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Saturday, August 29, 2015

Is the Internet of Things Really a Thing?

Many developers want to get started  with IoT, the "Internet of Things" development even at this early stage. Today it is mostly hype for consumer goods and a limited ecosystem. Even so developers can learn a lot from dabbling in the technology that is available on the market today. They can build small start-ups in a growing market niche.  But before going into "how to" for reality I will  get on my soap box and go into "why not" the hype as warning for those that think that IoT will be a panacea where machines automate thousands of mundane tasks we do in our everyday lives.

Developers Digest - Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Daily Collected  Quality links  of interesting topics for web developers.  Google doesn't read or understand the topics. I do and I list the ones that  count the most by interesting content not just keywords.

If  you are tired of  draconian moderators and have lots to say about the web developement or the internet in general. Drop me a line at twitter and I'll read it and post it up for others here. I  will endeavour to  have at least three lists weekly.

Hopefully this will make the internet a less boring place where news and information has been reduced to 140 characters and silly images.

10 Signs of Horrible Open Source Projects

Drinking the Bitter Kool-Aid 

Many believe that being able to use open source over  commercial  software open source is like a sweet, cool and refreshing drink on a hot summer day. But what happens when the drink being served is warm kool-aid and it's taste is  harsh and bitter?

Open source is a method of software development that tries to promote transparency and collaboration.
But much like American politics money has ruined many of those tenants. So nowadays open source is not as open as the name implies.

4 Things Developers Don't know about Microsoft

Over the last five years Microsoft has been trying hard to build a good reputation as an open source supporter. They have also had a number of successes in the open source community that go unnoticed or are deliberately ignored by developers.

Before you have that knee jerk reaction or blurt out open source forever!  Hold your opinion and read to the end this list of things you probably are unaware of about Microsoft and what's changed in the last years.

Is Windows 10 Reading your mind?

Microsoft  admits they will use Windows 10 to collect all the data made available to better target ads, personalize the operating system, and improve its software and services. It will be doing this through the almost thirty points of contact available within any device using it.

Big  data is the big question  and what is Microsoft  going to do with it? While advertising  is quick go to answer for the public. One has to think that a corporation with the power and resources of  Microsoft has something else in mind.

How JS and CSS Frameworks Ruin the Web

Dušan Lukic is his blog gives some very valid arguments on how the web is being ruined by the use of CSS frameworks like Bootstrap and  the popularity of  Angular.js and similar javascript frameworks.

He goes on to show how frameworks have become such an integral part of easy website building that many are learning the framework only. The result being that they are not aware of the problems that they can cause.

Using PHP to Measure Shared Web Hosting Quality

The web hosting industry has some strange ideas about what is good for their customers and their bottom line. It makes you think, "do they really care?".  Wouldn't it be great to have an established  and reliable method of  ensuring web hosting companies hold a high standard of service and security?  In this post let's look at why PHP could and should be used as the top metric for determining the quality of a web host.

4 ways to Post information without a Form

Many times you want to send a POST request to a URL without using a form. This is becoming more common in web development because of the increased use and popularity of API's and webservices. For security and simplicity most systems allow only post headers in a request. While you could send a form with only hidden elements this is not a flexible solution and brings with it some unneeded complexities. An easier way is to just tell the browser to use the POST header to send data when opening a URL.  These examples are in PHP and javascript which are the most popular web scripting languages.

Non-programmers Guide to How Frameworks Work

figure 1.
How does a content management system like Drupal or Wordpress work? Why are PHP frameworks like Laravel so popular?

After reading this you will understand  the inner workings of most PHP Frameworks, and  content management systems like Wordpress or Drupal. You'll do this without having to be a programmer or know any programming. As a matter of fact you'll be able to explain to actual programmers how they work in the real world.

PHP7 is a winner but the Internet Loses

There is lots of  talk about the coming PHP 7 release. The item most talked about is the performance benchmarks of existing code. No one is talking about the zero sum game being played between PHP performance improvements and lack of them in open source PHP projects.  Yes, a good part of the internet will be able to take advantage of the performance increases brought with PHP7. But  this is more than offset by code bloat, weak software architecture and decreasing performance of popular frameworks.

Zen of PHP better than the Right Way

The  majority of well known PHP programmers and  open source projects seek to make their PHP scripts become the only tool needed to create web applications. They group together a  following  for tools like Composer and  push usages of rules like PSR . They call it "PHP the Right Way". Honestly it would be hard to come up with a more misleading name.

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