Alex JF

New site and web identity

  • Category: Site

Hello everyone and welcome to my new site!

Having now finished my Bachelor of Science in Information Systems and Computer Engineering and 4 years after creating the previous version of my website, I felt that a change was needed to enhance the connection with my web identify. I feel that the alias 'AlexJF' (which, as you might have observed, comes from my name Alexandre Jorge Fonseca) is not only more unique and personal but also more mature and neutral. With 'Revolt' people might have thought of me as an anarchist or as a somewhat revolted individual when, in fact, I'm quite peaceful :P.

This new site also provided me with a long sought opportunity to get my hands dirty with Drupal. I have always wanted to setup a site using this framework/CMS (not sure what's the best term to describe it really) but university assignments and exams, other projects and lack of inspiration/motivation for 'fake site construction' have kept me from doing so. During the initial planning phase of the website, I considered various CMS packages and read various reviews and debates. I have had experience with Joomla, Wordpress and CMS Made Simple (in chronological order) so I was not a total stranger to the ups and downs of the most popular CMS (albeit things seem to have changed a lot since I last used them).

In any case, I had never had the opportunity to really dive into the Drupal framework and this new version 7 seemed to be a particularly good time to do so with the inclusion of the CCK modules into the core and revised taxonomy structure. I must say I was not disappointed. Granted, it still seems a little overwhelming and overengineered (one of the greatest complains I've heard of the framework) but overall, I'm liking the experience and it starts growing on you. I have yet had the need to develop a plugin (everything I needed up until now was already made) therefore I can't really comment on the ease of developing for the platform. However, from what I've read and from the code I've analyzed the flexibility of the system is truly outstanding.

I can, however, attest to the smoothness of Drupal theme development. With base theme frameworks like Zen or Omega I found that I could concentrate on what really mattered due to the excellent theme defaults. I ended up going with the Omega theme framework and was introduced to a concept I had never heard of: responsive web design. In a nutshell, this form of web design makes use of a new feature of CSS3 called media queries that allow you to selectively apply CSS styles based on conditions such as screen resolution. This gives you much more flexibility on your designs since you won't have to cater to all screen sizes with a single stylesheet.

As for the theme I developed, I wanted to make something minimalist but at the same time esthetically pleasing. I think it turned out alright but it is up to you as the visitor to judge that.

In any case, this post is getting rather lengthy so I'd better wrap it up. I hope you enjoy your stay and find something interesting while you're here :)

Regards, Alex

comments powered by Disqus