Should the Pens trade Orpik?

Posted on Tue, 10/22/2013 - 10:54

Much focus has been paid to Matt Niskanen or Simon Depres finding new towns. This is the most likely scenario, as Niskanen's youth and recent good play has surely garnered focus. His trade may be more likely, as Depres came to camp over weight. Although young defense talent is a major asset in this league. Letang is locked up, Martin played well (after a rough previous year), and the defensive depth is stacked (see: Maata, Pouliot, Ruopp, and Dumoulin). Further, Engelland provides an adequate substitute/backup. My focus has shifted to Orpik. He's in a contract year, his return is uncertain


Varnish and Drupal

Posted on Mon, 10/21/2013 - 20:55

Drupal is a complex and robust system. Due to all of the processing required to bootstrap Drupal, enabled modules, enabled themes, and page-specific rendering, one can imagine performance becomes a major concern. There are two primary ways of caching: a cached version of a page (passive caching) and back-end optimization (active caching). Varnish serves as a passive cache, having to rebuild itself once page content changes. This is common practice, as caching often has an expiration. The expiration can be an amount of time for automatic rebuilding of content, or can be triggered manually (like

development drupal

Tools I can't live without

Posted on Thu, 10/10/2013 - 12:05

My previous post outlined my exploration in text editors. But, there are several other tools that revolutionized my ability to do my job. Skitch - shareable screenshots with the ability to draw, annotate, etc. If you are seeing an error, need to make design changes, etc. Make a screenshot in Skitch, upload it to their servers, and share the URL with those you are communicating with. Shapes - OmniGraffle is awesome, but pricey. Shapes is a straightforward and cheap diagramming tool. This is a real quick and dirty way to share workflows and transitions. Much love for a $4.99 tool. VMWare Fusion

A brief comparison of text editors

Posted on Thu, 10/10/2013 - 10:56

To innovate, you often have to risk getting out of your comfort zone. The last several years, I have had varied needs which have required me to evaluate new text editors that offer more robust functionality. For years, I used Dreamweaver primarily as a text editor. I never used (or liked) the fancy GUI HTML editing. But, Dreamweaver provided three primary features that I loved. The syntax highlighting for PHP / JS / HTML really worked for me. The code could be split up into different Dreamweaver projects (with some directory as the project root). And, it has an integrated FTP manager to push

development drupal

Research contributions when problems are already solved

Posted on Tue, 10/08/2013 - 10:41

What happens when there are a lack of open problems? On the surface, it seems to make it more difficult to have impactful contributions. I just think it requires you to think outside of the box. Drupal is a great platform to look at this issue. A few nights ago, I was using my online banking system which required me to answer security questions as a form of two-factor authentication. I thought this would be a great problem to solve in Drupal. However, this is a solved problem: How does one contribute when problems are already solved? Let's consider

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Design issues of a distributed Drupal system

Posted on Thu, 10/03/2013 - 13:22

Scale and performance are major issues for high traffic websites. The design of the Drupal system poses many challenges to building a distributed system that can support load balancing. In Drupal, the design of the system has three principle components: code, database, and files. I will be sharing potential solutions in later blog posts. Code: This includes Drupal core and the modules that run on the web server. By running multiple web servers, you need to ensure the code is consistently maintained during deployments across all of the servers (see: continuous integration). The issue of timing

development drupal

Keeping up with the Joneses

Posted on Thu, 10/03/2013 - 10:24

Apple's release of new iPhones and iOS7 has been criticized for what analysts claim is a lack of innovation. Such things have been prevalent for years in Operating Systems, productivity software, tablets/mobile phones, etc. Even a slight market share can be earned by ripping off ideas from others, so businesses choose to do so. So, what suffers? Innovation. Companies have a limited number of resources. If the resources are dedicated to building features just to stay on par with their competition, how can they move forward? They fear being left behind. Sometimes marketing and profit needs