Client: Glidecam Industries, Inc.
Glidecam Industries, Inc. and I go way back all the way to ACT Smart Inc. my first full-time web job. Over the years the founder has become a close personal friend of mine who I have learned a lot from. I recently started working full-time for them and one of my first tasks was to work with Martin on a new design to make the website fresh and appeal more to the customers which consists of professional videographers and cinematographers.
I have developed in just about every PHP Framework. Every notable one for sure. So when a PHP framework had to be chosen for this project the decision was made to use CakePHP. CakePHP has been around since before I was heavy into PHP. With my favorite framework Codeigniter looking for alternative ownership my biggest fear is a framework losing support and having to redevelop under a new framework. So the main deciding factor was it’s longevity, popularity and documentation. All of which CakePHP fell into a little more than the others. Overall it was a choice I did not regret. CakePHP has a little different approach which is based off Ruby on Rails something I am not familiar with. Other than that it is just like any other MVC framework and provided “smooth sailing” throughout the project and I was pleased with the results.
Martin created two layouts in Adobe Photoshop and wanted the web version to be exactly like his Photoshop images. One layout was for the homepage and the other was the layout for the inner pages. These two layouts were to be fully scalable at any resolution as well as have mobile and tablet styles. These styles are necessary for the upcoming Glidecam apps for mobile and tablet devices which are currently in production and 85% completed and are also being developed by me. I have done 100% scalable websites before but this website design was so complex that having the site design be exactly how Martin designed, keeping cross-browser compatibility and having the site scale to any size was very much a balancing act. With the two designs painstakingly finished I was able to apply what he had done to the rest of the website’s pages and complete the design of the website.
I also created a fully manageable back-end behind a user wall. This was to make not only the website able to be updated by anyone we authorize but it also made the updating process faster. This is because areas like for example the dealers has scripted into it automatic geocode look-up just by entering the address. This adds the dealer to the dealer page as well as puts there longitude and latitude into the database so that is can be searched within the Google Maps script giving them a map representation of the closest address and directions if necessary. Another is the news which works just like a WordPress blog and provides an unique URL for each news article to share on Glidecam’s social media pages. With the back-end and the design set Glidecam was all set even if I got hit by a bus.
I have only touched on a few of my favorite features of the new Glidecam website and only more bigger and better things will come. In the end Martin has told me he could not be happier with the website and can’t get over how awesome it is. That is the stuff that makes Web Development worth all those code hair ripping moments.