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About SouthportNews.com
About this website.

This site was built and exists mainly for the purpose of demonstrating, promoting and advertising the web design and programming skills of John P. Lee Bsc(Hons).
Any sales, contract work or other income gained through this website are declared to all relevant authorities.
Due to extensive use of automation, administration of this website takes an average of two hours per week and the total running cost from August 2000 to August 2002 was only 265.96, an average of 2.50 per week.

  • To provide local community groups with a cost-free means of publishing information about themselves.
  • To provide tourists and locals with an extensive searchable directory of local information.
  • To provide local businesses with a cost effective and efficient form of local-oriented global promotion.
  • To create a self-running local website that requires no daily administration.
  • To showcase the design and programming abilities of the developer.

In December 2001 visitor tracking software was written especially for the purpose of tracking page views and collecting visitor statistics.
We do not count page views by the webmaster(s) which would otherwise distort the figures.
Unlike some sites which count 'hits' we only count page views.
Technically, a 'hit' is a request for any file from the webserver (images, stylesheets, script files, etc).
Arriving at the first page of the Southportnews.com website causes 46 such hits to occur.

Statistics on the viewing of adverts are collected seperately.

There were 865 keyword searches performed between 14th November 2001 and 23rd September 2002
2002 : Average of 2696 page views per month and 88 per day

2003 : Average of 4614 pageviews per month and 172 per day.

Southportnews.com has won the following award

Technical Expertise
The site is run by J.P.Lee who holds a degree in Computing several electronics qualifications,has held two company directorships, and has been involved in the design of network distributed software since 1990.
Mr J.P.Lee is registered as a Nokia developer and is responsible for the code behind the mobile services on this website.
All code and programming to run this site was built especially for the purpose. There are no 'off-the-shelf' scripts used.

Technologies used:
HTML, JavaScript, PHP, Database design (SQL, MySQL), ActiveX programming in Borland Delphi 5, WAP, WML, SMS, mobile messaging protocols, website content management.

"Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain"
It's 25 times more complicated than it looks !
The site is based around fifteen tables in a database that contains information about Southport businesses and groups, site users, news articles, sms logs, chatroom logs, site templates and colours. The database is implemented in a three-tier configuration, with MySQL (an industry standard SQL server) providing the data storage handling, PHP (a modern C-like web script language) providing the logic, and HTML, JavaScript and ActiveX providing the client side interface.
The news sections are fully integrated with the database, whenever an update is made the front page is updated and the headlines added automatically.
Site member log-in is authenticated from a table of users who have different access rights, registered users may post announcements in the news section if they have been given the right to do so. After a user logs in, their username and password are not passed from page to page, they are protected by using 1024 bit MD5 generated session IDs that automatically expire after a while. This is actually a more secure technique than the 'Basic Authentication' used on many other websites.
Image upload is achieved using a custom written ActiveX object that resizes, compresses and uploads the images, directly from a digital camera plugged into the webmasters' computer. This greatly increases the speed and ease with which updates can be made. If I take your picture in a local club then it will be online by the time you wake up with a hangover! At SouthportNews.com there is no such thing as a publishing deadline - this site is built to be updated instantly, no FTP or webpage editing software is required for daily operation.

This site has actually been in development since the idea was conceived in November 1999.

Software used
The following software is used to create and run this website:
Notepad, Adobe Photoshop 5, Photoimpact JPG smartsaver.
Other software was custom written in Borland Delphi 5:
Camtasia - Grabs and FTPs webcam image up over adjustable time periods
Melody - Text editor
Extranet explorer - web page analysis software (under development)
'8th db' - distributed RDBMS (under development By A.Mitchel) used to design and test the SQL tables

Compatibility Testing
Each page on this website was tested at 640*480, 800*600, 1024*768 using MSIE 6.0, Netscape 4.7, Netscape 6, and Firefox.
The 'easymedia player' does not work properly in Netscape, sorry.
The WAP site (http://tagtag.com/southport) has been tested using 'Nokia Simulator Application 2.0'.

If you have any problems with this website tell the technical team

All content (text/images/audio) copyright. Any replication is forbidden.
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