry but “soon” is as close as I can get to a deadline with this)
What I will do now though, is to put up what we have got so far, even if this is not as complete as I would like. The new stuff (specifically the bead pictures) is far better from a display point of view, even if the page doesn’t look very different.
The thing is I can now change the style and look of the page completely, without having to scrabble arround in html layout tables…!!! 😉
After that the next step is to set up an eBay selling account (and Paypal), so that we can sell online.
Sigh… Well more stuff to do… It’s never ending it seems.
As for CSS, I feel that I am understanding more and more all the time, it can be a real head banging experience if you are not careful, but certainly looking at how other people have laid out their sites has helped enormously (see my blog post “A useful CSS resource“)
I know I know… Man… setting up a new web site can be a pain.. I am struggling with CSS incompatibilities at the moment… (between IE6 and Firefox). You think you’ve cracked it, and then load it into IE and it all looks like a pile of rubbish…!
I must have read the CSS2 spec through at least twice from cover to cover, but there is always something that catches you out.
Hopefully I will have the new site up as soon as we get some final pictures for it as well… (that’s the olther thing holding up the process), trying to get pictures that are good enough, and can also be scaled down to show the detail even at thumbnail size is a challenge.
Currently there are two URL’s for this site www.silverlemon.co.uk and www.sarahdownton.co.uk
We will be going with the www.sarahdownton.co.uk URL now, so the new site will also reflect this.