Author: Tom McClean
Updated: 24 Jul 2016 12:16
Welcome to my personal website. I have run this website for about 8 years and I have relaunched it several times for various reasons. Now I am relaunching it again to utilise a new technology I have created called Portal CMS and so I can finally retire my old VPS hosting services.
The first time I published a personal website, I was very proud of it, but in time as I got better at design and development it started to look rather crude. Since then I have relaunched this website twice more; this being the fourth.
Each time I have relaunched I have done it for a specific reason, such as my development skills being better than they once were; meaning my personal website may not truly reflect what I can build today and modernisation and changes in design practices. But this time it was for a different reason, so I didn't change the design too much but what I did change was the architecture that sits behind the website.
My previous incarnation of this website had a little content management system I wrote called "Typhoeus Portal". This was a great little tool that gave loads of functionality like blogging OOTB, but about a year ago I moved all my hosting to Microsoft Azure and the way "Typhoeus Portal" was architected, meant that I needed to pay for a second site just to perform the abilities of the CMS.
To make the transition to Microsoft Azure App Services complete, and to allow me to retire my old Virtual Private Servers I created a new technology called Portal CMS which should serve as a framework for all of the projects I embark upon in the future.
So what is Portal CMS?
Portal CMS continued along the path I set with "Typhoeus Portal", it needed to provide OOTB functionality such as Media Management and Blogging. But I took it step further to complete some even more advanced tasks.
I now bill Portal CMS as a fully featured Content Management System with a powerful integrated Page Builder.
About 6 months ago I wrote a standalone website called EyeDentity. EyeDentity enabled people from all over the world to sign up and create their own Web Pages for free. The pages were created without any coding; just simply click and type controls. EyeDentity was a really successful project and the technology was vital for what I wanted to create in the future.
So I took the technology in EyeDentity and adapted it for Portal CMS, changing things I learned didn't work and adding things to take it to the next level.
In the end Portal CMS is a bit of a combination of both "Typhoeus Portal" and EyeDentity - rewritten to take advantage of my better development skills today. It serves as a framework for a website, giving lots of different things OOTB such as...
Blogging and Post Writing
Photo Galleries and Media Management
Page Builder to build dynamic websites
Scalable architecture to make it cheap and efficient to deploy several times.
To be customisable so that any websites I make in future can use the base framework, but be customised to suit the purposes of the website.
Responsive Design techniques and bootstrapped.
Contain reusable libraries that are common to all websites, like JQuery, FancyBox, bespoke Colour and Image Pickers etc.
To not require ANY setup for creating a new website from scratch.
So to that end Portal CMS is very successful so far, and one of the best things I have built to date, when I start new projects I can focus on the proposition of the site and not on writing authentication and basic architecture every time which slows down turnover.
Portal CMS is very new so I will be working on it for a while longer, but I have created a demo site and published the source code onto GitHub. If you want to learn more about Portal CMS. Take a look at its own website - https://www.portalcms.azurewebsites.net.
I have stuck a few screenshots in the gallery for this post if you want to see how it looks.
To give you an example of the capabilities of Portal CMS. This entire website was built using the page builder, from the Homepage to the blogs, it is all built using the Page Builder technology I have created. Ill post a video showing this technology soon.
Next is simple - I am going to keep trying to publish new Posts about things that interest me in the world of Software and Computers, and I am going to continue taking Portal CMS from strength to strength. Please come back again soon and see if I can keep up my writing!