Blog Archives

The great Vision Quest of 2016

Occasionally one starts to feel stagnant in a world of ever-faster-evolving technologies. More and more sites seem to be adopting transpiled Javascript frameworks, and thus it’s time to start hitting some education. I’ve chosen React, as that’s what seems to

Posted in Uncategorized

Ecto and tricky joined tables

Elixir’s Ecto framework has a lot of quirks. For the first time, I wanted to try to sort on a table that I joined up to another table using a LEFT JOIN. Furthermore, these fields are in a JS Datatable,

Posted in Uncategorized

Ecto EXISTS clauses with stuff in ’em

I have always loved the EXISTS() clause in PostgreSQL. It’s a super-convenient way of finding records that have associated records in another table without actually joining that table into your main query. Great for when you’re only interested as to

Posted in Uncategorized Tagged with: ,

Selenium Grid Status as JSON

Oy, modern developers want things packaged so nicely for them. I’ve become one of them over the last few years. Which is why I was surprised to see that Selenium Grid, which has a bunch of other API calls, doesn’t

Posted in Uncategorized

Go on, Emp.ex!

Had a great time attending the first ever Empire City Elixir Conference today. It’s really awesome to see how excited people are about a new language – the momentum is palpable and I truly believe this is where most heavy

Posted in Uncategorized Tagged with:

Easy-peasy major PostgreSQL version upgrade for Mac

The thought of doing a major version upgrade in PostgreSQL (in this case, 9.4.5_2 to 9.5.3), always gives me the heebie-jeebies. It could be that a couple years ago, when we finally got our 9.1 database at my startup out

Posted in Uncategorized

find_or_create with Ecto

The Ecto library in Elixir apparently does not have a native find_or_create method comparable to Activerecord as of the time of this writing. However, here is a nifty method you can drop into one of your Ecto models to achieve

Posted in Uncategorized

Headless browsers and proxy authentication

For my most recent gig, I’ve been trying to drive Firefox headlessly using Selenium and a pretty excellent Elixir library called Hound. One of the tasks I needed to accomplish was to connect to sites through a proxy server that

Posted in Uncategorized

Closure Tree hierarchy counting

We use a nifty gem called Closure Tree in our Rails app to manage our application’s file manager hierarchy. It stores the entire hierarchy in a separate table so you don’t have to traverse the parent IDs recursively every time

Posted in Uncategorized


Recently got roped into a side project for an old colleague and building something in Elixir using the Phoenix Framework. I’ve been using object-oriented (or somewhat OO languages like Perl) for the last 15+ years, so working with Elixir and

Posted in Uncategorized Tagged with: , ,