Week N+2

    Avantgardening.org: One of the websites I put live this week

    Avantgardening.org: One of the websites I put live this week

    It's Saturday evening, and time to quickly review my week. I've noticed my weeknotes have been picked up elsewhere, which is sort of embarrassing. I hope my ramblings are useful - it's certainly interesting for me reading how other people progress with projects.

    This week started with a bang, digging into the numerous projects that I've got on and spending some time on each pushing forward, one of them pushed forward quicker than the others, and the new Avant Gardening website was put live - after some fun getting control of the domains back from Microsoft Live Office (which involves killing email for the domain a short while... nice...). I'm happy with the cut and paste asthetic of the website, though there are still a couple of tweaks to do and two more sections. One is waiting on a bug I've found with Calameo to be sorted out - we resolved the bug but I'm waiting for them to roll it out to their site (Though I've just checked and they have now. Great!)

    Further work was done on Rossi & Rossi, rebuilding the site based upon their new logo. Fortunately my design wasn't too heavily reliant on the styling from their old logo, but it was still a bit of a pain to get all the alterations done on the site and get it back up and running nicely. Having done this I'm also not as happy with it as I was, and I've started refining the layouts, which is not speeding things up.

    On Tuesday I dug into some of the mapping work I'm doing on Spatial Agency, just playing around with Google Maps and trying some visualisations of location based data. Alas the information we have on each of the practises just specifies countries, so any spatial representation here is going to be minimal, but I think there are some worthwhile outcomes in it.

    I also got on with some of the more intensive mapping for the Rhyzom project with AAA and working through the complex interactions of different levels of contributors, events, projects, workshops, fieldtrips and locations. Painting a picture of this is intereting, but challenging. I think part of the challenge is coming from my desire to always approach the visualisation as much as a website as as a picture, and so I'm trying to build it in some form of semantic HTML structure. Rod for my own back. There was a quick meet with Donia from AAA yesterday evening to look at progress on this. It's not moved as quickly as I'd have liked it to, partially because of commitments elsewhere, and partially down to my focus on really understanding the structures before I start building.

    On Thursday I met up with the team at Afterall to review how they were feeling about their website, and what could do with being refined and improved. Overall they are happy with the site, but there are a few refinements to make, nothing to groundbreaking, but nice to really look at the usability and communication of this site rather than data structures and interactions of entities like a lot of the other projects.

    After than meeting I was staring into another with Paul Hetherington, former colleague and (soon-to-be-ex) Creative Director at SHOWstudio, to talk through his upcoming project. This project is going to be more commercial, but the underlying ideas behind it also give a lot of interesting possiblities. Don't want to give too much away at the moment - client confidentiality an all that - but looking forward to working on this in the New Year.

    Today has been spent working on the Lawson Park Electronic Library website, trying to get the first phase of this launched as soon as possible. I met up with Maria Benjamin (one half of collaborators on the project Guestroom ) and they like where I'm going with it. I hope to get the basic site up this week, and then we can really start extending the contents on the site.

    (As a side note I'm struck by the coincidence of collaborating with Guestroom on a project that contains a Reading Room, when another ex-collaborator is setting up guest rooms at a space called The Reading Rooms - perhaps I should suggest we join the libraries up...)

    I've also started building the framework for the website(s) for Abigail Hunt and Kieren Reed I mentioned last week.

    in other related updates, I've updated the Grizedale Arts with some design refinements and with a job opening, internship offers, and available residencies and commissions, and a job opening - one I'd be tempted to apply for if I was more qualified. These will start feeding back into the work that I'm developing as part for the Lawson Park website and as part of my ongoing work with Grizedale Arts.

    This week has also started me really thinking that the decade is turning, and it's become apparent 2010 is going to be an even busier year. Looking my updates over the last few weeks I've realised that I need to become more foccused on each project to fulfil things quicker, so that's my plan for next year.

    Another reflection this week was not being able to contextualise the speed at which I do things. In some ways it seems slow (I imagine from the outside) but in other ways I feel it's fast. I think this is an issue to do with not working in a space with people who do the same as me - and also the time-sharing aspect of the way I approach my work. I also think it's externally people don't see the details going into things (code optimisation, structural tweeks, cross platform testing) which start to be a drain.

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