The Dlayer MVP, how open sourcing the app helped me

If I ignore the inevitable restarts, I have been working on the minimum viable product (MVP) of Dlayer for a little over three years; it is astonishing how quickly time passes when you have a career and family.

I’ve been working on Dlayer demo, a responsive web development tool, one way or another, for almost a decade. In that period I got married, we have a three-year-old son and have moved half way across the country (small country).

I had an idea for a product, and I plan to realise it.

To say it has been tough would be a massive understatement. Realising Dlayer has been challenging, finding the time and money to work on my projects isn’t simple, it is about balance, you need to ensure you have enough cash flow to ensure your family is safe and comfortable, but on the other hand, you need the time to develop your projects.

I always planned on Dlayer being a private commercial product, 18 months ago I changed direction. After years of solo development and countless more ahead of me, I came to the conclusion that it is not possible to do this alone, I need help, but more importantly, I needed to relieve any stress from attempting to singlehandedly design, build and finance a complex product.

It took 18 months to prepare Dlayer for the official v1.00 Open Source beta release, but I got there, at the tail end of last year I released the first version.

Dlayer isn’t ready for prime time yet; there is still much to do, progress is consistent, and I’m getting my house in order so that the first contributors have a great experience.

As soon as you Open Source a product and realise that the eyes of other developers could be looking at your code you wake up, the quality goes up, standards you aim to adhere to get met and working practices in general improved, thank you.

ZF1 Lib updates

I’ve updated my ZF1 lib site.

  • Added a simple pager view helper.
  • Updated the image resizer and image cropper classes including new examples.
  • Added a simple HTML table view helper.
  • Added a Bootstrap badge view helper.
  • Updated the Bootstrap nav view helper, one fix, one new feature.
  • Added a Bootstrap progress bar view helper.

GitHub profile and new sample site

I’ve been working on one of my public GitHub repos since Monday, I’ve still lots to do but there are a few worthwhile updates so I though I would mention them here.

  • I’ve renamed the repo, now much more obvious it is a collection of Zend framework 1 view helpers, action helpers and utility classes.
  • I’ve updated the design of the included sample site, now a simple Bootstrap based site.
  • I’ve added a Bootstrap glyphicon view helper
  • I’ve added a Bootstrap label view helper
  • I’ve added a Bootstrap nav component view helper
  • The sample site is available online at zf1.deanblackborough.com

There is still lots of work to do, I’m hoping to be done by Sunday but we will see.

  • The original view helper and utility classes haven’t been updated
  • I need to put in place a system to ensure I work on the site more often then twice a year
  • I’ve additional view helpers, action helpers and utility classes to add.
  • Need to create a ZF2 version of site.

Languishing repo

I’m going to take a short break from Dlayer on the 6th July to update my Zend repo on GitHub, I’m hoping it will be less than a week.

I will be adding a couple of extra utility classes, sorting out several issues with the current classes and adding a few bootstrap based view helpers.

A sub domain will be added to this site to host the example site.