010110

1 Jan 2000. That was when this site went live. TEN years ago. I can't believe it myself! Such a lot has changed in the web design and development world in that 10 years. My site has always been a place to showcase my portfolio, and to express my views on my blog. The templates have been overhauled a few times, keeping in tune with what I've learnt and best practices of the industry, but the general look and feel has always been very similar.

It is time for a change.

All I know now is that I want to move forward. How and what that looks like, I do not know yet. This will be my sandbox and you are welcome to play.

Welcome, 2010.

Bushfire Housing

The bushfires in Victoria in the last few days have been horrific, leaving thousands of people homeless. I was inspired by something I saw during the Hurricane Katrina disaster in New Orleans, where a site was set up to pair up the homeless with people willing to offer temporary accommodation.

This proved to be very successful and I suggested we do this at Sputnik Agency where I work. The idea was very well received and we got together a small team, and started building the site. Please head to Bushfire Housing and sign up if you have a place to offer, or if you know of anybody who needs temporary accommodation. Any feedback is also welcome on the functionality of the sites or bugs you may find!

Thanks again! Lets help out however we can.

Wii

I got a Wii for Christmas! I just couldn't believe it when I opened the wrapping. It was from Simon, who I'd been telling about for months now, suggesting that he might even be interested in playing despite not being interested in games on consoles or computers.

I couldn't wait and had to set it up immediately and it came with everything in the box, including Wii Sports, a collection of sport games that show off the use of the Wii's innovative remote/controller. We went off to the Grampians the next day and I brought the Wii along and we had a few sessions at the cabin we stayed at. I went shopping yesterday and picked up a few games and another Wii Remote. I got Zelda: Twilight Princess, Rayman Raving Rabbids and the Wii Play bundle with a Wii Remote.

The games are all fab and brilliant use of the controller. It just feels very natural and easy to pick up. We had dinner with some friends last night, and everybody came over to mine and played on the Wii for a while. It was hilarious! Everybody was getting quite into it, even the ones who would not normally be interested in games.

My Wii Number is 7379 8788 7464 8405 if anybody else has one and wants to send messages through the Wii message board function, or whatever online features Nintendo decides to come out with. Send me an email with your number if you decide to add me so I can add you on mine too.

A week of hard labour

Monday morning I actually managed to sleep right through without waking up in the middle of the night! It was a good thing that I managed to adjust in just a couple of days. Simon's advice to just stay awake all day and keep busy rather than succumbing to it and taking a nap was right, hard as it was at times to fight the urge.We've been really busy all week cleaning and clearing out the house which Simon is preparing to rent out while he's in Australia working. Among the things I've done on the house, I've put up curtain rails, plastered, sanded, stained doors and painted door frames and doorsteps. We've had to make a few trips to B&Q, a huge D.I.Y. warehouse to pick up a few bits and pieces for this maintenance work. Occasionally I'd go over to Tosh's place (one of Simon's friends) to use his broadband internet connection to check on the eBay auctions and catch up on emails. Yesterday was the first time I'd gone into Leeds city centre proper, apart from that day trip to Doncaster where we got the train from Leeds station, and dinner one evening with Caroline and Jackie. Simon's nephew (Jamie) and niece (Emily) are here to stay for a couple of days, and we went into town to do a bit of shopping and for me, some sightseeing. As the weather forecast was for thunderstorms, we headed straight out to catch the sunshine while it was out so I could get some photos taken. It was a whirlwind tour of the major spots in Leeds. I saw the imposing, but magnificent Town Hall, Millennium Square and the adjoining Nelson Mandela garden, the Civic Hall with the gilded owls and clock, down a few of the shopping arcades including the beautiful Victoria Quarter. Popped in briefly to the only Harvey Nichols outside of London, which is priced waaaaay out of my range. The Corn Exchange however was a very interesting and eclectic mix of shops. I absolutely love the roof/ceiling of the building, which is an oval, exposed lattice dome and because of the sheer size of it, it has a mesmerising, hypnotic effect when you look at it. Simon, Jamie and I were in the Corn Exchange when the skies opened up and it was absolutely pouring down and we just couldn't make it back to where the car was parked and rejoin the other half of our group, Emily and Mrs Robinson. Just had to stay put and wait for the rain to die down. Tomorrow we're going out to York, a historical city that was conquered by both Romans and Vikings, and one of the few cities left in the world with an intact city wall around it. There's also the National Railway Museum which I'm really looking forward to.