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DC4D: 50 for 50

Dear Reader,

Ok, many of you that know me know that I run Day Camp 4 Developers. DC4D is a virtual conference designed to help developers take their career to the next level.

Our next DC4D event is part of our PHP Master Series and it’s titled “Deep Dive into Unit Testing”. We have four awesome speakers covering a wide spectrum of knowledge all related to Unit testing your code.

Batting cleanup for us is none other than Chris (GrmpyProgrammer) Hartjes himself. Chris is well known in the PHP community as one of the leading experts in Unit Testing. Chris has 2 great books out on the subject “The Grumpy Programmer’s Guide To Building Testable PHP Applications” and “The Grumpy Programmer’s PHPUnit Cookbook“.

The point

“Deep Dive into Unit Testing” is approaching the 50 ticket mark. I was talking to Chris about that this morning and he made this challenge.

If we sell 50 tickets or more to this event, I’ll give everyone coupons for 50% off both my books.

So I’m taking him up on it. Here’s my pitch to you.

  • If Unit Testing is important to you and your team
  • If you like saving money
  • If you’d rather spend the Friday before Christmas learning than pretending to work. (oh don’t look at me like that, it’s the FRIDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS!)

Join us. Register for Day camp 4 Developers, or register your team for an Office Party. Order the Pizza, pour the Mountain Dew, kick back and learn. After it’s over, we’ll send you an email so that you can continue the learning with Chris’ books and save 50%.

Join us for DC4D: Deep Dive into Unit Testing on Dec 20th, 2013.

Until next time,
I <3 |<
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Day Camp 4 Developers #6: Non-Programming for Programmers

Dear Reader,

It is hard for me to believe that we are already up to the 6th Day Camp 4 Developers. It seems like just yesterday that I was looking for a way to showcase a few great talks I knew about that weren’t getting selected at conferences. Now 3 years later, we’ve got 5 under our belt and are prepping for the 6th. (I say we because anyone who knows me that the secret sauce behind any of my projects is wife 1.29, The Lovely and Talented Kathy)

This time, the topic is Non-Programming for Programmers. Attendees will lear about:

  • Documentation
  • Agile development
  • Source code management
  • Estimating

I won’t go into the whole description, you can click through to DayCamp4Developers.com to get the complete list of speakers, talks, and to order tickets.

I will say this though. If you’ve ever bought a ticket to DC4D, thank you. It started as an experiment, it continued as part of my mission to help developers, and I’ll keep doing it as long as people keep buying tickets.

Until next time,
I <3 |<
=C=

Ecommerce in WordPress

Dear Reader,

The Problem

Regular readers know that back in November I put on a one day virtual conference titled Day Camp 4 Developers. Part of the deal was that all ticket holders got free copies of the recordings. It sounds like such a simple thing; just put them up for download, right? Not really. Let’s look at the actual requirements.

  1. Shopping cart to allow me to eventually sell the videos.
  2. A way to let my existing ticket holders “buy” them for free. (Coupon codes)
  3. A way to keep the real location of the files hidden so people don’t just go download them.

Those were the biggest items. Beyond that I was willing to either sacrifice or code it myself.

The Solution

I looked at a lot of shopping cart solutions ranging from the horrible to the expensive. I really wanted to go the open source route, not because I’m cheap or don’t believe in paying people for their work but I knew there would be needs I had that I would have to code myself. In that case, I wanted to be able to contribute back to the project. (Assuming they wanted the code, I wrote)

I ended up with eShop. It’s good, not great. It meets all 3 requirements, although I did have to help it along in a couple of places. I looked at the code, again, good, not great. It amazes me that after watching the PHP community scream “filter input, escape output!” so much that some developers still don’t. I had to add some filtering and a lot of escaping to get the results I wanted.

In the end though, it did the job. Like the other tools I used for DC4D, I could have written a more tailored solution myself, however, it would have take me a lot longer to get the job done and get the video’s up.

Side Note: I am so used to community projects being the norm that it surprises me when I find a project that is not community based. eShop is a single developer building a project. There is no repo for eShop and no way to submit patches other than just email them to the author. He has a forum for the project and it’s active enough to let me know people are using the product but there is no developer community working with him to mantain and enhance the project. It makes me sad. For those interested, no, he did not accept my patches but only because he didn’t want to take the project in that direction. I eventually forked it for my own use because I’ve modified it enough now that upgrading to future versions is a pain.

Conclusion

WordPress (“The word press” as one of the lovely and talented Kathy’s bosses used to call it) was never designed for ecommerce. Any solution is a bolt-on and feels like it. However, eShop is a good solution if your needs are modest.

Until next time,
I <3 |<
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