]> New site! 🌐:aligrant.com

New site!

Alastair Grant | Wednesday 11 October 2017

Trends and best practices, like many things in life, seem to come round in circles.  The previous incarnation of this web site was released in 2002 and was built in an era of dial-up modems and fragmented browser support.  We're now in an age of mobile-bandwidth restrictions and fiddly small displays to show content on.  I have some how skipped over the "big flashy image heavy" period - probably mostly because it never appealed to me.

Here is then, my new web-site.  The previous version was an experiment on developing a database-less content management system - this one developed as something more usable.  Built mostly from the ground up and hopefully encompassing the current in best practice on web development.

I have moved off from my old shared-hosting onto a VPS, which gives me far more flexibility.  I can now bring free Lets Encrypt SSL (yes, I know) certificates and HTTP2.  I'm looking forward to see what I can leverage from HTTP2, currently I'm just using it to push styles and scripts down with the initial page load.  The site is now more search-engine friendly, with the abandoning of GET query string parameters and adding bandwidth stealing semantic-web markup.

I'd like to say with near twenty years since the release of my previous site, this is some piece of technical master-piece.  In reality, I've had a few vague attempts at finding time to replace my site and only getting round to bringing together the code recently.  Fundamentally the site is built on a shared framework which I put together years ago for making data-driven web sites easy to build with URL routing and what not.  It actually turned out very much like what ASP MVC has produced in concept - which goes to show that technology isn't necessarily created by a lone inventor, just things come together and at that time, it's just the sensible way to do things.  This site though is built in PHP, my weekend language of choice.

What can you find on this site?  Same as you could find on the last one.  Nothing has changed really, just how it is presented.  There is some more archived content from other websites that no longer exist and I helped develop or run for gaming communities.  I feel it's important to keep this content online for posterity, it provides an insight into small interest groups at a point in time.  I just hope that when I pop my clogs somebody will mirror this content for the same reason.  Now that it is more search engine friendly, hopefully it should make things easier for the likes of the Internet Archive to snapshot.

What won't you find?  Comments.  The phenomenon of online comments warrants a post in itself.  I am not jumping on this bandwagon, and instead if you feel strongly enough to need to comment on something, click the contact link and send me a message.

Breaking from the voyeuristic norms of the Internet, any comments can be made in private by contacting me.