Breaking my learning habits for the better

September 17, 2020

I’ve been using Babbel for a few years now to learn Spanish and I find it a very well structured learning experience. Having completed lessons you are then prompted to review those items soon after and then again in the near future. If you correctly review items they are then presented for review periodically. I had got into a routine where I liked to clear my review items down to zero before doing any new lessons but a recent update to the app forced me into a change of habit. ...

Laravel Vue Testing

July 4, 2020

Laravel comes with some very good testing tools but I also wanted to use Vue’s testing tools on my components. I ended up reading quite a few tutorials and watching a few videos before finding enough information to get it working. I decided a good idea would be to list the most helpful resources and also setup a GitHub repo for future reference. My starting point was the series of videos on Laracasts. ...

Adapt Authoring Tool Hello World Part 3: Adding questions

April 29, 2020

If you’ve been following on from the previous post you will be on the Page Structure page, if not then from the dashboard double click on the Hello World course, then from the Course structure page double click on the Take the test and say “Hello World” page. You’ll now be back on the Course structure page. Double click on the page box which is now labelled Take the test and say “Hello World! ...

When to use a custom search solution

January 22, 2019

This post also appears on the Headscape site. Website search can often be a thorny subject. Expectations of search capabilities have been set very high by search engines. The default search offered by content management systems (CMSs) is often a bit basic by comparison. For example, the results are often not the most relevant to the search term used because the CMS is only offering a simple “does this page contain this word” method. ...

Blogging, Completed It Mate

September 8, 2018

Oddly enough I’d had this post in mind over the summer and then some gentle encouragement from Paul Boag on an episode of The Boagworld Podcast convinced me to finish writing it. Towards the end of last year I had several ideas for blog posts rattling round my head. I made a conscious decision I should actually finish the blog posts instead of leaving them as “Draft” and thinking “I’ll finish that soon”. ...

Today I am Not Working From Home

March 27, 2018

I’m a full time remote worker and have a room at home set up as an office I can shut myself away in. As I’ve talked about before I love working from home but this week for the first time I decided to try remote working from a public space. I choose a local Wetherspoons as it seemed to tick all the boxes and was a short walk from home. ...

Fractal – A Backend Developers Perspective

March 20, 2018

One of the great thing about attending conferences is attending a talk and learning about something you didn’t even realise you wanted to know about. During DrupalCon Vienna I saw a talk by Anton Staroverov and Tassilo Groeper from Wondrous titled Decouple your Twig from PHP and make Frontenders happy! In the talk they showed a tool called Fractal which has been developed by Clearleft. After seeing the presentation I felt this would be a very useful tool so set about looking into it further. ...

Why Your Back End Developers Should Be In The Design Kick Off

January 8, 2018

Design kickoffs are great, it’s the start of the project, expectations are high, ideas are thrown around liberally and everyone is excited about what’s to come. So why should you bring along the person responsible fo database tables and code no one will ever see? Get to know the business # Invitations to tender and design briefs are very useful documents to get an initial idea of what a business does and what they offer. ...

Customer Service as a Service

December 5, 2017

In my younger days I worked in a surf shop where the owner was very hot on customer service. He liked us to greet every customer when they entered and left. To start with this seemed quite unnatural and the odd customer even seemed confused. In general though it did open up communication and people seemed genuinely happy with the interaction even when you said thanks to them for leaving empty handed. ...