Starting fresh and with a new goal

I started thinking about it early last year and I guess it’s nigh time I took my current hobbies seriously (I mean, hey I’ve given myself loads of time to prepare already).

sigIt’s a work in progress but I’m hoping to get things set up quick so I can move forward with other, more important things (like actual shoots) :D.

Use PRY with rails console

I love pry.

Aside from prettifying the output of your terminal when debugging, it is a bit more handy thanks to it’s extra features. Here’s a railscast to see what you can do with pry.

If you want to use pry as the default shell for rails console you can simple open up your config/development.rb file and add:

MyApp::Application.configure do
  # start copying here
    silence_warnings do
        begin
            require 'pry'
            IRB = Pry
        rescue LoadError
        end
    end
   # end copying here
end

and ensure that pry has been added to the Gemfile.

or if you want a one liner approach (one line of config and a bundle install to be clear), just add the pry-rails gem to your Gemfile

gem 'pry-rails', :group => :development

Back to my roots

After a looong blogging hiatus, I’m finally posting an update.

A lot has happened (some good, some bad) but for what it’s worth, I’ve learned LOTS of things.  Now that I have some time on my hands and have found the need to reorganize, I thought I’d handle a bit more of my postings online.

Some currently in progress:

  • Simplicity for Project Alter (and Project Alter itself)
  • Crown Carnival
  • Reviving some of my default blogs including this one
  • A few photography stints ( still looking for an account to handle this.  maybe a DA account)

DRYing HTML using content_for and helpers

I recently encountered a scenario where I needed to dry up some HTML code for a navigation snippet that needed to appear on both the top and bottom of my main content. Here’s a snipped version of the code

<div class="tablenav top row">
   <div class="somenavigationfunction"></div>
   <div class="anotherfunction"></div>
   <!-- 
      Some code for the navigation here
    -->
</div>
<div class="display row">
   <!-- 
      Main display page here
    -->   
</div>
<div class="tablenav bottom row">
   <div class="somenavigationfunction"></div>
   <div class="anotherfunction"></div>
   <!-- 
      Some code for the navigation here
    -->
</div>

The code that I need repeated divs with tablenav classes. The usual way to go about this is using content_for and yield:

<% content_for :tablenav do %>				
   <div class="tablenav top row">
      <div class="somenavigationfunction"></div>
      <div class="anotherfunction"></div>
      <!-- 
         Some code for the navigation here
       -->
   </div>
<% yield :tablenav %>
<div class="display row">
   <!-- 
      Main display page here
    -->   
</div>
<% yield :tablenav %>				

A bit DRY-er now right? The problem with this approach is that both instances of the yielded output sports the same set of classes. This is good most of the time but in my current usage, I need the top instance to use a “top” class while the bottom one needed a “bottom” class for proper padding. I could simply add another div to wrap each of the yield lines but that’s requires me to edit the css file to reflect the change. Here’s the solution I came up with using content_for and helpers:

<% content_for :tablenav do %>				
   <div class="tablenav top row">
      <div class="somenavigationfunction"></div>
      <div class="anotherfunction"></div>
      <!-- 
         Some code for the navigation here
       -->
   </div>
<%= nav_block("top") %>
<div class="display row">
   <!-- 
      Main display page here
    -->   
</div>
<%= nav_block("bottom") %>

And the code for the helper

def nav_block(location = nil, &block)
  content_tag("div", content_for(:tablenav), :class => "tablenav #{location} row").html_safe
end

Just fire up the page in your browse and watch it work :). Now how exactly did this works? Turns out that content_for can also be used to output it’s contents. If you’re wondering why yield wasn’t used is because it simply doesn’t work with helpers. If you tried to use yield, you’ll end up with the following LocalJumpError: no block given (yield).

Important Note: I’ve only tested this on Rails 3.x, Rails 3.2 to be exact.
Hope that helps.

[Linux] changing file or folder permission recursively

I recently encountered a permissions problem when installing a new application on my Wiredtree VPS.  The crux of the problem was some of the necessary files have the wrong access permission thereby rendering the application almost inoperable.  To fix that, I needed to change permissions of a whole lot of files and folders.  And while I could’ve changed the permissions individually, it would’ve taken quite a long time so here’s what I found to work

To set all the folders to 755:

find . -type d -exec chmod 755 {} \;

To set all files to 644:

find . -type f -exec chmod 644 {} \;

Let’s say you want to change the permissions of files that end only in .rb and set it to 755 (pattern escaped with slashes)

find . -name \*\.rb -exec chmod 644 {} \;

Simple right?

Leaving the current nest

So yes. I finally made the decision to write THE letter.

I’ll be forwarding it to my superiors on the 15th and I’ll be signing my contract with the new company on Monday. More monies plox.

ArgumentError: invalid byte sequence in US-ASCII

If you’re on Ruby 1.9.2 and have started getting this error when trying to install gems (either by gem install or bundle install), your environment is simply missing the LANG variable and is loading up US-ASCII by default.

To fix this, simply run the command below before installing anything

export LANG=en_US.UTF-8

or to make it more streamlined, add it to your .bashrc or zshrc (if you’re using the zsh shell).

Built a new PC over the holidays

I was planning on saving things up for Ivy Bridge but seeing that it’s release date is around 6 months (or more) away, I decided to bite the bullet and splurge a bit to build a new gaming PC.

Here’s what I’ve bought to build my rig:

  • Intel i5-2500K
  • Asus P8P67-M B3
  • G.Skill RipJaws 8gb (2x 4GB 1600Mhz)  DDR3
  • Seagate 500GB 7200 Sata 3
  • Cooler Master V8 CPU Cooler
  • Cooler Master Storm Enforcer
  • AeroCool Strike-X 80PLUS 600W PSU

Total cost, around 30K Php

Why the i5-2500k?  It’s the most popular CPU in Intel’s current Sandy Bridge line and with good reason.  First off, it’s the cheapest unlocked processor, the next item on the list is the i7-2600K and while offers a bit of improvement over the 2500K, the added cost for me is simply not worth it.

My initial build had me going with the Asus P8P67-M B3–take note that I say initial because I’m going to replace it soon with a Z68 board (either an Intel one or another Asus board).  Mind you if you’re looking for a cheap way to mount your Sandy Bridge processor, the  P8P67-M  is a good board,  It’s got the basics laid down like support for 1600 Mhz DDR3 DIMMs, support for fairly large CPU cooler (in my case the Cooler Master V8), SATA 3 6Gb/s ports, USB3, etc.    For my use case however, I’ll be better off going with a Z68 board due to Virtu, Intel’s multi-GPU solution implemented at board-level.  Basically the gist of Virtu is that you’ll be using Sandy Bridge’s on-chip GPU until your applications demand something beefier.  I’m still looking at reviews but I think my gist is spot on so correct me if I’m wrong as I’m basing this on a several weeks old review from Anandtech.  Apparently I read things wrong, Virtu appears to be implemented on application level indicating that there will be a performance hit when you opt to use the IGP and discrete GPU at the same time :/  Darn.

I stuck with a Seagate 500GB 7200 because I still have my 1TB Seagate 10K Raptor which I’m currently using as my primary drive.  I wanted to get an SSD for this but that’ll have to wait for my Ivy Bridge (??? hopefully haha) build.

Looking at the list, there’s no GPU from the things I’ve bought.  I still have two DX10 GPUs which have served me well, the GeForce 460 GTX and the Radeon 4850 1GB SE.   The current build uses the Nvidia card because I had stability issues with the 4850 :/ I’m still going to use for my HTPC once I have purchased the new Z68 board.

Now for the case, I opted for the Storm Enforcer because my first choice, the 690 II Advanced was sadly out of stock :(.  Compared to my older case, the Thermaltake V3, the Storm Enforcer was a hell of a  lot easier to work with due to it’s massive size and features.  The price is well worth the looks too 🙂

I got the v8 and Strike-X PSU for kicks (admittedly it was an expensive choice >_> but it looks quite well with the case doesn’t it?).

Is it worth it?

In a word, yes.

My computer is now leagues faster than my older rig which was based on a Core 2 Duo processor and it feels a lot snappier than my 2011 Macbook Pro who’s performance is quite bottlenecked by the 5400 RPM drive (something I plan to remedy in the near future).  In terms of games, I can play Metro 2033 on High (with a few tweaks) and Skyrim on Ultra at 1920 x 1080 resolution considerably well (with a quite a few dropped frames on areas with high particle count thanks to my video card and it’s limited bus :/).  One of the best perks I’ve had is mirroring games on my 32 LCD TV so my “audience” can enjoy watching me play :)).

My new build will be an i3-2100 HTPC/Fileserver which I plan to get this January to replace my Buffalo NAS.

Need moar coffee

Sleep is a bit of a rare commodity for me these past few days :/

Must.
Get.
Sleep.

But I need to finish my projects.

Need.
Moar.
Coffee.

Back online yay!

FINALLY!

I lost all hope of waiting for the host of my dev box to get things in line and bring back my development VPS from it’s infinite downtime so I said “screw it” and moved this blog back under my “blog” server at WiredTree and got myself a new VPS from Linode.

Hurrah!

From the get go, I LOOOOOOOVE Linode. Awesome ticket response time, awesome server spec for your money and best of all, I got a VPS in Tokyo (response time yay). Checkout their plans here [Protip: that’s my referral link].

You can checkout the only project (for now at least) I have on my Linode VPS (Project Alter.. check it out here). Once I get things running smoothly (posting updates, not rolling out new code since that’s been optimized thanks to Capistrano), I’ll upload more projects onto it.

I am a bit miffed that they only support credit card payments as I have to manually deposit money onto my EON card to pay for it instead of simply getting paypal subscription to do it for me but hey, for the money I’m paying and the service I’m getting, it’s worth it. Yes, I could simply allow my EON card to draw funds from my Paypal account but I don’t like the extra charges.

In any case, I’m happy to get things back online. Now I need to go back to work on Project Alter 🙂

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