About Neil


Key Skills:

Web development and programming:

  • Development and integration of modules for Drupal, both 7 and 6 (approx 3 years).
  • Key Drupal Projects:
  • Extensive experience of object-oriented PHP and with MVC frameworks such as Zend, Symfony and Cake.
  • Relational and NoSQL databases (principally MySQL and MongoDB)
  • Modern HTML 5 / XHTML meeting W3C accessibility criteria. Standards-compliant and semantic CSS.
  • Good understanding of RESTful architecture using JSON, XML-RPC or SOAP as well XML transformations with XSLT and XPath.
  • Javascript and Ajax with frameworks such as JQuery and Mootools
  • Version control with Git and SVN
  • Unit Testing (PHPUnit) and Selenium tests
  • Good understanding of command-line Linux and Apache configuration.
  • Experience with document-centric search applications such as Solr and Sphinx.
  • Firm foundation in Java and Scala with some exposure to Ruby, Python and C# .NET.

Work Experience:

May 2013+ Platform 3 London:

Lead developer on the newly re-launched Serpentine Gallery site at www.serpentinegalleries.org using Drupal 7 in combination with a set of custom modules and custom theme to implement a radical fluid and responsive design with most content loading asynchronously. Note especially the Events and Exhibitions timeline and calendar overlay. For the same agency I also completed a more standard Drupal-managed site at www.towerhamletspru.org.uk .

May 2012 – April 2013  Greater London Authority:

The initial contract involved the maintenance and custom development of the GLA's main port at www.london.gov.uk as well as many related micro-sites. However, from October 2012 I assumed a new role as Lead developer for the migration of the old Drupal 6 site into a new Drupal 7 based site with significantly improved performance and usability, enabling full participation of distributed editors.

Key technologies and modules:

Drupal 7 with Views, Panels, Workbench Access, Moderation and Scheduler

Apache Solr for fast natural language full-text search of over 10,000 pages and 20,000 documents

Varnish for advanced caching of public users (pages are recreated after editing)

Custom modules for events management, site sections (integrated with Workbench access and moderation), programmatic migration of existing content, rationalisation of content types and roles, integration with other IT systems, namely eCircle, modern.gov, CSV files, FlickR, Twitter etc..

February - March 2011 – EncoreTickets:

Worked on a new voucher redemption service for www.theatrepeople.co.uk in Drupal 6.

January 2011 – Anderson and Norton:

Development of Drupal 7 for the Association of Real Estate Funds. Staging site available at www.aref.org.uk.

November 2011 – January 2012 and April 2011 – May 2012 Digitas:

Relaunch of Amnesty International’s campaigning, blogging and donation site at www.amnesty.org.uk and security audit of Shell’s public relations site at www.shelldialogues.com . I was responsible for blog customisation, campaigns and online donations ( www.amnesty.org.uk ) with integration of various Web services such as e-activist and handover of project to a permanent Drupal developer. I also integrated SagePay and PayPal card payments.

May 2011 – September 2011 University of London:

Redevelopment of London International portal: ( www.londoninternational.ac.uk ) migrating static pages to the Drupal  CMS integrated with Solr search engine, Varnish for caching and existing backend database systems.

November - May 2011 Capablue:

  1. 1.Development of a new IPTV platform, importing XML and JSON from various video services into a versatile Drupal 6 based CMS and presented in multiple device-specific formats. My role focussed on the developed on a custom Feeds module importing programme data into custom node types. Examples include STV's new PlayStation 3 catchup TV service player.stv.tv/live . The same code base has since been deployed for Parent Channel, Marks and Spencers TV and Playboy. Drupal was chosen for ease of content editing and customisation as well as integration with payment gateways.
  2. 2.In-Deed www.in-deed.net . Lead developer on this drupal-based online conveyancing service integrated with a backend Web Service using the Zend framework to provide a SOAP service for web services run by Panel Firms.
September - October 2010 Cable and Wireless:

Cable and Wireless. Two months contract for support and maintenance of multi-tier Web Portal for Network incident management interfacing with legacy database backend and using PHP Zend Framework and Java service layer. URLs: www.cw.com and www.mycw.co.uk .

August 2010 Freelance Work:

Snow Carbon ( www.snowcarbon.co.uk ). Deployment and theming of Drupal CMS and development of a set of Drupal 6 modules to import data feeds from leading tour operators, provide an admin interface for partners to add tour details and integrate these with custom content types.

January -July 2010 BBC Vision:

Development of a visual and subtitle search facility for archives of last 3 years of BBC TV and Radio broadcasts. Technologies used: Zend-based Forge framework, Glow & JQuery Javascript frameworks, XML / XSL, Solr and Sphinx as natural language search engines. Users can preview keyframes with matched citations and play a video from that point on a show and then link to an online Snippets video-editing tool. The application is available at www.bbcsnippets.co.uk but requires authentication.