Blog: Phill

Coffee (part 1)

We at Consilience are privy to some day to day luxuries during our time in the office; my personal favourite are our 10:20 caffe lattes courtesy of Ruth. I find that a good cup of coffee kickstarts the day and helps me out from, what is usually, a very zombie-like state. A morning coffee has become part of my daily routine, whether I am at home, at work, or on the train to university. Recently, I’ve started building up my

Clearing floats

To anyone out there reading up on clearing, this is the best method: It’s totally cross-browser compatible, doesn’t leave any messy markup and leaves the code fully accessible. It does however have 1 flaw… Scroll down to the part about the IE/Mac problem and you’ll see the fix involves adding a display: inline-block to the container block, which is then re-instated to a display: block in the IE stylesheet. The problem is that inline-block also affects all the other

Accessible font sizes

A quick note to developers that are styling elements that use monospace fonts (pre, code, q, etc). Be aware that some browsers, like Safari and Chrome, have their own fixed-width font size preference, which by default is set to 13px. This upsets proceedings when you apply a proportional (% or em) font-size to the body. There are three solutions to counter this problem: Apply font-size to each element separately Remove monospace from the font stack and treat it as a

Choosing a Framework (part 2)

The Final Four Down to last four; CakePHP, CodeIgnitor, Kohana and Zend. The test is to get each framework to print ‘Hello World’ on its own ‘/hello/’ page. For each test I will record the time taken to: Work out how to complete the task, which will indicate how simple it is to use, and how good the documentation is. How long the script takes to execute, to measure the performance. This will be averaged over 5 attempts CodeIgniter Test

Choosing a Framework (part 1)

So you’ve decided on a framework over a CMS for your web application? Me too! Here’s fundamentally why: Expandability. A job board is a complex application, and I want to be able to expand it with various modules as my time and resources increase. Flexibility. I want to know where things are going at a low level so I can better understand the system, and control the overall direction of the project. Change/Experience. I’m interested to see how a web

Is this CMS/Framework right for me?

I’ve figured I need to take a step back and re-analyse exactly what it is I’m looking for. There are now a lot of CMSs and frameworks in the market, all boasting about exactly the same. The most irritating claim of all is: “Framework/CMS XXYY is designed to make life as easy as possible to develop your robust, user-friendly websites” … REALLY? NEVER! The time has come where some investigation is needed to separate the men from the boys. What

Beginning MODx

Documentating my research of MODx CMF. I will blog some more in my own words when I know more about the system. I’ve highlighed the essential reading in bold. Help Sites Documentation: Wiki: Forums: The Project A very general overview of the goals of the project:,11800.0.html Pros and Cons: General Review: A 3 month review: MODx does a great job as a full featured CMS, but it’s true potential lies in it’s ability

Starting Afresh

I like shiney things. Things that make me go “ooo” and “ahhh”. For example I like Macs, and more suprisingly Windows Vista. It will come as no suprise then that I am a mad fan of using AJAX in my web sites and applications. Lets just recap on why Ajax is so ‘mega friggin awesome’! No more waiting for page loading. Web pages take about 2.5 seconds to download and another 1-2 to render depending on your computer hardware and

Password Manager

Found this great lightweight password manager: KeePass: All very self-explanatory. A master password locks the database. Plenty of plugins to make life easier for you. So far I’ve only tryed using the Firefox >> KeyPass importer which in turn requires you to download the KeyPass XML importer. I experienced problems when trying to directly import from Firefox so I downloaded the Password Exporter addon. This exports your Firefox passwords into an XML file which the Firefox >> KeyPass importer

Menu Challenges 2

IE6 is broken. [sourcecode language=”css”] #menu ul.level2 li { display: block; } #menu ul.level2 li a { display: block; float: none; border: 1px solid transparent; /* Stops the box from jittering on hover */ margin: 0.25em 0px; padding: 0.3em 0.6em; background: transparent; color: #666666; font-weight: normal; } #menu ul.level2 li a:hover { background: #f36e45 url(../images/menu-level2-bg-hover.gif) left top repeat-x; color: #ffffff; border: 1px solid #f2683d; -webkit-border-radius: 3px; -moz-border-radius: 3px; } [/sourcecode] 2 major problems. There is a large margin on the

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