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Just an update

Posted by derekbobo on January 21, 2009

Things have been going a lot slower than I’d care for lately. I’ve had a number of busy days at work, we adopted a new puppy, etc. “real life” has just been keeping my on my toes. That aside, I’ve tried to dedicate at least a little time each day to being productive. My hope is that if I set small goals I’ll continue to work on things without getting overwhelmed and before long I will have probably done far more than my goals for that night.

I recently jumped into building some of the core system stuff. By that I mean all of the business logic and data structures that will allow this beast to chug along without a lot of babysitting on my part. I had actually intended to work on the back end of the product itself, but pretty quickly realized I hadn’t built out containers for most of that data. I ultimately ended up on somewhat of a different path, but it was all still productive stuff and proved to be a nice change of scenery.

So over the last week here are some of the things I’ve been working on:

  • Design core system database. This includes features for invoicing, payment processing, accounting, CRM, etc
  • Since something like 75% of development time is spent validating user input (stupid users!) I worked on some libraries that handle input validation. I can now write forms assuming that the data is valid and then pretty easily drop in the rules after the fact. These utilities also handle maintaining page state and displaying any error messages.
  • I also added a utility for handling hashes and encryption. This will be useful when it comes time to securing sensitive data (and even user/password type stuff).
  • Building out some of the administrative forms that allow me to create clients, associate people to that client, etc. Basically I want to get enough of the core features built out that will allow me to create any components that will be required for the actual product rollout. Extra bells and whistles I can implement as needed.
  • I started noticing my code getting cluttered with some manual includes, so I rewrote my autoload function to include recursive autoloading of classes. This is definitely a handy feature.

I don’t feel like I’ve accomplished much over the last week, but when I write it all out (above) I feel a little better about it. I’m just going to keep chiseling away at it. I really don’t think I’m too far off from where I need to be, but I had to build out some of this foundational stuff in order to save myself time downstream. In hindsight I guess I was more productive than I originally gave myself credit for, but I guess the perception is that you accomplished more when you have something you can actually see.


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