Hey all,

Im hoping this isnt too out of line to ask - it is genuinely out of a desire to learn and improve, but sadly it is not necessarily code based.

I am working on getting "experience" so I can persue a career in programming, either web, platform, or otherwise... and in an effort to practice, I have put together a website for someone's small business...


I am looking for feedback on:

  • Layout
  • coding (if you wish to dig into it - though there is a bit of ajax/back end so that wont be seen very well)
  • user experience

What is not asked for by the individual -

  • eCommerce (so, while I know it's something I need to learn it is not going into this website)
  • at the moment, no Web 2.0 communications
  • pictures are coming
  • I will be eventually adding a session/login functionality so people may email orders.

Feel free to be brutal... but please remember I am just learning some of these technologies (mostly, the javascript and css)



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The site is pretty rough, but that is understandable since you are just learning. I basically started by doing a website for my parents and took like 3 months to do it from scratch. I learned a ton in the process. But if the person you are doing this for is expecting results soon, I would look into using a pre-built theme. Random google gave me this: http://desizntech.info/2011/11/25-best-css-templates-that-should-not-be-free-but-are/.

If you have plenty of time to spend on this website, then I would look into things like this:

I did this in 3 days... we still need a lot of materials (images, etc..) and I have a lot of database work to flesh out (and some spelling errors as well)... while I do need to work with some frameworks/packages (joomla, droopal, jquery, etc...) I want to make sure my basics are solid before I go making it easy (after all.. when you rely on tools without knowing what they do, when something goes wrong you get in trouble!)

I would like to complete it without templates. However, I do appreciate the idea.

+1 for html5boilerplate... At least you will start out right!

Is there anything in particular that is "broken" or out of place that you guys are pushing a template design, or is it simply because that's where most sites start?

No, it doesn't look broken. The template is nothing more than a clean page in HTML5, which I recommend using above HTML 4 Strict.

I am working on getting "experience"

So start with the latest version.

So... I guess this raises an "ethical" question of - do I develop for as many browsers as possible (since HTML5 is not fully supported yet), or do I develop for the latest tech?

HTML 5 is not fully supported yet, but a lot of what it does offer does downgrade cleanly. A lot of times you can get away with some non-necessary HTML 5 features that will only improve things as more people start to upgrade their browsers, but aren't critical to go without.

If you're looking to write personal projects to show in a resume, I would develop with the latest technology possible. If you're writing something that is going into production today, such as a website for a small business, first and foremost it needs to work with as many browsers as possible because it's not necessarily going to be utilized by early adopters. You can write the absolute best iPhone app in the world, and show off your amazing Objective-C skills, but if your target audience doesn't even have a smartphone, it's as useless as a brick.

commented: Thanks! +0

I would also recommend that new websites that you work on, set the page's docytpe, html element to follow the HTML5 structure. This doesnt meant that you have to introduce new HTML5 elements that your visitors' browsers aren't going to support. As new browsers, and new versions are released, more of them will begin to support the newer elements.

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