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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

I thought I was going to be a Web Developer! [From my "Web MaJoR" blog]

Okay, it turns out what I'm doing for my friend Rob is more graphic artist and video post production than I thought I'd be doing, and less web development, but I'm still going to use this blog to discuss what's going on in my professional life. That will include what's going on with the above endeavors, plus my own journey to become a better web developer (self-study, classes, projects personal & professional, etc).

So, who is this Rob guy and what are you doing for him then, you ask? Well, for starters, Rob is a personal trainer. Rob also loves helping people, especially where it comes to personal fitness. As such, he has under development a number of projects (videos, ebooks, a membership site, et cetera) that I will be linking to when it goes live later this year. I've been doing some web work for him, but mostly lately I've been doing video production (using Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe Encore DVD, and Adobe Photoshop), and have been working with him on the companion ebook for this product.

Since this product has to do with improving your posture (a problem that most people that sit in front of a computer for any length of time have — whether they're aware of it or not — that can cause a number of other problems for them), but is still under wraps, I'll refer to it for now as Project Quasimodo.

So, what are am I doing for myself then?

Well, I am still very interested in becoming a full-fledged web developer.

I did this kind of work for a brief time for my former employer but, as was typical at this company — in a very Dilbert kind of way — I was given training, put to work on a project, and then once that project was over (long before I could really master the skills) I was put to work on something completely unrelated to web development. Shortly after that project ended, I was laid off and have done very little with my own website since (being busy with "stay-at-home dad-hood" will do that to you!)

If I could master the skills I"d like to master, I'd be a wiz in the following areas:

  • web graphics (I'm taking a Photoshop Class at Dakota County Technical College (DCTC) to work on that)

  • Client side & server side web programming (which I will probably obtain while pursuing a Web Developer Certificate from Saint Paul College)

  • PHP5/MySQL (also part of the above named certificate program)

  • XHTML/CSS (actually part of client side programming, but I'd really like to know these areas well)

  • AJAX (something I'll have to find a class for sometime, or teach myself)

Right now, I'm reading Head First HTML with CSS & XHTML because, as I said, I'm really rusty at web stuff, and I've never done all that much with either css or xhtml, and I'd like to (one look at my blogs and you'll see why!)

Oh, and I'm about one third of the way through this book in what is — for me — record time, and I'm remembering a good deal (it does help though that almost none of this part of the book is new to me, just rusty!) Still, if you're new to this stuff, these "Head First" books are the way to go.