This is the long-ish version of my bio, you can read the shorter version here.
The professional basics
I’m a designer, front-end developer & WordPress consultant with over 11 years industry experience. In 2012 I founded Make Do, an events & education initiative with an aim inspire and connect with makers and doers all over the world. I also speak at events on a number of subjects.
The other things
All of my businesses, projects, events, products and clients are what keep me busy but I always find time for rare breaks with friends and my wife and dog and can be found in and around Yorkshire.
This includes regular trips to Sheffield and Leeds and of visits to my local town center to the wonderful Old Number 7 pub.
As you may have guessed, I love events, conferences, hack days, meetups, code retreats, seminars, you name it and I try and attend it.
Check out my Lanyrd profile to see what events I’ll be speaking at or attending and make sure to look for me at the after party, I’ll be the one with the beer in hand making the most noise.
Feel free to contact me about any events on my mobile 07957545877 or email me email@example.com – any topic, any time. I’m most active on twitter @mkjones and can be found on Skype as ‘base6design’ (my rapid web design business) and also Google+ if you want to do a hangout.
Interests & passions
I’m a geek, so my interests are science, technology, design, engineering, gadgets, computers, reading (books & comic books) and watching documentaries.
I love films and hit the cinema at least once every week. You can see my Flixter reviews here. I find that going to the cinema rather than watching movies at home is the only real way I can get away from technology becuase no phones, iPads, laptops or distractions can get to me when I’m in the cinema.
I also absolutely love animation and cartoons (shows like Regular Show, Adventure Time & American Dad among others) and if I had to pick a sport that I love dearly it would be snooker (watching not playing sadly).
I often say that by ‘hobby’ is quite mundane, because it’s simply taking in information by reading articles, books, Wikipedia and watching educational films and TV. Some is useful but a lot isn’t and I’m fine with that.
In 2010 I made the pilgrimage to the Kennedy space center in Florida twice to see my beloved Space Shuttle make its final launch into space before the project was finally cancelled. Sadly, both times the launches were delayed and I missed my opportunity to ever see one of these amazing machines reach orbit. I did however fall in love with the KSC, the whole place has an amazing buzz, like the history of the past 60 years is seeping out of the ground into your bones. And in 2013 I travelled to California to see the first ever Space Shuttle on display in a museum, Endeavour at the California Science Center
I love to travel when possible and try my best to make it to the USA for a holiday every couple of years.
Loving your work
Finally. I’d say that my main interest is my work and the industry I work in.
I design things, make thing and generally help people get things done. In 2012 I came up with a list of tips and advice that I try and live by. I try my best to refer back to them and at the same time evolve them with every piece of work I do.
My list of web & digital tips:
- If you don’t know who your target audience is then you don’t know anything
- Organise your content structure for your business and your navigation for your customers
- Go with your gut, your brain can be stupid
- Design by committee = design for mediocrity
- Always think content first.
- If you like the way something works, steal it, improve on it and iterate. Eventually you’ll have something you can call your own.
- Rehash. Rework. Reuse. And don’t ever build from scratch.
- Nominate design and brand guardians and make sure they do not back down.
- Never use Comic Sans, not even as a joke. Really, it’s not funny.
- Understand how long things take and how important R&D is.
- Designers and developers live this every day.
- Emma Watson is the same age as the World Wide Web.
- Prototype fast, fail quickly.
- Draw and sketch – just do it!
- ‘Social media’ is just a name for how we interact with each other via the web
- Treasure your privacy, it will be gone in a few years
- Give honest feedback
- Always ask why
- Educate yourself and then communicate what you have learned.
That’s it, I’ll keep adding to this page when I remember more but for now you can just go and read my blog.