It took a while just to get to this point, but we finally have something tangible to look at.
It was somewhere around Day 2 that we decided to put together someplace where we could show off our skills. We also decided to document the progress on a blog. What you are reading now is that blog.
It wasn’t our intention to document how to start a blog, but I feel like we couldn’t just say, “and then we put up a blog” and leave it at that. So, I’ll give a brief description of how we got this far.
Step one was to figure out what we would call ourselves. It really shouldn’t be the most important thing, but if you want to put something on the Internet, it needs to have an address. If you want your own address you need a domain name. If you need a domain name, you need to go to a name registrar.
We decided to go with GoDaddy, not because they are the best, but because we are very familiar with them. Frankly, we don’t know if GoDaddy is the best or not. There are probably others that offer the same services, but we know that GoDaddy works and we know that they are inexpensive and we want to get to step two already.
We looked at a bunch of names and settled on BAMapps.com because it has some relevant meaning and it was available, the second one being the most important. BAM is an acronym for Bill and Michael and it’s relatively easy to remember. “Apps” is what we do, so BAMapps.com it is.
While at GoDaddy, we got some e-mail forwarding service for BAMapps.com and we ordered a managed WordPress site. The e-mail forwarding service allows us to have email addresses that end in BAMapps.com that forward to our regular address so we don’t have to check e-mail in two places. The WordPress site is the blog itself. This blog is running on WordPress.
WordPress is a free and open-source blogging tool and a content management system. It makes keeping a blog easy.
Everything we got at GoDaddy ended up costing $28 for a year of service.
Now that we have a couple of receipts, we should probably find someplace to put them, preferably someplace where we both can access them. We both already have accounts at DropBox, so we created a shared folder to which we both have access. It’s a small thing, but it’ll make collaborating over the Internet a little bit easier.
The next step was to get some tools and a work space. Not physical tools or space, virtual. VisualStudio.com offers free versions of the Microsoft Visual Studio Integrated Development Environment (IDE). This is the environment we’re both familiar with and comfortable working in.
VisualStudio.com also offers free access to VisualStudioOnline, a service that makes it easy to collaborate and manage software projects. It’s a virtual work space where we can design, build and manage out software project. We created BAMApps.VisualStudio.com and this is where will do our work.
Finally, we needed a place where we could deploy any apps and host any back-end servers that we create along the way. Microsoft Azure provides cloud services like hosting website and virtual cloud servers. They offer one month free and deep discounts to developers who are just testing things out. We signed up for a new subscription and now we’re able to create a virtual network with virtual servers both private and public.
So, there’s a lot of behind the scenes stuff that needed to get done, but we’re finally at the point where we can start writing code again. Wow, I’ve missed writing code. I can’t wait for tomorrow.