Remove Disqus and 3x Your Blog Performance
Sep 17, 2021
I got fed up recently of the insane number of requests that were given over to my use of disqus here on my blog. I’ve had it enabled since moving from Wordpress to various other blogging engines, wanting to take my comments with me to a static blogging engine, but enough is enough. I remember disqus being a darling in the startup scene when it first launched in 2007 but it’s changed hands several times since and the idea that randoms ads may turn up on my blog at some point is a massive turn off.
Automatic Static Site Creation with Astro, Supabase and Netlify
Sep 10, 2021
This week, I revealed mixes.it - a very simple site I’ve created for indexing DJ mixes scraped from the web. I wanted a no-frills site that I could get Spotify playlists of DJ’s I like to see what new music they were playing and that I didn’t have to spend much time supporting.
I used Astro and Supabase to create the site itself and the whole thing is currently built using Netlify.
Comparing Low-Code Tools as a Developer
Aug 10, 2021
When first hearing of the concept of “no-code” I have to admit I cringed a bit. The implication that a mere mortal client could combine services without ever getting a dev involved seemed cute and definitely wouldn’t lead to anything genuinely valuable.
I come from the age of Hackathons, where a devs would quickly put together really interesting combinations of services in the blink of an eye. They would do all this for nothing more than the joy of building, rather than the offer of expensive prizes from some well funded business as a form of motivation.
Why Python devs love Requests
Jul 08, 2021
Requests is the HTTP client I and every Python developer I know always reach for when we need to pull data from remote sources. It got 121M downloads in June 2021 alone according to PePy and has 45.5k github stars at the time of writing. Developers love making requests with Requests!
At the time of Requests original release in 2011 urllib3 was the high level HTTP library of choice and Requests actually uses it as a dependency.
Build Your Own Pico Powered Midi Controller for $35
Jun 08, 2021
Find the video of this article on youtube
The Launchpad is a midi controller used for audio production with digital audio workstations (or DAWs) like Ableton. In comes in mini and standard forms and features 64 pads, along with 16 additional buttons ready to map to your application of choice. The mini version starts at £75, the standard is £145 and there’s an older “Pro” which is currently available for £179.
Installing Module Extras with Pipenv and Poetry
Apr 07, 2021
I thought it worth documenting how to install “extra” dependencies in Pipenv and Poetry after struggling to find the answer myself. Context: I hit a problem with uvicorn where the websockets module hadn’t been installed as a result of not including the “standard” extras. Rather than return an error, it just failed to connect the websocket which made me think something was wrong with my network configuration.
As an example, take the following pip command:
YouTube Videos as Small Experiments
Mar 30, 2021
The popularity of working on small experiments (or ‘bets’) as business ideas before investing a significant amount of time upon one of them is a model of work rapidly gaining traction with indie hackers.
It makes so much sense - when you’re small and in need of money to fund your work, you don’t waste time on ideas which are unproven. Instead you choose to work on a portfolio of many ideas over a short period of time to see which ones resonate with customers.
Setting Up a New M1 Mac for Development
Mar 05, 2021
I recently updated my 2012 Mac Mini with a 2021 M1 Mac Mini and decided to document the first time setup process. You can also check out a youtube video I’ve made on setting it up. What follows is all the steps in written form as a handy reference for you to copy and paste from - or future me. Surprisingly, the installation process was fairly simple now there are versions of software written for Apples new architecture.
Comparing VAT Solutions for Bootstrapped UK Businesses
Feb 23, 2021
Laws on when to apply VAT have always been a complex beast - in 2015 the EU made changes that meant that VAT was to be calculated based on a customer location, introducing a VATMOSS system for its collection. Since leaving the EU things have become even more complicated if you happen to be based in the UK. You now are no longer able to make use of the VATMOSS system, meaning you potentially need to register for VAT in every EU country you sell products to (!
Creating Social Images with Puppeteer
Feb 16, 2021
In this post I’m going to show how to generate images for sharing content on social networks like twitter and facebook using Puppeteer. This could be for any content - a post on our blog or something more complex like a dynamic storefront. So long as we correctly include open graph meta tags within the markup appropriate for the sites in question, our nicely designed image will be included as part of the apps feeds, rather than a blank preview.