Charles D. Gray, web developer

Welcome. This is Speak, my development partner. Sitting on my knee as I code. Sometimes he's in my shirt.

Skills

HTML/CSS ↴

I have been coding HTML since the dark days before CSS, and using it as part of my work steadily since 1996.

Some of the things I use and understand:

  • HTML5
  • CSS3
  • Document Object Model
  • Semantic HTML
  • Canvas element
  • Datalists
  • Media elements (audio, video)
  • Editable elements
  • Open Graph protocol
  • Bootstrap
  • W3.css
  • CSS media queries
  • CSS property transformation
  • Pseudo selectors
JavaScript/jQuery ↴

JavaScript and jQuery are the basis for all my sites and apps; I use them for standalone projects and in WordPress plugins and within pages in third-party CMSes.

Some of the things I use and understand:

  • jQuery UI, jQuery Mobile
  • CreateJS
  • AngularJS
  • APIs such as Google Maps, Facebook, bit.ly
  • Cookies
  • JSON
  • AJAX
  • Chrome extensions
PHP/SQL ↴

Most of my web apps depend on an SQL database for data storage and PHP for server-side processing of existing data and new user input.

Some of the things I use and understand:

  • PDO prepared-statement queries
  • Session management
  • Password hashing
  • cURL
  • MySQL/SQL Server
  • Complex database joins
  • ExcelPHP
  • PHP Simple HTML DOM Parser
WordPress ↴

The most-ubiquitous do-it-yourself CMS is also a great pick for professional projects, IMO. I’ve developed several sites and plugins on the platform.

Some of the things I use and understand:

  • Plugin development
  • Template/theme development
  • Editor customization
  • Custom post types/meta data fields
  • Categories, tagging, archives
Responsive emails ↴

Several times in my career I’ve found myself responsible for building emails to spec for a variety of platforms.

Some of the things I use and understand:

  • ExactTarget
  • Luminate Online
  • MailChimp
  • Email on Acid
  • MSO tagging for Outlook compatibility
  • Webmail, desktop, mail app best practices
Metrics ↴

It doesn’t matter what you build if no one uses it; for public-facing websites and apps, I have frequently been involved in deploying and interpreting a variety of metrics platforms.

Some of the things I use and understand:

  • Omniture SiteCatalyst
  • Google Analytics
  • Chartbeat
  • CrowdTangle
Video editing ↴

From my years as a TV journalist, I’ve honed my audiovisual storytelling skills. While I don’t lay claim to master-level editing skills, I am comfortable in several editing environments.

Some of the things I use and understand:

  • Edius
  • Vegas
  • Avid
  • FlipFactory and other transcoding utilities
  • Web-optimized video rendering and publishing

Samples

Choice Hotels Call Forwarding Portal

Choice Hotels Call Forwarding Portal

Developed a new version of Choice Hotels' back-end system for managing its call-forwarding program. The Call Forwarding Portal allows users to quickly search and update participating hotels' information and tracks strategic goals via support for data import from and export to Excel spreadsheets.

Read more

Tools used:

  • PHP
  • SQL Server
  • PDO queries
  • PHPExcel library
  • JavaScript/jQuery
  • Bootstrap
  • AJAX
  • JSON

Bound Angels

Bound Angels

A site honoring the memory of my niece and her best friend with a scholarship in their name ... features a rock-hunting campaign with photo gallery.

View online

Tools used:

  • WordPress
  • PHP
  • MySQL
  • JavaScript/jQuery
  • Bootstrap

Responsive email builder

Responsive email builder

The challenge was to build a simple tool for Arizona PBS staffers to use to make truly responsive email content. While the third-party system they used had a WYSIWYG editor, it fell short on modern smartphone email apps and didn't easily support inserting ad units hosted on another third-party ad server.

Read more

View online

Tools used:

  • PHP
  • JavaScript/jQuery
  • Bootstrap
  • Email on Acid for testing
  • MSO markup for Outlook compatibility
  • AJAX
  • JSON

Arizona PBS

Arizona PBS

Oversaw complete redesign and CMS migration for KAET, Phoenix's PBS station. Managed extensive redesign/relaunch of azpbs.org, migrating the site from a home-brewed CMS on a unnormalized MySQL database to a modern, responsive digital property on the WordPress CMS. 

Read more

View online

Tools used:

  • WordPress
  • PHP
  • MySQL
  • JavaScript/jQuery
  • Bootstrap
  • AJAX
  • JSON

About me

My name is Charles Gray.

A graduate of Columbia University, I have been in digital publishing since pretty much the beginning, landing my first dot-com job in 1996. There I learned good presentation in terms of content and copy, and basic HTML development.

Most of my career has seen me on the content side of digital publications, including arts and entertainment as well as local news.

In recent years, I’ve branched out into less content and more development. Though I’m not a designer, I can code to spec and deliver a fast, responsive, and stable product in a reasonable time frame. It also helps that I love the work.

My favorite projects are productivity apps that help people do their jobs.

About Speak

Speak is a sun conure – a type of small parrot from the jungles of South America. He only weighs a few ounces and is 10 or 12 inches long on a good day (counting the tail), but you’d never believe that judging by the surprising amount of noise he can make.

He is fully flighted and has the range of our home (though thankfully he is also perch-trained and rarely makes a mess anywhere he’s not supposed to).

When I’m at my computer (or TV or stove or wherever), he is usually perched on me or climbing around inside and outside my clothing.

He and the dog have been enjoying a nervous truce for years.