Archive for January, 2007

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Recognition

25 January 2007

When you’re working on a web project, people are quick to point out what they hate about it, but less likely to tell you that it’s great. Today something nice happened — I and two colleagues got a recognition award from the CIO for a project we did last year. It was a pretty important project in some circles around the country, but for me it was great because I got a chance to do a few new things, work with amazing raw materials, and most importantly, work with some terrific people.

It was definitely one of my favorite projects ever, and only phase one has been completed — phase two should be careening forth very soon.

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Projects, projects, projects…

24 January 2007

I’m not a huge fan of doing multiple projects in parallel, but I guess that’s the way of the world. Right now, I’m banging out a few tools, including a project management interface (PHP, MySQL, XHTML, CSS) and a bibliography aggregator (PHP, MySQL, JavaScript, XHTML, CSS), a couple of humanities projects, one involving video of historical reenactments (PHP, MySQL, JavaScript, XML, XHTML, CSS [cataloging, storage, retrieval, archiving, and presentation]), and another involving the digitization and rich markup of hundreds of antiquated documents (XML, XSLT, XHTML, CSS, JavaScript).

The one I’m enjoying the most at this point is the bibliography aggregator. It may never see the light of day, but as a proof of concept, it is darned effective. It leverages uses the free and very cool API at ISBNdb, and draws some of its required bits of data (e.g. a ‘book’ item needs a title, author(s), date, publisher info, etc.) from the desktop app Endnote. You can either fill out the form manually with this information, or type in the ISBN of the book, and the fields (through the magic of XML, PHP’s simpleXML function, and a few convoluted regular expressions) are populated with the appropriate values. It’s all rather sexy! (Email if you want to see it in action — I don’t want to publish a development-server URL.)