You've probably already guessed that I love Twitter's Bootstrap, and Dave Gandy's Font Awesome. They make the initial site creation so much quicker and easier. People seem to get a little weird when they see you are using bootstrap, like you have cheated, however its a tool, thats free, well put together and looks fantastic. I think with Microsoft baking it into their basic templates, the stigma associated with using it has decreased.
When I decided I wanted to make SiliconPanda, it was really nothing more than a hobby, something to allow me to use any new tech and services was interested in, and didn’t really need a reason. It is really rhyme before reason, If I see something interesting I want to be able to use it straight away, not wait for a valid reason to implement. It is something that is impossible to really do in a professional work environment.
Now the sites seem to be coming together, I think I’m going to start opening things up. Starting with my trello boards, which can be found here, they have only really been seen by myself and a couple of friends/ colleagues, so you will have to excuse the language and cryptic tasks (This will improve now I have opened it up... promise).
Trello is another service I don’t think I would be able to live without, it organises so much more than just my weekly code tasks. I have boards for everything. Every site I work on has a trello board from the moment I start thinking about it, along with backlog boards, infrastructure to-dos and a life board, with financial goals, achievements, etc. I'm not a naturally organised person, so these tools on offer really do help to keep me on track.
Getting SiliconPanda has taken much longer then I first anticipated, however I have only been working on this in my free time, I usually get a burst of code done on my commute each morning and maybe an hour in the evening but that’s really it. There have been a few occasions I have free up a few hours over the weekend or had a day of work and used it to finish up the longer tasks. I'm pretty pleased with the end result.
I'm sure that you wil find problems with the site, weird behaviour in places, or styling thrown out by silly errors. If i spent much more time on polishing up then I doubt you would get this amazing blog for a long time, and nobody wants that! So any feedback, pointers, comments would be greatly appreciated, you can use the comments or fire me an email- email@example.com
So once my code started to come together, and i started to show people what I had been working on, I seemed to get some interest.
Testing data isn’t the nicest to show someone when you want people to use your code, I needed to throw together a site using my code, i.e this blog.
Whilst working on this I have also been working with a lovely lady: Deema Zainy. She had a great idea a while ago to create an online publication for Middle Eastern culture, to really show of the art, music, culture, life style. Originally this was to be a printed magazine, but what better way to reach your audience all over the world that using the internet. So I jumped at the chance to work with Deema on the project. And that’s pretty much what I have been doing in my spare time for the last couple of months. Check it out melonmag.co.
We are at the stage where Deema is finding more content, and starting to collate everything for launch. Deema by trade is a very talented graphic designer, and I'm sure without her influence, SiliconPanda would look pretty awful. Now, I’m not saying this is copy of melonmag, you can see that it isnt, but she has defiantly been a heavy influence in all aspects of SiliconPanda, including designing the logo!