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22 June 2009

Behind The Scenes - Making of a Website

Having a website is a fundamental requirement for every business in this internet age. So learning the basics of getting the site ready was of utmost importance to me during my preparation period. My aim was to identify a platform that is simple to use and can be updated and managed easily.

Before this, I never even knew that there were open source platforms like Drupal, Joomla, Word Press etc., using which we could build full-fledged websites. While searching online, I found a lot of paid platforms, however none of them came close to open source. Maybe I am biased here, due to the cost factor :).

With a multitude of free platforms, it was rather tough to pick one. I knew what I wanted, but mapping my requirements to the appropriate platform was taking more time than anticipated. I had to tackle this a bit differently.

My first instinct was to seek professional assistance of a web developer. But then I realised that I would only be given a suggestion based on what one person knows or is exposed to. If, at a later stage, it turned out to be wrong, I would be in big trouble. To be on the safer side, I had to ask at least 8 to 10 professionals to reach a final decision. But the tough part was to find these professionals and secondly, even if I find them, would they care to help?

Linked-in was the answer to my problem. I posted a few questions about what I was looking for and in reply, a lot of experts around the world shared their point of view. I got a really balanced and informed opinion about each of the available platforms and within a few days, was able to make a decision! Thanks to social networks!

And Joomla was the winner.

The next task was to select a hosting provider. When I typed in web hosting, there were hundreds of companies that came up in Google, starting from Free sites to those charging $500 per month. The range of options was too vast and it was hard to make comparisons! I started going through a few of the plans and had to research further when I came across words like Dedicated, Virtual, Co-hosting, Grid etc.

I realised that I had to first determine the type of hosting that I need, before looking into the nitty-gritties. Once I had a fair idea of the different hosting options available, I framed a few questions around my requirements and posted it in Linked-in to get expert opinions. I also put posers on other websites like to get a local perspective. The suggestions were more or less similar - Dedicated Virtual Hosting looked like the best bet.

Once I decided on Dedicated Virtual Hosting , I had to find a provider. The available options were narrowed down as I was looking for a DV provider within a certain price range. There were 4 or 5 providers that always came up in searches and there were a lot of comments available on the web about each of them. From there, it was an easy pick.

The choices around the website were finally made; all thanks to the internet and the online communities ever ready to help.

09 June 2009

Our House - Progress so far

The framework of our house has been completed. For the past 3 weeks, I have been going on-site every day! It was really exciting to see the shape of the house evolving.

Timber framing the ground floor

Fixing up the front

Starting work on level one

Getting the roof done

Half way through the roofing

Final Touch up on the sides

Windows fitted

Frame work almost done

Being there, I just felt like all the hard work is starting to pay-off finally.

Next stage is brick-laying. Once they complete laying the bottom half of the house, the Scaffolding will go up. Waiting for that to happen!

If you would like to read Part 2 please click here

If you would like to read Part 1 please click here