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Henstra Advies en Ondersteuning

Harm Henstra is a coach and interim manager based in Haarlem. He needed a small, straightforward website to present himself and his services. So rapidly I put up a new Joomla installation. After a short planning meeting Harm wrote most of the content in his new website. I structured it and filled the site. We jointly choose a stock template and I adapted the colours and feel to his corporate identity. Next, we put up the "pawn" images and portraits to finish the global layout.

HTML style guide

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:49

When designing websites graphic designers often draw a neat picture in photoshop. The day to day use of a website greatly differs from this ideal scenario. The design shows a calm and readable site with demo text. But the actual website in use everything but serene and readable. The text style is usually the first aspect of a site that gets diluted. Both users and visitors create content or leave comments which just don't fit the initial picture painted by the designer. A lot of problems stem from the use of wysiwyg editors in content management systems.

JRoute and module visibility

Sat, 09/12/2009 - 20:04

Correct SEF routing in Joomla is pretty easy thanks to the class JRoute. If you want to redirect to a clean url just use the basic method _(); like so:

2Value Subversion

2Value is a network organisation. In this organisation I am among a growing number of associates who create high quality open source software solutions for the web. The network character is one of the great strengths of such a company. However, you need a set of effective procedures and collaborative tools for such an organisation to work effectively. In the last couple of months I worked on implementing Subversion and localised environments in 2Value.

Related nodes and custom breadcrumbs

Fri, 08/21/2009 - 17:38

Sometimes, having an easy to use CMS like Drupal or Joomla is just one more excuse to keep on tweaking. Just now I added a related nodes block to the article and project pages. Let's say I write an article like this and I tag it drupal. A couple other articles on the same topic are shown in a block in the right column. Hard to do? I don't think so! Just use the views module an some view arguments, like so.

Flevoziekenhuis Readspeaker

I've created a Joomla Readspeaker plugin for the Flevo Hospital in Almere. Readspeaker is a technology that allows webdevelopers to embed a screenreader on a website. Off course many people with a visual handicap already use screenreaders but these usually read everything on the webpage. With readspeaker, the webdeveloper can decide which content should be read, and which shouldn't. Also it's a platform independent solution. If you have a recent webbrowser with javascript enabled it works.

SEO and performance

Tue, 07/21/2009 - 15:46

Discussions on Drupal site optimisation are usually technical discussions. But many a time they boil down to philosophical discussions. Search engine optimisation (SEO) and performance tweaks aren't necessarily good for the manageability of your site or for your potential visitors. I ran across a couple of these dilemmas in recent days while trying to optimise my own site.

Business cards

Sun, 06/28/2009 - 01:29

Business card front, back in rolloverLast week I got my new business cards. The folks at Zalsman did a great job printing the range of colours carefully selected by Rob Krijgsman.

Movie embedding

Wed, 06/17/2009 - 12:34

Despite some seriously evil legal terms, I moved the instructional videos for the Joomla-SugarCRM bridge from blip.tv to vimeo.
The guys at blip.tv weren't able to deliver xhtml 1.0 strict validating embed code. I considered youtube. But the encoding quality of vimeo, when it comes to screen casts, beats the crap out of youtube's encoding.

Tweaking the site

Thu, 05/14/2009 - 11:59

Since a week I'm working in Haarlem every Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. With the good folks of 2Value we're manning a new office at the Kenaupark. The synergy of sharing an office location can be a really good thing. One of the benefits is always having a usability guru around. Kor pointed me at some shortcomings of this website. Some of them I solved today.