Docker without Dockerfiles

Dickon Reed wrote “Why we use Docker Sometimes an innovation has such an impact that, when talking to developers, it seems everybody has decided to learn the same thing at about the same time. Maybe that’s Rust, or Haskell, or Ruby, or Python, or Perl, or C++, or C, or Turbo Pascal or BASIC. Maybe it’s the novelty…”

Reading ARFF files with Elixir

Patrick Tschorn wrote “If you are implementing a machine learning approach, you are likely to want to test it on publicly available datasets. A large number of these datasets use the ARFF file format established by Weka. I am not aware of any Elixir ARFF readers, so I am going to explore writing one (‘Arfficionado‘) in this blog.…”

The Terminology of Knowledge Graphs

Alexandra Orth wrote “Terminology is constantly evolving and often confusing. This is especially true in tech with the constant re-defining/re-naming/re-branding/re-implement churn that companies undertake to make their product stand out. A few months ago some questions appeared in a thread regarding the use cases for knowledge graphs. Knowledge graphs and graph databases had a resurgence in popularity the…”

Fixing networking after a Tunnelblick crash

Dickon Reed wrote “If you are running tunnelblick to access a VPN using OpenVPN on a High Sierra Mac, and for instance your whole system crashes, once you’ve logged back in you may lose all network access, even when you have the VPN down. In my case the fix was to open Terminal and run: networksetup -setdnsservers "iPhone…”

Building a GuixSD Vagrant box

Tom Parker-Shemilt wrote “I’ve been curious about the use of declarative mechanisms for creating operating systems for some time. In contrast to most configuration management tools which say certain things that will be true and let everything else do what it likes (particular packages will be installed, particular services in a named state, etc), declarative mechanisms declare the…”

Building rule-based machine learning systems from scratch

Patrick Tschorn wrote “Sometimes, it is obvious that a project needs machine learning, but you can tell that simply pumping the data through all the algorithms in a popular library (and picking the one algorithm that performs least badly) is not the answer. Machine learning libraries cannot cover all algorithms, trade-offs and heuristics specific to arbitrary problem domains.…”

Can Great Britain run fully on renewable energy?

Krista Hyer wrote “In Great Britain, electrical power is supplied via the National Grid, which constantly and carefully balances supply against demand. This is a vital and high-stakes process—deviations of more than 1% in the Grid’s conditions can lead to infrastructure damage and power outages due to blown fuses. (Even deviations of less than 1% will have noticeable…”

Lego Telepresence bot: how not to try and build one

Tom Parker-Shemilt wrote “Four years ago, I built a Dalek-based telepresence bot (part 1, part 2), and I’d been idly thinking for some time that what I really needed to do was make a better follow-up, as a much better one could probably be done with Lego Mindstorms especially given the existence of the BrickPi board for interfacing…”

Three books every software developer should read in 2019

Patrick Tschorn wrote “Ok, that title is tongue-in-cheek clickbait, but here are three books which in my opinion are likely to broaden your horizon by offering surprising perspectives on the most powerful tool that you have at your disposal: your mind (and your body). I have found these books to be filled with interesting observations and pieces of…”

Dockerizing Sybase and connecting to it from Elixir

Patrick Tschorn wrote “On a recent project, we were required to connect our software to a Sybase DB on Linux, which we managed through FreeTDS and ODBC. I will summarize the relevant details in this post. Please be aware that a number of alternative solutions are conceivable. I built Docker images for our software, so that I would…”

Vellere: exposing Github vulnerability notifications to Slack

Tom Parker-Shemilt wrote “A few years ago, Github introduced vulnerability alerts on repositories and although it was initially just for Javascript and Ruby, they’ve since expanded it to Python, Java and .Net and I’m guessing more languages are also on their roadmap. It’s a useful feature, except for one problem: it’s notifications are poorly implemented. They appear to…”

PowerBI: making it functional with Google Analytics

Alexandra Orth wrote “I recently finished a project that introduced me to PowerBI. It’s a great piece of software—intuitive, powerful and fun to use. It’s inspired me to start exploring other Business Intelligence technologies like Tableau and DataStudio. However I did run into one problem that took a lot of googling and some youtube video watching to solve.…”

AWS Lambda and Actix: easy conversion of small web apps into serverless

Tom Parker-Shemilt wrote “I’ve been idly considering the uses of serverless computing, and I’m still not convinced it’s worth it. I’ve used it before, mostly as a means to make things happen in response to AWS events, but the pattern everyone talks about is using them to run web apps, and I’m not fully convinced about that. However,…”

Six emotions experienced by a Stack Overflow treasure-seeker

Polly Shaw wrote “If you’ve been unlucky enough to have been experiencing problems in the general areas of Spring Boot or RabbitMQ recently, you may have turned to Stack Overflow for a bit of non-judgemental support. Some scrutiny of your config files for typos, perhaps, or a gentle word of advice from seasoned experts on the exact meaning…”

On the value of maintenance

Tom Parker-Shemilt wrote “Most of our posts here talk about new software, but there’s also a lot of value in the longer-term maintenance of code and given I’ve done some of that recently, I thought it worth revisiting various earlier projects in that light. None of these are really large enough to have their own post, but collectively…”

And why beholdest thou the Must that is in thy brother’s eye?

Tim Band wrote “I remember a quote from John Z Delorean, creator of the iconic Delorean car as seen in the Back to the Future movies. With his backers breathing down his neck to produce his ambitious car in just a few months, he asked legendary Lotus designer Colin Chapman whether he could do it. Chapman asked him…”