Sunday, February 25, 2007

Who? What? Where?

Welcome to "The Puf Principle", my newest blog on programming, technology and other things surrounding software development. In this first post I'll briefly describe who I am and what I've done in my working life. It's by no means required reading, but it might serve as nice background information to my future posts.

I'm Frank van Puffelen, a software developer in the Netherlands. Friends and colleagues often call me "Puf", a nickname that I picked up in college to differentiate from all the other Franks out there. That nickname also explains the title of my Blog.

After tinkering with home computers (ZX81, C64, Spectrum, Atari 600XL anyone?) throughout high school, I decided to get my Bachelors in CS. Through some coincidence and weird choices, I ended up majoring in medical computer science; a field for which I still have a soft spot. I've been developing all kinds of software for a living since the early 90's. Through the years I've used many languages from Borland Pascal and Delphi, through MFC to Java and C#. Throw in some interrupt programming in assembly, real-time data acquisition (EKG recording) on Windows 3.1, accounting software and creating GUIs with just about any technology I can get my hands on and maybe you can see why I consider myself (not just physically) a well rounded developer.

That about sums up what I wanted to share with you for the moment. Do you want to know more? Is there stuff missing? Let me know.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dear Puf,
What I really would like to know from my professional point of view is how much 'energy' you put in web accessibility (for the visually impaired)when developing software.

kind regards,

auntie

Frank said...

Hi Auntie,

Good question.

When building web sites (mostly for myself and my blogs) I do try to follow the rules of graceful degradation and progressive enhancement. So things should work with JavaScript disabled if at all possible. There are some experiments that are really just exercises in JavaScript for me. So I hope those with limited browser will forgive me for not figuring out a way to support them in those few occasions.

I also typically at least test my blogs by disabling all styling and (if the blog is not photo related) images. And I occasionally check how things look on a device with a very limited resolution (like a PDA, Wii or iPhone). Although neither of those is a real screen reader, it's closer than many people test their sites. But if anyone finds a part of my sites that just doesn't work with a screen reader or that is horrible when used through a text-to-speech synthesizer, please let me know. I'd be happy to fix it. I am also known for often forgetting alternate descriptions on some crucial images, so please point it out to me when I do that again.

Of course my photo related sites will never be as interesting to blind people as they are to those with sight. But at least the textual parts should come out OK and be in a useful order.

May I know why you are asking?

Puf