I've been a bit quiet for the last couple of weeks. Now I can reveal why!

All my spare time has been taken up building Shelvist (well, that and looking after a 4-month old). It's a way of keeping track of which books you have read, which ones you are currently reading and which ones you want to read. That's it.

Just over a year ago, I started listening to a lot of audiobooks and, 12 months after I subscribed to Audible, I decided I wanted to see just how many books I'd read*. All the existing book tracking sites (e.g. Shelfari, Goodreads) focus on recommending, rating, reviewing which just seemed like hard work.

Building this was also a chance to learn some new tech. I've been wanting to play with CakePHP for a while so this seemed like the best opportunity. It's been a while since I used any kind of framework and I've never used a PHP MVC framework (although I did build one last year as an intellectual exercise).

I got over 90% of the site built in spare time over about 5 days and most of that was spent just reading the CakePHP docs. The reason for the lengthy delay between initial build and launch is down to that last 10%. As often happens with frameworks, nearly everything you'd ever need to do is bundled into some nice, easy to access functionality. That is, after all, kinda the point of a framework. It's the stuff that makes your product or website unique that proves trickier. I won't go into any details just now although I might come back to it in a later post.

More later, first of all, go shelve some books: Shelvist.