When Vue.js Is Too Much

While Vue.js‘ popularity continues to sky rocket, there are some alternatives when you want to keep the declarative style but Vue.js is far too much for smaller requirements.

One is Stimulus from the team at Basecamp:

Stimulus is a JavaScript framework with modest ambitions. It doesn’t seek to take over your entire front-end—in fact, it’s not concerned with rendering HTML at all. Instead, it’s designed to augment your HTML with just enough behavior to make it shine. Stimulus pairs beautifully with Turbolinks to provide a complete solution for fast, compelling applications with a minimal amount of effort.

A very recent new framework is Alpine.js which uses the tag-line think of it like Tailwind for JavaScript which, has a huge Tailwind fan, is very intriguing.

Alpine.js offers you the reactive and declarative nature of big frameworks like Vue or React at a much lower cost.

Listen to Caleb Porizo, author of Alpine.js, talk all about it on this episode of Full Stack Radio.

Something in the Water

I’ve just finished Something in the Water – How Skibbereen Rowing Club Conquered the World by Kieran McCarthy. It’s excellent.

You’d see this book on the shelf and be a little put off – how much do we really need to know about Paul and Gary O’Donovan? But this book is only partly about them – it’s about the club, the town and its people and how they built a club and an environment that could produce an Olympic medal willing crew.

The book weaves the story of Skibbereen Rowing Club from its humble beginnings to the powerhouse in Irish rowing that it is now. The author does this by moving back and forth over the time line in a way thay kept me enthralled throughout.

Kudos to Mercier Press as well – as book covers go, this one is beautiful. I do most of my reading on Kindle these days but I was given the ‘real’ book at Christmas and it’ll have a place of pride on the bookshelf. I look forward to dipping back in again in the future.

I rowed for ‘the Bish’ – my secondary school rowing club which is formally known as St Joesph’s Patrician College, Galway – from 1992 to ’97. The Irish Junior National Championships of 1997 feature in this book because it was the first time that Skibb won a national junior championship with a crew of 8 – the premiere junior title. It was nice to relive it but it also stung – we came fourth in that race, just outside of medal contention. We thought we were going to win it – but then I guess every crew thinks that.

Kieran probably didn’t realise but my partner in the bow pairing on that 8 was Alan Martin. Alan – who besides being an incredible athlete, is one of the most genuine and nicest people you’ll ever meet – gets a number of mentions in the book as he rowed in mixed crews that included Skibb rowers and was also the sub for the Irish heavyweight 4 in the Beijing olympics.

The book captures the joy and pain of rowing superbly. How beautiful and calm it can look from the bank, while the rowers’ muscles can be burning and their lungs ready to explode inside the boat. I’m probably not painting the best picture there but it’s a truely wonderful sport. In looking around for some of my old races while writing this, I came across a draft history of the Bish club which included a quote from a former member:

Lest people should think that rowing is all about winning I hasten to disabuse them of that idea. Winning is sweet and is usually only the just return on investment in hard work and discipline.

Secretly I believe that what rowing is all about is being on the river on a flat calm day in early Summer, the boat is sitting up well, the calls of the water birds all about, the smells of growing things in the nostrils, and being part of that camaraderie forged of mutual dependence and trust that is reserved for oarsmen.

Frank Cooke

Thanks Kieran for the trip down memory lane.

St Joesph’s (‘The Bish’) Jnr 8 Crew, 1997. L-R: D. Harty, D. O’Byrne, D. Boyd, N. Concannon, J. Naughton, A. Martin, R. O’Connor and B O’Donovan (me!). Front: K. Hynes (cox).

Some other resources I found while looking back:

Kamailio v5.3 and MySQL 8

As installed on Ubuntu 19.10, Kamailio v5.3 will not work out of the box with MySQL 8 due to changes in the way in which users are created and privileges granted between MySQL 5.x and 8.

To fix this, edit /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/kamailio/kamctl/kamdbctl.mysql as follows:

# diff /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/kamailio/kamctl/kamdbctl.mysql.orig  /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/kamailio/kamctl/kamdbctl.mysql
>               GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON $1.* TO '${DBRWUSER}'@'$DBHOST';
>               GRANT SELECT ON $1.* TO '${DBROUSER}'@'$DBHOST';"
<               sql_query "" "GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON $1.* TO '$DBRWUSER'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED  BY '$DBRWPW';
<                       GRANT SELECT ON $1.* TO '$DBROUSER'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY '$DBROPW';"
>               sql_query "" "CREATE USER '$DBRWUSER'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY '$DBRWPW';
>                               CREATE USER '$DBROUSER'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY '$DBROPW';
>                       GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON $1.* TO '$DBRWUSER'@'localhost';
>                       GRANT SELECT ON $1.* TO '$DBROUSER'@'localhost';"
>                       GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON $1.* TO '$DBRWUSER'@'$DBACCESSHOST';
>                       GRANT SELECT ON $1.* TO '$DBROUSER'@'$DBACCESSHOST';"

The above worked fine for me but do note:

  • Make sure the database and users do not already exist on the database (or delete them if they do).
  • Use a different username for the read-only and read-write users.
  • MySQL 8 has a bug so issue FLUSH PRIVILEGES if you have trouble manually removing a user.

A Whirlwind Tour of Ireland’s Internet History

I had the pleasure of giving a talk at HEAnet’s National Conference 2019 last Friday on Ireland’s internet history as seen from INEX’s perspective. HEAnet is a founding member of INEX and one of our greatest supporters. They were the first to order a 10Gb port way back when they were new and shiny; and again the first to order a 100Gb port when they became available in 2015. Both of these were collaborative efforts allowing us each to get familiar with this new technology.

Ireland’s internet history – especially the dial-up era – has many fascinating stories. I was of school-going age when this all kicked off but there are some recent excellent projects covering the era and well worth a bedtime read.

  1. The History of the Irish Internetinternethistory.ie – by Niall Richard Murphy. As well as telling his own story, Niall sat down with luminaries of that era including INEX’s own Nick Hilliard and Barry Rhodes.
  2. The TechArchives project which collects stories about Ireland’s long and convoluted relationship with information technology and preserves them. This is done through personal testimonies and includes people such as Barry Flanagan who formed one of Ireland’s first dial-up ISPs from his garage in Galway and gave me my start in the ISP industry; and Barry Rhodes whose history with Ireland’s internet starts long before INEX.
  3. For INEX’s 20th anniversary, we undertook a project to record the history of the exchange which can be found here – it also includes some personal reflections from those involved in its early days.

Single-Page Applications – New Laravel Frameworks

Single-page applications (SPAs) are web-based applications that rewrite the current browser DOM rather than doing full page reloads. They look and feel responsive and crisp but are pretty complex to write. At least differently complex – the balance of developer knowledge moves from backend templates and view logic to pretty heavy frontend JavaScript. It’s also quite hard to migrate traditional web-based applications.

Some of the more popular SPA frameworks include Vue.js with Vue Router; Ember.js; and AngularJS. For anyone coming across this for the first time, Vue.js looks really interesting.

There’s a new framework that works with Laravel and tries to bridge the gap between the traditional full page reload model and the new SPA model called Inertia.js. Jonathan’s stated goal with this is:

I wanted to blend the best parts of classic server-side apps (routing, controllers, and ORM database access) with the best parts of single-page apps (JavaScript rendering and no full page reloads).

There’s also a second new framework that’s in this between-two-houses-mould but still quite different called Livewire. It really is best to look at the code to see how this works – it really is different but also very interesting.