Education:Bachelor's Degree in Web Technology.
Certificate in Social Media for Business
Certificate in Startup Engineer (Stanford Coursera)
Web Work:Build websites & program applications, web technology consultant. Mobile sites & basic iPhone Apps. Technical support experience at the University. Freelance & corporate experience since 2005.
Databases:Sybase (w/SPRs), MySQL. Exposure to: SQL, PROGRESS, PostgreSQL
Environments/Servers:Mercurial (source control), Windows, Macintosh, Unix (terminal environment), Apache Past/Exposure: Git, IIS, Webspeed, Subversion
Applications:Joomla (Open source CMS), Gimp (like Photoshop), Wordpress, DreamWeaver, Zend IDE, Safari, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, Macromedia Homesite, Eclipse, Firefox, IE, Chrome, & more
Other:W3C standards, cross browser testing, accessibility, table-LESS design, some search engine optimization (SEO), information architecture, publishing, graphic manipulation, familiarity with e-commerce (online shopping buying/selling), basic hardware, & more
Web Technology vs Web Design vs Computer Science
Definitions below may vary by region, education or personal preference
Although I have some artistic skills and was a computer science major in the engineering department most of my time at the University, I don't call myself a web designer or computer scientist/engineer. My skills and experiences are unique in that I specialize in, (but not limited to), technology of the web, which covers various topics from "programming/scripting" to technical design, some information architecture (how to organize the content), and standards that help with accessibility and user friendliness. Technical aspects of the web are generally not covered in depth in the web designer and computer scientist curriculum, as my web technology curriculum did not involve taking art classes or engineering courses.
So what does a typical web designer, web technologist, and computer scientist do, and why is it important to differentiate among them?
A web designer typically focuses in the Arts, and uses what-you-see-is-what-you-get (WYSIWYG) software, (like Dreamweaver for example), that codes FOR them as they layout/create websites, or FLASH animations. Computer scientists typically focus on building desktop based software (the ones you install in your computer), not web applications. So for example, a web designer may know how to make a highly visually appealing website, but might not be familiar with coding it or organize the content in a user friendly manner, and a computer scientist may learn how to web program, but they might not be familiar with the details of web standards.
Web technologist seems like a fairly new concept and takes into consideration topics like technical design and web standards. For example, organizing content, in the most efficient way to making it easier to navigate. Making code work for among different browsers (e.g. Internet Explorer vs Firefox vs Safari), and on computers verses mobile devices. Good technical design also helps expand accessibility, for example, for the visually impaired who may use text to speech software (to read the words out loud for them) and at the same time helps search engines crawl through your site to have better results. Coding efficiently will help keep pages load faster and take up less space. Taking these concepts into consideration can save a user from frustration and help you keep a user on your site. The advantage of focusing in web technology is taking into consideration all these aspects to make the site as optimal as possible.
Getting back to why it is to differentiate among these 3 different roles. I find that a lot of companies or individuals confuse these roles; they want a web site, web application, or to convert their desktop software to web applications and may end up NOT hiring the right role (or *enough* roles) to help accomplish their goals. For example, they might expect a computer scientist to create effective web applications, expect a web developer to create some graphics/logos, or they might expect a web designer to create a script to run on their site. There are also several companies that even provide web services themselves, but don't take into consideration the important web technology concepts that would make their services better. They might also decide to use existing outdated resources/ideas instead continuously upgrading and re-training to keep up to date to the current trends. Everything is a continuous learning process; that is how we get better.
Sometimes people might confuse me for a web designer, or someone who just maintains web sites, not recognizing the importance of the role of a web technologist. Or wish to save money by searching for the rare individual who can "do it all." I have to be honest, it would be a dream to "do it all," but it's extremely RARE to find a person who *knows* web design AND web programming AND things that a computer scientist knows. Not saying it's not possible.. just rare to have an in depth focus of all three. Sometimes it is necessary to hire more than just one individual to get the job done and done well. Taking these things into consideration will help save money in the future and save from having to rebuild everything from scratch again on the next upgrade.
I have also talked to a few companies who also told me an issue that they have is the designers don't understand the techies and the techies don't understand the designers. This is where a web technologist like me can come in handy and bridge the gap among communication. Because I have knowledge in technical design that is relevant to web designers concerns, and can relate to computer scientists, I think ahead of what is needed on both ends, translate to them in understandable terms in order to merge the two concepts together.
In the end, it comes down to what your goals are over the web and what you need to accomplish them. I believe I can help you lean towards a good direction, towards that goal, contribute new ideas or improve existing sites and applications.