FOWA 08: Day 1 Talks

I visited the Future of Web Apps conference last Thursday and Friday in London. The talks were by large excellent, and the speakers were personable and gave detailed answers to questions. Talks were split into Business and Developer, which made choosing difficult for me because I'm involved in both. Videos of all the talks are here: All FOWA 08 Videos

The Future of News – Kevin Rose, digg

Kevin’s talk was given in a more formal way than you might expect from his Diggnation presenting style. He gave details on how Digg’s looking at bringing in new tools to improve the quality of recommendation and conversation on the site.

Web apps are dead, long live web apps… – Edwin Aoki

Edwin drew parallels between web apps and the current financial crisis. He discussed different revenue sources for software, claiming that developers aren’t motivated by money.

Read More →

Top 5 uses for Capistrano

I recently posted my top 5 uses for Capistrano over at Helicoid's Blog — including juicy code snippets!

I like Capistrano a lot. It’s now doing all kinds of things to ease my workflow, from backing up servers to providing me with detailed signup statistics for each of my web apps. Whilst I’m still the only developer designing and building 4 successful web apps I need all the help I can get, so I’ve naturally cobbled together a range of software techniques to help. At least, until I can find an army of robots to do the work for me.

Seriously, as soon as we hit enough subscribers to take on another developer I’ll be straight out in London hunting down the finest Ruby developers, with bribes in the form of shares and beers.

Read More →

5 Great Mac Tools for Programmers

Diff visualisation: Changes

Changes is a fast and friendly diff tool. You can quickly list files that have changed in a project, and view differences between files. It also works with Subversion and Git (and several other version control systems), so it will fit right into your typical workflow. Oh, and it also has a TextMate bundle.

Changes gets perhaps the highest accolade for a mac application: I like Changes so much it actually has a permanent place in my Dock.

Read More →

Rapid Rails Part 3: Desktop Mastery

Welcome to Rapid Rails Part 3: Desktop mastery, the third article in my series focussing on making Rails (and yourself) faster.

A good programmer recognises when to reuse and therefore reduce code. A great programmer applies this tendency to their own workflow. Whether you use an IDE or text editor, working with Rails can be made more pleasant and efficient by observing commonly performed tasks and simplifying them.

The examples given below have a heavy bias toward TextMate, Vim and Mac OS. If you work in Windows or Linux, at the very least consider the following 10 ideas.

Read More →