Hi! I'm Nathan Hoad


New blog

After quite a long while I have finally finished my new blog . My old blog was powered by an aging PHP/MySQL system that I wrote almost 2 years ago. The shiny new system is built on top of the Ruby on Rails framework.

I learned a few new things about Ruby and Rails while developing the new system. I went through three or four different plugins for file uploads before settling on paperclip. I went through a number of tagging plugins before settling on acts_as_taggable_on_steroids. There are probably even some more elements that could have been built more easily with plugins but that's something more to learn for next time.

Thanks to the awesomeness of Rails, most of the development work was already done for me. Although the programming of a site isn't that complicated to begin with, having Rails means the annoying parts are already taken care of, leaving more time to perfect the design.

Most developers that I talk to seem to hate the design part of building web apps but I love it. I find that in the designing stage I have the most freedom. Anything could be possible (even if the reality might say otherwise ).

I went through countless design mockups before I managed to come up with a design that I was happy with. I found that my first few designs were overly complicated, incorporating elements that weren't essential (full Twitter feed, Delicious feed, etc). I began stripping things out until there was nothing left to remove. The result of that process was the final design for this blog.

There are still a number of things that I have yet to add. For one, commenting on posts isn't available. At the moment I haven't decided if I will add comments but I think I am leaning towards a 'yes'. I felt that comments and the like are something that I can do later and that the important thing was to just get the blog out.

So here it is. Have a look around and let me know what you think.

If I just made your day a little better then thank me with a coffee or maybe a a pizza