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Using Chrome Extension Generator for the first time

Chrome Extension Generator by yeoman is an npm package that can be used to very easily scaffold out a Chrome extension. Over the past year I have poked and prodded at a few chrome extensions, and ended up publishing one to display download counts on GitHub. I highly recommend this generator, it creates everything you need out of the box and also enables easy set-up of permissions, actions as well as auto rebuild and reload into Chrome for testing.

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Some TLC for the first MOT

In my eyes the van was perfect, and was decently priced, so I was quick to snap it up, although naturally every second hand vehicle is going to have a few issues, some of which I missed and some which got slightly worse after the initial drive home. Below is a quick snapshot of the issues that I encountered and how I dealt with them for the MOT.

Those things that could wait

  • A handful of small scratches and a few dents, nothing to worry about.
  • The interior wood panelling had a hole in it, caused by something impacting the outside of the body, but the body had been sorted, the wood just needed fixing up, no MOT issues here.
  • When changing into 5th something made an odd sound, a small crunch, though it didn’t feel too bad, so probably not worth worrying about at this early stage.
  • One of the mirrors was slightly smashed (totally my fault). It turns out I was not quite ready to reverse this van out of the driveway I had it parked on.

Those that had to be fixed

  • The horn didn’t work at all! This is a requirement.
  • I couldn’t find reverse gear at all! I’m sure reverse functioning on a vehicle that has reverse is probably an MOT requirement.

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sMite

sMite stands for ‘simple Mite’, which to most people still means nothing at all. Mite is a time tracking web service, and depending on how companies make use of it things can become more complicated than they should be.
smite is how I tried to tackle this complexity in less than 8 hours!

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My new van

So I created a category on this Blog for my new van some time ago now, but I am yet to post about it at all. One of the reasons that I probably held back was at the start of this Blog I wasn’t really sure what I was going to put here. But here goes with post #1

Van Number 1I bought a van in August 2015 (9 before this post date).

It is a white short wheelbase Volkswagen Transporter 4, and of course my plan is to travel in it and enjoy the country and hopefully other parts of the world. In August it had roughly 170,000 miles on its clock, which hopefully leaves room for many many more.

Prior to this I was served well by an old 1989 / 1990 Nissan Micra 988cc hatch back (also in white), but that is now serving another master.

At the time of writing this the van has already changed in many ways, but lets save that for later posts.

Refactoring around WatchedItem in MediaWiki

The refactoring started as part of [RFC] Expiring watch list entries. After an initial draft patch was made touching all of the necessary areas it was decided refactoring first would be a good idea as the change initially spanned many files. It is always good to do things properly ® instead of pushing forward in a hacky way increasing technical debt.

The idea of a WatchedItemStore was created that would remove lots of logic from the WatchedItem class as well as other watchlist database related code that was dotted around the code base such as in API modules and special pages.

The main patches can be seen here.

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T460 & Windows 10

Lenovo T460A few weeks ago I was blessed with a new Lenovo ThinkPad T460 to replace my old and very beaten up HP Pavilion DV6-3180EA. This also meant an upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10 that I have been putting off for some time. Here are my first impressions of both the T460 and Windows 10.

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Language usage on Wikidata

the Wikidata LogoWikidata is a multilingual project, but due to the size of the project it is hard to get a view on the usage of languages.

For some time now the Wikidata dashboards have existed on the Wikimedia grafana install. These dashboards contain data about the language content of the data model by looking at terms (labels, descriptions and aliases) as well as data about the language distribution of the active community.

For reference the dashboard used are:

All data below was retrieved on 1 February 2016

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The break in Wikidata edits on 28 Jan 2016

On the 28th of January 2016 all Wikimedia MediaWiki APIs had 2 short outages. The outage is documented on Wikitech here.

The outage didn’t have much of an impact on most projects hosted by Wikimedia. However due to most Wikidata editing happening through the API, even when using the UI, the project basically stopped for roughly 30 minutes.

Interestingly there is an unusual increase in the edit rate 30 minutes after recovery.

I wonder if this is everything that would have happened in the gap?

My Joomla Component development workflow

Joomla20Symbol20Color20FLATMy first and currently only Joomla component development was for the SWA UK website. The component manages memberships, events, tickets, results and more and is a rewrite of a previous component for Joomla 1.

But in this post lets ignore what the component does and instead concentrate the development workflow that is used. After lots of research at the beginning of development I decided to ignore other  methods of developing a component and this is what I ended up coming up with.

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Building applications around Wikidata (a beer example)

Wikidata provides free and open access to entities representing real world concepts. Of course Wikidata is not meant to contain every kind of data, for example beer reviews or product reviews would probably never make it into Wikidata items. However creating an app that is powered by Wikidata & Wikibase to contain beer reviews should be rather easy.

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