T-522: New Site Design and Server
Written by Christopher Spence   
Wednesday, 18 November 2009 01:59

Hello all,

As you can see, I've given my site a bit of a face lift. In fact, I've switched to a new content management system (Joomla) and server (Media Temple). I figured that this is an opportune time to explain what's involved in setting up your own website.

First off, you will likely need a domain name (a.k.a., "web address") that you can direct your users to. You can purchase a domain name from godaddy for around ten dollars per year (provided that the name has not already been taken.) You also need to purchase some server space to host your website (i.e., the place that you upload all of your files to.) Depending on the level of service that you need, this can run anywhere from five to hundreds of dollars per month. I had been using a service called Hostek, which offered great service and lots of file storage space for about $12.95 per month. I have just switched over to MediaTemple and am paying a bit more ($13.33 after a 20% discount off the already discounted annual purchase plan... the service before discounts runs $20 per month). I switched to a new server because I wanted to be able to host several websites in one place (my wife's photography site, this site, and some testing/development sites for work), and because I wanted to set up a subversion repository to back up my code files (neither of which were offered on my current Hostek plan).

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 November 2009 13:08
T-522: Wireframing
Written by Christopher Spence   
Wednesday, 18 November 2009 01:45

During this week’s lab session we’ll get a chance to dabble in the fine art of “wireframing.” A wireframe is basically a barebones illustration that demonstrates the proposed layout and functionality for an application/project-idea. This is generally the least technical step of the development process, but arguably one of the most important because it is the foundation for the user experience; and surely a convoluted user experience can translate into a poor educational application.

This week’s lab time will be a bit less structured and will allow you more opportunity to begin developing your project ideas. The remaining time will be devoted to exploring/playing-around-with the iPlotz wireframe tool (featured in the second and third screencasts below). You can visit iPlotz here.

There won’t be any written instructions this week, both because this tool is fairly intuitive, and because the iPlotz website features an excellent screencast demonstration of the application’s functionality.

Video Screencast Part I: Introduction to Wireframes

Video Screencast Part II: Logging in to iPlotz

Video Screencast Part III: iPlotz Tutorial courtesy of the folks at iPlotz (below)


Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 November 2009 01:58

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