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Sunday, March 6, 2011

Mobile posting

I'm writing this post on my phone using the official Blogger android app... seems pretty basic, but handy nevertheless!

More posts coming this week, if my workload cooperates.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Life as a Mac web developer

I have a terrible secret. For the last few months, I've been using a... Mac (gasp).

Now I may be the only mac-user on this blue ball that isn't some sort of die-hard apple cultist. I think they're great (if over-priced) hardware, and I dig OSX. I don't think Steve Jobs is the second coming. I hate iTunes and iPods. I don't have an iPhone. I don't like black turtlenecks.

But this does make a nice little web development machine. I have a command line (that's not DOS...) and a unixish OS. It has apache set up right away. It has a very nice UI, and there is some amount of "it just works" - although I'm not sure that's more true with WIndows. But it is more true than of even the best linux distros, at least in my experience.

So, stay tuned and I'll point out some handy apps for any other web devs who've made the switch.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Empty $_POST array in MAMP

OK, so just spent 30 minutes debugging this. I'm now using a mac as my development platform for one of the sites I support. It's worked pretty well until today when I started adding a new feature. I ran into a weird problem where POST arguments were not being made available, either in $_REQUEST or $_POST - while GET arguments were.

Thanks to this page, I was pointed in a useful directions. Turns out for some reason my version of MAMP had a max_post_size of "3200M" set in its php.ini file. That was not working too well - when I changed it to 32M, everything went back to working normally.

So, perhaps that will help someone else who's driving themselves crazy!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


OK, time for a non-techie post. After all, were all humans, right? Well, maybe...

I love halloween. Love it. Best holiday of them all. I loved it as a kid, and it just gets better as an adult. I like the weather, I like the decorations, I like the beer. It's a great time.

This weekend one of my favorite podcasts will be doing their Halloweekend - in which new shows will be posted each night starting on Friday - should be a blast. Check it out! Maybe you need something fun to listen to while you hand out treats or head to your halloween parties :)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Ooh shiny - Ubuntu 10.1

Just read this Ubuntu review - I used Ubuntu on my primary work machine for a long time, but it's been a few years since I used it now... time to get back in I think. Wonder if it will work on my old sony vaio - I suspect it has proprietary hardware that may cause problems....

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Dropbox is a savior!

(yes, decided to try to post some more, got really busy for a while and this project - among many others - got sidelined...)

A couple days ago Dropbox saved me from a significant amount of repair work. Dropbox is a free online backup/file sync tool available for windows, mac and Linux. Basically you set up a folder different computers. Anything in that folder is a synced to all the other computers. This is handy for easily keeping things available that you need on different machines.

It's also handy for collaborating with other people, in that you can give people access to specific subdirectories of your dropbox folder. I did this for a project I was working with a designer on. He spent hours working on a photoshop file, then told me that it was ready for me to use...

I opened the file, and only about 10% of the required stuff seemed to be there! Uhoh. I called him, and he swore up and down that he'd done the work, etc.

Well, Dropbox also has another handy feature - previous versions of files are available via its web interface. So I logged into the web interface, found the file in question and found that sure enough its file size had been quite a bit larger a couple versions back. I restored the file and *presto* all the necessary stuff is there! Whew! Somehow he'd overwritten the file with an older version.

So, if you haven't already check out dropbox. I've really had zero problems with it, and it's really quite handy - and occasionally a real life saver!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Great google article

Over on Maximum PC - there were a few things I didn't know you could do with the various Google apps.

One is uploading files to google docs - any file. Which ties in well with my previous post about storing passwords - I uploaded a copy of my password safe file to google docs as a backup. Can't hurt, right?

Also, I wasn't aware that you could set up forms in google docs that act as surveys, and then store the results in a google docs spreadsheet. This is a little alarming, as a decent amount of my work involves coding up custom surveys similar to this...