An iOS client for my Coffee Tracker API

About 9 hours ago I dandered down the road to see what was happening at the FlackNite event being hosted in Farset Labs. When I finally got myself settled down with network access and a cup of coffee and said hello to everyone it seemed I was the only one without a project to work on. Nightmare. Decisions, Decisions I couldn’t think of what to focus on but Rob and Pete were sitting next to me and tinkering with some Objective-C and Cocoa.

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An introduction to Sinatra

Tonight I gave an introductory talk about Sinatra at the second meetup of BelfastRuby. The Converser platform I’ve been building this last while uses a lot of Sinatra so when I was asked to give a talk about using Ruby to develop web apps without Rails it wasn’t hard to think of a subject. This was my first technical talk and apart from a touch of nerves and forgetting some of the jokes I had in mind I think things went well.

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Tracking my coffee consumption with Redis, Sinatra and Cocoa

I’ve often joked about putting together an app to track my coffee consumption, such is my reputation for consuming the black goodness. Like a lot of my other personal projects, the idea had a prolonged gestation period and was finally born through a welcome spark of motivation. Crafting fine web APIs Over the past 6 months the bulk of what I’ve been doing day to day with Vigill has involved building web APIs for consumption by mobile clients.

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A simple app to monitor Google Chrome on OS X

I was on-site with Vigill one day before Christmas and I mentioned to Oisin an idea I had for an app. I was sick of having endless tabs open in Chrome, hogging memory, each one some seeming important enough at the time that I read it but now just a contextless enigma. If I at least knew how many tabs I had open, it would be a step in the right direction I thought.

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My also-ran Markdown Editor for OS X

Quite often I feel the need to learn something new for the sake of learning something new. Covey aficionados would know this as sharpening the saw. I usually struggle deciding upon something however as there are so many areas to choose from in the software world and it isn’t everyday I feel drawn enough to something to put time and effort into it on top of holding down a day job.

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A tale of three pull requests

After years of earning a living through using free software I’ve finally contributed back to the open-source world. Frustration For the two and a half years I’ve been pushing some personal projects to Github and some of my code I’ve been told has even been helpful for others. While this is certainly open-source none of my efforts have affected existing codebases. Numerous times I’ve scoured the bug trackers of projects I’ve had some sort of interest in, on the lookout for an issue I could investigate, even getting as far as reading through upteen lines of foreign code but ultimately unable to add anything.

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An iOS client for my UK inflation app

After last week’s great Xcake meet I felt a fresh surge to take on new challenges and bend some less-familiar pieces of technology to my will. Motivation The first product of this enthusiasm was a prototype web app built to get a bit more experience with Python and Google App Engine. A few days later it got an API. The resulting rapid feedback loop led me to pick up my copy of Beginning iPhone Development which had been sitting gathering dust for the last couple of years and get stuck back into following the examples.

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Keeping an eye on UK inflation with Google App Engine

For a long time now whenever I’m on the search for something interesting to work on that could potentially be of value to myself and others my attention is brought to topics like machine learning, data mining and natural language processing. These are all areas within computer science which are not particularly easy and have a higher barrier of entry compared to building a typical web application for instance. Yet, if implemented correctly they can provide great insight and fame and fortune are bound to be near.

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A minimal Rack app to lookup your external IP address

I think I first heard the term “Rack-app” when I started using Heroku to host a couple of projects. I didn’t know an awful lot about Rack but I did know that it helped a great deal when it came to getting my Rails and Sinatra apps off my workstation and onto the web. Tonight I thought I’d have another quick look at how it works, what it takes to build a Rack-app and what information about the request is available to the handler.

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Backing up Delicious bookmarks to CouchDB

Last year I started researching how CouchDB could be used for the BodyGuard web-app QA platform. Unfortunately I had to put my tinkerings to one side when some extra freelance work came in; contracting during the day and freelancing in the evenings quickly put an end to any spare time and my fitness efforts took a hit but I was only self-employed for a short while and it seemed the thing to do.

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