The Portfolio of Derek Brooks

JavaScript

I've done extensive JavaScript work over the years. From the client-side to server-side and from popular frameworks to thousands of lines of custom libraries. Some of the frameworks I've most used include: Express, ExtJS, jQuery, Nuxt, Prototype, Scriptaculous, SproutCore, Vue and a handful of custom in-house frameworks.

Here are 33 projects that I've worked on tagged JavaScript.

derek.broox.com

Screenshot of derek.broox.com
derek.broox.com is my general home page, online scrapbook, and development playground. Its primary purpose is to catalog my life and allow me to play with various APIs and web development technologies. It serves up thousands of photos, check-ins, microblogs, blogs, maps, videos, and various other data from my life. Since 2001, it has been a constantly evolving web application.

v8 - latest version

This is the first version of my site that I completely rebuilt in a new language and platform. I moved the entire site from a containerized LAMP stack to a server-side-rendered (SSR) Nuxt.js application that relies completely on the Broox API to power its content. I chose Nuxt and SSR in order to keep my SEO and open graph / social sharing meta tags intact while still providing a speedy, asynchronous client-side browsing experience.

Broox API

Screenshot of Broox API
This is a RESTful API to surface all of my personal data like blogs, microblogs, photos, geodata, etc. It currently powers derek.broox.com and photos.broox.com.

v2 - latest version

After growing a little tired of Node, Express and Sequelize, I decided to rebuild my personal API using Python, Flask, and SQLAlchemy. The end product felt much cleaner and allowed me move a lot faster when iterating on new features.

Modest Control Panel

Screenshot of Modest Control Panel
The Modest Control Panel was a multi-tenant Content Management System that allowed merchants to manage their Modest powered storefronts. Features included the management of store themes, payment gateways, shipping methods, orders, third party e-commerce product syncing, and even generating standalone iOS applications. The back-end of this app was built in Python using the Flask framework. The front-end was initially built with plain Javascript and jQuery, but was eventually migrated to React. As the Modest client application tech lead, I oversaw and greatly contributed to the overall product architecture and implementation of this web application.

Modest Web Store

Screenshot of Modest Web Store
The Modest Web Store was a mobile-first, responsive, multi-tenant web application that powered each of our merchant's web-based storefronts. In addition to (and more importantly than) a browsable store, it powered contextual buy buttons and instant checkout screens that could be embedded into ads, emails, and anywhere else on the web or in a mobile application. The client-side of the web store was initially built in Backbone.js and integrated with the Modest Commerce API via a thin Node.js proxy. Later, we started to migrate the front-end to Vue.js. I was the architect, tech lead, and leading contributor to the web client.

Call Tool

Screenshot of Call Tool
Call Tool is a phone canvassing web application used by both Obama for America and the DNC. In its simplest form, it provided volunteers with a potential voter to call and a relevant script to read. The volunteer could then record the answers from the potential voter, which were used to learn more about how the campaign should be operating or targeting individuals. Underneath its shell, Call Tool had a fairly complex architecture that proxied all of its data through our Narwhal API and interfaced with a Voter Checkout Service API and synced with 2 of the campaign's vendors. I architected and built the Call Tool web application and its communication with the Narwhal API from the ground up. I also extended several parts of the Voter Checkout Service to make it more performant, tighten protection against fraudulent callers, and better integrate with our vendors. As I took on other tasks on the campaign, I worked with other engineers and oversaw all development on the application.

Des Moines Alive

Screenshot of Des Moines Alive
Des Moines Alive is a personal project that my friend Nick Leeper and I built to help Des Moines Area folks find awesome local bars and restaurants. In addition to general merchant info, we provided users with aggregated data such as reviews, foursquare tips, merchant tweets, etc. We designed Des Moines Alive to be very lite and easy to navigate. The goal was to provide our visitors with the information they wanted as quickly as possible.

v2 - latest version

Nick and I decided to use this version of Des Moines Alive to learn new things, play with APIs, and switch our focus to local businesses. We built our own custom PHP MVC, with ideas borrowed from our experiences with Rails and Kohana. We redesigned our database to be more efficient. We also began using many more APIs such as SimpleGeo, Google Maps, Facebook, Foursquare, and Twitter to aggregate data and give our users more information.

Dipity

Screenshot of Dipity
In short, Dipity was an interactive digital timeline web application with a hint of social networking. We built an incredible web-based tool that allowed users to create, share, embed and collaborate on interactive timelines that integrated video, audio, images, text, social media, geolocation and of course, accurate timestamps. Timeline viewers could pan around and zoom into these timelines for a very nice, visually engaging experience. Being that it was all built in vanilla javascript, it even worked, and was incredibly responsive, on mobile devices, ipads, etc.

v3 - latest version

Building Dipity 3 is the main reason I was hired. Version 2 was a couple years old. The design was dated, its timeline widget was built on the YUI library, and was generally inefficient. Dipity 3's goal was to update the look, improve the widget's efficiency, support HTML5 guidelines, function on mobile devices, and provide several new features. I built the front-end from the ground up, added several new features in both the front and back end (including Facebook connect, better registration process, etc), and worked closely with our other part-time engineer on the completely rewritten javascript timeline widget. I spent a lot of time making sure that the new Dipity timeline widget worked on mobile devices such as androids, iPhones, and iPads.

Perficut

Screenshot of Perficut
Perficut is one of the leading landscaping and lawn service companies in Des Moines, IA. They came to our company, Red Five seeking a more serious web presence along with some custom tools. In addition to a complete redesign built around our CMS, I also built a large custom irrigation and service scheduler for Perficut and their clients. This scheduler allowed Perficut to define a season, serviceable neighborhoods, average appointment times, the number of crews available, and other small details. From here, the tool allowed Perficut to assign crews to neighborhoods (based on stats from the previous season). Once this was all set up, customers could visit Perficut's site to schedule sprinkler system startups, shutdowns, and service. On top of this custom tool, I was also in charge of integrating this site into our SiteMan CMS and deploying the site.

Philadelphia Marketplace

Screenshot of Philadelphia Marketplace
Philadelphia Marketplace is the shopping center located within Philadelphia International Airport. They hired Red Five to update their site, give them a content management system and also set up interactive maps for their shopping center. This was a pretty simple project from an engineering perspective. I was in charge of integrating the design into our CMS, writing a bit of javascript for the front-end, and finally, deploying the site.

Smithson Woodworks

Screenshot of Smithson Woodworks
Smithson Woodworks is a side project that was run by my cousin-in-law, Jon Smithson. One year we decided to trade, he'd build me a component rack for my entertainment center, and I'd help him get his stuff online. Jon sent me a logo and some photos of his work, I helped him by setting up a Wordpress site that integrated with a Flickr account. Jon simply uploaded photos and created albums on Flickr and those would become automatically mirrored to the portfolio on SmithsonWoodworks.com.

Holiday eCards

Screenshot of Holiday eCards
This is a microsite that I built as a marketing tool for malls owned by PREIT. It allowed people to customize and send flash-based cards to friends and family. It was also built so that a campaign could be coupled with a contest. For example, all cards sent to moms on mothers day could be eligible for a mall gift card. For delivering the cards, I wrote a small script using the WhatCounts.com API. This little application was a lot of fun to work on and a huge success for the associated malls.

v2 - latest version

The Holiday eCard microsite was brought back to life for the winter holidays in 2009. Only this time instead of supporting only 3 malls, it was to support ~40 malls. That said, there were many performance improvements and generalizing of the codebase. The site was a great success receiving several hundred cards.

Countryside Motorsports

Screenshot of Countryside Motorsports
Countryside Motorsports is an interesting little site that I was able to crank out pretty quickly in 2008. However, we got it done right when our client got super busy, so it sat unlaunched for about a year until we were able to resurrect, update, and launch the site. It was a pretty basic marketing/inventory viewing site for an ATV, Snowmobile dealer in Iowa. I modeled and built a custom admin for managing inventory, specials, and homepage banners.

TowRate

Screenshot of TowRate
TowRate was a startup that offered a custom service to towing companies. The site allowed subscribed companies to manage their assets, map routes, and calculate profit margins for every tow. It was built in a way that allowed the towing companies to quickly run these calculations while on the phone, so they could figure out the most profitable way to charge for each tow. On this project, I was in charge of pretty much everything except for the initial design. My job involved data modeling, loads of calculations, back-end development, front-end development, form design, and deployment. TowRate was a very javascript heavy application, using plenty of asynchronous calls for things like sorting, calculating rates on the fly, and grabbing map data from the Google Maps API. The Maps API was used to help determine mileage and time for each tow. From there, the app used extensive math and formulas to help find the best price for each call. Companies were able subscribe to TowRate on a monthly or yearly basis. I integrated PayPal's Web Payments Pro to handle these subscriptions; let users join, autorenew, enter discount codes, cancel accounts, etc. Subscribed companies could also manage their trucks (as well as truck expenses), users, tow rates, tax areas, routes, etc. It provided an all around fleet management solution to any towing company.

West Bank

Screenshot of West Bank
West Bank is an Iowa based bank that my company, Red 5 Interactive, had been working with for years. When they came to us for a redesign, my assignments were to integrate our in-house CMS, build a couple plugins, and build functionality to capture a user's zipcode and display the appropriate location-based content. The plugins I built were based on previous functionality they had and wanted to retain: current loan/savings rates, alerts, and custom newsletters.

Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division

Screenshot of Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division
Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division is responsible for the regulation and control of all alcohol and tobacco in the state of Iowa. The division has generated hundreds of millions of dollars for the state of Iowa. Our company, Red 5 Interactive had hosted IABD for years. Up until this rebuild, they were one of the very last Java based sites running on an ancient server stuck in a closet in the back of our office. As time went on, it became scarier and scarier to let their site remain live. Once showing IABD the physical server they were running on, talking them into a complete rebuild was no challenge at all. One of the most daunting parts of this rebuild was the task of migrating all their content. I heavily modified our internal Site Spider to accomplish this task. The client had around 400 pages and 700 files that were linked to (mostly PDF press releases). I had to completely crawl their site, import everything into our CMS and fix every link to work correctly. Given the fact that they had FTP access to the old server, things were a mess, and this was not a simple task. I'm talking about some serious site scraping madness! Being such a large site, this client came up with all kinds of awesome ideas for our CMS, which I was able to add-on and commit back to the repository for our other clients. After setting up our internal CMS and importing their hundreds of pages/files, I had to build a Javascript Fund counter to display on their homepage. Basically, the client takes their projected income, enters it into a custom tool that I built in SiteMan, and my JS did the math to determine how much money was being transferred to the state every second. It then dynamically animated a count-up on the homepage. I also built some fancy, custom (and totally dynamic) javascript dropdown navigation. Finally, I had to model and build a custom plugin to allow IABD to import CSV files of their alcohol products, stores, and tobacco compliance data. Then, I built functionality to browse and search all of this data on the front-end. At the time, Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division was basically a test of all my skills. Sys admin, back-end development, front-end development, scraping, importing, and finally deployment.

Loffredo Fresh Produce

Screenshot of Loffredo Fresh Produce
Loffredo is a high-end produce company serving much of the Mid West. When our company was hired to rebuild their site, my assignments were to integrate our in-house SiteMan CMS, create some plugins, build in a fancy javascript fruit carousel, and of course deploy the site to our production server. The plugin I built for this site simply allowed Loffredo to manage branches and employees and allow site visitors to contact them. The fruit carousel I mentioned was a custom javascript animation that cycles through various fruits on the homepage.

Michael Annett

Screenshot of Michael Annett
Michael Annett was an upcoming race car driver from Des Moines, IA. We didn't build his site from scratch, but when his site development/hosting company stopped providing good service, we were asked to take over. The former host of michaelannett.com was not very cooperative in the site transition - so we had an interesting time getting Michael's content for him. To get Michael's site, we wrote an internal app called Site Spider to crawl his existing site, save all the pages, their images, stylesheets, javascripts, etc - all while preserving the links and folder structure. Once I successfully crawled and downloaded this site, I put this app into our internal Content Management application, SiteMan. I also built a couple custom SiteMan plugins, which included a photo gallery and online store management. The store they wanted was fairly small, however, no matter the size, building an online store is quite an effort. After launch, Michael was able to easily update news, photo galleries, results, schedules, general web page content at anytime, and could sell his gear online.

S & C Automotive

Screenshot of S & C Automotive
S & C Automotive is a company that provides vehicle warranties and protections to local car dealerships. If you bought a car from any of several dealerships in Iowa, you'd be offered a set of warranties - paint protection, rust protection, etc. These protections were all sold to the dealerships by S & C. I built a web application to allow S & C to manage these protections and offer them to dealerships. The dealerships had their own accounts and could log in and select each protection that they sell. Then, S & C could view, process, ship, and bill for these registrations.

SiteMan

Screenshot of SiteMan
SiteMan is a Content Management System that we built at Red 5 Interactive. It was originally built so that mall property owners could manage each of their mall property's websites. However, once we realized how powerful our system was, we decided to generalize the app so that we could deploy it for all of our clients. We rebuilt SiteMan to allow our clients to easily manage a single website or a group of websites. This way, a parent company could edit any of their child company websites, while employees of the child companies would only be able to see and manage their respective site. The front-ends of the sites managed by SiteMan were also completely extracted from SiteMan itself, which was great for 2 reasons. First of all, it allowed us to more easily keep all of our clients' systems up-to-date in that we were just updating SiteMan and not touching their presentation layer. Secondly, it also allowed us to launch new campaigns and designs for clients very quickly without touching the content management system. When we deployed SiteMan for a client it came with a core group of tools like user management, web page editing, file management, audit logs, etc. From there, custom tools could be added as plugins. These tools included functionality like, announcements, events, careers, photo galleries, stores, social networking, etc. We also built SiteMan in a way that allowed users to customize their tool layout. Any user could pick which tools they used the most and arrange them in a way to get a quick snapshot of the exact data that they were interested in. Tools could be added, removed, or sorted at any time - and everything remained just as they left it on their next visit. This application was very Javascript heavy, making extensive use AJAX, dialog windows, and WYSIWYG editing. As such, we had minimal page loads which provided a very streamlined experience for our clients. I am very proud and excited to have worked with such a great team on this app. It was so versatile and simple to keep pushing forward.

NAPA Sales Driver

Screenshot of NAPA Sales Driver
Edwards Graphics Arts (a partner to NAPA) hired our company to build a web application for distributing posters and flyers to NAPA's retail stores. Each store could purchase any of several different promotional products. This is a process that NAPA and it's 3rd party designers had previously handled over the phone. I built a web application to help streamline this process and eliminate phone ordering. This app allowed Edwards Graphic Arts to upload and edit designs for the stores to order. Retail store managers could then visit the site and order promotional products that fit their demographic. This site was very javascript heavy with a lot of asynchronous calls to provide a quick user experience. I also integrated it with PayPal's Pay Flow Pro to allow for online payment.

TMC Transportation

Screenshot of TMC Transportation
TMC, a local trucking company with some of the most beautiful trucks that I've ever seen, hired us to rebuild their website and enhance their web presence. I was in charge of modeling and building a system to manage employees, sales reps, and news. The sales rep data was fed to flash maps via XML. The careers page was built by consuming a remote XML feed.

Signs Plus

Screenshot of Signs Plus
Signs Plus is a Des Moines area company who is responsible for some of Iowa's most impressive signage. They hired my company, Red 5 Interactive, to completely rebuild and rebrand their site. They wanted something that was loud, colorful, and gets their products right in front of the customer. Our designer took care of the visual aspects, while I was in charge of modeling and content management. The major function of the admin panel was to allow Signs Plus to upload photos of their work. The images were dynamically resized in several ways to fit the flash-based home page, as the rest of the site. Being that the homepage was flash, I also built some dynamic XML endpoints to feed data to power the animations. Shortly after release, we received emails from Signs Plus saying that they were already getting new business based on the quality of their site.

iTunes Web Remote

Screenshot of iTunes Web Remote
In 2008, I bought a couple Airport Express modules to create an iTunes controlled whole-house-stereo. It was awesome until a terrible song would come on and I'd have to run upstairs to skip to a better tune. Apple quickly became aware of this problem and released an iTunes remote for iOS. However, at the time I didn't have any iOS devices and I couldn't justify spending a few hundred dollars for an ipod touch/iphone music remote. As such, I decided to build a remote of my own. Using PHP and AppleScript to communicate to iTunes, I was able to whip up a super light web-based remote that ran on my Mac. With "LAMP" running locally, I could visit the IP of my Mac from any device on my internal network and navigate my songs. At the time, I used this to switch songs via my blackberry, sidekick, a PSP, or even our Nintendo Wii. It was great for parties!

Justin Marks Racing

Screenshot of Justin Marks Racing
The company I work for, Red 5 Interactive was hired to build a site for NASCAR truck driver, Justin Marks. Our basic guideline from the driver was to "make it like Bam Margera's site." He really enjoyed moving elements, photos, and of course - a music player. My job was to integrate the site with Justin Marks' Flickr account, build XML feeds to power our flash app, and also build a non-flash version of the site.

Glimcher

Screenshot of Glimcher
Glimcher is a premier real estate investment trust that manages malls and shopping centers across the United States. They came to my company, Red 5 Interactive, seeking a corporate website. My company had already built and launched this site by the time I began working on it, so my job was simply to enhance some features on both the admin and the front-end. Glimcher wanted a near real-time display of their stock price on the homepage. However, there weren't any great services to grab this information at the time, so I built a CRON scheduled script to scrape a couple quote sites and grab their stock price. Whenever the price was successfully grabbed, the price was written to a local file that was read by the website. Glimcher also wanted real-time stats on their leasing informational pages, so I added some functionality to display updates on leasable square feet, property count, etc. Finally, they wanted to be able to quickly show/hide all dynamic content on their website. I added some simple toggling as well as drag/drop sorting to any and all data in the CMS.

Team 46

Screenshot of Team 46
Team 46 is a group of service and avionics specialists working at the Des Moines Flying Service (DMFS). They hired our company, Red 5 Interactive, to make a micro-site for their technicians. The Team 46 micro site was pretty straight forward. They needed a way to blog, manage case studies, take service requests, and upload photos. For the blog, I simply installed an internal blog plugin that I'd previously built. Everything else in the CMS was custom programmed. There was nothing crazy about this app, but everything was built and deployed very smoothly.

The Bellevue

Screenshot of The Bellevue
The Bellevue is a building located in downtown Philadelphia that houses restaurants, shops, and a hotel. They hired my company, Red 5 Interactive to build an informational site for them. I built a small, custom content management system for this site allowing Bellevue to manage events and photo galleries. The photo galleries could be organized and sorted via drag and drop.

Countryside RV

Screenshot of Countryside RV
Countryside RV was my first complete Ruby on Rails site. I was the main programmer for this project while working with Red 5 Interactive. Our designer and front end developer took care of most of the design and html build-out. I was in charge of modeling and building the actual application and content management system. The primary function of the site was to display all of Countryside's current RV inventory. Countryside could add a large amount of detail as well as upload multiple photos of a given RV. We've also implemented a "Buyers Gallery" that allowed some visible interaction with Countryside's user base. When someone bought an RV from Countryside, they'd be featured on the website with their new camper.

515 Alive

Screenshot of 515 Alive
515 Alive is an urban music festival that takes place in Des Moines, IA. We donated this simple dynamic informational site to relay event times and locations. The site's simplicity was largely due to the very short deadline and last minute event changes. I worked closely with a local designer for some of the elements.

Iowa Business Alliance

Screenshot of Iowa Business Alliance
Iowa Business Alliance came to my partnership with a design in place, but they needed help bringing their vision to life. We built them a useful, dynamic website with a custom content management system that they could use to attract potential clients.

Lujack's SUV Trails

Screenshot of Lujack's SUV Trails
I designed this site for Lujack's Northpark Auto Plaza, where I previously held my internship. Lujack's is the fist dealership in the country to have their own SUV offroad test track. This track has several obstacles to test the performance of sport utility vehicles. The screenshot shown is a portion of the virtual map I built for Lujack's. When a user hovered their mouse over an obstacle a description of that obstacle was shown in the description box. If an obstacle was clicked on, a small video clip would be played in Quicktime format.

Computing Services

Screenshot of Computing Services
While at Cornell, I worked for Computing Services - the department that managed all of Information Technology. As part of my work-study I was hired to design a site for our department. It was my first experience in coding websites with things other than straight HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. I got to learn perl and the magic of including reusable .nav files for easy, DRY navigation manipulation. My main duty was to fix old links, remove unwanted content, add new content, and update various items throughout. Due to such a large amount of changes, I ended up recoding most of the site from scratch. Everything except for the RESnet (student intranet) section of the website was my work. At the time, if you saw a little stylized "x" in the footer the bottom of the page - I programmed it.