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Matthias Noback:
Containerizing a static website with Docker (Part 1 & 2)
Jan 06, 2017 @ 09:07:39

Matthias Noback has started a series to his site showing you how to use Docker along with a static site, like one generated with Sculpin to create a complete environment. So far he's posted part one and part two.

Recently a former colleague of mine, Lucas van Lierop, showed me his new website, which he created using Spress. Lucas took two bold moves: he started freelancing, and he open-sourced his website code. This to me was very inspiring. I've been getting up to speed with Docker recently and am planning to do a lot more with it over the coming months, and being able to take a look at the source code of up-to-date projects that use Docker is certainly invaluable.

Taking lots of inspiration from Lucas's codebase, and after several hours of fiddling with configuration files, I can now guide you through the steps it took to containerize my blog (which is the site you're visiting now) and deploy a single container to a production server.

In part one he talks about how his blog is currently set up - based on a "large set of Markdown files" - and using Sculpin to generate the resulting site. He walks through the configuration of the Sculpin installation and how to configure and build the initial container, the "build" container.

In part two he continues the process but creates a "blog" container this time. This container runs the web server itself (nginx) configured as required by the Sculpin formatting.

tagged: container docker static website tutorial series part1 part2

Link: http://php-and-symfony.matthiasnoback.nl/categories/Docker/

Object-Oriented Autoloading in WordPress, Part 1
Nov 18, 2016 @ 13:57:08

The TutsPlus.com site has posted the next part of their series looking at autoloading in WordPress plugins. In this latest post the most from just the namespacing and setup into the actual code - creating some simple object-oriented classes that can be easily autoloaded.

I recently wrapped up a series in which I covered namespaces and autoloading in WordPress. If you're not familiar with either of the above terms, then I recommend checking out the series. [...] While working on the series, specifically that of the autoloader, I couldn't help but recognize a number of code smells that were being introduced as I was sharing the code with you.

This isn't to say the autoloader is bad or that it doesn't work. If you've downloaded the plugin, run it, or followed along and written your own autoloader, then you know that it does in fact work. But in a series that focuses on namespaces—something that's part and parcel of object-oriented programming—I couldn't help but feel uncomfortable leaving the autoloader in its final state at the end of the series.

They move away from just autoloading and namespacing quickly and move into OOP concepts like interfaces, implementing them, the "single-responsibility principle" and a few other helpful principles. They define the goals for the work ahead and move into the code, updating the current state of the plugin to use these new ideas.

tagged: oop objectoriented wordpress part1 series interface singleresponsibility principle

Link: https://code.tutsplus.com/tutorials/object-oriented-autoloading-in-wordpress-part-1--cms-27381

Using Namespaces and Autoloading in WordPress Plugins, Part 1
Oct 21, 2016 @ 10:43:38

The TutsPlus.com site has posted a new tutorial for the WordPress developers out there showing you how to get started with namespacing and autoloading in your WordPress installation.

Namespaces and autoloading are not topics that are usually discussed when it comes to working with WordPress plugins. Some of this has to do with the community that's around it, some of this has to do with the versions of PHP that WordPress supports, and some of it simply has to do with the fact that not many people are talking about it. And that's okay, to an extent.

Neither namespaces nor autoloading are topics that you absolutely need to use to create plugins. They can, however, provide a better way to organize and structure your code as well as cut down on the number of require, require_once, include, or include_once statements that your plugins use.

The article then starts in by listing the things you'll need to have installed and working to follow along. It then talks about what they're going to help you build - a simple plugin that adds an "Inspirational quotes" widget to your post editor page. They walk you through the basic setup of the plugin, adding the box to the page and setting up the "questions.txt" file to pull the quotes from. Code is provided for each step including the creation of the "quote reader" class and the class to display the meta box.

tagged: namespace autoload wordpress plugin introduction part1 series quotes

Link: https://code.tutsplus.com/tutorials/using-namespaces-and-autoloading-in-wordpress-plugins-part-1--cms-27157

Building a Welcome Page for Your WordPress Product: Code Part 1
Sep 23, 2016 @ 10:33:58

TutsPlus.com has started off a new series of posts for the WordPress users out there showing you how to build a "welcome page" for your WordPress site and product.

In the first two articles of this series, I wrote about what welcome pages are and how they are helping products improve user experience by connecting the dots, after which I wrote about the WordPress Transients API that I intend to use while building the welcome page.

Coding a welcome page for your WordPress plugin can be a tricky process. The entire concept revolves around redirecting users to a particular page via setting transients and finally deleting them. Let's start building the welcome page.

They walk you through the creation of a simple plugin that can be used to easily create (and re-create) these "welcome" pages (the final result is here for the impatient). The tutorial the starts off by defining the architecture of the plugin and the workflow that it will follow to generate the page. From there it gets into the code for the plugin itself and related supporting files including the "initializer" that activates the plugin, making it ready for use.

tagged: welcome page wordpress plugin series part1 tutorial

Link: https://code.tutsplus.com/articles/building-a-welcome-page-for-your-wordpress-product-code-part-1--cms-26014

Building a WordPress-Powered Front End With the WP REST API and AngularJS: Intro & Set
Aug 05, 2016 @ 11:17:36

The TutsPlus.com site has kicked off a new tutorial series today with part one of a look at using the WordPress REST API and AngularJS to create an API-powered frontend application.

In this series about building a WordPress-powered front end with the WP REST API and AngularJS, we will put the knowledge acquired in the introductory series to use. We will learn how we can leverage this knowledge to decouple the conventional theme-admin model supported by WordPress until now. We will plan and build a single-page application (that I've named Quiescent) with a WordPress back end which will feature posts, users, and categories listing pages. We will configure AngularJS routing and build a custom directive and controllers for the resources mentioned above.

In this first part of the series they walk you through some of the planning steps before the application even gets written (including wireframes). From there they get a bare-bones HTML structure setup for the Angular app to live in and make a matching WordPress plugin. This plugin will return a featured image, author name, associated categories and image resize data related to a post. The code for the plugin is included.

tagged: wordpress api frontend angularjs tutorial plugin wireframe planning series part1

Link: http://code.tutsplus.com/tutorials/building-a-wordpress-powered-front-end-with-the-wp-rest-api-and-angularjs-introduction-and-setup--cms-26115

SitePoint PHP Blog:
PHP, Arduino And… Minecraft? Combining Minecraft with PHP!
Jul 07, 2016 @ 13:35:15

On the SitePoint PHP blog author Christopher Pitt has a new tutorial posted about combining PHP, Arduino and Minecraft and combine the physical and software worlds in an interesting IoT combination.

Some of the most interesting programming I’ve done has been in Minecraft. It’s an open-world, sandbox game developed by Mojang, (recently acquired by Microsoft). Minecraft began as a canvas for creative expression, and while I do very different things in it these days, it still is that for me.

I’m going to take you on a journey, as we build a Minecraft mansion, and then secure it with a real-world alarm system. There’s quite a bit of ground to cover, and though I plan for this to be a two-part series, I’m going to have to leave some of the tangential details for you to discover!

For those not familiar with "programming" in Minecraft (not the backend language, but using things like redstone) he gives a brief introduction. He then sets up the situation - the creation of a "sprawling mansion" in your Minecraft world and a need to secure the front door. He includes the command to set up the "door open" test on a command block. He then shows how to hook this into a loop to continuously test if a door is open or not. With this open/closed door check system in place he then brings PHP into the mix, having it check log files for the "whispers" when the door actions happen. He then creates a watcher for these events and has it respond with a chat message back to the user. That's all in this tutorial but a future part of the series will add on the physical aspect - the Arduino.

tagged: tutorial physical arduino minecraft notification watcher series part1

Link: https://www.sitepoint.com/php-arduino-and-minecraft-combining-minecraft-with-php/

Internationalizing WordPress Projects: The Introduction
Jun 28, 2016 @ 10:38:01

The TutsPlus.com site has kicked off a new set of posts today with he first part of their series covering internationalization in WordPress applications.

A few years ago, I wrote about the process of internationalizing WordPress-based projects. Though I think there are some times when tutorials don't necessarily need updating, refreshing, or revisiting, there are other times in which we can all benefit from revisiting the topic.

After all, software changes from year to year, and we also gain experience as we continue to work with a given piece of software. WordPress is no different.

They'll be covering what internationalization is, how it works within WordPress, the difference between internationalization and localization and more. In this first part of the series, though, they briefly cover some of the functions and functionality you might see as a part of WordPress already to make internationalization possible.

tagged: internationalization wordpress tutorial series part1 introduction

Link: http://code.tutsplus.com/tutorials/internationalizing-wordpress-projects-the-introduction--cms-26636

Kick-Start WordPress Development With Twig: Introduction
Apr 12, 2016 @ 09:14:01

On the NetTuts.com site they've posted the first part of a new series showing you how to combine WordPress and Twig to "kick-start" your development with this popular content management system.

A lot has been written about the future of WordPress, and many believe that it lacks a templating language, especially when platforms like Django, Ruby on Rails, Node.js, Laravel, and even Drupal possess one. Facts like "WordPress powers nearly 25% of the web" make it difficult to question its current PHP-based templating system. But as the modularity in code is still missing, one can ask when the core will have a templating engine.

The good news is right here! The Twig templating engine along with a plugin called Timber can help us write super-clean and modular code in WordPress.

They start with a brief introduction to Twig and a bit of history of where it came from. They also give some reasons of why you might want to use this popular templating engine (besides its popularity, of course). The tutorial then starts in talking about Timber and how it integrates with both WordPress and Twig to render the Twig templates. This first article is more of an introduction to this integration and doesn't contain much in the way of code examples. That will be coming soon in the following parts of the series, though.

tagged: wordpress twig integration tutorial series part1 timber

Link: http://code.tutsplus.com/articles/kick-start-wordpress-development-with-twig-introduction--cms-24781

SitePoint PHP Blog:
PredictionIO: Bootstrapping a Movie Recommendation App
Apr 05, 2016 @ 11:22:11

On the SitePoint PHP blog they've posted a tutorial showing you how to use the Prediction.IO server to create a movie recommendation application. Prediction.io is "an open source Machine Learning Server built on top of state-of-the-art open source stack for developers and data scientists create predictive engines for any machine learning task".

In this tutorial, I’m going to walk you through PredictionIO, an open-source machine learning server, which allows you to create applications that could do the following: recommend items (e.g. movies, products, food), predict user behavior, identify item similarity and rank items.

You can pretty much build any machine learning application with ease using PredictionIO. You don’t have to deal with numbers and algorithms and you can just concentrate on building the app itself.

The tutorial, the first part of a series, refreshes some older instructions for getting the Prediction.IO system up and running. He walks you through the creation of an AWS instance for the server a few different ways (Vagrant, Docker, etc). He then talks about the use of the Movie API from MovieDB and the two parts of the application that will be implemented on top of it: a learning phase and a recommendation phase. They show how to use Prediction.io to create the recommendation engine and make the new application on top of it. He helps you install some dependencies to use in the PHP side of the application and briefly explains what they're for.

This wraps up part one of the series. In the second part he starts putting this all to use and creates the PHP functionality to lay on top of the machine learning engine and handle learning and recommendations for users.

tagged: predictionio machinelearning server tutorial movie recommendation application part1 series

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/predictionio-bootstrapping-a-movie-recommendation-app/

eZ Blog:
How to optimize performance of the LAMP stack with eZ (Part 1)
Mar 03, 2016 @ 11:43:51

On the eZ blog there's a new post, the first part of a series, showing how to optimize the performance of your LAMP stack with the help of some tuning on the server and software levels.

Nowadays, a website is not only a simple HTML page. Your visitors expect dynamic, personalized information fast and you need a scalable way to deliver content as quickly as possible. This, of course, puts significant pressure on page loads and response time. In this series of posts, we’ll explore eZ’s system architecture and provide recommendations on how you can optimize caching and decrease response time with eZ software.

They then talk about the various pieces of software that make up a typical environment and some tips on optimizing them:

  • Varnish
  • Apache
  • MySQL and MariaDB

Each includes the configuration changes and setup that's helped eZ get the most out of their stack and links to other tools to help you evaluate the performance differences.

tagged: optimize performance lamp stack series part1 varnish apache mysql mariadb

Link: http://ez.no/Blog/How-to-optimize-performance-of-the-LAMP-stack-with-eZ-Part-1