13 Oct

BOSH website feedback

BOSHrun updated website

BOSHrun.com has been up and running for 4 weeks now. The initial launch was successful, with only minor issues from a handful of users. This included routine things like lost passwords and activation emails going into junk folders.

The biggest problem since launch has been spam users registering on the site, once of which direct messaged a few users. This is obviously a very serious issue, and can cause huge annoyance for members. If the issue isn’t resolved quickly, it could cause members to stop using the site. I installed extra catches on the registration page, added report a user buttons and increased the spam security on the site. Since doing this, there hasn’t been a single reported problem.

I have also received a lot of positive feedback for the site:

 

website feedback 01

website feedback 02

website feedback 03

I set up a forum topic on the site where members can give their feedback and ask for help if necessary. It can be viewed here.

Another notable element of the site is the design of the new shop. The minimalist design really shows of the products, and I’m very happy with the increased functionality of the shop (including adding in dropdown lists to select size and fit).

Screen Shot 2015-09-03 at 09.57.26

 

I’m very happy with the outcome of this project, and am interested to see how the site evolves with the increase of users and content being produced.

As of today, there are 197 registered users.

Screen Shot 2015-10-13 at 21.39.43

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04 Dec

Web Dev: Functional & Content Requirements

Now I’ve identified the requirements of the client, and completed a substantial amount of user research, I need to scope functional and content requirements.

Functional Requirements

  • “HOW should the website meet client’s objectives and user’s needs?”
  • “WHAT do users need to DO on the site?”

I’m going to be using the MoSCoW method, which stands for Must, Should, Could and Won’t.

 MUST

  • Have an in-site search engine
  • Allow members to register/login
  • Allow members to contribute to a forum
  • Allow specified “expert” members to contribute to the blog
  • Link to existing social networking sites
  • Have a suitable payment process (PayPal)

SHOULD

  • Error checking on the register/login form

COULD

  • Allow members to get an email notification when their comment/post receives a reply
  • Integrate Facebook comments
  • Have a function where members can enter their details into a league table

WON’T

  • Integrate with tracking software such as Garmin, but this is a possibility for the future.

Content Requirements

Fortunately with this project, the majority of content needed is already available (see Content Inventory). There is a vast amount of imagery and text on both the existing BOSH Run website, and on their Facebook page. The logo is already existing, along with a strong brand. There is plenty to chose from, so the biggest task will be selecting those to use.

Therefore, I will only need to create the following; copy (instructions) for the register page, and rules of the forum, along with general text and locating the right imagery needed.

Plenty of existing content

Existing content on BOSH’s Facebook group.

 

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10 Apr

Making a portfolio website

I have been working on a new portfolio site to show my work and some of the skills I have learnt over the last six months.

With a good working knowledge of HTML5, CSS3 and JQuery, as well as an eye for design, amazing things can be made. Here is a collection of helpful blog posts, tutorials and code that can help make your website a little bit fantastic.

1. MEDIA QUERIES – CSS TRICKS

Responsive is key. We all need to be doing it. I spend a massive amount of my web browsing time on a smartphone. One train journey makes it apparent that phones and tablets are a huge portion of web traffic. Even on this blog, my analytics show that 27.76% of site views have been on a mobile or tablet.

analytics mobile usage

Basically, too much to ignore. So my portfolio site uses media queries to set up a specific mobile site (and less drastic changes for tablet) found here at CSS-Tricks.

Ashley Nye responsive design

2. JQUERY PLUGINS – UNHEAP

Everybody could use a bit of JQuery, not to rely on, but to enhance. It’s a very quick, easy way to make your website do cool stuff. And grab a load of cool at Unheap.

3. PRINCIPLES TO CODE BY – SMASHING MAGAZINE

This is a great little article on keeping it clean by Chris Coyier. Ok, so there is no rulebook (as much as I wish there was) but there are certain things you can do to make your code cleaner, more beautiful and crucially easier to read and edit. This is a must, in a world where time is money.

This can also help satisfy the perfectionist in you. Everybody wins.

4. BROWSER SUPPORT TABLES – CAN I USE

Can I use…? Wouldn’t the world be a much better place if the answer was always yes. Sadly, though, that is not the case. Worst case scenario is (and rather foolishly, but we’ve all done it…) after painstakingly perfecting your site on one browser, you nervously open it in another to find it looks like someone with a grudge against you hacked your server.

Save time and energy checking browser compatibility before you code.

5. VALIDATE, VALIDATE, VALIDATE – W3C VALIDATION

For HTML and for CSS, it is extremely important to make sure there are no errors in your code, and periodic checks will save lots of time later on. Mistakes are made by everyone, so whether you are a beginner or expert, validating code is crucial.

6. WHAT IS POSSIBLE WITH JAVASCRIPT

This isn’t really helping you to make a portfolio site, but it is inspiring. If you want a little motivation, take a look at this blog post on develop-a-website.com that showcases some amazing JavaScript experiments. So you’re not about to install a sheet of tearable cloth on your portfolio, but it’s still worth taking a look.

I’m impressed enough to say, I’m going to learn to be a better coder.

Tearable cloth

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