About Me

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Me they day of my New Scientist interview

Me they day of my New Scientist interview… not leaving my body to science no 🙂

This is the homepage, online ‘CV’, and central hub for Kristian ‘Krispy‘ Brown.

A WordPress / PHP / Java Developer, Writer (sports journalism), and social media fan (13,000+ social reach), and WordPress enthusiast.

I am a professional developer, recently the Lead Developer at New Scientist magazine, leading a small dev team looking after the in house maintained java website and CMS, and leading the re-development to a new WordPress based site.

Currently between roles re-charging batteries and working on some personal projects in PHP and WordPress.

This site and many others I’ve created/maintain are hosted on my own dedicated Windows server.  I also have worked with Linux/Unix, having built up some skills using Amazon AWS – cloud based hosting services, including their EC2 instances for webfronts, RDS for MySQL managed databases, and lots of other good tech (S3 storage buckets and Cloudfront CDN).

I have also been a senior Java developer (Java, SEAM, JSF, Hibernate, Oracle, PL/SQL etc), and have 19+ years professional IT experience (started with two years application and PC support, before moving on to be a C and Ingres database developer, then onto an OO language called Forte, before being trained in Java and web technologies some 8 or more years ago).

Outside work, being a technology enthusiast (I was an Internet early adopter, connecting via a 14400 baud modem some 19 years ago now!), I am a creator of many websites of over the last 19 years in my spare time, mostly in PHP and MySQL, now specialising in the very flexible WordPress open source system (which you can see here in action on this very site).

The Man

Married (to my understanding wife Nicola), one cat (Yuen, named after a Hong Kong movie star), a real ale and now craft ale fan and sometime home-brewer.

I’m a HUGE darts fan – running the UK’s most popular PDC Darts fansite.  Now somehow considered a ‘proper journalist’, having written for a darts magazine and a few guest articles on other sites.  Through my writing and website I’m now a friend of many darts players, officials, and other fans.  In fact I’ve managed to become a bit of a character in the world of darts (other fans have even stopped me for photographs, I kid you not!), even though he’s own game can only be described as ‘RUBBISH’.  I now play for Stilton Country club on a Monday night, and have finally won a few games (only a few mind you).

I’ve written freelance for Inside Darts magazine (sadly no more), the odd betting blog, and my twitter @dartsbeerscheer has a large darts following (5,000+ followers), and the Facebook fan page of DB&C has now reached 8,000 ‘fans’.   With that social media following over 13,000, and also daily visitor levels reaching peaks of 25,000 across my web empire, I have quite a reach across the virtual domain.  My set of websites have over 3.5 MILLION page views a month.. that’s a lot of eyes on words and code I’ve typed!

Web stuff

Me showing off the beerfest mobile app I created

Me showing off the beerfest mobile app I created (pic for local paper)

This site itself is run on a 3rd party content management and blogging system called WordPress, which takes all the effort out of creating a ‘news’ site such as this.  I do create my own sites from scratch using his PHP and MySQL, but I’m a realist and know that trying to re-create the wheel is laborious and pointless in some instances.  My hugely popular (18,000+ unique visitors a day, and over 3 million page views a month) short story site; ‘Short Fiction’ (www.short-fiction.co.uk) is a prime example of my own hand custom coding, written from scratch iteratively over time in PHP and MySQL (Please note:  That site does have a lot of adult content written by the guest authors.. so not really safe for work unless you work at a very funky company!).

I wouldn’t call myself a “web designer” as such; I’m more technically minded than a graphic designer… but I can if pushed turn my hand toPhotoShop well enough to get my projects going.   After using web design tools like Dreamweaver, I have since moved back to writing HTML by hand and using templated CSS on the whole.  It’s one reason I use WordPress, as it, and it’s thousands of free and commercial themes, take a lot of the hassle away.  I then ‘tinker’ and customise.

I can also edit together videos well enough in Adobe Premier, and also put together some motion graphics shorts using Adobe After Effects, you can see some of the video’s here on youTube.  Again it’s not my no. 1 skill – but I know where to source good templates then know enough to edit and customise them well enough.

This site is a homepage to share general thoughts and knowledge, and to act as a portal to my other websites and interests – see a selection of my created sites on the portfolio page.