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Developing Web Daily

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All the new stacks

So lately I have looking into all the new ways of developing web applications, and there are a lot. I have looked at CakePHP, Laravel PHP, the MEAN Stack and the list goes on and on.

I know most people are saying to their self, really PHP, yes I still use PHP and so do a lot of people. Since I have started looking at Laravel for development it has brought me back to PHP for some of my applications, and if you haven’t looked at it yet I would suggest you try it out. You can find it here.

I have also been trying out the MEAN stack, which is MongoDB, Express, AngularJS and NodeJS. I do like Angular and everything it brings to the table, plus I like that it is being supported by Google. I will tell you that if you are new to development, the MEAN stack can be a bit overwhelming. You need to download a lot of dependencies and if you have never used, npm, bower, or anything other package manager, you might find your self in a bit of a predicament.

You have to know where you are downloading all the packages too, not to mention that there is a way that you can store them globally so you can use them over and over again for every project.

My question is, Do we really need this many dependencies to create a project?

My opinion, you don’t. Before you get started developing make sure you pre plan your project and decide what all is needed to make it work. Sometimes you can get by with very little to make your project work. Others, you will find that you need to use an MVC, MVVC or whatever design model you want to use to make your project work.

Either way, with so many choices coming out these days, just make sure you research the right technologies for your project. Don’t just do what is new and hot at the moment. You never know, it could fade away tomorrow and no one could support it.

Just my opinion.

T

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Speaking at FITC’s Web Unleashed 2013

I’m speaking at FITC’s Web Unleashed 2013 in Boston on Nov 7,8. I am doing a half day workshop on Greensock and an hour long session on LESS. I’m really excited about sharing some of this knowledge with more developers.

Below you will see the description for the conference, and if you want to attend enter this promo code, SPEAKERVIP, when you purchase your ticket and you will get 10% off. Here is the link to the conference. http://fitc.ca/event/webu2013/

Hope to see you all there.

DESCRIPTION

Web Unleashed 2013 is the front-end developer event that is not to be missed. The technology space around us is continuously changing, and it’s important to stay up-to-date with the skills and knowledge to push you ahead in your career. Get all the latest know-how over a two-day period: day one features a wide range of conference sessions focusing on front-end development, and day two takes a deep dive into specific topics with hands-on workshops. There is also an evening networking event where you may just meet your next boss, employee or partner!

TICKET INFORMATION

Conference – November 7
Workshop – November 8
The Works – includes both conference and workshop November 7-8

Early bird tickets (ends October 11, 2013)

Conference: $99
Workshop: $149
The Works: $199

Regular price tickets (after October 11, 2013)

Conference: $129
Workshop: $179
The Works: $239

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Choosing a code editor

So for some time now I have been debating over which code editor to use. I mean there are a lot out there and I have grown accustomed to the eclipse environment. I was using FlashBuilder for my AS3 projects and then moved to Aptana for my Titanium and Web projects, but I see so many people using Sublime Text that I thought it was time to explore the other options and report my findings.

My first choice was to go with Sublime Text.
I like, how lightweight it is, and how quickly it opens. As many of you know that have used eclipse, it can take some time to open. Sublime comes with some nice pre installed themes, and there are more that you can download. I also liked the find feature Sublime has built in, but to me, this is where this editor becomes a little bit tough to use. In my opinion, you almost have to have a manual to work this editor. There are a lot of features out there, but they are plugins and you have to install them, which takes some time to figure out. It doesn’t have a nice menu option to create a new project, which in my opinion would be nice to have built into the software. Not to mention you have to know all the keyboard shortcuts to run all the features you may have added. Don’t get me wrong. This is a powerful editor, and once you get to know your way around the features you will love it.

Pros: lightweight, fast, lots of plugins Cons: Has a bit of a learning curve, plugins can be confusing

Aptana:
I am very familiar with this editor since it is built on the Eclipse platform, and it does have a lot of features built in like, great code hinting, themes, FTP, built in server and easy to use search feature. Now for the flaws. The software is very bulky and takes a long time to load, and I have a solid state drive. Sometimes getting GIT and SVN to work correctly every time can be a little weird. When using CSS preprocessors inside of Aptana can be hard to set up. There is no code hinting or color coding even after trying several fixes everyone recommends.

Pros: Lots of built in features, code hinting is great Cons: Bulky slow to load, LESS & SaSS are hard to get coding for

Adobe Brackets:
Still in its infancy Brackets is very similar to Sublime Text, but I like the fact that Brackets is created using HTML/JavaScript, makes it very easy to configure. Just like Sublime, you need to add the extra plugins, but adding them to Brackets is easier. Technically Brackets is still in Beta, but I highly recommend this editor over Sublime.

Pros: Lightweight, fast, built on HTML/JavaScript Cons: Still in Beta, little bit of a learning curve, and it is headed up by Adobe, which after seeing them ditch other software could scare you.

There are a few more I tried, but these three are the most prevalent. Again, this is just my opinion. If you have some suggestions post a comment.

T

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Dev Workshop INdy

Well I organized a new Meetup group called Dev Workshop Indy, and I must say it has taken off better than what I thought it would. After 6 months we are up to 300 members and have a constant 30 – 40 people turnout.

The idea was to have workshops to help people learn new products and not just do a high level overview. In my opinion this is just what the community needed. We mostly have workshops about web development but have done gaming and design workshops too.

I just wanted to share the excitement that that is happening for our dev community.

Check us out here. http://www.meetup.com/Dev-Workshop-Indy/

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Issue With Exporting Flex Mobile App

Well I have learned a lot recently with building a mobile app using Flex 4.6, don’t panic Flex will be around for a long time. The most recent issue I have found when exporting my app was using the new, “Export application with captive runtime” feature. This is a nice idea and I wish it worked better.

Captive Runtime

Captive Runtime

The idea here is that you can export AIR along with your application so the user doesn’t have to install it, but the issue is that it increases your file size about 25 mb, yes that is right 25mb. That is a lot when you’re talking about a mobile app.

So the lesson learned is until it is fixed don’t use this feature if you are trying to keep your application small. I went from 25.9 mb to just 900 kb after changing this setting.

Hope this helps you and if you have any ideas how to fix this please let me know.

Todd