Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Importance of Details

I’m very fortunate to have an amazing graphics artist putting the conference website together. She’s done an amazing job, and I don’t want this post to sound like I’m slaggin’ anyone…its more of a “lessons learned” thing.

We’re launching the site this week and I was sent all of the HTML for the site so I could get it setup on my web host. Admittedly, I didn’t look at them as soon as I got them.

Lesson – Don’t Put Off To Tomorrow What You Can Do Today

When I popped open the zip file last night I saw a collection of PHP files. I wasn’t expecting PHP, but whatever…no biggie. At least, until I tried to get it running on my web host. Turns out that they don’t support PHP.

Luckily the damage was very minor: PHP script was just being used for include files (header, footer, etc.) and for some menu aesthetics…nothing that can’t be remedied with a little Javascript.

But it leads to the real lesson of this experience:

Lesson - Don’t Assume, Spell Out All The Details

*Especially* if you’re a developer dealing with a graphics person. That’s not a slag against graphic artists, its just reality: I live in a Microsoft world with Microsoft hosting providers and Microsoft technologies and leveraging Javascript for UI goodness. Graphics people live in an Adobe world with PHP and Flash. Sometimes terms can mean different things, so make sure you investigate and communicate limitations up front (i.e. If I provided the web host capabilities up front, this wouldn’t be an issue).

Note: In the time it took me to write this post, she had the updated site in my inbox…awesome people = awesome results!

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