Code crafting: web and mobile development

We believe in putting in the hard yards to write elegant code, from standards-compliant HTML/CSS, to responsive Javascript, to extensible, high-performing PHP and SQL. While it's true most of our clients will never take a peak at the results of these labours, the business benefits are evident:

Wander over to our how-tos and demonstrations, if your after the technical blog posts we published earlier.

Mobile, tablet and browser compatibility with W3C web standards

If your website is a delicious layer cake, the HTML/CSS markup is the top-most sugar frosting layer. Your site's markup dictates how web browsers (you're using one - Internet Explorer, Firefox, etc - to look at this post) display your site and also how search engines index your site. What we pay attention to in our markup:

  • we're clean freaks: HTML will never be interspersed with styling, we like to keep our styling exclusively in CSS files - this means we can updating a styling rule in just one place and have it cascade throughout the site without any conflicts;
  • semantics: aka vocabulary for machines - web browsers and search engines are actually quite simple minded machines, by implementing semantics' best practices we ensure these machines display/read your content the way you intended them to
  • browser compatibility: the easiest way to ensure your site displays beautifully for all visitors, regardless of whether they're on a an old PC using Internet Explorer or the latest MacBook using Safari, is for the markup to be W3C standards compliant - web browsers follow W3C's standards, and if your site does too, everybody's singing from the same sheet
  • device compatibility: your customers' computers are no longer just their desktops or laptops, now their looking at your site on their smartphones, tablets and mini-tablets, and responsively-designed markup is rescuing us from having to develop separate websites for each device - we use HTML5/CSS3 to suss out the size and capabilities of the device your client is using and responsively deliver the best layout

Dynamic interactions thanks to Javascript

Wondering how the Portfolio in our right-sidebar automatically scrolls, or how the 'What can we do for you' and 'What is Drupal' sections expand/collapse? That's with a little sprinkling of Javascript, or more specifically, a Javascript framework called JQuery. How we use Javascript in our projects:

  • JQuery: like Twitter and Reddit, we like to use the JQuery framework (selected after deliberate trial and evaluation of other frameworks, including MooTools and Prototype) although we're keeping our eye on up-and-comers such as Angular and Backbone
  • less in more: we sprinkle on our Javascript with a light hand - which means your site is never sluggish or unresponsive
  • fallback position: not all web browsers know what to do with Javascript, not only do we have plain HTML fallbacks for when Javascript may be disabled, we also never use Javascript for essential site features - your site always works with our without Javascript

Versioning and safe site launches

Versioning, or version control, is how we keep track of what updates have been made with each new feature/enhancement of your site. By following a thorough release management workflow, you can sleep easy knowing that - there's always a backup, we can rollback to any previous version of your site, and multiple developers can work together without fear of overwriting anything/losing any updates. Technical note: we used to use to use Subversion, but most of our projects our now on Github.

No hard-coding on my watch

No hard-coding and a few other aspects of our programming:

  • no hard-coding: lets you control your business rules whenever possible, whether it's calculating the shipping fee for your e-commerce store or sending a welcome email for your membership website
  • secure: we're fluent in Open Web App's Security Project - we always check forms' input fields, hash sensitive information and then save the database and use encrypted (SSL) connections for e-commerce sites
  • high performing: your site's speed and performance depends on how it has been coded (in addition to where it is hosted) - our strong software engineering skills means we never burden your server's memory or processing with wasteful tasks

Need a website that looks *and works* great on widescreen monitors, tablets in landscape orientation and smartphone in portrait mode? Or an email campaign? Maybe a Facebook landing page? Want to wrap your mobile site and push to the mobile app (iTunes, Google Play) marketplace?
Just want to debate technology and workflow tools? Drop us a line :)

Image credits: (1) Pies, Pies, Pies (1961) by Wayne Thiebaud (2)Flatiron by laverrue (3)Meritocracy by opensourceway (4) punched cards by Marcin Wichary