Generating PDFs: wkhtmltopdf & Heroku

So, it has come to this.

Reports, yes, your application will have to have reports – in brand colours, with images and logos abounding, and probably festooned with graphs of various sizes, shapes and degrees of relevance to what was once a nice, streamlined set of data. This report has just become a part of the application ‘product’, meant not just to communicate, but also to entice and enthrall. Form has become just as important as function… and, did I forget to mention? It also needs to be exportable.

Exportable, portable, downloadable, shareable – because as I mentioned, it’s not just data now. It is now something clients/users need to be able to ‘have’, to attach to emails, send to their marketing departments, and incorporate into their powerpoints.

There are a few ways to make this happen, but generally speaking, it’s time to break out the PDFs.

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I Hear the Train a Comin’ – A Few Reasons Why Rails 4.0 Will Rock Your World

rails4Mention Rails, and you will often believe you are debating White Castle burgers. You either love or hate it with little room for anything in between. DHH created a framework where you generally have to play by his rules and if you disagree with those rules, you might become frustrated or a bit disgruntled while working in the framework.

Whether you are comfortable working within DHH’s framework or not, the fact is that the train is moving and it includes new features that will improve your apps as the version matures. Developers using Rails will cringe at points similar to what we felt with the introduction of the asset pipeline. Even tonight, as I write this post, I have had a moment of asset pipeline cringing. Hating the change… or as DHH puts it, the “progress”…

However, there are numerous advantages to using Rails and the newest installment will build on and create new features that will make development easier, more secure, and more fun (at least we hope in the long run). (more…)

Git Nosetests Heroku Boom! (Lightweight Continuous Integration)

boom

Your code isn’t getting any better sitting around undeployed, let’s get it out there.

Continuous Integration is a good thing. Get your commits tested and deployed fast and hassle free and the rewards will pile up in your lap. So what’s the least amount of work it would take to get a simple continuous integration pipeline set up? We want to know when a commit has happened; run the tests; and deploy to a staging server. Let’s say we have a python project, using git for version control, deploying to heroku. Deploying to heroku and running nosetests are both super simple so will this be easy?

TL;DR: Yes.

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