research

In Whitby:

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Today is the 228th day of the year
(so, only 137 more to go)

Frank Zappa once said:

We live in a very special time right now. At no other time in history has there been such mass disillusionment in terms of reliance on governing functions. Most people don't want to come to terms with that. It's been proven over and over again that the emperor isn't wearing any clothes, but most people don't like to look at naked emperors. In the process of turning around to avert their eyes, they saw the discotheques and a few other things and latched onto them.


Historical Interests

I think I might have very nearly been a software engineer.

Why was I doing a PhD in web engineering in the first place? Well, before going into HE, I had been a commercial web developer and always found it mystifying how haphazard the process of development sometimes was. There was plenty of work around concerning user interface and front-end performance, courtesy of people like Jakob Neilsen, but it seemed that very little attention was being paid to the process from the web designer and developer's point of view. In the mid-part of the last decade this started to change a little, but I still think that there is a place for research in my area, and of course some are still doing it.

How can you build a web system that is like good software; component based, modular and scalable. And how do you do all that and make it work on as wide a cross section of platforms as possible?

That's where I came in (or tried to). I explored the differences and similarities between software and document systems. I decided that, while different, they were similar enough to use the some of the same metrics to measure them. The question was, which ones?

I do still have a general interest in Web Engineering and development generally and also in the applicability of XML applications, content management and delivery mechanisms for heterogeneous environments.

So, I started writing things. Samples of these early, legacy documents are placed here. for historical reasons, As such many of them are rather rough and ready, so please excuse Type I Postscript rendering where it occurs. I did some of the later work on major documents using pdflatex so later dcuments do start to look a little better.

"No piece (of art) is ever finished, merely abandoned."