Jamie Balfour BSc

Welcome to my personal website!

Technology enthusiast

I am very interested in technology, particularly relating to computer science. I am most interested in web design and development.

My main hobby is programming. One of my most well known products from this is ZPE. I also am the sole creator of BalfBlog, BalfBar and BalfSlider.

A little bit about me

In 1997, when I was six years of age, I got my very first computer. I was always very interested in the ins and outs of it and dismantled it to see how it worked.

Years later, in 2016 I received my BSc (with honours) in Computer Science, obtaining a First class degree.

I'd like to welcome you to my website and hope you enjoy using it as much as I have enjoyed building it!

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Me
Jamie Balfour BSc
Full stack developer

Site changelog

08.06.2015 - 29.11.2015 10.27

Update number 102

I do not update the changelog so much anymore since the website's core has been finished hence why there's been nothing new here.

I thought it would be wise to update it with the new information now however. The following is a list of improvements site wide.

  • Flatter sidebar, no borders other than colour differences
  • Site wide compression, lots of images have been compressed across the website
  • Minor improvements to DragonScript that reduce requests on mobile devices
  • New Pill Form - labels now bind text and inputs together
  • Better colour consistency - fewer colours but more consistent colours
  • Flatter interface - less box shadows, border radiuses and gradients
  • Better information architecture - noticeable in reviews and articles
  • Footer is now merged into site links
  • Themes are now better designed
  • New JBBar menu
  • New Teaching section
  • Font is back to Open Sans
  • Performance improvements
  • Security improvements

05.05.2015 - 07.06.2015 23.33

Update number 101

  • Gallery image loading is now done with JavaScript so not to slow page load
  • Article navigation is now an inline-block and will automatically hide by default
  • Added the [hide]/[show] button to all article navigation elements
  • List elements will never go left of their list number in article navigation and content navigation lists
  • The site has a flatter design
  • Added orange line to menu
  • The menu floats after a certain height on desktop (as was before)
  • Added search from the main menu
  • Started to use Source Sans Pro rather than Open Sans as the font on the site
  • Changed the font-weight of headers to be more suitable
  • Box-shadow added to site links
  • Articles are now inline-blocks with 100% width to allow nice, smooth selection
  • New Twitter widget
  • New Download button
  • Minor improvements to the design of the blog widget
  • Minor improvements to the site design and architecture

27.03.2015 00.14

Update number 100

  • Minor fixes across the site
  • The menu no longer floats on desktop
  • Code is now minified on the fly rather than being minified all the time. As a result I will likely drop my triple-template and change to a single CSS file that is minified rather than minifying all of them on the fly.

17.02.2015 09.59

Update number 99

  • Removed the top colours on menu when items are hovered due to a slight inconsistency with the rest of the website.

14.02.2015 12.10

Update number 98

  • As requested by several users of my website, I have added an option to logout from the top menu when they are logged in.
  • Fixed a few issues with dark mode and my new DragonScript website
  • Added an 'active' state to the menu
  • Added an option to search only my blog when users are searching my website

07.02.2015 14.14

Update number 97

  • Added last updated time to footer and shrunk the version information on footer
  • Changed the Contents page link in tutorials to be more like Previous and Next buttons
  • Site tidy up focus

01.02.2015 12.10

Update number 96

  • Minor performance improvements across the site
  • Minor stability improvements
  • Changes in the login page
  • Added a page to request OTC to reset password
  • Fixed email issue where the bottom of email was not included
  • Added image-frame fix that makes the frame surround the image (JavaScript powered)
  • Moved the welcome message (news feed) to outside the main content section
  • Site links now stretches across the page
  • Reduced padding on tablet devices
  • Changed section navigation buttons to have an orange border around them when hovered

10.01.2014 11.58

Update number 95

  • Minor consistency changes to EpicForm submit button
  • Site is now powered by DragonScript (previously JBQuickScript) making it easier to manage pages.

05.01.2015 22.47

Update number 94

  • Focus on SEO - better Facebook integration, the site now has better thumbnails for Facebook when shared.
  • The Gallery has been revamped. JGallery 2.0 features a CSS-only appearance. It still functions on IE8 but to experience the beauty one needs a modern browser that supports the transform:rotate CSS attribute.

01.01.2015 23.40

Update number 93

Whilst enjoying new year I decided to update my website with some new features.

  • Removal of the admin section. I have phased this out and now have a different method of maintaining the site.
  • A newly constructed head and tail for the site makes it even easier to manage the site. This marks the release of version 3.6.
  • New login management makes the site more secure where necessary.
  • Site sharing is improved.

22.12.2014 11:03

Update number 92

Minor changes to site, particular focus on fixes.

  • Fixed an issue where text-decoration was applied in Gecko browsers to some of the navigation
  • Minor fixes in the Download Center
  • Improvements to security of login
  • Improvements to Reset password functionality
  • Epic Form title style changed to appear more like an actual form
  • Minor other Epic Form changes
  • Bullets now appear when site is printed and the site uses the new coloured bullets

14.11.2014 16.12

Update number 91

  • Fixed a few issues on the site caused by the site CDN
  • Fixed an issue with Dark Mode
  • Fixed the conclusion

04.11.2014 13.15

Update number 90

  • Added Dark Mode to website, which makes the menu bar black rather than grey
  • Made Halloween and Christmas themes activate automatically
  • Added the ConclusionBox to the site

19.10.2014 15.13

Update number 89

  • Added a box shadow to the main contents panel and the sidebar

13.09.2014 10.41

Update number 88

  • Added 'blog:' prefix to search box, so if used it will search the blog rather than the whole website.

07.09.2014 23.47

Update number 87

  • Changed the search boxes

07.09.2014 00.08

Update number 86

  • First change in a while. This change is the first major design change in a long time, dropping the page design for a new grey design.
  • Justified text

29.08.2014 11.47

Update number 85

26.08.2014 16.16

Update number 84

  • New gray style on desktop (not sure if it's for keeps, but it's experimental)
  • More minor CSS fixes

26.08.2014 12.15

Update number 83

  • Image-frames now have a border
  • Fixed an issue with the image-frame class

25.08.2014 18.16

Update number 82

  • Minor CSS changes including moving padding from the sidebar and main content to the page itself, changing the title bar CSS and the footer CSS. All of these reduce the CSS file size by about 8KB.
  • Removed some CSS elements and merged some CSS selectors.

23.08.2014 19.40

Update number 81

Well that's me back from my Perthshire break which means back to web development.

  • A minor tweak that changes the margin on mobile and tablet designs
  • Fixed an issue with sidebar width on 1075px and less displays
  • Article navigation is now CSS table or falls back to block.
  • Image frame description given a bigger margin

21.08.2014 22.14

Update number 80

  • Images within image frames force the widths of the frames, so text flows under perfectly. This is achieved with Jquery.

19.08.2014 23.07

Update number 79

  • Removed box shadow on sidebar
  • Added border on the main content

19.08.2014 01.17

Update number 78

  • Fixed a minor issue where text was not centred in an image frame

18.08.2014 23.51

Update number 77

  • Social buttons now have a white background on mobile
  • Removed margin in 1070px scaling

18.08.2014 11.00

Update number 76

  • Fixed an issue where albums within album sections would not navigate correctly.
  • Fixed an issue where albums would retain the last title attribute in their links

17.08.2014 16.29

Update number 75

  • Added titles to gallery photos

16.08.2014 18.39

Update number 74

Although I am on holiday, I got some feedback to say that the article navigation was substandard.

I have since chosen to bring it back from the tabled design to a more responsive one.

  • Fixed page navigation in articles to float
  • Code samples resize with the main content
  • Menu now is mobile on iPad and other 1024px wide tablets.
  • Added padding on slide description
  • Minor other CSS improvements
  • Changed the article navigation to no longer float.

15.08.2014 16.51

Update number 73

  • Changed the background colour of code samples
  • Changed the code attribute to display with a border as such: This is code
  • Users can now save site settings which load each time. They can also delete site settings.
  • Minor changes to the appearance.

13.08.2014 18.26

Update number 72

  • Improved site speed
  • Font changed on headers and footer from Helvetica to Helvetica Neue. Helvetica remains as a fallback font, along side Segoe UI and Arial.
  • Fixed issue with mobile website right floating element being ignored.
  • Fixed an issue with the H3 element where it would not have a margin at the top
  • Fixed article image problem, forcing them all to be the same size.
  • Reduced site size.
  • Added user agent sniffing to find out the user agent of a mobile device. This is used to stop the download of Twitter and Google AdSense. I do not normally trust, user agent sniffing mechanisms, but it is not for an essential cause.

13.08.2014 00:49

Update number 71

  • Major performance improvement, reduced above-the-fold render issues
  • Social icons migrated to JavaScript so to reduce page load issues
  • More dataURI images added in base64 format
  • New social icons
  • Density reduced

11.08.2014 18.16

Update number 70

  • Reduced individual page size by 400KB, bringing the average page size to 600KB.
  • New social media icons due to the removal of ShareThis to reduce the size of site

08.08.2014 13.06

Update number 69

  • Tutorials will now feature a navigation section at the top.
  • Navigation now floats left.

07.08.2014 21.30

Update number 68

  • The changelog has now been moved to a database of changes. This makes it easier to update, as well as customisable. Using the ?rev=1 at the end of the URL makes the changelog reversible.
  • New features in the Gallery:
    • Videos have been added
    • Photos can have any filename, not just img.jpg

06.08.2014 19.13

Update number 67

  • I have spent most of the day changing the way code samples appear on this site. They now format with proper line numbers.
  • General performance improvements

30.07.2014 17.34

Update number 66

  • Fixed an issue with the ShareThis buttons and mobile devices
  • Replaced FancyBox with Magnific Box

29.07.2014 23.09

Update number 65

  • Create a more image button for gallery
  • Fixed header links
  • Removed almost all inline styling within the main pages

28.07.2014 22.40

Update number 64

  • Added FancyBox modal image dialog to articles and reviews
  • Added FancyBox modal image dialog to gallery.

24.07.2014 17.00

Update number 63

  • New Contact floater
  • Removed Feedback floater
  • Hanging orb

23.07.2014 22.00

Update number 62

  • Worked on improvements in the slightly neglected gallery:
    • Centered all of the albums
    • Removed <hr> elements and replaced them with bordered sections
    • General flexibility functions improved
  • Improved site security by protecting certain files from access

22.07.2014 23.25

Update number 61

  • Fixed a scaling issue with image frames

21.07.2014 23.50

Update number 60

  • Improved page navigation in tutorials

21.07.2014 14.30

Update number 59

  • Change of sizes with mobile and tablet browsers
  • Background of footer is transparent on mobile devices and background image is enabled
  • Further improvements to front slideshow (JB-Slideshow)
  • Added Disqus for comments
  • Gallery improvements

17.07.2014 23.09

Update number 58

  • Added new social icons from ShareThis
  • Improvements in Site Links on mobile
  • Scalable site

15.07.2014 12.48

Update number 57

  • Minor changes such as JavaScript improvements
  • Removed some inline styling
  • Removed search_inner
  • CSS now changes with the size of the window on desktop as well
  • Some mobile performance improvements

11.07.2014 15.31

Update number 56

09.07.2014 13.22

Update number 55

  • Fixed the invert colouring function

06.07.2014 14.51

Update number 54

  • Moved Development section into Tutorials
  • There is now a http://www.jamiebalfour.com/ website as well - all pages map directly
  • Minor improvements
  • New slideshow no longer using third party code (JB-Slideshow)

01.07.2014 13.40

Update number 53

  • Changed the menu slightly

29.06.2014 15.30

Update number 52

  • New software menu for desktop

27.05.2014 23.40

Update number 51

  • Parallelized domain into subdomains

25.05.2014 19.31

Update number 50

  • Fixed IE8 and below support by hiding the landing page.

23.05.2014 15.41

Update number 49

  • Created the first newsletter
  • Improved a small details on the site

11.05.2014 14.31

Update number 48

  • Added background colour <code> element
  • Added the Settings panel to the menu on desktop
  • Minor CSS layout changes

10.05.2014 11:21

Update number 47

Version 3.4.0

  • New menu (5th version)

30.04.2014 12.04

Update number 46

  • Removed the border-right property from the main content and replaced with box shadow
  • Added new landing page.

17.04.2014 01.40

Update number 45

  • General improvements
  • New vertical dotted line on first site link panel
  • Added link to labs.jamiebalfour.com
  • Changed site links and contain box shadow style
  • Changed the font of the menu
  • Made menu all uppercase
  • Increased the padding around items in the menu making it easier to select on tablets

15.04.2014 10.18

Update number 44

  • Fixed the jump issue on tablet and mobile devices when scrolled passed 100 pixels
  • Added sidebar on large tablets when in widescreen

06.04.2014 19.49

Update number 43

  • A couple of changes involving the search, making it more attractive
  • Improved the Epic Form design
  • Mobilised the Epic Form better
  • Changed the way the new note element works on mobile

04.04.2014 17.43

Update number 42

  • A couple of minor CSS changes to make for a more consistent theme
  • Added styling to blockquote element
  • Entirely printer friendly
  • Took away the horizontal break in the footer and replaced with a grey border
  • Changed tooltip design further; they now appear in green.
  • All item and article containers have a better design; new box shadows and borders
  • Article containers now have an orange stripe at the left hand side

01.04.2014 15.13

Update number 41

  • More tutorials being added
  • Fixed a few problems with other tutorials
  • Tooltips now appear in a green colour and are no longer links
  • Fixed issue with print mode where it would add extra white space
  • Links appear in #FF6600 rather than #FFA500 when printing

27.03.2014 16.20

Update number 40

  • Performance improvements
  • Added the labs.jamiebalfour.com subdomain
  • Fixed a few JavaScript issues
  • Added column support again (desktop and large tablets)

21.03.2014 02.06

Update number 39

  • Applied a fix that prevents the jump when the menu begins to scroll
  • Fixed a few issues with the new CMS.

18.03.2014 20.37

Update number 38

  • Re-added columns to the site design again, this time with better form

18.03.2014 13.33

Update number 37

  • Fixed the head section width
  • Added tag line under title

17.03.2014 22.49

Update number 36

  • Added the word Search to the search box. It disappears when it has focus.
  • Performance improvements
  • Changed the logo and favicon to the new design

16.03.2014 00.09

Update number 35

  • Fixed an issue where small tablet (like the Nexus 7 2012) devices would display as desktop devices.
  • Improved loading time.

09.03.2014 19.11

Update number 34

  • Fixed an issue with JavaScript
  • Improved load times

01.03.2014 12.05

Update number 33

  • Change of font to Helvetica, reduces loading times
  • Page floats again on desktop
  • QR code moved to the bottom on desktop
  • Printable footer

16.02.2014 16.37

Update number 32

Version 3.3.4

  • Menu reshuffle changes a few titles
  • New tablet site means that the menu remains the same as the desktop menu on tablets such as iPad

10.02.2014 13.38

Update number 31

  • Menu shuffle removes Interests into About and Reading
  • Added Blog to main menu

03.02.2014 20.42

Update number 30

  • Improved log in now redirects to the page before (using PHP referrer).

27.01.2014 22.05

Update number 29

  • Fixed a crucial issue with Safari and some versions of Chrome based on WebKit not rendering the menu on the web page due to an issue with the menu CSS.

26.01.2014 12:44

Update number 28

  • Improved SABAP (Software Alpha/Beta Application Program) to limit to users of the site to download. A massive improvement over the previous key to hand system.

21.01.2014 23.47

Update number 27

  • Google Analytics added to site
  • 14,897 bytes of CSS and JS freed up by minifying both.

20.01.2014 09.46

Update number 26

  • CSS improvements, reduction in loading times due to the removal of 20 kilobytes of data.
  • General consistency improvements.

16.01.2014 17.08

Update number 25

  • Site design and workings are finished.
  • Completed the content management system (BlackCat)
  • Fixed a few issues and display issues
  • Printer friendly CSS added

12.01.2014 16.35

Update number 24

Version 3.3

  • Tablet and larger phone design completed.
  • New search box
  • New site buttons for site settings and tools
  • New feedback tab
  • More fluid and better performance.
  • Better SEO (search engine optimization)

31.12.2013 21.38

Update number 23

  • Yes, it is true, I'm working on New Year's Eve rather than being out partying with friends due to bad planning this year.
  • The fixed menu now disappears when not in use, but when the user floats over the top where the menu resides, the menu appears. Entirely CSS and desktop only.
  • Each first letter of an article or section of an article has been capitalised (CSS).
  • New jQuery based animated news feed rather than single welcome message.
  • Changed scrollbars (limited browser support, currently looks like IE is the only one with support)
  • Final remarks
  • Happy New Year everyone! Wave goodbye to 2013 and hello to 2014!

12.12.2013 11.36

Update number 22

  • Website now has better support for WebKit.
  • Chrome errors fixed, preventing the use of the mobile website when in fact it should be the desktop version.
  • added the information panel about cookie use.

04.12.2013 00.10

Update number 21

  • floating survey now pops out correctly
  • fixed the floating survey glitch that made it possible to double click it and make it move to the middle of the display
  • 'We Blog' blog removed from my site.

06.11.2013 23.10

Update number 20

  • Floating menu now features the search box
  • search box now adapts to the size of the screen, so if there is no room left, it appears as just a button that shows a drop down search

02.11.2013 18.00

Update number 19

  • Fixed the menu in FireFox thus terminating the use of CSSMenu

26.10.2013 01:45

Update number 18

  • New settings panel
  • General fixes
  • Performance improvements in the gallery
  • Gallery improved
  • Major updates to the sidebar

24.09.2013 11.20

Update number 17

  • Gallery has added IE8 (and perhaps below) support

19.09.2013 19.44

Update number 16

  • Added the ability to float to the top menu after certain scroll height.
  • Fixed an issue with the menu in Chrome and Safari
  • General design improvements

14.09.2013 00.59

Update number 15

  • Fixed an issue with the Software menu in WebKit browsers (Chrome and Safari) where it would not display correctly because of the link to Record Checker.

13.09.2013 12.40

Update number 14

  • Top bar now floats
  • Main section now floats
  • Added Firefox support for new menu by abstracting with the old menu interface
  • Mobile site no longer shows gap at the right
  • Articles, reviews and tutorials are automatically divided into tabs for each section
  • Articles, reviews and tutorials are now in a container with an image and description

07.09.2013 19.15

Update number 13

  • Fixed a few issues with the menu
  • New redirect if the page visited is in the Software section
  • Now better has better compatibility with IE6 and IE7. Still very slow. Full IE8 compatibility.
  • Sidebar and main text and site links all float.

03.09.2013 11.50

Update number 12

Version 3.1

  • Major changes
  • New styled menu, Oracle style using MenuCool.com's menu. Uses JavaScript to create effects and can contain more links and information without looking messy
  • The new menu has images as well as links for a more interesting approach

27.08.2013 14.00

Update number 11

  • Added a new 404 error page
  • Improved gallery

21.08.2013 00.58

Update number 10

  • Added my own photo gallery to the site
  • Discovered I had now overwritten my standard template with an old one, therefore when back at home (on a timeshare holiday right now) I will need to reupload the CSS file

10.08.2013 18.37

Update number 9

  • Printer friendly version of page added through JavaScript
  • Added more information on my computer build service and a link to contact me
  • More work was done on mobile version of site

02.08.2013 16.19

Update number 8

  • Added a new confirmation requirement to subscriptions
  • Added a new confirmation page when the user subscribes
  • Fixed an issue where the whole page was centred on the successful subscribe page
  • Improved the email system

25.07.2013 00.00

Update number 7

  • New size of site links
  • New Selling page link in site links
  • Changed ID to Class with site links small panel (noticed this after being pointed out)
  • New Webutation Website Reputation badge on site
  • HTML5 badge
  • Powered by Windmills at the bottom in site links
  • MMXIII has been added to footer
  • Footer has been changed
  • Front page now shows latest from blog, all YouTube videos, Facebook and a PayPal donation button
  • Mobile site added, still under work

16.07.2013 22.08

Update number 6

  • Minor changes; site links divider improvements
  • Removed underline from all links but shows up on hover
  • Changed colours of links

08.07.2013 13.28

Update number 5

  • All articles, reviews and tutorials now use the HTML format
  • Contact page has been updated to support URL parameters, this allows the easy insertion of a subject field
  • Selling page has been added, but currently not to the menu. This will be for technology and other gadgets that are for sale.
  • Easy email from Selling page to Contact page. URL parameters are created automatically.
  • Added a regular expression to PHP and JavaScript files, _jb_fslash_ which represents a forward slash

03.07.2013 21.25

Update number 4

  • Fixes on site layout
  • Returned footer to old design
  • Fixed blog layout issues
  • Added a new feature (which will be mentioned once it is fully up and running)

30.06.2013 17.29

Update number 3

  • Fixed a page issue where it would incorrectly display on Safari on iPad
  • The background image on the blog is shared with the website all the time
  • Feedback survey link added to both my personal blog and We Blog blogs.
  • Minor changes to the site links display

26.06.2013 17.25

Update number 2

  • Fixed floating survey to ensure it is always on top
  • Changed front page to have two columns
  • Changed About Me page to have two columns
  • Redesigned the front page

26.06.2013 14.25

Update number 1

Version 3.0

  • Tableless design
  • A new interface
  • HTML5 built entirely
  • CSS2.1 is better used
  • Consistent fonts
  • Orange and gray theme
  • New CSS menu
  • Reduced size of menu
  • New front page
  • New Site Links section
  • New design for the page, instead of using a page border it has box shadow from CSS
  • Better category naming
  • Development is now able to expanded into sub sections from the menu
  • Updateable menu from a text file
  • Updateable search box from a text file
  • Updateable sidebar from a text file
  • Updateable welcome message from a text file
  • Updateable image slider from a text file
  • Better server side scripting integration, taking better advantage of the Apache server
  • Removed Cycling sub section
  • Removed Life section
  • Admin section improved
  • Floating feedback survey is now added

Site accessibility

A lot of the original functionalities that once existed here have been removed.

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