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Aug 8, 2017

The 12 Worst Mistakes Advanced WordPress Developers Make

WordPress is a very popular way to get a site up and running quickly. However, in their haste, plenty of developers end up making horrible decisions. Some mistakes, like leaving WP_DEBUG set to true may be easy to make. Others, like lumping all your JavaScript into a single file, are as common as lazy engineers. Whichever mistake you manage to make, read on to find out the the 12 most common WordPress mistakes that new and seasoned developers make. If you find yourself committing one of these mistakes, don’t despair. Each mistake is an opportunity to learn.

1. Placing WordPress Theme JavaScript Code into One Main File

Once, while doing page speed optimization for a [...]

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Jul 31, 2017

Creating a Ruby DSL: A Guide to Advanced Metaprogramming

Domain specific languages (DSL) are an incredibly powerful tool for making it easier to program or configure complex systems. They are also everywhere—as a software engineer you are most likely using several different DSLs on a daily basis.

In this article, you will learn what domain specific languages are, when they should be used, and finally how you can make your very own DSL in Ruby using advanced metaprogramming techniques.

This article builds upon Nikola Todorovic’s introduction to Ruby metaprogramming, also published on the Toptal Blog. So if you are new to metaprogramming, make sure you read that first.

What Is a Domain Specific Language?

The [...]

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Jul 28, 2017

Code Optimization: The Optimal Way to Optimize

Performance optimization is one of the biggest threats to your code.

You may be thinking, not another one of those people. I understand. Optimization of any kind should clearly be a good thing, judging by its etymology, so naturally, you want to be good at it.

Not just to set yourself apart from the crowd as a better developer. Not just to avoid being “Dan” on The Daily WTF, but because you believe code optimization is the Right Thing to Do™. You take pride in your work.

Computer hardware keeps getting faster, and software easier to make, but whatever simple thing that you Just Want to Be Able to Do, Dammit always takes longer than the last. You shake your head [...]

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Jul 20, 2017

A Guide to Process-oriented Programming in Elixir and OTP

People like to categorize programming languages into paradigms. There are object-oriented (OO) languages, imperative languages, functional languages, etc. This can be helpful in figuring out which languages solve similar problems, and what types of problems a language is intended to solve.

In each case a paradigm generally has one “main” focus and technique that is the driving force for that family of languages:

In OO languages, it is the class or object as a way to encapsulate state (data) with manipulation of that state (methods). In functional languages, it can be the manipulation of functions themselves or the immutable data passed from function to [...]
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Jul 12, 2017

Laravel API Tutorial: How to Build and Test a RESTful API

With the rise of mobile development and JavaScript frameworks, using a RESTful API is the best option to build a single interface between your data and your client.

Laravel is a PHP framework developed with developer productivity in mind. Written and maintained by Taylor Otwell, the framework is very opinionated and strives to save developer time by favoring convention over configuration. The framework also aims to evolve with the web and has already incorporated several new features and ideas in the web development world—such as job queues, API authentication out of the box, real-time communication, and much more.

In this article, we’ll explore the ways you can [...]

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Jul 7, 2017

Ramping up Software Deployment – A Docker Swarm Tutorial

Unless you’ve been living inside a shipping container, you’ve probably heard about containers. The industry has been making a distinct move away from persistent to ephemeral infrastructure, and containers are square in the middle of that move. The reason is quite simple: While containers certainly help dev teams get up and running quickly, they have even more potential to completely change the face of operations.

But what exactly does that look like? What happens when you’re ready to take the leap off of running containers locally, or manually on a few servers? In an ideal world, you want to just throw your application at a cluster of servers and say “run it!”

Well [...]

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Jun 30, 2017

Angular vs. React: Which Is Better for Web Development?

There are countless articles out there debating whether React or Angular is the better choice for web development. Do we need yet another one?

The reason I wrote this article is because none of the articles published already—although they contain great insights—go in-depth enough for a practical front-end developer to decide which one may suit their needs.

In this article, you will learn how Angular and React both aim to solve similar front-end problems though with very different philosophies, and whether choosing one or the other is merely a matter of personal preference. To compare them, we will build the same application twice, once with Angular and then [...]

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Jun 16, 2017

Eight CSS Tips for Advanced Layouts and Effects

The realm of web front-end development has made considerable progress over the last few years. However, the web front-end, as the users see it, is still the same: HTML markup styled with CSS.

Many layout problems can seem simple at first but often proves to be tricky. Without extensive knowledge of how certain CSS features work, these advanced layouts can seem impossible to achieve with CSS alone.

In this article, you will find eight expert CSS tips and tricks that leverage lesser known CSS features to implement some of these advanced layouts and effects.

1. Maximizing CSS Sibling Selectors

The problem: You are losing optimization opportunities by not [...]

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Jun 9, 2017

Building an Angular Video Player with Videogular

The Videogular project is supported by Toptal Open Source Grants. Toptal Open Source Grants supports members of the Toptal network pursuing Open Source projects.

As one of the first Open Source Grants recipients, Raul Jimenez Herrando is adding new features, fixing bugs, and writing documentation for the Videogular project. To learn more about Toptal Open Source Grants, email opensource@toptal.com.

According to online traffic statistics, video is taking over control of the web. The good old TV is dying and companies are moving fast to dominate a market that will represent the 80% of online traffic by 2019 .

Many media providers and products rely on HTML5 video [...]

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Jun 2, 2017

Android DDMS: A Guide to the Ultimate Android Console

Developing is a tricky business. The target keeps moving, new technologies and domains periodically come to life, new tools pop every now and again, and languages change in what seems to be managed havoc.

Still, even with all these changes, the fundamental rules stay the same. One of the most important of these underlying rule states that to create really awesome software, you must gain deep, ongoing and detailed introspection into your executing system. Diagnostics, debugging, and profiling are terms sometimes used in this context, but the rule goes deeper. A top-notch developer literally “feels” his system. He knows what will cause is to chunk waiting for more memory to [...]

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