David Turner

Signing On & Signing Up

After a restful break between Semesters 1 and 2 it looks like I'm back, and straight back into the thick of things. Whilst I've been taking time out I've not been neglecting my project, taking time to organise things and unwind after a stressful first semester. I have a feeling that this semester is going to be piling on the stress from the get go.

So now that I'm back I need to get things going with my Major Project, ReferenceIt. The first step of this is going to be providing a way for people to keep abreast of what is happening with the project, closer to the launch of the site. An ideal solution to this is creating a mailing list. As an added bonus this gives me a way to measure interest in my work, and gives me a way to reward early adopters by giving them early access to the site.

Getting The Ball Rolling

The first thing I knew I needed to do was find a good tool to help me handle my mailing list. I'm a big fan of building things myself, but with everything else I need to work on I realise that sometimes it's better to use a pre-made solution. In this case there were two obvious solutions available to me. These were MailChimp and Campaign Monitor.

Inspired by the stress levels I'm already feeling I decided to take the safer option of the two - working with the one I've previously used. In this case, MailChimp. I've had some experience with it, which put it a step ahead of Campaign Monitor.

With the decision made it became a simple thing to set up a mailing list. This left me to handling something I'm good with, creating the HTML to let people register themselves with the mailing list.

Sticking with a Theme

The entire way through my last semester I covered how I want the design of ReferenceIt to be a style that relates to the images my mind conjures up when I think of referencing, the comforting colours of sitting down and reading through an old, yellow paged, book. The mailing list form is the first opportunity for me to convert this image from imagination into code and images, and I wanted to make sure that I did it properly.

Of late I've been having awesome ideas for layouts and designs, which is equal parts awesome and scary as I've always thought of myself as a developer, not a designer. Once again this was the case with the design of the mailing list registration form. I visualised the idea of a post card which people could add basic information to that I would need for contacting them. For this form that consisted of their email address and their names. The final result can be viewed on the site and I'd love it if you'd register to find out more about the project.