A soma holiday

Setting things up

November 30th, 2008

There’s no way to work without a workbench. That said, I need to setup our tools so I can work on our project.

I have this folder called Sites which holds all the sites I’m responsible for so a good way to start is to make a new folder for this project. I named it after the domain name I chose, pooood.com.

Then I open up MAMP Pro, click on the Hosts tab and add a new host just so it’s easier to test it on the browser, I just need to call pooood.com:8888 and the site is ready to go.

Now I need to follow CodeIgniter’s installation procedure which is actually quite simple: download and extract the content of the zip file to my working folder.

I end up with something like this on my app folder:

system/

user_guide/

index.php
license.txt

I like to have a host just for the user guide so I just delete it from the app folder. I also delete license.txt, it’s not needed here. That leaves me with:

system/

application/
cache/
codeigniter/
database/
fonts/
helpers/
language/
libraries/
logs/
plugins/
scaffolding/

index.php

This is the most common setup of CodeIgniter but it’s not my favorite. I don’t like to have all those files available through http access, even though I can block them in a number of ways (and they are blocked by default with a simple index.html file). So I make some changes to this setup. I move the application/ folder to the root of the app folder. I also create a new folder on the root called www/ and move the index.php file which was on the root to this folder. Meaning:

application/

system/

www/

index.php

Then, on MAMP Pro, I set the host I created to point to the www/ folder instead of the root. That way, the only file available through the browser is www/index.php. If you try to open the file on the browser you’ll get a fatal error. That’s because you need to tell CodeIgniter that you moved some folders within it. To do so, you just need to edit www/index.php and change the following variables to the corresponding values:

$system_folder = “../system”;
$application_folder = “../application”;

Reach your site again and you’ll see the nice welcome message of CodeIgniter. That’s my setup and now I can code right away.

Next: data modelling.

The right tool for the right job

November 29th, 2008

After having a good idea and thinking over and over again about it, there’s pretty much only three conclusions I can think of: now, someday, never. That’s the answer to when will I put my efforts into this? Then it makes sense to think about how to do it and with which tools.

For this project I’m going to get my hands for the first time in some technologies, the most expensive being the iMac. I’m not sure yet if I’ll move on to a laptop anytime soon but if I do so it will be a Macbook. So, either way, i’m using OS X to work and that’s a debut.

I believe working with OS X helps me a lot but I can’t use it for my routine tasks like surfing the web, listening to music or talking with some friends on some messenger client. Don’t ask. But to work it’s been amazing so far.

To develop on OS X I’ll use MAMP Pro. It eases the process of getting PHP and MySQL to work and does some extra stuff I appreciate a lot. I’ll also use Textmate to write code, MySQL Workbench to design the database (Windows only yet but that’s not important), Cyberduck to transfer files, PHPMyAdmin or Sequel Pro (not sure yet) to handle MySQL actions, Terminal to act like a geek, Keychain to remember all those passwords I keep forgetting and maybe Illustrator but still haven’t thought about the design yet.

Now, the tool I’m really anxious to start working with: CodeIgniter! CodeIgniter is a PHP framework which is gaining some popularity since Ruby On Rails took off not so many years ago. I tested it for a while and loved it. I think the most interesting thing about this project is how to use CodeIgniter to make a dynamic website.

I almost forgot: I’ll use MooTools to make it enjoyable too.

Next: the setup process.

The infamous first post

November 29th, 2008

So.. Uh.. Hi!

After more than a decade doing projects on my own just because, I wanted to bring some of the good ideas that were living inside my head to life. So I thought, since I’m starting, why not write about it? I know it will be helpful to me and it might as well be of any help to someone else so let’s make it.

I’ll start with a project called pooood. It doesn’t really matter what’s the point of the whole thing but how I’m going to do it and what difficulties will I get here and there. Speaking of which, there’s a big difficulty right now: time. I don’t have much but I really want this to go through. Slowly but to the end, I hope.

Right now I won’t waste much time with the appearance of this site, I’ll return to that after the end of the project. Or at least the first phase of the project… Still, I love this theme and will probably base mine around this, made by Randa Clay.

That’s it. I’ll start right away!

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