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  • Online Training System in PHP

    When I inherited the system, the basic architecture was fairly satisfactory, despite not being built on a recognised framework or technology.  It had clearly been re-worked by several previous developers and styles, revealing some fragmentation. For example, two different database abstraction layers were in use, which was redundant.  And the database account username and password was specified identically in seven different files, making it an irritation to move the software to any other host....
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  • UK Nature Database

    The front end is based on Joomla with php and MySQL as usual. Unusually, the backend database is an amalgam of MySQL and Oracle. In addition, the open source Symfony framework is used to keep everything coherent. I had a subsidiary development role on two modules: I created a handful of customised modules for importing a variety of legacy information, from Access, Excel, Word and plain text; and also a series of procedures to export various views of the Oracle data in XML format. My colleague R...
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  • Artspiration - Art E-Commerce site

    Some of the artwork is traditional media, but a lot is generated by software, including my bespoke applications. OpenCart was perfect for the showcase and handling purchases. It is an open-source php CMS. It uses a straightforward template system, easy to understand. I have found several cases where I wanted to make small customisations, and it has always been easy to locate the right spot to adjust. The "out of the box" W3C compliance is good, so helping to ensure consistent display across br...
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  • Three PHP Postnuke CMS sites

    ... of details, but there was a good spread of development and maintenance tasks over several years, including: Newsletter modules, templates, customisation Bespoke database modules for contacts and funding sources Amendments to PostCalendar Amendments to phpBB2 and administration of forums User Guides User training Customisation of a Photo-Gallery Custom modules for presenting news and articles Improvements to Search algorithms and display of results Development of RSS feeds, incoming and outgoing...
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  • OJ Webcrawler

    ... per language and issue, using a free zipper component. And for status indicators, there were assortments of red, amber and green lights to entertain Dave and Tony, who magically had time on their hands. If I had to do this today, naturally I would use php and CURL, but at that time (1998), Delphi made a great equivalent.
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  • Drupal Skills Showcase

    ... Development" by John K VanDyk and Matt Westgate. It has real explanations and practical code to show you how to get started. No book tells you everything, but this one is genuinely useful in getting you started. Naturally this used industrial-strength php and MySQL, and we retained an excellent state of HTML validation throughout....
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  • Drupal devel.module

    ... by uninstalling the module – because I could not get to the admin screen. In short, something of a disaster. If you are in this pickle, read on. I removed the devel folder from modules. Next went through the database with my old friend Navicat (but phpMyAdmin would suffice), and removed the devel_* tables. There were also some core tables which had lines with "devel"-related info. To find those, I sorted the tables by date so I could concentrate on the most recently-used tables. Then it was...
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  • Hearts Collective Arts Site

    ... for lapsed products and moving them to a folder for deletion), and improve W3C HTML compliance. We also organised DPS (Payment Express) payments. We also allowed people to list in a few currencies, not just NZ dollars. It gave me the chance to build a php SOAP request, collecting currency exchange rates several times a day from http://www.webservicex.net, so that we always offer the correct exchange equivalent and needing no manual update. Hearts Collective launched in 2011 and aims to build...
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  • Silverstripe ComplexTableField

    ... the "Add XXXXXX" button to add my first data record, the popup which appeared showed the bewildering message  Fatal error: Call to a member function removeByName() on a non-object in C:\work\xampp\htdocs\portal.test\sapphire\forms\ComplexTableField.php on line 536 It took a while to figure out what I had done wrong, and this may help you too. My data object had this code: function getCMSFields() { $form_fields = new FieldSet( new TextField('Name', 'Service name'),...
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  • Picasa: Customise Templates

    ... error changes to the result CSS, for example. 2) I clicked the template option so quickly that Picasa had not had time to delete and re-create the folder before it was required to fill the folder with new results. Tip: I wanted my result files to be php and not HTML, so that I could include some php code. At first I manually renamed the result files, until I realised that Picasa had a good option for me. In each of the two .tpl files, there are lines which define the output filename pattern,...
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  • Silverstripe for Brian R Richards

    Brian has a fantastic team of graphic designers who had built some lovely and varied designs. I helped Damo put these designs into practice, building web software combining Silverstripe, php and MySQL. Ziwipeak - Premium Pet food using 100% Natural NZ ingredients. We built a shop system, a blog, testimonials pages, stockists and distributors databases with Google Maps, and a feed calculator. We also used a sprinkle of JQuery. All pages can be updated by the client.     Brian Richards Corporat...
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  • E-commerce Web-Site Topologika

    ... account necessary. I also prepared automatic email to be issued to the buyer and to the merchant when a transaction is completed. The whole task was slightly hindered by a somewhat complicated handful of legacy Perl CGI code intermingled in with the php, most of which needed to be preserved untouched. If any future PayPal developers are reading, I can endorse the PayPal system almost wholeheartedly (and far superior than Kagi). My qualifications are that we uncovered a couple of strange bugs in...
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  • Kenpo Karate NZ

    Replacing HTML with php and CSS The graphic design of this karate club website was quite attractive. The technology however was basic: table-driven with all HTML, and some CSS. Being HTML, any changes in general layout, such as amends to the menu, had to be done on every page. Tiresome. What a shame that the HTML4 spec doesn't allow for an "Include" statement. So my first campaign involved the gradual adoption of php, so that parts of the layout could be derived from a set of common functions....
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  • Medipharma E-Commerce Sites

    Initially I planned to write these mostly with my own php plus a small open-source php tool for a shopping cart. However, almost by chance, I stumbled across php OpenCart. I was very fortunate to discover this great piece of kit. It is fantastic for the small and medium site which wants to present and sell products. I managed to get both sites built with very little bother in about six or seven working days. Out of the box, OpenCart has a reasonable array of options without making life very com...
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  • Pharma Health NZ Web Site

    ... Health, (Auckland NZ) already had some idea of key ingredients to use in the graphic design of the web site, such as a red-cross motif. He also wanted to use cool blues and greens, suiting the tone of a healing and natural business. The site uses bespoke php, all pages going through a common layout function something like a small-scale CMS, to preserve consistency. The focus of the web site was always going to be the products themselves. Hence, the main page is dominated by large attractive but...
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  • Zend Framework Bank Marketing Database

    I had never used Zend Framework before, though had used Symfony with a php project a few years earlier. So it was a "0-60 in ten minutes" job, and I grew to like ZF very much. I built a ZF php backend app receiving transaction requests from a customer's iPhone, and placed them on a MySQL database. These transactions needed verification via a continuous cycle of once-only passwords. The requests prompted bank transfers. I also built a variety of operator screens to manage accounts and requ...
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  • Magazine Subscriptions Database

    It has required a fair amount of detective work in a short time to deduce the intricate database architecture of the Dioscuri system, and to bend the legacy data to suit. For example, we had several years worth of records, thousands of transactions, which did not actually say what had been bought. Exactly the kind of challenge that I like. (And the cake was very welcome too, thanks!) I also have found use for my experience at Google Geocoding, to write a small utility which helps clean up th...
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  • Membership Database for an NZ Drinks company

    Once again I used Zend Framework (ZF) to build a php membership database, and including an API so that trusted third-parties could operate on the database. Requests could be submitted by CURL and validated with a secret key. There was also work on the public-facing website, to offer the option of signing up by Facebook as an extra option.
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  • Incentive Solutions PHP

    This was a varied role over 18 months, both front-end and back-end, all manner of php, MS-SQL and JavaScript. ISL has a comprehensive and sophisticated system helping to manage all aspects of the business, and I was helping the tech manager (David Higgs) on maintenance and improvements. Coping with tens of thousands of members requires a large range of features, and the main software architect (Hi Lance!) had done an extraordinary job covering so much territory.  Among the tasks were: Creation...
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  • Free Telly Guide UK, PHP

    ... something similar on the web. This used all the same back-office infrastructure that he'd put together to collate all the disparate channel listings. The end-product of that was a simple large text file in CSV format. This was straight-forward to parse with php using fgets and explode as the main tools. php and Iterative Web Design Chris had a good idea of what he wanted and had crafted a neat PDF of the layout. We iterated implementations for a week or two, spiralling towards an attractive an...
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  • Drupal Website: Everybody's Acupuncture

    Heather had been working in acupuncture, massage and other natural health solutions for some years. She decided the time had come to promote herself more widely, but also wanted a website which she could update herself. This was a braver choice than a simply static HTML site, but made sense for her ambitions to be adding items of news and health information for her clients. We implemented www.everybodysacupuncture.co.uk, based on Drupal 6, which was recently issued in Beta form. It has proved pe...
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  • Sports Perform UK

    php Templates In common with my other recent sites, I have my bespoke php template system which is quite flexible and suits these small sites; it lets me get productive as quick as possible. I was sent the graphic design, very simple, though as always the body text came in sundry waves and variations. Kate wanted a dropdow/flyout menu. I have a slight aversion to Javascript implementations of those, partly based on the old-fashioned idea that some people might have JavaScript turned off. CSS im...
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  • Dynamic Adventures PHP Calendar

    ... having colour-coded names showing up on the month and week views. I spent several hours of research and was surprised to find what a large number of calendars were available, both open-source and shareware. Gratifyingly for me, most of them were in php, my stock in trade. But the second surprise was that none of them catered for this seemingly straightforward (nay, generic) requirement. This would mean I'd have to start with a near-miss app, and get out the spanners for some tinkering under t...
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  • PHP Zend Certification

    We can give credit to John Cowles, my friend at altcom Limited for recognising that we all ought to get official Zend certification. Zend is the official producer of php and runs well-priced training and certification schemes. In preparation, as a bunch (John, Neil, Richard and I) attended a useful php course in the Digital Peninsula, Penzance. We had all written and fixed innumerable lines of php code but we still discovered useful extra snippets outside our comfort zone. Then we signed up to t...
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  • North Shore Yogalates

    The site needed to be "smooth", mellow, with natural textures and symbols, to reflect the style of the teacher. "Dru" yoga is a style which emphasises calmness and avoids the more strenuous exercises of some other schools. It was also useful to publicise the class dates and locations in North Shore, Auckland, NZ. The teacher was starting from scratch and so publicity and visibility was essential. We were fortunate to secure the ideal domain name which has exactly the words required to convey th...
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  • IPSV Module for Joomla

    ... more importantly, found by search engines) the appropriate set of IPSV labels is set into the META statement of the HTML, using "Dublin Core" conventions, viz:  <meta name="eGMS.subject.category" scheme="IPSV" content="Heritage">. This work used php in a Joomla site with the Yahoo User Interface (YUI) tree control, which is an excellent free offering of JavaScript to provide an all-purpose solution to a common and difficult problem. And even then, it wasn''t easy!...
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  • Seismics.net Google SEO

    Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Cosmetically, the site was pretty well suited for the market - no-frills. And it was already well-ranked on Google for some terms, but they were not all the terms which were required. It didn't take long for me to rummage "under the hood" to spot the usual culprits: poor page titles, no headings summaries at all, and, of less value, lack of META descriptions. Following up the rear was a sprinkle of small-beer items : a few TITLEs missing for images and better an...
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  • E-commerce for Training System

    At very short notice, I got a complete e-commerce site running for a company selling online training. (Cannot be named for reasons of confidentiality). Again, I used the excellent Opencart system written in php. I am always pleasantly surprised how this system accommodates so many requirements so quickly and reliably. In a short time we had loaded many training products, catered for tax and shipping in NZ, Australia and worldwide. We made 3 "stores", one for each zone, and all using one set of p...
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  • Cat Hotel Stoney Creek

    ... mistake: my local PC had all lowercase table names. It derived from a setting I tried last year in MySQL: lower_case_table_names = 1 This was a mistake because when I installed my local Silverstripe base CMS, it created names with all lowercase - but the php code continued to use camelcase. This works on Windows, but on the live Linux server, just about every table could not be accessed by the php. So I had the dreary job of trudging through every table and renaming them with trusty tool phpMyA...
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  • Paid For Digital Download, Lets Talk

    The site already used a Paypal basket for off-line sales, so it was an elementary clone to get the new item displayed on the page and the Paypal button working.  But the main obstacle was offering a zip file which could only be unlocked by the purchaser, and in addition, would only be available for a certain time period. This narrow window of availability helps protect against web-bots or other villians scavenging the zip file and circulating links for free. I could have developed something fro...
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  • Mobile-friendly Website Conversion

    ... have very short text). Also, ensure that the menu items are spaced sufficiently for stubby, inefficient fingers to stab at them reliably. Keep your fonts large enough to read. There are several techniques for handling mobiles and we used a blend of two: php choice: I decide to offer different markup for the page header for desktop and web, using the tests supplied by the mobiledetect.net php library. This allowed us to show a mobile display with a header image then a reduced menu below that....
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  • Health House web site

    ... Edward Benson-Cooper, to set up in Health House on Shakespeare, in Milford, Auckland. Although they both have their own websites, it made sense to showcase their services in one place as well, which is www.healthhouse.kiwi.  This was a small and easy php site. I added a Nivo plugin for an image slider on the front page. 
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