It’s been quite a while since I’ve made a blog post, I haven’t forgot about my blog, however I have been constantly busy with numerous other things! I am finally starting to get everything organized, so updates should start to become a bit more regular (finally!).

So let’s update some of the projects I currently have running, and their status:

  • CartoLogix for Windows [ on hold ]
  • CartoLogix for Web [ re-drafting ]
  • W3R File Parser/Blogger [ in progress ]
  • XNA RTS Game [ in progress ]
  • .NET MVC Forum Software [ drafting ]
  • Developing Your Own Diagram Software Book [ in progress ]

I also have two long term development projects, which unfortunately are confidential, so I am unable to mention details of their development until completion.

CartoLogix for Windows is currently on hold, as I am in the process of converting it into a book describing how to develop your own Diagram Software in C#. I have not yet tried to find a publisher for the book, as I first want to complete a couple major chapters which I think would be beneficial for the publishing companies to give me a fair judgement, on whether they will publish my work or not.

CartoLogix for Web, the original project, which took me a lot of time to develop, I have decided to re-draft, as I am sure I can re-develop all of the existing features to be faster and more stable than they are at present. I also believe that I can do all of this in a mere fraction of the original development time, with a few tricks I have learned over the past year. I’ll be posting updates on the project progress in future blog posts.

W3R File Parser/Blogger, is a small project I have undertaken. I was asked to create a plugin for WordPress, which allows the user to upload a W3R file, which will first be parsed for information, and then uploaded to a public FTP. The parsed information and Link to the file will be automatically posted into a new blog post, and blog formatting options will also be available.

XNA RTS Game, a Real Time Strategy game I am currently developing with Microsoft’s XNA Framework. I have a full development team on this project, of which, I am the lead programmer. I will be making use of the Lua Scripting language for this project, and releasing the game on the Xbox 360 Marketplace.

.NET MVC Forum Software, something I have wanted to do for ages is write my own Forum Software, a good software package, which is written in .NET, offers a lot of flexibility, ease of use, stability, and it best of all, open source (free to use).

That covers pretty much everything that is going on at the moment, I also need to redesign my homepage at some point, as the scale of work I am now undertaking has come to be a bit too much for the current design to handle.

Once more, I am delayed in actually making blog posts, as I have been ever so busy with numerous different things. Let us go through a summary of what I have been up to since my last blog post..

I have been enrolled onto more training courses, learned a lot more useful functionality in the .NET 3.5 framework, increased my production rate with use of a lovely tool called ReSharper, saved my work a fair chunk of money in server costs by identifying some unrequited hardware and migrating some architecture around. Another bit of good news is that I have finally booked my driving test for my car, and on that topic, today upgraded the speakers in my Land Rover to a much better system. I also was asked to join a 4x4 club by a lovely young lady at my local music store when I went in to buy some new headphones.

So to the most part, everything is going very well, I have signed up to the Gym with a personal trainer, managed to put on nearly a stone of muscle, feeling much healthier, and I also upgraded my home network to N1.

The next thing I want to try do is take on a few more freelance projects, as I now feel I have a good grip over my day job, and what I do there has dramatically increased my productivity levels, not only from having worked with professionals/contractors who are specialists in their own fields, but also from all the learning material and time I am given to further my own development. I would love to take a vacation later this year, so the extra money would be great to help me pay off the credit card before I head off.

I am sure that it will be probably another month before I actually post here again, but most likely there will be some even more interesting things for me to share.

Well I have been working for William Reed for nearly a month now, and I must say I am loving it! I am learning so much, getting to play around with all the tech and such that I normally only get to mess around with in my free time, and get to speak to people who actually know what they are talking about!

So far, I have learned jQuery (I used to be highly proficient in JavaScript, but now I can code even more, in less time), even wrote my own jQuery Plugin. I have also been learning LINQ, MVC, nHibernate, Resharper, and a few other bits. I am to also learn ENDECA very soon, which looks like a very interesting item to work with.

I am already making good use of all this knowledge, as they keep giving me small projects to try out, while they train me up.

New job aside, I have decided to write some User Controls of my own, as I have tried out many different controls (commercial and open source) and none of them do exactly what I would like them to do. Some offer a lot of features I like, but then they have hidden problems. So I have decided to develop my own, which I would have better control over. I may even publish them if I feel they are good enough.

Once again, I have been really busy with numerous different things. I have been teaching myself Microsoft Silverlight, reading a bit more into AJAX for ASP.NET, as well as playing around with a few other languages. As an experiment, I have started to convert CartoLogix into Silverlight, as I have a feeling it would run much better as a Silverlight application, if it is intended for use over the web.

I am also going to be starting a new job at William Reed Business Media, as a Junior Online Solutions Developer. I am looking forward to playing around with all the new ideas and new technology they work with, which will include Microsoft Silverlight.

When I get a bit more time, I will do a bit more of a global update on everything on this website, but unfortunately I have been away either working or traveling.

Unfortunately I have been busy with a lot of other work which takes precedence over me completing this website.

However I am now slowly finishing it all off, I’ve just about finished the Home page, and Blog, just need to make a few tweaks. I need to sit down with my friend who is a technical writer to sort out the Products and Portfolio sections, and I should hopefully have the Contact form completed today at some point.

After I’ve finished up the frontend, I can whip up a nice little CMS for myself, as my previous CMS, I wrote in PHP, and this new website runs purely on ASP.NET. I’m trying to make best use of all the functionality of .NET - so far I’ve done MasterPages, and a few Server Controls, however I think for the CMS I will make a few custom usercontrols.