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How to develop your own web application

Posted on by Clive Walker in Web Development

I wrote this post a while back. The content can still be relevant but the information I've linked to may not be available.

I went to the inaugural £5 App Meeting in Brighton yesterday to hear John Montgomery and Ian Oszvald talk about two web applications that they have developed in their spare time.

Unfortunately, the Brighton trafffic meant that I arrived late but John M described Chrss which is a chess-playing application where the moves are delivered via an RSS feed. Neat idea to use RSS for something like this.

Secondly, Ian described ShowMeDo which is a video/screencast tutorial website. The site is aimed mainly at the techie computer geek market at the moment but has the potential to expand into other areas.

It was good to hear discussions about the definition of a '£5 App' and whether you should develop multiple applications in parallel before concentrating on those that are more successful than others. This is an interesting idea but I can't help feel that this would dilute the time and effort require to develop a successful web application and market it.

It was also interesting afterwards to discuss the rapid application development frameworks that are available, particularly Turbogears and Ruby on Rails. It seems essential to use a rapid development framework these days.

The discussions also left me feeling that I should put some time and effort into learning one of these frameworks. With a stack of work piling up and recent book purchases to read, this is easier said than done for me at the moment. I need to free up some spare time.

Thanks to Ian and John for organising the £5 App Meetings and for the free beer!

» Related: Other comments on the meeting here and here.

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  • 28 Mar 2007 14:17:31

    Good to chat with you Clive. Glad you enjoyed it.

    I’d say it’s definitely worth looking into some of the frameworks out there. With so many now there’s bound to be one that fits well with what you want to do and also how your brain works. If you can find something that works in a way that’s close to how you would do it, then you’d be onto a winner.

  • 30 Mar 2007 13:37:00

    Hi Clive. You’re more than welcome, we had a great night too. The next event (bootstrapped Social apps) will be pretty cool too.
    I quite agree re not spending time making too many £5 Apps, I think trying (and maybe discarding) one at a time is more sensible, especially if time is tight.
    You’re sure to profit by looking into one of the rapid dev frameworks – at showmedo we have videos on TurboGears and Rails, naturally :-) We’re missing Django but I hope to fix that omission soon.
    The next event will be Tues April 24th (last Tues of the month), same venue, same time, more details to come.

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