Instead of doing the sensible thing and actually revise for my exams, I've been working on my little side project the last couple days. As I mentioned in an earlier post, the imaginatively named "my e-penis.com" is a database for tracking game collections and progression. As it stands a user can register for an account, login, search for games and provide basic information about the status of each game, such as ownership (whether you have the game, had the game or want the game), completion progress (if you completed it, gave up on it or if the game is uncompletable in the case of an MMO or puzzle game), completion date and how many hours have been played.
Technology wise, I'm using a combination of PHP and jQuery on the front end and a MySQL database on the back end. I've had very little practical experience with jQuery despite being aware of it for a while now, so the whole thing has been a learning experience. Its also been quite a while since I last designed a site from scratch, so I've had to come up with a fresh design that feels more modern than the last site I built. And yes, I'm making a green website. You have a problem with that?
The internet doesn't have enough green if you ask me.
The site uses Giant Bomb's API (which was a nice crash course in JSON) to provide the game database. Back in the FWXD days one of the major issues with the site was trying to get users to enter game information into the database. Using an external wiki that is always growing and correcting itself is certainly the better solution, especially as the site is really only designed for myself. I would love for others to get some use out of it, however I don't really intend for it to gain traction. If I did, I would have chosen a more politically correct name...
The site is currently in alpha, but if you want to play with it and give me feedback, you can check it out here.
In other news, on Thursday I was offered full time employment at my day job. This July will mark two years with the company. I joined them for my placement year and stayed on part time (currently only a day a week) during my final year of University. This offer marks the first time I will be "employed for reals", and includes the obvious benefit of a pay rise, as well as the promise of 20% time to work on personal side projects that can benefit the company.
I had done a lot of thinking leading up to this week as to what I wanted to do once I graduated. Should I do a masters degree? Look at what other job opportunities are available? Or maybe live up to my threat and go back to college and do an art degree? After the last year it didn't take me long to decide that I had had enough of the education system, and frankly I don't know how well I would fit in with a more "professional" company.
Despite the fact they claim to be getting more "proper" (with a real office and everything), you gotta love the idea that your company is making its millions on porn star rum.
So I accepted. If nothing else, I feel more comfortable graduating with a secure job, which will allow me to more casually monitor other opportunities than if I had graduated unemployed. Not that I expect to be leaving them any time soon. They tried and failed to find a replacement for me, so I must be doing something right.
I wont be joining them full time until after graduation at the end of July, so I have some time before then.
On another topic entirely, SEO is a funny thing. I use quotes from TV shows and video games for the title of all my posts. This has resulted in my blog ranking highly in a Google search for "Do you know who I am? I'm the man who's going to burn your house down", which is just wonderful. I found this out when looking at the referrals this site has been getting. Some of the more interesting (and non-SEO abusing) referrals have been for searches such as "nsurl asynchronous download image progress", "uisearchdisplaycontroller coredata" and "iphone development sqlite or core data". I don't claim to be an expert in any of these subjects, but I'm thinking of writing a few posts on how I did a few things in my project to help people searching for these subjects. There was a lot of work involved in understanding some of this stuff, so maybe I can give developers taking on the insane task of learning object-c in the future a hand.