Gary Smith Web Developer

Welcome to my portfolio web site! This site is meant to showcase the web development skills and experience of Gary Smith.

Having started as a professional web developer in 1995 I’ve evolved along with the new techniques and technologies that have emerged. This gives me a unique perspective and a deep understanding of how all of the availble technologies can be combined to create a modern mobile friendly website.

Projects


I’ve worked on these projects in one capacity or another, usually as the sole developer– the one thing I never did though was design them. I have an extensive background in graphic arts but always as a technician, never a designer. Some of these sites featured below are gorgeous, I was fortunate enough to work with some very talented designers.

The screenshots below are just an easy way to group my projects. Clicking on the image will open a popup with details about the project and a screenshot.

I’m a full stack developer because I can take all of the graphics and designer’s specifications and turn them into fully functional websites. I’m not a developer and a designer, I’m a developer.


Code


My web projects are hand coded, object-oriented and (usually) database-driven. This combination allows me to rapidly create sites with advanced interactive capabilities. Past projects include e-commerce sites, calendaring applications, online reservation systems and custom content management systems. I currently uses HTML, CSS, Javascript, MySql, PHP, jQuery, Ajax and Laravel Framework on my favorite web platform, Linux/Apache.

I love accessing third party API’s. I’ve been using SOAP and CURL for years. I especially love using JSON when accessing API’s. I’ve also enjoyed accessing the new RETs server api to facilitate the syncing of MLS IDX data to a members remote database server allowing searches of the mls database on the members web site. This allows members to sort and format mls listings in a manner consistent with their own web site.

I create clean, well structured code to enhance readability. I’m comfortable with Object Oriented and Procedural coding styles. I have experience with Zend, Laravel and Code Ignitor frameworks and a working knowledge of Wordpress and Magento CMS’s. I also can create static sites using Jekyll. The site you are viewing now is built with Jekyll but some of the content comes from a Google Spreadsheet.

My html and css are optimized for faster loading and reduced file size. I have a clear understanding of caching and minifying techniques and the ability to reduce http requests by concatenating javascript/css files and combining images with the use of css sprites.

My recent passion has been learning DevOps. I started out using Vagrant with Chef and Berkshelf for provisioning until I discovered Ansible. I started out in DevOps as a way to build development environments that were standardized across a team and had all of the tools the developer would need for the project. The VM’s contained all of the server and client tools such as Apache, Mysql, Php, GIT, etc as well as front-end tools like node, ruby and image compression tools to name a few. I’m currently exploring Docker Containers as an alternative to Vagrant and VM’s. I especially like the fact that Docker will work on Windows since Ansible won’t. I’ve recently converted my Laravel development environment to run on docker with all of the laravel goodness being able to run webpack, gulp, composer, npm, artisian and bash scripts withing the containers. I love keeping my development computer free of having to install all of the tools needed to develop modern websites.

I can update and deploy sites via ssh, ftp, git and svn. I also use Ansible to provision and deploy sites. Sites are kept up to date using custom webhooks that merge git pushes and can build sites like Jekyll static sites.

I have strong troubleshooting and problem analysis/resolution skills and the ability to learn and apply new techniques and technologies as they become available to solve both new and old problems.

Specialties: Web development on UNIX platforms, Mac OSX, Linux, Solaris, LAMP Stacks and LEMP Stacks.

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