Behind the Brain


I got bored over the weekend so I decided to start writing a small tool that could be useful: BumpVersion.

This tool allows you to bump the version of your software project with a single command. From my experiences this can be very useful since I tend to forget to bump the version all together or don't catch every spot the version is written.

For now there are only some basic functions available but I will work on it to make it even more useful.

Aug 3rd 2014, 18:24 by Sylence.
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A closer look on CakePHP

As you know I have rewritten this whole website to get away from WordPress. This had two main reasons:

First, I no longer have to worry about changing APIs or incompatibilities between plugins. So if I want to use this website for something more (I already have some sort of API to access some features of this site) everything is in my hand. If the server API changes I now what changed and why and I can adapt the client APIs as well.

And second I don't have to force WordPress into being something it wasn't designed for. WordPress is GREAT when it comes to simply having a blogging system but imho falls short when using it for things that go beyond.
Implementing an issue tracker like I did for the new site would be a pain in the ass if I had to do this for WordPress. Besides I don't have any experience writing plugins for WP so I guess this would have taken much time as well.

When I started on writing the site I had to decide whether to go for CakePHP or Zend. I had some minor experiences with both and finally decided to go for CakePHP. The main reason was that Zend is too much blown for my taste. Yes having the ability to fine tune every single detail might be a good thing for fully featured web applications but I figured CakePHP was good enough. And well it surely is!

So I decided to give you some insights about working with CakePHP. The number one thing to mention is the great documentation on their website. I did have a good time reading through it and almost all questions I had when developing this site could be answered by reading the documentation. For everything else there is StackOverflow (ok this does apply to Zend as well but I wanted to mention it).

Cake really does a good job at doing things on its own if you let it. Mapping database tables to PHP classes is just a matter of a few lines if you go by the conventions.
This is also the one biggest lesson I learned: Using CakePHP it is always best to go with its conventions. When I started designing the site's database I named my primary key columns the way I always do: TableName_ID (for example the primary key for a user would be User_ID). Doing so would mean to tell every class in the Model that it shouldn't use the default PK (which is simply id) and instead use a different one. So I decided to go with ID as my primary key. And yes it does make a difference between id and ID. Only the lower case version is working. Took me forever to find out why my relations didn't work as expected.

Then of course there is the Form generation which is just great. You put a few lines of code in your view and you get your form for the model with validation and security options. Everything with just a few lines of code plus a few lines of configuration. Simply love it.

All in all I love how CakePHP makes it hard to go off the MVC-Pattern while never making it hard to follow it. I never had the feeling that I would be better off mixing the Model with Controller or the View with the Controller. Having worked with other MVC-Libraries this was a great plus for me since most of the libraries I previously used (with the possible exception of Zend) did a better job at standing in my way than acutally helping me.

For a start on CakePHP this should be enough. I'll try to give you more insights in the future. So stay tuned!

Jun 30th 2014, 17:24 by Sylence.
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Splatter - Blood Red Edition

If you haven't heard about Splatter yet it is time to check it out. It has just been released on steam

I have bought the game when it was released and now I'm waiting for my steam key (the developer will give everyone who bought the game a key) to play it again.

If you like killing zombies, top down shooters, or both you should definitely take a look at Splatter.

Jun 5th 2014, 00:06 by Sylence.
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A new website... again

Yes your eyes are working. I decided to give this site a whole new look. And while I was on it I decided to give it an overall remake.

The thing is now completely coded by myself so I don't have to worry about changing Plugin-APIs or things like this. The site now also features a more or less fully featured issue tracker. If there will be any need for a forum in the future I'll happily add one to this site.

Now I have time to code other things again :)

Jun 2nd 2014, 20:13 by Sylence.

Something old and something new

I'm still alive :)

Yes i know that one could easily think different but yes I'm not dead.

So what happened in the last few months? (or was it years?) well first of all I got a new smartphone again. A blackberry z10. Yes a blackberry. I know I wasn't very satisfied with my old storm but blackberry 10 simply rocks. The most fluid work flow I've ever seen and outstanding performance. I guess the q10 would have been a great choice as well but I couldn't wait any longer. I instantly fell in love with the new OS when I saw the first presentation. if you are looking for a new smartphone you should definitely take a look at the new blackberries.

So what have I been working on? Well I started on creating a launchy clone and there's already a lot of progress. The closed beta has been running for some time and apart from missing documentation and some polishing there is not much to do before I will start a public beta.

I guess I could have reached quite a few useres if I had released this much earlier. Just think about the people that don't want to get used to Windows 8. However I guess with the announcement of Windows 8.1 these potential users will be harder to reach.

Aside from this I also started on working on a framework for creating 2d games in c# since Microsoft has dropped development of xna but there is still very much to do.

So happy coding to all of you :)

Jun 4th 2013, 00:26 by Sylence.
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