Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Self Managed Learning Plan

My proposal for the SMLP is PHP. I fell that learning this skill at this stage of my career would benefit me greatly.

My previous qualifications & interests have centered around programming; though this is the first time that is has been focused on the web.

I currently posses a working knowledge & understanding of PHP & its uses on the web; though that knowledge is in its infancy & could be compared to my working knowledge of CSS before the completion of the A9 unit.

Though I have previously written & worked with databases, I am as yet to work with any web based server-side database.

Looking back on one of my previous post ‘Personal Development’, I identified the kind of roll that I would ideally find myself falling into. Additionally noted in the post is the identification of a skills gap; namely PHP.

Because I have a genuine interest in the subject & a programming background, I feel that I would have a high level of motivation & drive to develop my knowledge further.

My second choice for the project would be Flash with action script. Whilst I feel that this skill would be valuable to me & my development, it is not an area that I wish to specialize in so I feel that my knowledge would be likely to fade and / or become rusty after the assignment simply through a lack of call to use it.

In anticipation for this assignment I have already purchased books relating to PHP, though I have had little time to work trough.

I am looking forward to the unit & hope that I am permitted my first choice.

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Third quarter and the bases are loaded…

It feels like only weeks ago that I was sat in my office talking with my colleagues about starting a web design & development degree; but in actuality, it was more like a little under two years!

So much has changed since then.


I felt that the CSS unit was fantastic! My only regret was that we had other units running at the same time which detracted from some of the more advanced learning. Though this was a shame, I still really enjoyed the way that the unit turned out.

Once again, this unit has shown me how little I actually knew & know about CSS. When John gave the lecture on the box model, everything fell into place. It reminded me almost of when I was learning clutch control in a car.

I am under no illusion that there is still much more to learn & that experience is perhaps the best way to develop my skills further; much like learning to drive, its not until you pass your test that you fully understand what you are doing.

On the Job

This project has been a real eye opener for me so far. Not so much at working with clients as I have had experience with this before (both web & non-web related) but how difficult it can be working with a team where everyone (myself included) is equally inexperienced.

The projects largest revelation for me is how difficult it can be to start up a new company; though I am sure that if this was a ‘real life’ job (what ever that means) then procedures would be in place with longevity of service in mind. The key I feel would be experience.

I do feel that the other team are at a definite advantage to us because up until the point of winning the pitches for the Games Development & the Photography sites we had done equal amounts of work & now we have to carry on with the work we were doing for the two clients that had been secured since almost the beginning of the project.

Culture Vulture
I have enjoyed this unit also so far. I enjoyed the research into the mini, both new and old, as it is a subject close to my heart.

The creative days that we are having has been a completely new experience for me; it feels almost what I imagine the first week of an ‘upstairs’ kind of class.
I have really enjoyed today’s day of exploring line, texture, colour, etc using photography of my local area.

With the end of the year within sight it is important, now more than ever, to stay focused & not loose direction.

Though I am listening to podcasts (Boagworld, Rissington, .net & TWiT to name a few) there is still a whole world of web out there yet to be explored.

I am looking into events where I can network with people in the industry & hopefully find employment; though further my education is still an option.