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Friday Grab Bag

Posted 2017-10-06 15:21:01 GMT

Happy Friday! Here's a healthy dose of randomness to start your weekend:

- The iOS 11 update is pretty nice so far, especially for iPad users. However, the battery usage on my iPhone 6s seems to have increased significantly. Has anyone else noticed this?

- PostgreSQL 10.0 has been released! Check out the announcement.

- AOL Instant Messenger will be discontinued on December 15th. It's the end of an era.

- The Perl Dancer Survey 2017 is online. The Core Team needs and wants your feedback about the future of Dancer. Find out more about the survey, and get your response in by October 31.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Tags: crome-plated perl dancer postgresql

What have I been up to since 2015?

Posted 2017-02-02 19:47:40 GMT

Since last I last posted something technical, I was between work opportunities and just getting involved with Dancer and the Perl community after a long time away. A lot has changed in that time, and I wanted to take a little time to share a bit about what I have been up to in that time.

Joining the Dancer Core Team

The thing that pleases me the most was having been invited to the Dancer Core Team. I have adopted the role of release manager, and for now, I spend most of my time on the project reviewing pull requests, running and writing tests, building and testing releases, and crafting release announcements. I spend time squashing bugs and dealing with GitHub issues as I am able to, and am looking forward to having some time this spring to get some wishlist items taken care of for the project. The Dancer Core Team is a talented, passionate group of developers that care deeply about the Dancer Community, and I am honored to be a part of them.

Rejoining the Perl Community

After a long time away, I have started participating in local Perl Monger groups again. I have mostly attended Chicago.pm meetups during this time, but have recently started attending MadMongers meetings as well… There is a really interesting series of sessions at MadMongers right now that center on developing a Zork-inspired single-player text adventure, which is too good for this retro-game lover to pass up.

I have also started attending some other area meetings that involve accessibility and general web development. I am trying to learn about VueJS and Angular from people with experience in it, and trying to educate people about Modern Perl and what it means to be a Perl developer in 2017.

Accessibility is a new passion of mine, and I am both trying to learn how better to make web sites more accessible while convincing my fellow developers to do the same.

Tau Station

I spent the last year or so as project manager for Tau Station, and had a great time being paid to develop a MMORPG in Perl - quite the dream come true! It’s an amazing game, and it is rapidly progressing towards its alpha launch this summer. If you are interested in sci-fi, Perl, or free-to-play games, you should really check out what’s going on there - you won’t be disappointed!

What’s next?

I am devoting some time this spring to work on a charity devoted to helping parents and families of children with autism. My own son was diagnosed with autism this past year, and it’s been a long, difficult, and educational journey for my family. We have been extremely fortunate to have access to information and resources that have made this a lot easier for us to live with, but many families do not have the tools they need to help themselves or their children. I am hoping that through our efforts and outreach that we can provide help, information, and other resources available to all families of special needs children.

Here’s to an amazing 2017. Stay tuned, much more to come!

Tags: crome-plated perl dancer

Dance, dance, dance!

Posted 2015-10-04 20:59:59 GMT

My experimentation with Mojolicious ended at my own site. I liked it for simple things, but as I tried to build an app that grew, I found myself getting more and more frustrated with the framework. I don't find that my frustration is damning of the product necessarily, but it was clear before long that it wasn't going to suit my tastes down the road.

Hello Dancer :) I have missed you like a long lost old friend.

I started by porting an old project of mine from Dancer 1 to Dancer 2, and was immediately reminded of why I loved Dancer - simplicity, clarity, consistency. The consistency was really appreciated as my pet project grew in size.

I can respect Mojo's reinvent the wheel, try to eliminate non-Perl core dependencies approach. But as I have worked with Dancer again, I like how it is able to remain lean while building upon a number of other tools in the Perl community that are well-tested and vetted by others.

As I have been working more with Dancer, I have taken to sending a few pull requests through to clarify and improve some issues I have found with the documentation. I've found the community very helpful and receptive (especially Sawyer, who has fielded a ton of questions from me as I have been getting up to speed again), and have even been threatened with a commit bit if I keep up the good work :) It's my sincere hope to keep contributing to and helping to improve Dancer and the community.

Tags: perl dancer mojolicious crome-plated

Fun with Mojolicious

Posted 2015-08-20 16:49:50 GMT

Since I need a website for my new venture, I decided that I might as well try out a new tool while for the construction of it. I've been meaning to get to Mojolicious for a while, so I decided to give it a whirl.

I have to say, I am extremely impressed.

Mojolicious is everything I like about Dancer - fast, simple, lightweight, and doesn't get in my way, especially for smaller projects. It has the added benefit of being highly extensible, and lets you easily grow your application into something you'd traditionally use Catalyst for. It has a friendly community, active development, and like their website says, it has made web development fun again!

I have a couple of more extensive projects waiting in the wings, and I am looking forward to building them with Mojolicious.

Tags: perl programming mojolicious web design crome-plated

Building an API

Posted 2013-07-08 14:52:11 GMT

Later this year, for the first time ever, my company has to build an API so third parties can more easily access date stored in our applications. Additionally, we are going to be providing an authentication mechanism for other applications that our clients may write using our API. Invariably, the first time I try something new, I make more than a few mistakes along the way, and I'd rather not make them in this API. So I am going to make these mistakes while designing an API for another product I love :)

IssueTrak, our helpdesk software vendor, has a great API already, but with them going all-in on the development of the new version of their product, they haven't been able to support all the great new features of IssueTrak in their API. So what better opportunity for me to learn something new than to build an API that includes these features?

But building the API isn't enough. I'd like to use this experience to learn some new tools, too. I had originally wanted to use Grape (and learn Ruby), but the sad reality is that if I want to get this done in any reasonable amount of time, I'm going to have to use Perl. So I'm going to change up my usual toolchain a bit. Instead of Dancer, I am going to use the newly-released Dancer 2 (going wild, I tell you!). After some discussion with rjbs, I am going to take a stab (inside joke) at Text::Template instead of TT2. For the help browser, I am going to use PureCSS over my beloved Bootstrap.

I'm hoping at the end of this adventure that I will have learned how to build a sane API that others will have an easy (and enjoyable?) time using, and that I'll have gained some understanding of some new tools that may be useful for future projects. If not that, I'll have had a nice exercise in expanding my horizons, getting out of my usual habits, and finding another way to do things.

Tags: issuetrak perl ruby purecss bootstrap tt2 dancer grape crome-plated