Noel Rappin Writes Here

2010/07

July 30, 2010: I Always Thought It Was An Animal Native To The Rain Forest

Book Status Beta 5 came out on Wednesday. Currently trying to figure out how to structure the Shoulda chapter in light of the direction that project has gone in since I wrote about it for the Lulu book. Friday Links One significant change in Rails 3 is that, because of the way Bundler works, the code for your gems is not part of the project. And if you are using RVM, each project might have a different gemset, and different directory to find those gems.

July 28, 2010: Mathematical Navels

Book Status Beta 5 still in progress. Probably today. No other news to report. And In Other News, My Navel Is Still There It’s been a little more than three months since I started doing these more-or-less daily blog posts here, which is far and away the longest I’ve ever sustained daily blogging. The original idea of this was that it was going to be my daily standup for the Rails Test Prescriptions book, which would force me to do something on the book almost daily since I’d be reporting on it.

July 27, 2010: No Rails Release Shall Escape My Sight

Book Status Beta 5 should be out today, with the legacy and the Rails 3. Next up are the Shoulda and RSpec chapters, starting with figuring out how to handle the changes in Shoulda since I last wrote the chapter. Rails I’m sure all of you within the interest circle of this blog already know that Rails 3.0 RC 1 was released yesterday. Part of me wants to say “finally”, but that really isn’t fair.

July 26, 2010: A Hammer, A Nail, and A Giant Squid

Book Status Beta 5 should be out early this week, featuring a mostly new chapter on testing legacy projects, and also updating the code setup and the initial walkthrough chapters to Rails 3. Over the next couple betas any remaining Rails 3 incompatibilities will also be fixed. Book Reviews Something new for you on a Monday, a couple of novels that I liked in the last couple of weeks. Kraken, by China Mieville.

July 22, 2010: Catching Up

Me Me Me Video of my recent talk at Refresh Chicago: You Got Your Agile in My UXD is now online. I haven’t actually watched this version all the way through, but I apologize in advance for looking like a drowned rat – it was raining that night. (Not, of course, in the room where the talk was…) Book Status Now working on switching the early “tutorial” chapters to favor Rails 3.

July 21, 2010: This Code Belongs In A Museum

Status Not much to tell, really. Spent some time getting RVM set up, since I think I’ll need it to manage simultaneously building the Rails 2 and Rails 3. Now I have a working version of the startup appendix that uses Rails 3 and Devise. I can’t speak to using Devise in practice yet, but the immediate goal of making the setup less complicated was definitely accomplished. The big question now is how much to support Rails 2 in the walk-through chapters.

July 19, 2010: Building a Legacy

And Now A Word The schedule for WindyCityRails 2010 just came out. WindyCityRails is Saturday, Sept, 11 at the Westin Chicago River North. I will be running the PM tutorial session on “Testing in a Legacy Environment”. I am frequently asked how to start testing on a pre-existing code base with no tests. In this session, we’ll start with a made-up “legacy” code base, and discuss techniques for adding tests, and fixing bug, and adding new features in a test-driven way.

July 16, 2010: Why Not Four?

Not much time this morning, not many accumulated links. So just a little bit today. Book Status Still writing the new parts of the legacy coding chapter, last night a little bit on removing dependencies. I think only one more section to go before that’s a complete draft. Next up, I think, is making the code samples Rails 3 compatible. One quick thing Sometimes you don’t realize how weird something is until you try to explain it.

July 15, 2010: An Apple Comment A Day

Book status Still writing the legacy chapter. Totally coincidentally, Michael Feathers, author of Working Effectively With Legacy Code, just wrote on an issue similar to what I’m dealing with right now: The Bad Code Kata. I imagine Feathers had a similar problem when writing his book about legacy code. An Apple Comment A Day So Apple is apparently holding a press conference Friday about iPhone 4, although they haven’t officially confirmed that it’s about the antenna issue.

July 14 2010: The Smallest Thing

Book Status Still working on the legacy chapter. The sidebar here is that deliberately writing bad legacy code for purposes of using as examples in a book is a little challenging. It’s got to be tangled enough to make the point that it’s hard to clean, but small and clear enough to work in the context of a book example. My tired brain was fighting it last night. Training! I mentioned this recently, but I want to mention it again.

July 13, 2010: I Guess It Isn't A Dynabook Yet

Status Back to link posts today. The book is still lurching forward on the legacy chapter. Thanks to those couple of you that asked questions on the forum and made it look a little less lonely over there. Quick Review Quick iPhone 4 impressions, but understand that I haven’t actually, you know, used it yet, just took it home and set it up. The screen sharpness really is notice able.

Pair Programming, or Two of a Kind

Repeating yourself is clearly an occupational hazard of blogging. I’ve been trying to put together a post about pair programming for a while. Somewhat randomly, I found myself wandering through my blog archives at Pathfinder, and I came across this little essay, which was the last thing I wrote at Pathfinder before, shall we say, Events Transpired, so I probably blocked it a bit. I definitely blocked the responses that were on the Pathfinder blog the following week, because, well, Events Were Transpiring.

July 9, 2010: Beta 4 Released and More

Update Beta 4 of Rails Test Prescriptions is now available, with two new chapters, one on Rcov and coverage in general, and one on writing better tests. Buy here. While I’m in the self-promoting mode, the book is also available for pre-order at Amazon and other exciting locations. More Promotion And while I’m here, I should mention that Obtiva has updated their training schedule. Obtiva offers a 4-day Boot Camp for learning Rails and TDD that will next be offered August 2nd through 5th.

July 8, 2010: Who Needs a Hero?

Book Status Beta 4 should be going out Real Soon Now. As far as I know everything is ready and we’re just waiting for it to actually be generated. Still working on legacy coding chapter. Links A couple of links about hiring today. One debate is between Ben Orenstein and Brian Liles about whether you can get a Rails job without experience. Somewhat weirdly, both of them seem to be arguing the same side, which is to go out and get some experience.

July 7, 2010: Dylan Goes Electric (Probably Not True)

Book Status Beta 4 should be available this week, or at the latest Monday, apparently we’re working around people’s vacation schedules. It will have two new chapters, and some error fixes and tweaks around the book. Next is on to Beta 5. In status news that shouldn’t interest you much, the end of the quarter meant the end of my first Pragmatic pay period. And apparently Pragmatic pays as soon as possible, rather than waiting 30 or 90 days after the end of the pay cycle.

July 6, 2010: Opinions are Bad For Business

The title, by the way, is from a favorite scene in a favorite movie. Status Now definitely working on the “dealing with legacy code” chapter, which I am hoping will be substantially more useful than the Lulu version, in that it will cover a few more techniques. I should know later today what the timeline is for beta 4. Links Let’s see what we’ve got today. Nick Quaranto over at Thoughtbot wants you to stop leaving time bombs in your tests.

July 2, 2010: Cease and or desist

Book Status And now I turn my lonely eyes to the chapter on testing legacy code. I liked this chapter in the original book, and it’s something I get asked about pretty consistently, so I really want to make it great. Links I’m personally going to spend a lot of time with David Chelimsky’s post about RSpec 2 docs. It’s the best listing I’ve seen so far about changes between RSpec 1 and RSpec 2.

July 1, 2010: Screencasts and Road Maps

A lot fewer links today. Yesterday, by the way, the most clicked on link was the “Don’t do this” like to the method_missing nil post. Book Status Handed another draft of the Rcov and Style/Test Quality chapters in. Expecting that to be the next beta next week, but we’ll see. Links Kent Beck has a screencast series on TDD from Pragmatic. I linked to the rough version of this some time back.

Copyright 2022 Noel Rappin