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13 Steps to AngularJS Modularization

code A guest post by Christopher Hiller, the author of Developing an AngularJS Edge and a Software Architect for Decipher, Inc. He enjoys gaming, coding, and gleaming the cube. He can be reached on GitHub or as @misterhiller on Twitter.

AngularJS is not a silver bullet. It doesn’t just magically generate maintainable and extensible apps. You might get lucky with a small app and write it from scratch elegantly and efficiently, using each of AngularJS’ features correctly, and maybe you even have 100% unit test coverage (read my post on writing tests and stomping bugs). Your app might do one thing, and do it flawlessly.

This series, however, is not about those applications.

This series is about applications that:

  • May be giant, frothing behemoths, yet…
  • Might be delicate flowers, whose petals shed at the slightest breeze
  • Have been written by multiple developers, but you didn’t write it
  • Integrate closely with other non-AngularJS apps, or have non-AngularJS apps fully embedded into it
  • Have lackluster unit tests or no unit tests whatsoever
  • Use a scaffolding tool designed for much smaller applications
  • Don’t have anyone on the team that fully understands the implementation
  • Take many weeks or even months to fully grasp to a new team member

And finally, if you’re 90% through developing a simple feature for this application and think, “you know what? I should have finished this a week ago,” and you still have 90% left to go, this post is for you! Continue reading →

Your Project Will Be a Success If…

code A guest post by Bob Hughes, editor and co-author, handles project management for IT projects in the telecommunications, energy and local government sectors. He is an academic at the University of Brighton where he gained a PhD in software measurement.

This is the first of three posts about what I think are key lessons for novice IT project leaders.  Note that I said project leaders, and not managers. So this is not for the directors of multi-million euro/dollar/pound programs, but for those who look after the actual development work. The high-level director may have strategic vision, but could well be a generalist who delegates responsibilities about detailed technological and business issues. Leaders of the software development teams, whether they like it or not, find their noses rubbed in technical concerns.

Project leaders will also have to deal daily with other human beings in their teams, most of whom, hopefully, will be great, but some of whom can be awkward.  Guidance on project management often offers step-by-step processes. I hold up my hand and admit that I have been responsible for some of these. But the good project leader is likely to have some useful general attitudes and approaches, and it is these I want to focus on. Continue reading →

Rethinking Peer Reviews for Node.js Code

codeA guest post by Adam Baldwin, the Chief Security officer at &yet and the Team Lead at ^Lift Security, where they help teams build more secure Node.js applications through assessments, consulting and education. Adam can be reached at @adam_baldwin.

As I wrote in my previous article on building secure Node.js applications, there are many things you can do to write Node apps that are more secure.

One of those suggestions is to review code manually as commits are merged into projects you are involved with.

Peer reviews are often suggested and often received with little hesitation as part of a development teams code quality process. Done properly, peer reviews can ensure project integrity, help educate developers and bring your development team closer together.

If you are already using peer reviews in your process, I hope to provide suggestions for you to improve your existing process. If you aren’t, hopefully you will start and this post gives you some insight into peer review as we have done it at &yet. Continue reading →

Crafting Data Maps in R

code A guest post by Tom Barker, a software engineer, an engineering manager, a professor and an author. Currently he is Director of Software Engineering and Development at Comcast, and an Adjunct Professor at Philadelphia University. He has authored Pro JavaScript Performance: Monitoring and Visualization, Pro Data Visualization with R and JavaScript, and Technical Management: A Primer, and can be reached at @tomjbarker.

Continuing the theme I’ve been writing about, let’s look at crafting data maps in R. But first let’s level set and make sure that we clearly define a data map. A data map is a representation of information over a spatial field – a marriage of statistics with cartography. Data maps are one of the most easily understood and widely used data visualizations, because their data is couched in something that we are all familiar with and use: maps.

One of the earliest and most famous data maps is the Cholera map created by Jon Snow in 1854. The Cholera map is a data map that outlined the location of all of the diagnosed cases of cholera in the outbreak of London 1854. You can see the Cholera map below. Continue reading →

Using Android, IOIO and a Motion Sensor

codeA guest post by Scott Sullivan, an independent Digital Product Designer. He has a background in technology-based art, visual design, and User Experience design. He can be found on Twitter @scotsullivan.

For this project we’re going to use Processing, which is a language built on Java used to create an Android application that will be connected to a passive infrared motion sensor via the IOIO board. Every time the sensor detects movement, it will display “Moving” on the screen of the Android device.

The IOIO is a microcontroller and has very similar capabilities to an Arduino, except this microcontroller specifically plays nicely with Android devices. In this post, you’ll be using the IOIO board for simple digital output, which is the most basic IOIO capability. Continue reading →

How to Create HTML Labels in SVG Using D3

code A guest post by John Williams, a web developer who has worked for media, education, and government organizations for seventeen years. For the last seven, he has been working for NewCity in Blacksburg, VA, assisting with several data visualization projects in bioinformatics. He can be found on Twitter @thudfactor. If you are at the Fluent conference, be sure to listen to John’s D3 talk today, March 11th.

Labels are a critical part of any data visualization, and formatting labels deserves a lot of attention. Unfortunately, SVG itself doesn’t do us any many favors in that department. Yes, there are a lot of text formatting options. And you can do impressive layouts with text. But you pretty much have to do it manually. That’s a shame, since we already have an excellent text layout engine built in the browser. If only we could use HTML to make labels inside SVG elements.

It turns out you can as long as you’re okay with giving IE a less-rich experience. But first, let’s look at an example using SVG text elements: http://jsfiddle.net/thudfactor/LL3gU/. Continue reading →

Using Subscriptions and Contacts on Google Glass

codeA guest post by Justin Ribeiro, a software engineer, building on the edge with his company, Stickman Ventures, Inc. He will hack just about anything–code, hardware, house, car, and kids’ toys. You can find him on Twitter @justinribeiro.

In my first post, I discussed getting started with the Mirror API and handling the inserting of timeline items. In this post, we’re going to explore listening for events from actions taken on cards and we will work with contacts. Continue reading →

Keeping Your Homebrew Up to Date

codeA guest post by Shannon Appelcline, a versatile author and programmer who currently works as the lead iOS developer for Skotos Tech, an online entertainment company. In the past two years, he’s written seven iOS games for them, all based on tabletop releases by popular German designers. The first of these was Reiner Knizia’s Money (2010)—which has also been ported to MacOS—while the most recent was Reiner Knizia’s Modern Art: The Card Game (2011). Shannon’s two most recent books show the breadth of his interests. They are iOS4 in Action (2011), published by Manning Publications, and Designers & Dragons: A History of the Roleplaying Game Industry (2011), published by Mongoose Publishing.

In Getting Started with Homebrew, I talked about what the Homebrew package management system is, why you’d want to use it, and how to install it and access its basic functionality.

This post expands upon those basic ideas by talking about how to keep your Homebrew up to date — and so ensure it’s doing its job optimally. Continue reading →

Get Ready for Java SE 8!

Java SE 8, released by Oracle on March 18th, is a highly anticipated update to the Java platform. The addition of lambda expressions (closures) and streams represents the biggest change to Java programming since the introduction of generics and annotations.

The Java developer community is eager to take advantage of these powerful new features. According to Typesafe’s recent survey of Java developers, 65% intend to upgrade to Java SE 8 within the next 24 months. Continue reading →

Quick Tip Using the Mirror API for Glass

codeA guest post by Justin Ribeiro, a software engineer, building on the edge with his company, Stickman Ventures, Inc. He will hack just about anything–code, hardware, house, car, and kids’ toys. You can find him on Twitter @justinribeiro.

Although sending data to and from Glass through the Mirror API is straightforward, determining the proper means to structure that data can be difficult. Glass is not your average platform; your design has to account for a different user interface and user experience.

With limited screen real estate, you can’t send the kitchen sink to Glass. Similarly, you can’t just shrink the font size in hopes of fitting more data onto a card. Besides paring down what you send to a user, you can also send groupings of cards called bundles. Continue reading →

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