Used Wood Update

Life: I bought some used wood, in the shape of a house

Off the bat, the most exciting news is my wife and I bought a house, with the help of our lovely realtor Vincent and our even lovelier thank-you-putting-up-with-our-11-pm-questions friend/banker, Rodney. We closed on Cinco de Mayo, and have been working on it ever since.

Kitchen in Progress

We’ve been having a great time sweating and bleeding our way through some updates, including sanding and painting all of the kitchen cabinets, tearing off wallpaper, ripping out built-ins, adjusting built-ins, painting walls, repainting walls, and spending far more money than we expected. I say that with genuine enthusiasm. We’ve also found out we know more about plumbing than we thought, and that I can sort of plaster a wall by myself. We’ve also discovered my coworker, Mike, is brilliant and could probably teach us enough to build our house should we accidentally light ours on fire. He’s been an incredible help.

Work: Hannon Hill Cascade

Part of the big redesign we’ve been working on includes revamping the underlying structure of our websites. Until recently, we had know centralized codebase – we were literally copying and pasting all of our files into a new “Site” and editing as needed. We now have a proper “college-assets” area that has our master CSS and JS and config sets / content types / data definitions. New sites are spooled up via a template, and can override those college-asset files as needed. We also finally started making some fancy “assets” that have made the workflow easier for our content creators.

The result: whereas it took us 1.5 years to redo all of the department sites in the College that last time we painted the bridge, we’re on track to do it all over again within 2 months. Considering our university structure stops us from being able to use Cascade’s “Web Services” feature, not to mention accessing the database, we’re all feeling pretty good about ourselves.

Some legacy stuff we had left in Global is also being deleted (slowly, and manually, urgh). Hopefully the other units / colleges will follow suit and we can upgrade to Ocho.

More Work: Django & Wagtail

While we’ve been using Cascade for a while, we’re also in the process of deploying our first Wagtail site. So far, I’m loving the process of creating in Wagtail. It all just sort of makes sense in a way that Cascade never really did, and it has far more power and ease of use than I ever found in WordPress.

Final thoughts

I have a few posts in draft mode right now, both on Cascade. Hopefully those will be coming out soon.