Mix Vue.js with Django templates

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 11 Jun 2020

We have an application written in Django that we want to piece-wise migrate to a Vue and API architecture. This post explores how we managed to combine Vue development inside a Django project, and all the frustrating dead-end along the way. Hopefully saving you time in your own process. read more...

Building Git Pull Requests with Jenkins

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 15 Apr 2020

Through the years and Jenkins releases, we build Jenkins jobs that are able to run tests on the master branch. With more and more casual contributors, we want to be able to run tests on Pull Requests, automatically adding annotations for the test results. read more...

In the year ahead 2020

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 21 Mar 2020

In spite of the coronavirus crisis, it is the time of year where accountants close the books for last year, and for the DjaoDjin team to reflect on what we did well, what can be improved, and where to take the product forward over the next months. read more...

DjaoDjin prices will increase Dec 1st 2019

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 4 Nov 2019

The whole DjaoDjin team wants to thank you for the trust you placed in us to manage the nuts and bolts of your online product. read more...

Building CSS/JS static assets and Django

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 4 Jul 2019

In the early days of the Internet, you added your .css and .js files in a static/ folder under your Django project and you were done. Things have evolved. Getting the User Interface static assets to a browser is a lot more complex now. read more...

testing a Django 2.2 website with SQLite3 on CentOS 7

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 8 May 2019

Django 2.2 was released on Apr 1st 2019. Since it is the most recent as well a Long Term Support (LTS) version, it was time to update the Jenkins bot infrastructure to include Django 2.2 in the Django versions tested. read more...

Integrating Django i18n with Jinja2 and Vue.js

by Dima Knivets on Tue, 16 Apr 2019

It is straightforward to add translations to a Django project with built in Django templates. However, if you are using other template engines like Jinja2, it might take more effort to make those work together. Things can get tricky if you want to manage translations for both the frontend and the backend using the same Django tools. I'm not going to cover the basics of i18n in Django hereas there is already a great deal of information on the Django website, but instead talk about the out of the box stuff that is not integrated. read more...

Forging Ahead 2019!

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 4 Feb 2019

January was a month-long of analyzing feedback and planning for the year ahead. With Chinese New Year around the corner, it is time to write down the lessons learned in 2018 and what the DjaoDjin team will work on in 2019. read more...

2019 Weekly Reading List

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 1 Jan 2019

Short list updated weekly of articles and papers we read and found worth mentioning in 2019. read more...

Documenting an API implemented with Django Rest Framework

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 24 Oct 2018

With growth comes many support issues, one of them being able to efficiently answer questions for developers and prospective customers. The API doc hosted on Read-the-Docs were showing their limitations. So we embark onto surveying the landscape for API documentation, looking for a solution that fits DjaoApp APIs implemented with Django Rest Framework. read more...

First days with Zendesk

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 4 Oct 2018

Adding a thousand users in one day, many of them working across the spectrum of fortune 500s companies is a strong incentive to build a professional customer support organization. The first step being to sign up for Zendesk. Here was we learned in the first couple weeks. read more...

Date/time, back and forth between Javascript, Django and PostgreSQL

by Dima Knivets on Tue, 17 Apr 2018

DjaoDjin caters to micro-SaaS products. These are specialized and local products. As an example, A1Ceus targets compliance with New York State professional certification requirements. Usually the teams behind those websites are small (1-3 people), with their thumb on the pulse on daily business numbers. Reporting graphs in UTC did not cut it. Questions kept piling up in the customer support inbox about discrepancies between what those micro-SaaS entrepreneurs were experiencing and what the report charts were saying. Reports had to be presented midnight to midnight local time. Here is the journey of what that meant technically to show revenue reports in local time. read more...

2018 Weekly Reading List

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 1 Jan 2018

Short list updated weekly of articles and papers we read and found worth mentioning. read more...

PostgreSQL, encryption and AWS RDS instance

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 19 Aug 2017

Sometime ago, I wrote about installing postgresql on an encrypted volume and running postgresql on an ebs volume encrypted with keys managed by AWS KMS. Today let's see how we can quickly deploy postgresql on an RDS instance with both encryption at-rest and in-transit. read more...

Export Python Code Coverage from a Docker Container to Jenkins

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 17 May 2017

The full tests workflow is presented in the diagram below. We presented the steps to build a Docker container and upload it to ECR in another post. Here we will focus on generating Python coverage results and getting the files to be presented into Jenkins. read more...

Jenkins, Docker build and Amazon EC2 Container Registry

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 16 May 2017

The major features released in Jenkins v2 are Jenkinsfile and Pipelines. Today, we will see how to create a Jenkins job to build a docker container out of a source repository then upload it to an Amazon EC2 Container Registry. read more...

First day with Docker

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 14 May 2017

(This post was updated for running Docker on Fedora 25) Since Docker was released as open-source, it has spread like wildfire. Both Amazon and Google have been quick to support Docker on their respective cloud. read more...

Nginx, Jetty and Jenkins (updated)

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 13 May 2017

It has been a while since we setup Nginx, Jetty and Jenkins together the first time around. Fedora is on version 25, Jetty on version 9 and Jenkins on version 2.60. read more...

Vendor Landscape for Enterprise-Ready SaaS

by David Schoenbach on Thu, 6 Apr 2017

Enterprise-ready SaaS: The term suggest feature-rich, scalable, and secure -- qualities at the core of any cloud-based service for enterprise customers. But the bar is trending higher, and developers now have greater expectations to meet as they set their roadmap for enterprise-ready SaaS. read more...

Create an EC2 AMI with Ansible

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 30 Mar 2017

Time to boot EC2 instances has significantly improved over the years but it still takes in the order of tens of minutes to do a system update and configuration. As a result, we always create a base image, fully configure and that is then instantiated as necessary. Of course, we use Ansible to setup and register that AMI. read more...

Elements of a good receipt

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 31 Jan 2017

Charge receipts are an essential part of payments online, both for selling physical goods (e-commnerce) and subscriptions for Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). A good receipt will help customers build trust in your business as well as avoid chargebacks. In this post, let's review the elements needed for a good receipt. read more...

Weekly Reading List

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 1 Jan 2017

Short list updated weekly of articles and papers we read and found worth mentioning. read more...

Analysis of Runtime Behavior of Boutique Software-as-a-Service

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 12 Dec 2016

We define a boutique Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) as a business from one to fifty people, which primarily sells a software product through an online subscription service. We were curious to find out the technology stacks behind those businesses, as well as the usage of administrative features (User profiles, Billing, etc.) that need to be built up as part of running a Software-as-a-Service but which are not core to the service delivered. read more...

Porting a Django app to Jinja2 templates

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 26 Oct 2016

Jinja2 has many nice features over native Django templates, one being a more strict sand-box security model and second template macros. Fortunately Django 1.8 introduced support for Jinja2 templates. In this post we will see how we ported our Django code base to Jinja2 templates. read more...

Resizing an EBS disk

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 21 Oct 2016

Sometimes you underestimated the disk size required to setup and run a service on AWS. The quickest way to keep moving forward is to resize the EBS storage associated with the EC2 instance. read more...

Breaking The Curse of Negative Cashflow in SaaS

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 1 Sep 2016

It has become a custom that a SaaS company will sacrifice its cash flow and profitability when chasing after revenue growth and growth of the customer base. This is obviously made possible if a SaaS company is backed by a large amount of investment, specifically from Venture Capital firms. read more...

Logrotate, S3 storage, and AWStats

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 24 Aug 2016

Today we are going to push the rotated logs to a S3 bucket, the download those logs and process them with awstats. read more...

Boutique entrepreneur, LLC or Corporation?

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 25 Jul 2016

You are starting a Software-as-a-Service business to clinch this nagging pain you had at the company you just left. Now swimming into the business legal jargon, you are wondering should I create a LLC or incorporate? I am neither a lawyer nor a certified accountant. The following blog post cannot be construed as professional advise. It is merely the thoughts of a boutique entrepreneur that has spent way too much time reading through documents available on the Web. None-the-less I hope it helps you. read more...

SubfieldBase has been deprecated Django warning for DurationField

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 24 Jul 2016

As we are getting ready for a Django 1.10 upgrade, it is time to take care of one of the most baffling warning in the code base RemovedInDjango110Warning: SubfieldBase has been deprecated. This lead to a long journey through code, documentation, and release notes. read more...

Hiring a technical co-founder

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 3 Jul 2016

You are starting a Software-as-a-service business to clinch this nagging pain you had at the company you just left. You have connections and some business expertise but the only line of code you have ever seen was in an 80s movie where a kid prevented a nuclear war by having a computer play tic-tac-toe against itself. You are definitely looking out for a technical co-founder. read more...

Mental Preparation for the Future CEO

by Aurélie Pérez on Sat, 28 May 2016

Is it time for you to create your own company? Are you ready to begin the amazing adventure which is entrepreneurship? Today we are having a guest post from Aurélie Pérez, Advisor about Happiness At Work on the mental preparation you will need to become a CEO. read more...

Django Rest Framework, AngularJS and permissions

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 25 Apr 2016

We are building an AngularJS application that will talk to a backend API written with Django Rest Framework (DRF for short). Let's see how we do that nicely and securely. read more...

In the year ahead

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 23 Jan 2016

Jan 1st 2016, we survived. Bigger fishes didn't make it. Two customers are going live with their product next week. Three deals were signed. The quota for January was met. Time to look at what lies ahead. read more...

2016 Weekly Reading List

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 1 Jan 2016

Short list updated weekly of articles and papers we read and found worth mentioning. read more...

How to set pricing for my subscription business?

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 6 Oct 2015

Getting the perfect pricing will make a huge difference on a business, from sales velocity (how fast do you sign customers) to free cash flow (how much can be re-invested quickly into growth). Every market, product and situation is different. It will take trials and errors to get it right. Let's just remember rule #1. read more...

Serving static assets in a micro-services environment

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 5 Sep 2015

While deploying code on a production server can be tricky due to prerequisites, version drift, etc. Serving static assets, commonly called Plain Old Data (POD) has its own set of challenges. Often static assets are "compiled" (gzip, minification), moved around the filesystem and served to a browser by completely different services (ex: nginx) than during development. In practice it means a lot of things can potentially go wrong. read more...

Whitelabel Domain with TLS

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 24 Aug 2015

The first and easiest thing to do to start a business on the Internet is to register a domain name. There are a few gotchas to be aware of before you select a DNS provider and hand over the domain name to your technical team. This post is a little bit more technical than usual but reading through it will avoid a lot of headaches and frustration later on. read more...

A typical day building a boutique hosting platform

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 17 Jul 2015

Mark Suster's blog is always on the edge between a strong opinion and a pragmatic approach to moving forward. I like it. Recently Mark wrote "How the Hell do I Prioritize Work, Blog & Find Balance?". It prompted me to reflect on "What do I myself do in a typical day?". read more...

Nginx authenticated files access

by Stephane Robino on Tue, 7 Jul 2015

When dealing with large files (2Gb+), we would prefer nginx to serve those files directly. The trick is we want nginx to serve those files solely to authenticated users. We will see in this post how to have nginx serve the files directly, yet keep the authorized access logic inside our web application. read more...

How to bring your own service online

by Joe Bonadio on Thu, 11 Jun 2015

There are two opinions when it comes to building a service on the Internet: if you are willing to work for free for a while, you don’t need much capital to start a web service - $37 is enough. On the other hand, the math of SaaS favor large amounts of capital early. Surprisingly both lines of reasoning are true. read more...

Browser direct upload to S3

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 10 Jun 2015

Dealing with large files over HTTP has always been challenging, Doing so in the context of access control and user authentication even more so. Once faced with that first (too) big file, you will most likely search for Nginx direct file upload without passing them through backend or if you rely on AWS, look into S3 direct upload from browser. We will see in this post how to do the latest. read more...

Django, Gunicorn and Syslog-ng

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 29 May 2015

As we add more customers, traffic and infrastructure grow, centralized logging becomes more of a pressing need. We configure the Gunicorn/Django service to log messages through the local syslog-ng and have syslog-ng forwards logs to an aggregator machine. read more...

Jenkins, SELinux and Python Coverage

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 28 May 2015

Time for an upgrade of the Jenkins machine. This time we are setting up Jenkins with Jetty 9 on Fedora 21 to continuously run CasperJS tests against the Django web application. read more...

PostgreSQL, encrypted EBS volume and Key Management Service

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 27 May 2015

A little while ago, I wrote about installing postgres on an encrypted volume. The approach is very secure and uses standard Linux tools but it has two drawbacks. read more...

How New EC2 Instances Lead to Re-write PDF Tools

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 11 May 2015

Amazon announced new T2 instances in July 2014. A little later it became clear that AWS free tier for StartUps was only for T2 instances. The free tier offer did not extend to the previous T1 generation (We found out on the first bill). read more...

Two background colors on a nvd3 line chart

by Stephane Robino on Sat, 9 May 2015

NVD3 (running with d3.js) is a great plug-in to easily create nice chart. Here we will see how to set two different background colors that visually separate past results and future predictions on a line chart. read more...

Organizing Ansible Playbooks

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 2 Apr 2015

In this post I will describe how we organize DjaoDjin Ansible playbooks for deployment on AWS as well as the rationale that lead to it. read more...

Single sign-on through OpenLDAP on Fedora 21

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 31 Mar 2015

Whether you work with a lot of contractors that come and go or you are dealing with the pains of a growing business, there is a point where copying ssh keys around on your EC2 instances does not cut it anymore. Time for a centralized login solution. read more...

Postfix, Dovecot and OpenLDAP on Fedora 21

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 30 Mar 2015

So far we had run the mail server with static hash files. As we add contributors and machines in the mix, it is about time to introduce a central account service (i.e. OpenLDAP). Since Rackspace and Amazon deprecated their first generation instances, re-building the mail infrastructure from scratch on a new system seemed appropriate - plus, it is fun! read more...

StartUp Discussion Panel

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 1 Mar 2015

On February 18th, DjaoDjin organized a discussion panel to the benefit of 32 students from ESCP visiting diverse companies in San Francisco for a week. read more...

Happy New Year 2015!

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 4 Jan 2015

Happy New Year to You! Happy New Year to all those who entrust DjaoDjin with the technical challenges of running their boutique services online. Happy New Year to all those who support DjaoDjin with their time and money. read more...

2015 Weekly Reading List

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 1 Jan 2015

Short list updated weekly of articles and papers we read and found worth mentioning. read more...

Where the road leads - Vasilios Pavlounis

by Joe Bonadio on Sun, 2 Nov 2014

A first generation Greek-American born and raised in Halifax, Nova Scotia, San Francisco Bay Area entrepreneur Vasilios Pavlounis graduated with a business degree from Dalhousie University in 1986. His life changed course, however, when he saw an ad for a computer consultant job three years later. As he recalls, “I literally had to look it up. Once I did, I said ‘I think this computer stuff is the future.’ ” read more...

Software-as-a-Service Lighting Talk at Sourcegraph

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 20 Oct 2014

These are the slides about djaodjin-saas I presented at Sourcegraph in October. read more...

Deploying on EC2 with Ansible

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 18 Oct 2014

Ansible is a great piece of software to write IT automation scripts. The fact that Ansible is written in Python makes it even sweeter for us. read more...

Multi-tier Implementation in Django

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 16 Oct 2014

These are the notes from the lightning talk I gave at the SF Django Meetup on September 24th. read more...

jQuery plugin to annotate images

by Stephane Robino on Sun, 31 Aug 2014

For the past months, we have been using a workflow to communicate layout changes on the site that includes an in-browser screen capture, followed by a screenshot annotate step and concluded by a todo item in the backend database. read more...

Back to school: lessons learned this summer

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 25 Aug 2014

Last week, yet another DjaoDjin client processed his first payment through the DjaoDjin subscription firewall. In this post, I will share what the team learned completing the DjaoDjin Minimum Viable Product (MVP) over the summer. read more...

From Cycling to IoT - Eran Frohman

by Joe Bonadio on Mon, 11 Aug 2014

“The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” - George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman read more...

Email Notifications with Amazon SES

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 5 Aug 2014

Today we are setting up email notification for the Django webapp through Amazon SES, not to be confused with Amazon SNS (Simple Notification Service) and Amazon SQS (Simple Queue Service) which are other useful notification services from Amazon. read more...

Triggering the VersionEye API

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 30 Jul 2014

Today we are going to mechanically upload DjaoDjin's requirements file to VersionEye through a git post-update hook. read more...

Postgres on an Encrypted EBS Volume

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 30 Jul 2014

There are only two kinds of people, those who encrypt and those who wish they encrypted. The way EC2 instances boot, it is almost impossible to do full disk encryption. Here we will store the postgres database files on a separate encrypted EBS volume, and thus tweak the default postgres installation along the way. read more...

Schema Migration with Django

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 29 Jul 2014

Database schema migration is a fact of life and South has imposed itself as the de facto solution within the Django community (at least until Django 1.7). The south docs are explicit, yet it is good to read the excellent south-explained post before diving in. read more...

Docker on Amazon Elastic Beanstalk

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 26 Jul 2014

We have recently played with Docker on a Fedora 20 Virtual Machine. What we are looking to achieve Today is to run a Docker container on Amazon Elastic Beanstalk (AEB). read more...

Resources for SaaS businesses

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 6 Jun 2014

To wrap up, we recently came across some articles providing very insightful angles to running a SaaS business. read more...

How we setup pylint on a git pre-receive hook

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 14 May 2014

We have worked as a cohesive team of Python developers for a long time. Either it is underscore variable names, spacing conventions or the 80-column rule, most of them had no problem. All the code written could be pretty much guaranteed to be PEP-8 compliant. read more...

2014 Weekly Reading List

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 1 Jan 2014

Short list updated weekly of articles and papers we read and found worth mentioning in 2014. read more...

Born Entrepreneur - Hasan Mirjan

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 10 Nov 2013

Entrepreneurship is in Hasan Mirjan's genes. His father was a successful businessman manufacturing insulation material in his native Iraq. Mirjan’s journey into entrepreneurship began at the age of 20 with a chicken farm. read more...

Multiple step form with jQuery validation

by Stephane Robino on Fri, 25 Oct 2013

We will see how we can easily validate a multiple step form thanks to jQuery and jQuery validation plugin. The aim is to validate each step of the form one by one and post a clean form. read more...

Landing in Silicon Valley - Eric Olivier

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 7 Aug 2013

Fifty-four-year old Eric Olivier is widely traveled and has dabbled in a wide variety of businesses ranging from hospitality to information technology. read more...

Continuous Integration for a Javascript-heavy Django Site

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 25 May 2013

In the popular series on how technical decisions are made, we will see Today why DjaoDjin picked django-jenkins, phantomjs, casperjs and django-casper to build its continuous integration infrastructure on. read more...

RapidSaas Meetup Notes

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 17 May 2013

After all, one of the most compelling arguments for building a SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) business is that you can do it on a shoestring and be profitable within a few months - No ‘Angel’, no VC, fully bootstrapped. read more...

Is baseball the best sports analogy for entrepreneurship?

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 21 Apr 2013

There are a lot of sports metaphors thrown around in business. I have already written about technology for the sports fan. Most prevalent in the startup world is the home run hit. Baseball is a popular sport, and since the San Francisco Giants are at the top of their game, it is quite understandable that baseball gets thrown around a lot around in the bay area tech circles. read more...

How we picked d3js to draw SaaS metrics

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 1 Mar 2013

There are only few webapps that can do without displaying nice looking charts. This is even more so when you are running a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) website. If you believe we are living in a knowledge economy as I previously described in Open source business models, this means we must search and are bound to find already made solutions. read more...

Business Anatomy

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 7 Jan 2013

[UPDATED] A physical person is made of limbs and organs each with a dedicated function. Amonst them, the heart, by pulsing blood through the body at regular intervals, defines life and death. In a shortcut analogy, bussiness law organize companies as moral entities with roles and procedures and, if anything, financial statements and taxes give the pulse of a company. read more...

2013 Weekly Reading List

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 1 Jan 2013

Short list updated weekly of articles and papers we read and found worth mentioning in 2013. read more...

Focus on Profit

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 10 Dec 2012

I had the pleasure of attending Joel Gascoigne’s presentation on Buffer at a recent San Francisco Financial Startup Meetup. Joel cited some interesting numbers:

  • 400,000+ registered users
  • 1.7% conversion rate
  • $10/month membership
read more...

Behavior-Driven Development (BDD) in Python

by Michael Armida on Fri, 12 Oct 2012

We've adopted Behave over Lettuce for our BDD needs here at Djaodjin. Below I'll present a summary of the motivations for this, and some criticisms of Behave. read more...

Nginx, Gunicorn and Django

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 22 Jun 2012

I decided today to bring a new web stack consisting of nginx, gunicorn and django on a fedora 17 system. We are also throwing django-registration in the mix since the service requires authentication. read more...

Setting-up PAM and LDAP

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 15 May 2012

I wanted to setup my web app to authenticate through PAM as a general authentication mechanism. Since users are allowed to register and update password through the web app directly, I indented to use LDAP to hold user profile information. So I delve into setting-up PAM and LDAP. read more...

Packaging Python Apps

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 22 Apr 2012

I have never quite understood why python (or ruby) packages are delivered through their own manager (pip, gem) instead of the local system package manager (apt, yum, etc). I mean I understand the python developer rationale and disagrees with it. read more...

On Startups

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 14 Mar 2012

Between all the overly hyped articles covering launch events, plancast postmortem is a refreshing must read. read more...

The Future of the workplace

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 7 Feb 2012

I work from my house, as well as several coffee shops next door, and client's labs once in a while. When you are in a software development industry, you can pretty much work from anywhere as long as you can connect to the Internet. I recently attended an event at Rocketspace presented by Podio and Liquidspace. While Podio can feel like a generic tool, check out Screenlight (featured in Zencoder blog). Screenlight is a good example of an enabler of distributed workplaces for a very specific market, in this case the market of video screening. read more...

The N Rules of something

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 15 Jan 2012

Happy New Year! Big resolutions for 2012? If you haven't picked yours yet, these lists of rules to live by are always a lot of inspiration. Enjoy! read more...

Redmine plugins

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 15 Nov 2011

Today I browsed through the redmine plugins directory and selected a few that might be fun to use in our projects. read more...

Redmine is very slow

by Sebastien Mirolo on Mon, 14 Nov 2011

I setup redmine recently run through thin behind a nginx on a rackspace cloud machine. The interface is great and it seems like a very useful application if it was not so slow to respond. Simple http requests take forever even on a machine that experiences only minor traffic. read more...

Nginx, Jetty, Lift and Scala

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 2 Nov 2011

After setting-up a php stack, a python stack and a ruby stack for web applications in the last couple weeks, I decided to go with nginx / jetty / Lift / scala next. read more...

Setting-up Modx CMS

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 16 Oct 2011

Modx is a CMS system written in PHP. As a result, unless you install the not-yet-released PHP 5.4, you will need a PHP-enabled front web server. If you planned to use nginx you will have to do so through FastCGI (remember no built-in http server before PHP 5.4) which if, out-of-luck, you are running a PHP version below 5.3 will require a patch in the PHP source tree. Modx supports mysql as a database backend but there are no mention of postgresql. As a result, I have sticked with a "traditional" LAMP stack for now. read more...

Setting-up Redmine

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 9 Oct 2011

After a few days battling with trac, I decided to give redmine a shot. read more...

Authentication using OpenLDAP

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 8 Oct 2011

In the most part I followed the ubuntu 11.04 openldap tutorial. The wikipedia article is also useful to understand some of the basics. I later stumbled upon LDAP for Rocket Scientists which definitely helped clarify some. read more...

Setting-up Trac

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sun, 2 Oct 2011

I needed to setup a forum for developers on a recent project. That included a source control repository (git), a wiki, a blog, a buildbot and an issue tracking system. To provide the last components I decided to setup trac and a few trac plug-ins. read more...

Here Comes Everybody

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 8 Sep 2011

I picked-up "Here Comes Everybody" from Clay Shirky. It is a very interesting and entertaining read. read more...

Continuous builds with Jenkins

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 7 Sep 2011

Jenkins is another continuous integration server written as a java webapp just like cruisecontrol. Jenkins seems to be the most popular continuous integration package today. There is extensive documentation to install it on many different operating systems and it comes with lots of plugins. read more...

Stubbing Java Classes

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 7 Sep 2011

Many times while validating a software product, you have to substitute a few parts in order to enable automated testing. This was again the case recently when I was confronted with a java application built as a jar file. The application relied on a complex subsystem of components that needed to be stubbed out in the test runner. read more...

Books I read this week

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 23 Jul 2011

I picked up "Only the paranoid survive", "Cowboys and Dragons" and "The Shockwave Rider" from the library this week. read more...

Denying comment spam bots

by Sebastien Mirolo on Sat, 23 Apr 2011

It is kind of fun to look through your application logs and find traces of a hacker trying to break in. It might even be intellectually stimulating to play this game of hide and seek with another human being. Unfortunately most malicious attempts hitting your server will come from bots. Those don't get discouraged. Those don't change tactics. They keep trying to brute force passwords, even when you only allow private key login in your ssh daemon. They keep trying to access PHP scripts, even when you do not have any PHP stack running on your web server. Worse, if you allow people to leave comments on your web site, you are almost guarantee to attract spam bots that will waste precious bandwidth and mess up statistics you use to learn about your audience. read more...

Startup Sales Meetup

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 31 Mar 2011

Yesterday I attended the Startup Sales Circle Inaugural Meetup provided by SalesTie. It was a great venue, with a lot of interesting people to meet and a very informative panel discussion moderated by Adam Rodnitzky at RelTel Technologies. That was definitely one of the most professional meetup I went to. read more...

Summer Readings

by Sebastien Mirolo on Wed, 1 Sep 2010

September is here again. The summer is almost over and as usual the cold and foggy days have given ways to the warm season here in San Francisco. It is a good time to compile a list of the articles and books I have read through the last months that have held my thoughts. read more...

Open source business models

by Sebastien Mirolo on Fri, 23 Jul 2010

There are many reasons to structure your business as an open source business. For example, your business largely relies on open source software itself and it sounds like fair practice to do such yourself. A second example is that your business is small. It does not have the resources to seek out talents and knowledge on its own. This is a real problem in a knowledge-based economy where a business competitive edge relies increasingly on who, what, as much as when you know something. An open source business can leverage contributions from diverse relevant sources around the world. In the end though, noble or practical, a business only survives through sustainable profits. It is thus important to control costs and setup channels through which revenue can stream into the business. read more...

What is the other guy in the office doing?

by Sebastien Mirolo on Tue, 25 May 2010

Coming up with innovative technology is an art. Building an actual product out of that technology is an art. Making money out of that product is an art. In every case, there are plenty of opportunities to screw-up along the way but as the saying goes: "Smithing makes the smith. Sailing makes the sailor. Cooking makes the cook. Tailoring makes the tailor". At some point you need to jump in the unknown and start doing; practical experience will come with the years. Nonetheless, failing because "we did not know" is not an excuse. The ones that succeed are always the ones that can draw on the experience of others. When given a situation, they will obtain the technical advantage from their accumulated knowledge. Experience is a guide, not a master. read more...

Technology careers explained to sports fan

by Sebastien Mirolo on Thu, 14 Jan 2010

Most people do not understand the skills thare are needed to work in technology. The stereotype is that you need to wear glasses and talk in intricate mathematical formulas. Well, I argue that everyone is fit to work and have fun in technology, even if you are a sports buff. read more...


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