Gone but not for long

Please bear with me, I’d hoped the transition between my old host and my new one would be smoother than this but due to unforeseen circumstances some aspects have taken longer than they ought to have done. Bendavis.me will be back on soon.

In addition, my apologies for the lack of posts lately. Amongst other things I’ve really not been well, a recent bout with kidney stones has laid me low but I feel it’s time now to get back on top… so to speak. I have new toys too (laptop and phone), time I did something with them! Soon as I get Ubuntu set up of course. It spent last night defragging that pesky NTFS partition so today I can resize and free some hard drive space. I’m biting my nails when it comes to graphics support (I’ve always used nvidia in the past, this laptop has a Radeon 3450) but I’m sure it will handle things immaculately.

One thing this HP Laptop has impressed me with so far (I only got it yesterday) is being able to run Bloodbowl at it’s native resolution of 1440 x 900. But not just run – run smoothly with some effects and filters turned on – I’m very impressed! Note to anybody reading this who has a copy of the game – get in touch. I’d love to test the online multiplayer on this game.

That’s all for now, you should see this site return to it’s former state over the next few days. In the mean time I apologise for missing links – sorry!


Ok, so I’ve finished moving bendavis.me to my new domain manager and host so the site is back! All I need to do is change the theme. It’s not autumn any more… time for a new look. Expect my style’s to be in flux for a while as I jangle about in the back (metaphorically) trying to plug the Christmas lights in.

Bendavis.me : My personal blog/portfolio/thinking space

It’s not exactly new but I’ve finally got around to moving onto my new myfirehost.com servers and freshened it up with a new theme. I’m still working on it but I’d love to get some feedback anyway.

I’m still not sure about a few things, and feel the theme needs more to tie it together. Is the header font right, does it fit?

What do people think?

I invite all criticism, but please be nice 😉

The end for wordpress coders?

I’ve recently (just now in fact) been made aware of an adobe Photoshop plugin for wordpress theme creation straight from a psd design.

Looking through the Divine Project website and reading more about it seems to uncover a few pertinant points.

The site itself answers my initial question in its F.A.Q

What is Divine plug-in?

Divine is the program developed for those who know a bit about Photoshop and sites creation but don’t want to waste their time making up a valid website on basis of popular CMS manually. Using this program you are able to easily make up a professional website and upload it promptly to the server through the embedded FTP-client.

Waste time making a valid website? Are they insinuating that valid code is unimportant? Can’t say I agree with that if that is what they mean. The plugin goes so far as to manage the entire themes’ upload and management as well.

Continue reading →

Keep in sync with Xmarks


While I’m putting together my final review of Moon OS I thought I’d talk a little about a plugin I use a lot these days. Xmarks started initially as foxmarks, a Firefox plugin for backing up your bookmarks and actually syncing them each time you add/remove links. Adding a plugin to firefox is such an easy and, importantly, quick procedure that it meant you could share your bookmarks between two places effortlessly.

That functionality continues today with Xmarks but has been improved and expanded to include other browsers.

Continue reading →

Ridiculously good-looking but just ridiculous underneath

Finally I’m nearly there with the basics of this theme. The look and feel is about right, and when I load the page I like what I see. I just don’t like the code that creates it.

The code behind it is a hugely modified version of the Writers Blog theme by Eric Crooks. I loved his simple yet elegant theme and knew it would be a great starting point. However; there are a few things now I need to do with the theme to finish it that require a rewrite of the basics to accomplish.

I don’t like monolithic programming structures. That is Microsoft’s biggest mistake in my opinion; and the reason Windows gets so slow after even a short period of use. But what I have here is a combination of so many little css hacks and alterations that reviewing my code makes my eyes water.

Bad Benjy.

So, it’s time to stop it and tidy up (fantastic cartoon when I was growing up – anyone else remember it?) With all this colour and panache I’ve lost what I hold dearest in web design: semantic markup + clear and concise CSS = ease of use/adaptation for all.

Once I’m happy with it I can get on with uploading some of the other wordpress themes I’ve been working on.. and everything else I tinker with when I’ve half the chance.

Linux Mint Generated Button

Linux Mint Button

After a little discussion and some information about how wordpress.com functions from mesanna I’ve quite quickly made the first demo version of a generated button. And here it is.

So far it’s really just proof of concept, and its code is a little limited but could very easily and quickly be improved, depending on what information you actually wanted to share. The reason I’ve put the date in for now is because it’s the simplest way to show the principle involved here. The date comes from the php function of the same name in this case I used:

Continue reading →

Another theme update

Yet again I’m posting up another screenshot of my work in progress theme.

Basically, with this theme I wanted something really personal, the kind of theme you’re unlikely to find anywhere else. I also wanted to make its palette slightly ubuntuesque with oranges and browns. I think it’s coming along pretty well. Continue reading →