Website Development

BTasker Recipes

Part of my shift to separating certain types of information out so that it can be located more readily.

Based on the success (in terms of accessibility, ease of use and loading speed) of my snippets site, I moved my collection of recipes out of their original Joomla site into a static HTML site generated with my homegrown SSG.

The site features full search features, implemented on the client side in Javascript, and due to it's static nature can usually be served from my CDN in milliseconds.

The primary aim when designing the site was that it should be incredibly lightweight - I was using an old tablet in the kitchen to view recipes while I cooked.

BTasker Snippets

Part of my shift to separating certain types of information out so that it can be located more readily.

The site is generated using my CLI based content-management-system - essentially a Static Site Generator (SSG). This route was chosen for security (no dynamic code exposed to the world), but also for performance reasons - the resulting pages are static HTML and so are very cacheable, so can be loaded incredibly quickly.

The site exists so that I have somewhere to share small code snippets (i.e. not unlike a Github Gist), and is accompanied by a small Python client which allows snippets to quickly be searched and viewed from a shell on my systems at home.

BenTasker.co.uk v3.1

In April 2013, following feedback from others, the site was switched over to using a different default colour scheme (with the old one still supported via a toggle on the pages)

A number of other important improvements were made too, including reducing the site's use of cookies, improving transparency (via the launch of mod_yourData) and the addition of some basic privacy options to the left-hand side of the site.

In the ensuing time, those privacy options have changed/improved and new privacy features have been added - including multihoming the site so that it's accessible as a Tor .onion, and enabling opportunistic encryption. Others, like support for the dark theme have been removed (though the theme seemingly still works, as that's how I got the screenshot for the V3 information page

BenTasker.co.uk V3

BenTasker.co.uk was migrated to Joomla 3 in March 2013

Content came across automatically, as it was simply an upgrade and re-templating of the Joomla CMS that underpinned the site

An entirely new template had to be used for Joomla 3 due to the old one not being compatible, but the original build continued the tradition of light text on a black background.

Going from the 2.x branch of Joomla to 3.x was a big step - whilst the upgrade itself wasn't as painful as from Joomla 1.5 - 2.x, extension compatibility was a serious issue.

Vehicle Fuel Tracker

The ultimate successor to Vehman, Vehicle Fuel Tracker was a Joomla based site allowing TCO to be tracked for vehicles

The user-facing portion was simply a custom Joomla extension which communicated with the FuelTracker backend via API, and presented the information returned

It allowed generation of graphs showing average MPG, total expenditure, servicing costs etc for any vehicle in the system.

Although I discontinued the service in 2017, I still use a private version of the system in order to track my mileage

Seatrade Global

Seatrade Global covers worldwide shipping news, featuring news from 4 regions and 9 industry sub-sectors. My main involvement with the development of the site was custom code development and pre-release project management. Following the site going live, I've continued to provide support on an ongoing basis, including development of new features such as the 'Live From' functionality

The site is Joomla! based and uses a variety of extensions to implement a wide range of functionality, including basic support for semantic markup