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Repeats

Shorthand function properties in ES6

Here is an ES5 object literal with two string properties and a function property:

let user = { 
  firstName: 'Max',
  lastName: 'Muster',
  fullName: function() { return this.firstName + ' ' + this.lastName }
}

user.fullName() // => 'Max Muster'

In ES6 we can define a function property using the following shorthand syntax:

let user = { 
  firstName: 'Max',
  lastName: 'Muster',
  fullName() { return this.firstName + ' ' + this.lastName }
}

user.fullName() // => 'Max Muster'

We can also define a gette...

The JavaScript Object Model: A deep dive into prototypes and properties

Speaker today is Henning Koch, Head of Development at makandra.

This talk will be in German with English slides.

Introduction

As web developers we work with JavaScript every day, even when our backend code uses another language. While we've become quite adept with JavaScript at a basic level, I think many of us lack a deep understanding of the JavaScript object model and its capabilities.

Some of the questions we will answer in this talk:

  • How does the new keyword construct an object?
  • What is the differen...

Merging two JavaScript objects

Let's say you want to merge the properties of two JavaScript objects:

let a = { foo: 1, bar: 2 }
let b = { bar: 3, baz: 4 }

let merged = merge(a, b) // => { foo: 1, bar: 3, baz: 4 }

Depending on your build, there are several ways to implement merge().

When you have ES6

When you have an ES6 transpiler or don't support IE11, you may use the spread operator (...) to expand both objects into a new object literal:

let merg...
Repeats

Test Driven Development with Cucumber and RSpec

Test Driven Development is the paradigm to "first write a test, then implement the code". This guide shows how to apply it in practice, with Cucumber and RSpec as integration and unit test frameworks.

Hierarchical approach

I like to view TDD as a process with three levels:

  • Cucumber level (integration test)
  • Code level
  • RSpec level (unit test)

During development you are frequently changing levels. It may look something like this:

Integration _                    _
Code         \__      ___     __/
Spec            \____/   \__...
Repeats

Webmock normalizes arrays in urls

Typhoeus has a different way of representing array params in a get request than RestClient.

Typhoeus: http://example.com/?foo[0]=1&foo[1]=2&foo[2]=3
RestClient: http://example.com/?foo[]=1&foo[]=2&foo[]=3

Webmock normalizes this url when matching to your stubs, so it is always http://example.com/?foo[]=1&foo[]=2&foo[]=3. This might lead to green tests, but in fact crashes in real world. Rack::Utils.build_nested_query might help to build a get re...

Linked content

PostgreSQL: Difference between text and varchar columns

PostgreSQL offers three character types for your columns:

  • character varying(n) (also called varchar or just string): Contents are limited to n characters, smaller contents are allowed.
  • character(n): All contents are padded with spaces to allocate exactly n characters.
  • text: There is no upper or lower character limit (except for the absolute maximum of 1 GB).

The documentation states:

There is no performance difference among these three types, apart ...

Repeats

HTTP Client in RubyMine

RubyMine has a HTTP Client that can be useful to test web APIs.
Just create a .http scratch file an write your request in it.
The request can then be executed with the "Run all requests in File" button above the file.

Some alternatives:
Postman
Curl

The format for request is like this:

Method Request-URI HTTP-Version
Header-field: Header-val...
Repeats

How to use Active Job to decouple your background processing from a gem

In a web application you sometimes have tasks that can not be processed during a request but need to go to the background.
There are several gems that help to you do that, like Sidekiq or Resque.

With newer Rails you can also use ActiveJob as interface for a background processing library. See here for a list of supported queueing adapters.
For ...

Repeats

Don't mix Array#join and String#html_safe

You cannot use Array#join on an array of strings where some strings are html_safe and others are not. The result will be an unsafe string and will thus be escaped when rendered in a view:

unsafe_string = '<span>foo</span>'
safe_string = '<span>bar</span>'.html_safe
[unsafe_string, safe_string].join(' ') # will incorrectly render as '&lt;span&gt;foo&lt;/span&gt;&lt;span&t;bar&lt;/span&gt;'

Bad

The solution is not to call html_safe on the joined array and if you thought it would be, you [don't understand how XSS protecti...

Ruby: Using the pry debugger in projects with older Ruby versions

In case you want to use pry with an older version of Ruby, you can try the following configurations.

Ruby 1.8.7

Your pry version must not be greater than 0.9.10.

gem 'pry', '=0.9.10'
gem 'ruby-debug'
gem "ruby-debug-pry", :require => "ruby-debug/pry"
gem 'pry-nav'
gem 'ruby18_source_location'

Ruby 1.9.3

Your pry version must not be greater than 0.9.9.

gem 'debugger', '=1.1.4'
gem 'pry-debugger', '=0.2.0'
gem 'pry', '=0.9.9'

Known errors

No source for ruby-1.9.3-p551 p...

Linked content

The ultimate guide to Ruby timeouts

An unresponsive service can be worse than a down one. It can tie up your entire system if not handled properly. All network requests should have a timeout.

Here’s how to add timeouts for popular Ruby gems. All have been tested. You should avoid Ruby’s Timeout module. The default is no timeout, unless otherwise specified. Enjoy!

Repeats

How DECIMAL columns deal with numbers exceeding their precision or scale

When storing floating-point numbers such as prices or totals in an SQL database, always use a DECIMAL column. Never use FLOAT or kittens will die.

DECIMAL columns are parametrized with a precision and a scale. These parameters describe which numbers can be stored in that column. E.g. a decimal with a precision of 5 and a scale of 2 can store numbers from -999.99 to 999.99, but not 1000 or 1.234.

This card explains what various databases do when you try to store a number in a DECIMAL field, and that number exceeds that colum...

Repeats

simple_format does not escape HTML tags

simple_format ignores Rails' XSS protection. Even when called with an unsafe string, HTML characters will not be escaped or stripped!

Instead simple_format has a whitelist of tags it allows. These are:

ActionView::Base.sanitized_allowed_tags
=> #<Set: {"small", "dfn", "sup", "sub", "pre", "blockquote", "ins", "ul", "var", "samp", "del", "h6", "h5", "h4", "h3", "h2", "h1", "span", "br", "hr", "em", "address", "img", "kbd", "tt", "a", "acronym", "ab...
Repeats

Webpacker: Configuring browser compatibility

Webpacker uses Babel and Webpack to transpile modern JavaScript down to EcmaScript 5. Depending on what browser a project needs to support, the final Webpack output needs to be different. E.g. when we need to support IE11 we can rely on fewer JavaScript features. Hence our output will be more verbose than when we only need support modern browsers.

Rails 5.1+ projects often use Webpacker to preconfigure the Webpack pipeline for us. The default configuration works something like this:

  1. Webpack checks w...

CarrierWave: How to generate versions with different file extensions

We use CarrierWave in many of our projects to store and serve files of various formats - mostly images. A common use case of CarrierWave's DSL is to "process" the original file in order to create multiple "versions", for example different resolutions of the same image.

Now we could go one step further: What if we want to create versions that have a different file extension than the original file? For example, let's assume we'd like to create a ve...

Repeats

Ruby: Referencing global variables with the built-in English library

With Ruby's build-in library English you can reference global variables with an english name. This makes you code easier to read and is also suggested by Rubocop's Style/GlobalVars cop.

Example before:

if 'foo' =~ /foo/
  puts $~[1] # => foo
end

Example after:

if 'foo' =~ /foo/
  puts $LAST_MATCH_INFO[1] # => foo
end

Require pitfall in Rails

The English library is not loaded by default in Rails. S...

Deprecated

How Rails and MySQL are handling time zones

When working with times and dates in Rails applications, you need to deal with the following problem:

  • In Rails, Time objects have a time zone. You can get the zone name by doing time_object.zone.
  • This zone is considered when doing time calculations, e.g. 10 AM CEST minus 8 AM UTC is zero.
  • A datetime in MySQL does not have a zone. It just stores the literal string "2010-05-01 12:00:00".
  • That means that Rails must make assumptions about timestamps loaded from and written to MySQL.

Rails has two completely different modes ...

Deprecated

You don't need each, collect or select in Coffeescript

Working with lists in Javascript is painful because the native Array class is so poorly designed.

One way to reduce the pain is to to use Underscore.js's functions like _.each, _.map or _.select, which unfortunately clutters your code with awkward calls to the _ helper.

Fortunately when you use CoffeeScript you don't need any of that. CoffeeScript has a very versatile for keyword that can do anything that each, collect or select can do. Enjoy!

each

f...
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