Weeknotes 23: 10th June – 16th June 2019

Demoing a project, a resurrected meet up and working on two new client sites.

Client work

My work for clients this week was dominated by planning out and writing the technical specification for a new website for one of my clients, who are branching out in to a slightly different type of recruitment than they ususally handle.

The basics of the site are pretty much a copy of an existing service that my client will put their own spin on. Although that makes the process of planning the site more straightforward as you can see what has been decided by someone else and work out which parts you’ll change and which you’ll disregard, it’s easy to underestimate how much of an application or service you can’t see. Working out the project has taken me longer than expected as I work out all the hidden parts that it will need and how to make them work.

I’m writing a technical spec as it is an excellent way to work out all the interactions the site will need and therefore what we need to store ahead of time rather than starting coding and realising you need to ditch work as you haven’t thought it through properly. Also, this lets me pass a chunk of the work over to Laura to code up. As the spec is growing and growing as I work out all the detail, I sent her some sections to work on while I continue planning and writing. Hopefully I’ve worked out the database side well enough that we won’t have a lot of amends to do when I’ve finished the spec.

I also spent a few hours starting a new site to promote health and safety on work sites within the industry of another client. The site is partly there to improve safety, and partly to promote the client and an offshoot business. Having done some planning for it a while ago, this is the first chance I’ve had to sit down and break out my editor and get started. Having done a few hours I’ve realised building a Laravel site to do it might not be the best idea as I could use WordPress to get most of what I need much more quickly. So I need to decide which way to go with that next week. Hmm, what was that about planning ahead that I was just writing about?

My Projects

On Monday lunchtimes at The Skiff usually has Show & Tell run by Tom Parslow. This is a chance to show off some work you’ve been doing or something you’ve made for a few minutes and take questions from the audience. I showed the latest version of my Twitter thanks app and the improvements I made last week. Feedback was positive and on reviewing some old notes I realised the recent changes I put in were from ideas in feedback from the last time I showed it.

I now want to get it up and running as a public tool. Realising I might get people sending out nasty messages using it, I’ve added some basic logging so I can review what tweets are sent with it and can ban people if they are being nasty using it. I’ve now registered a domain and will spend a few hours next week getting it up and running. It’ll be very rough around the edges, but that is fine for now.

Open Coffee Sussex

Jonathan Markwell has re-started his Open Coffee Sussex meet up, which happens in the morning of the second Thursday of the month in Brighton. Usually I can’t get to Brighton on Thursdays as I do both school runs, but Katie being on a different shift let me head across. It was great to see it re-start, I met some interesting people, and managed to have a bit of a catch up with Jon, who is once again somewhat of a free agent.

If you want to meet people building their own businesses and services in Brighton, this is a great meet up to go to.


Not great as Katie is doing a lot of extra work as they’re short staffed at her job, and that means I’m on a lot more school runs, childcare and cooking. It also got a bad hit on Thursday when I had a bad night’s sleep, then a lot of hip pain. Still, mainly sleep was better and that is good.


Nothing on 30×500 and didn’t get to writing the list-style article I should be working on.

The Farm

Attendance up to 21, and once again at the Caxton Arms. My notes were…

  • Coding for iOS using Metal
  • React.js
  • Wired Sussex Job Fair next week
  • Finding short term tech work
  • The BNM list
  • Looking for visual demo style Javascript work
  • Project catch up
  • Brighton restaurants that can’t seem to serve hot food
  • Burger King and the Impossible Whopper
  • Speccing a project to be a copy of an existing site – you have to imagine the unseeable parts
  • Odd jobs we have done
  • Checking which websites should be blocked? Warn others in the office first!
  • Politics and what might happen with Brexit
  • Working through hay fever
  • Chili plant cultivation
  • Aches and pains – are Farm members getting old?
  • Making a new logo for your business
  • The tough economics of running a cafe


Katie was working all weekend and Tom was knackered after the first week of this half term, so it was relatively quiet with a trip to the library and some playgrounds.

Reading: Started Forever and a Day by Anthony Horowitz. A James Bond novel, which isn’t normally my thing but I bought it at a discount and it sounds intriguing. It’s set just after World War II, which I didn’t expect from the cover description. It’s going fine, quite short chapers which is good for reading just before bed.

Writing with: a lot with a Papermate Inkjoy Needlepoint I’ve had on the go for a while, almost finished but stores more than it looks. Also with the Platignum Studio when I’ve got paper that can take the fountain pen in.

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