Blog Posts by Andrew B. Collier / @datawookie


Testing CSS & Xpath

There are many tools for generating CSS selectors and XPath expressions. However, short of using them in your code, how can you quick test them? In this post I’ll show how you can use your browser’s Developer Tools to establish that your CSS or XPath is doing what you intend.

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Dynamic User Pages

Month of Gatsby
Suppose you want to redirect paths beginning with @ to a specific user page. For example, the @datawookie path would take you to the user page for handle datawookie. There are probably a few ways to do this, but one approach would be to use dynamic routing. 🚀 TL;DR Show me the code. Look at the 27-dynamic-users branch. This site is deployed here. First let’s set up the user page at src/pages/user. Read More →

Python Security Audit

Is my code secure? This is something that we should all be thinking (if not worrying) about. A thorough security audit would be the ideal, but what if you don’t have the skills or resources for that? Well, there are some tools that will at least get you part way there.

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Gatsby, Tailwind & Docker

Gatsby and Tailwind are a formidable combination for putting together a robust and attractive site. Throw Docker into the mix and you also have robust and reliable deployments. Here’s how to set that up for a minimal site.

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.NET and MySQL in Docker

In the interests of full disclosure, I know very little (very little indeed!) about .NET. But I do enjoy figuring things out. In this post I’ve documented what I learned when trying to connect a simple .NET application to MySQL using Docker Compose. We’re going to try to do this using Docker as far as possible, which will allow me to avoid having to set up .NET on my local machine. Read More →

WordPress Headless CMS

Month of Gatsby

Not everbody is comfortable crafting web pages directly in JavaScript, HTML or even Markdown. Often content writers are more productive in an environment like WordPress. What if you want to develop your site using Gatsby but allow content writers to still carft their content in WordPress? No problem! You can use WordPress simply as a Content Management System (CMS), then pull the content through into your Gatsby site.

In this post we’ll look at how to set up a Headless WordPress CMS as a source of content for Gatsby.

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Minecraft Paper Server

The original Java Edition of the Minecraft Server that we installed previously inmplements all of the basic server functionality required for multiplayer Minecraft. But perhaps this is not enough. What if you want to customise the server by installing plugins? In that case you need to install a more sophisticated server forked off the original. The PaperMC Minecraft Server provides a lot of bells and whistles not present in the original.

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Weekly Digest & Annual Review

A quick review of the year.

  • I published 55 posts (including this one).
  • I spent a lot of time working with GatsbyJS for one of my clients. At first I was quite out of my depth, but I slowly figured out more or less how it works. I documented some of my learning in a series of posts.
  • My most popular post is still about Shared Memory & Docker. The runner up looks at how to Install GitLab Runner with Docker.
  • I spent some time compiling data on kayak specifications in the hope of producing a definitive table. It’s a work in progress but it’s already getting quite a lot of interest.

Now onto a few interesting articles from this week, mostly announcements of new versions.

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SSH Tunnel: Dynamic Port Forwarding

With a local or remote SSH tunnel the ports on both the local and remote machines must be specified at the time of creating the tunnel. But what if you need something more flexible? That’s where Dynamic Port Forwarding comes into play.

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SSH Tunnel: Remote Port Forwarding

Local and remote SSH tunnels serve the same fundamental purpose: they make it possible to securely send data across an unsecured network. The implementation details are subtly different though. A local SSH tunnel acts like a secure bridge from a local machine to a remote server. It’s ideal for accessing services on the remote server which aren’t publicly exposed. Conversely, a remote SSH tunnel reverses this direction, forwarding traffic from the remote server back to a local machine (or another machine).

The critical distinction between the two is the direction of the connection between the remote and local machines.

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