Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Croogo, you yummy little CakePHP tart

I've been working with CakePHP for a while now.  Certainly not in at the ground level, since my first recorded usage is with CakePHP 1.2.1.8004, back in January 2009.  Since that time, I've been involved with the development of 7 projects that use the PHP MVC Framework, with most using in wholesale, and a couple to drag their legacy or CodeIgniter based butts into a land of comfortable OO MVC.

Most of these projects have involved providing basic CMS capabilities, from which I've ended up copying improved portions from one project to the next.  I've never bothered with plugins before, since portion of functionality had to be ready for anything that the particular project required.  It was always easier to copy what worked in the main application than develop a plugin that may or may not get used without taint from the application that required it.

At the start of this week, a team member referred me to Croogo, an open source CMS written with CakePHP.  At first, I was a little curious.  I'd only heard of one other CakePHP CMS, and that was Wildflower.  At the time, it was early days for Wildflower, and I needed something that worked out the box.  I guess with the CakePHP knowledge I have these days, I'm probably a little more at ease with third party CakePHP software.

So, this morning, I decided to take a little bit more of a look at Croogo, and its inner workings.  Oh my, I'm impressed.  It seems to have all the basics that I'm looking for in a CMS, and none of the cruft.  Content, menus, authentication, roles, contacts and a template system that any PHP developer would be comfortable with.  And by the looks of things, extensible!  You can create a regular CakePHP plugin, add a few file descriptors here and there, and you've got a Croogo compatible plugin.

I'm very impressed, and very excited.  Already, I've got two potential projects that I'm thinking of implementing Croogo for to provide basic CMS functionality, and then I'll create plugins to handle the parts that make the applications unique.

No doubt I'll have a few articles before the end of the year for things like extending the authentication, and adding application functionality to the CMS.  There are probably articles out there that do this already, it's just very early days for me.  Did I mention I was excited?

Back it up, pack it in

Note to self:

Next time I upgrade Eclipse from one major version to the next, also take a backup of the workspace, so that I can hook that old version of Eclipse in to it, if I need to.  It may not be able to read from the projects that are there, if they've been opened and converted to the new version, but at least I'll be able to tell quickly which Eclipse plugins I've installed in that old version, and where I got them from.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Meeces to pieces

Some one get me a cup of concrete.  I need to HTFU.

We found mice in the house on the weekend, so I purchased a couple of traps on Sunday.  Having pets already, getting traps that poison wasn't something I wanted to get.  I've seen the effects of RATSAK on a cat, and it's not pretty.  I don't want to inflict that sort of pain on a mouse, either.

So I got one of those live capture traps.  There's a ramp or two that let the mouse go in, but they don't get to leave.  Apparently, these traps will catch up to 10 mice at a time.  We've also got the ultra sonic emitters, too, but apparently they're a bit useless, since mice get used to all sorts of annoying sounds.

On Sunday night, we caught the two that were inside.  Here's hoping it was the same two from Saturday night, anyway.

And then tonight (Monday), I inspected the trap I laid downstairs.  It's a fairly open area, so the presence of mice is not surprising.  The more I think about it, the presence of mice down there is a given.  Anyway, four of the little buggers.

My release method is a little naive.  I go to the front of the driveway, and let them out.  Hopefully, they become someone else's problem.  More than likely, they'll just make their way back to my place.

I did see an article for a trap that involved a string on a stick, over a bucket of water.  I'm not plused about drowning either, but it beats prolonged agony of poison, and is a bit more permanent that catch and release (unless I drive them a distance down the road).

Anyone got any practical experience with live mouse disposal?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Magic words

I've got a list of magic words on my whiteboard at work.  If you ever find yourself saying any of these words, train yourself to have alarms bells going off in your head, and re-examine your statement for facts and sanity.

  • surely
  • maybe
  • assume
  • thought
  • hopefully
It's just a short list, easy to remember.