Sunday, August 31, 2008

Tonight I finally finished my very first website, check it out here or at the address in the title (which ever floats your boat). Right now I have most of my portfolio on it, software is coming very soon once I get preview versions out but my photo library was pulled at the last minute because the gallery did not me my expectations. Check it out and let me know what you think? I used iWeb for this release but I want to use something with more power like Dreamweaver but I prefer the price of Expression Web, what would you recommend?

It has been an interesting journey and one of the most important things I have learned is that each browser on each different platform will render a website differently. Any image that required a shadow had to be created using an image editor, shapes or images that have shadows added to them iWeb do not show up in Firefox or Camino but work fine in Safari and Internet Explorer 7 & 8. The website has been online most of the day (but still hidden) for testing using the following browsers:

Firefox 3
Camino 1.6
Safari 4 (Developer Preview)

Firefox 3
Safari 3
Internet Explorer 8 Beta 1

Here are some of the things I have found out during testing: Internet Explorer isn't that hot on alignment, Firefox is just plain slow and Safari surprisingly is the best web experience on windows mainly due to it's own font rendering system. Fonts in Windows Vista are not anti-aliased 90% of the time which means they look sharp and horrible so Safari is a welcome change. In my testing and general use the fastest browser for each platform is Safari on Windows and Camino on Mac which is the fastest browser on the planet. You may have different results but these are very general :)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

New host, new domain, content soon :)

I decided to launch my website about a month ago and I was going to use my 20Gb of MobileMe space but the lack of multiple emails, decent performance etc I decided to pay for a dedicated host and domain name. My man Lloyd refereed me to his host, whom is just starting up, the ball got rolling and now is now live. Well the preview is up for now but hopefully the full site will be live by the end of the weekend, you will be able to see my portfolio of design and photography works as well as freely download the software I have developed so stay tuned!

Hit up the preview and let me know what you think :)

P.S. Alex Mills Design is 1 year old this month!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Stunning Interface concept for Mozilla

While browsing the mozillaLabs website, I like to check up on the concept series to see what's new and today I was in for a nice surprise. Azra Raskin has posted a video demonstrating what could happen when you open a new tab in Firefox, exploring some 'zero-cost' concepts but upon visiting his Vimeo profile I came accross the video called 'Bookmarking and History Concept' by Wei Zhou. This concept (and video production) is amazing and makes you sit back an just go 'that is cool!' because you are lost for words. Running this concept for real would require a fair amount of system resources but by the time Firefox 4 comes out we should be ready. My biggest requirement for Ff4 is speed improvements for the Mac, FF2 is twice as fast as FF3 but Camino is quicker than any other browser (on any platform) on the planet! Just quietly Safari 4 is really fast too....Check the video out:

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I got accepted into Tafe!

Ok so you Aussies will know this is almost nothing due to the fact that almost anyone can get into Tafe, which is cool because that is what it's for. But I thought I would let you guys know that I have been accepted into my Diploma of Electrotechnology course at the eCentral East Perth Campus, which I will be studying while working part time at DigiLife as an Apple Technician. Next year is going to be huge and busy, it's pretty damn scary to think about it but should lead to some bigger opportunities. My main goal is to study programming further after I complete this course, which covers everything from hardware to software to renewable systems. The hardware aspect opens up a whole new window for me and makes my big future project more 'do-able' (think old car and lots and lots of technology). While this blog has been my journey as a developer, it will take on a new role as I leave home (approx 1600km from home) and start a life of my own in the big city which I will document here.

But hey this most important thing is that I got into my course and the new Gym Class Heroes EP, Patches from the Quilt, is insanely awesome! F#*k you this is for my people lol

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

MobileMe update

Today I received an email from Apple telling me that I would receive a 60 day extension of my MobileMe subscription at no extra charge. They noted in the email that the MobileMe launch wasn't their finest hour and yes while the email issues I have had were a pain, all it took was to tell my clients and teachers that my email provider is having issues and no love was lost. This is an ambitious service, which has been noted before, but it's not everyday that Apple makes a mistake or is not proud of something they have done. It takes honor for a company to announce that to it's customers and just imagine the size of the email Microsoft would send to it's Windows customers. I will keep you updated on this topic but I would recommend leaning off the web interface as I have had a much smoother experience using desktop apps like and iPhoto for using the MobileMe services.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The difference between Apple & Microsoft

On the Discovery Science channel (Foxtel Digital/HD) they finally have some new more modern content, in particular a show called Download. The episode I watched followed the invention of the web to the development of the Mosaic/Netscape browser and the competition from Microsoft which led me to thinking. Microsoft used it's money and power to destroy (word used by Internet Explorer engineers when talking about Netscape) the competition, not software from which the company was built from. We all know how crappy Internet Explorer is, the only reason it's still going is because of business as any self respecting developer would have scrapped it already. Microsoft got to the top by using illegal and brutal Business tactics while Apple is rising to the top by making great software and matching it with great hardware. Name one Microsoft application (concept or release) that hasn't already been done before? Microsoft engineers admitted they did not want to know how their salesmen made the multi-million dollar deals, relating them to members of the mafia. Don't get me wrong, I have a lot of respect for Bill Gates and his talented developers but Microsoft as a company is exactly where this industry must not go.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Lloyd is the man!

Fellow developer and designer Lloyd Humphreys from the UK has just won a Microsoft funded competition with his screencast on how to develop a simple music player using Expression Blend in C#. He won $11,000 worth of Prizes from Microsoft. Lloyd runs his own company (at 14!!) and has a number of clients for his software and website development skills so if you need some design work, give him a go. Head to his website for more information. This dude is a professional and a great asset to any project.

Congratulations man!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


Introducing my new website...kinda. Hitting this link will take you to the preview page for my new website that will be designed to offer my software, design works and services all focused around a clean and professional design. The launch of the site will also be the launch of the new Orion Project but I will tell you more about that later. The website will offer blogs or 'status updates' for all the software I have available, allowing you to track progress on new versions and when updates are ready, there may also be a company blog but I will keep this google blog as my own personal one. You will be able to download the latest versions of Fern and Waterpoint Manager for PC, possibly preview versions of the Orion apps will be available as well.

It will also offer my design portfolio and in the future may offer some design services. Stay tuned as it will be launched sometime this month (more details closer to release). This release is being made completely with Apple's iWeb application so it will be interesting so see how long it works before I need more. The website is hosted on my new MobileMe service and by default has the standard domain name '' but hopefully for the release I will have a custom domain.