As embarrassing as it may sound, Sam started his journey into web development designing a web presence and gig posters for his high school punk band. After figuring out becoming a rock star wasn’t going to work as a career path, he started studying a quieter profession – learning how to write basic HTML elements and photoshopping his friends’ heads on to celebrities’ bodies. Fast forward a few years – during his time attending Virginia Tech, Sam started to get serious about web design and digital media. He would often stay up late into the night working on top secret side projects. His current interests include distributed infrastructure and object oriented programming. Sam recently graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) with a Master of Science degree in Information Systems. Sam also has a Post-Baccalaureate Graduate Certificate in Business Administration from VCU and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Virginia Tech. At VCU, Sam works as the University Webmaster. He currently lives and works in Richmond, Virginia with his wife and her cat.

About this website

This website has gone through an iteration and update about once a year since it’s inception in 2008. As you can see I’m an infrequent blogger but I do make good use of this website and server as mostly a personal learning platform and playground.

The backend is currently managed by WordPress, which I have somewhat of a love / hate relationship with. I seem to go away from and back to it with each site iteration depending on what I’m learning at the time. As I do some WordPress work professionally, I’ve found it’s helpful to be able to learn and experiment with my own installation before borking more important things.

This website runs on a custom WordPress theme narcissistically called Sam Yerkes 2018. The theme is a combination of selected pieces of the Tailwind CSS framework, Medium Zoom and some custom styles and scripts. All the assets are combined and optimized via Laravel Mix (an implementation of webpack).

I’m currently hosted on a self-managed micro virtual private server (VPS) from digitalocean.com using Ubuntu 18.04 (Bionic). Various software is used such as Apache, MySQL, PHP and Redis. I recently rewrote the environment to run all the previously mentioned software through Docker containers for increased flexibility and consistency. It was a great learning experience.