Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Draw me a cat

I've been called a webmaster more than once but I don't think I ever really earned the title. There's just so many things that go into building a website and I don't have the expertise nor the inclination to perform all tasks. Sure, I can create a web application based on the requirements specification and I'll even do the database modeling myself. But ask me to design the webpage and you'll be staring at a blank screen. Ask me to configure the server and it will be me staring at you.

That's why I've always appreciated my co-workers during the many years I've been in web development. We were busy workers in an assembly line. Project manager meets with the client and finds out what they want. PM drafts the requirements document and presents it to the staff at project kick-off. Web designer thinks of the look and feel for the site and makes several design mock-ups from which the client can choose. In the meantime, web developer (that's me!) starts on the DB design and any back-end programming that can do without a fancy user interface. After the web designer has finished the mock-ups, s/he submits it to PM who then presents it to the client. Client chooses a design; PM gives go-signal to web designer to create html pages based on the chosen design. Web designer hands over the html pages to the web developer; web developer plugs in the code into the html pages. Et voila, you have a working website. Of course there are a lot of things that happen and must be done before the client finally signs-off on the project. But you get the picture. Each member of the team has a specific task which must be done within a specific amount of time and each adheres to the development process as much as possible to ensure smooth transitioning of work output.

So that's if you have a whole team. But if you're only two people trying to execute your bright ideas onto a website-to-be then you're bound to have shared responsibilities. I'm not complaining though. Just yesterday, we spent the whole afternoon designing a logo and we're not even finished yet. I struggled with letting my creative juices flow (maybe because I didn't have any) but I did enjoy every pixel-crunching minute of it. :)

After the logo comes choosing a color scheme. I'm surely dreading it but I think we'll get by with a little help from our friend.

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