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How to calculate United States holiday observances

Usually around a holiday I will do a post that’s somehow related to the holiday. Seemed kind of silly to do a post on how to calculate Independence Day in the United States since it’s pretty straight forward. It always lands on the 4th day of the month of July. […]

Stop blaming your hosting company for downtime

I was struck with downtime last week. Linode’s Fremont data center went offline in a big way. Service was interrupted for nearly 4 hours. Did I panic? OF COURSE I DID! At first at least. Thing is, when a site of mine goes down, I just assume that I had […]

The problem with dark mode in macOS Mojave

If I still used MacOS as my daily driver, I’d be absolutely over the moon about dark mode being announced for Apple’s next macOS release, Mojave. It’s great that this feature is finally being added, but it’s very much “too little too late” if you ask me. For those unaware, […]

$10 VPS Showdown - June 2018 - DigitalOcean vs. Linode vs. Vultr

It’s already that time again! This month, I’m comparing $10 VPS offerings instead of the smaller $5 plans. Linode recently upgraded all of their “standard” plans and I wasn’t entirely sure if their $5 instance, deemed a “Nanode” qualified as standard. Didn’t help that their blog post announcing the resource […]

Unique indexes with MongoDB and Mongoose

Even though I’ve been using MongoDB for the last few years, I’m still very much a noob when it comes to a lot of things. One of those things would be unique indexes. Generally speak, I interact with MongoDB three different ways: I write code that explicitly creates something with […]

Set Vim background based on your terminal's background color

I’ve been spending more time at the pool lately (sorry, not sorry) and I’ve found myself manually switching between a light and a dark gnome-terminal theme. This was all well and good, but my .vimrc includes set background=dark so regardless of which theme I’m using in the terminal, vim has […]

$5 VPS Showdown - May 2018 - DigitalOcean vs. Linode vs. Vultr

Switching it up yet again on y’all! This month, we’re back to looking at those east coast data centers, but also, Ubuntu 18.04 LTS is out and this is my first set of metrics run on the latest long term release of Ubuntu. Sadly though, sysbench was throwing shade while […]

Coping with writer's block

It’s 5:55 PM on a Sunday afternoon and I am succumbing to the fact that today I have writer’s block. I don’t think it’s that I’m blocked up completely (although I am admittedly a bit constipated right now) but I have definitely hit the wall on the post I had […]

The "Josh" Sandwich

Get your head out of the gutter, that’s not the kind of “Josh Sandwich” I’m referring to. The “Josh” is an actual sandwich of my own design. The exact date of creation is unknown but I’d argue that it was sometime in 2010 when the sandwich in it’s “final” form […]

How to POST to a webhook in 5 different programming languages

With the release of inbound webhooks for CrowdSync workflows last week, it seemed fitting to do a write up on how to POST to a webhook. So what is a webhook, anyway? The Wikipedia definition is that webhooks are “used-defined HTTP callbacks”. Kind of a stuffy definition if you ask […]

How to install Node.js 10 on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

Two days before Canonical dropped the latest and greatest long term service release of Ubuntu, the Node.js Foundation dropped the latest and greatest (and eventually long term service release) of Node.js. Due to the timing of things, Ubuntu 18.04 LTS was shipped with the current long term service release of […]

How to install the latest version of Node.js 8 on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

Right on schedule, Canonical has released the latest long term service release of Ubuntu, version 18.04. This particular release is shipping with Node.js 8 which is the current long term service release of Node.js. Unfortunately, the version which shipped (8.10.0) is already a bit behind the latest version, 8.11.1 (at […]

I deleted my Facebook and here's what happened

Not a damned thing. Nothing bad at least. Unless you count typing facebook.com a few times a day when I was trying to avoid the things I should be doing. Time heals all wounds though ;) With that, I have never considered myself addicted to Facebook. In fact, I went […]

So I guess that makes me a liar

It was just over a year ago that I wrote this gem. I shouted to the world that I was done fucking around with how my blog looked and would solely focus on content creation moving forward. Indefinitely. 5ever. Then a little over a year later, I got a bug […]

How to install Firefox Developer Edition in GNOME on Debian Stretch

Haven’t said much about it, but I’ve recently moved back to Firefox on all of my devices. Nightly on my phone, and Developer Edition on my computers. The installation on Arch was a piece of cake (as expected) but on my iMac running Debian 9 (Stretch) I had issues with […]

Chunking an array in JavaScript

Recently I was working with some data coming out of a Redis pipeline and I wanted to take the data and split it up into an array of X items per key. I was working with PHP, this wouldn’t have been a big deal, just use array_chunk and get on […]

$5 VPS Showdown - April 2018 - DigitalOcean vs. Linode vs. Vultr - West Coast Edition

This month I’m switching it up and comparing servers on the west coast, specifically in or around the San Francisco area. Also, I’m going back to only comparing 5 buck instances in the hope that it will free up a bit more time in the future so I can add […]

Unable to open GNOME settings on Arch Linux after GNOME upgrade

Often times I blog about topics because I want to make sure I have a record of an issue and how I resolved it. This is one of those times. As discussed last week, I recently made the switch from Debian to Arch Linux. The biggest draw for me was […]

The Distrohopper, or There and Back Again

In a town in East Texas there lived a distrohopper… To catch you up, I’m a Linux user from the mid-1990s that was hot for Slackware had a brief affair with Gentoo on an iBook before settling into the ease of Ubuntu. Then I took a tragic detour into the […]

How to !important inline styles in React

If you’ve ever used Bootstrap, you probably know that it’s pretty aggressive in it’s use of !important in it’s styles. At CrowdSync we love Bootstrap, having ditched Foundation for it, but the overzealous approach to !important does get in our way sometimes. Similar to our post earlier in the week, […]

Using <style /> blocks in React

Every once in a while you are faced with a scenario where the best course of action is to slap a &lt;style /&gt; block in the middle of your code. For us, it was that time we wanted to set an arbitrary width (selected by the user) on a component, […]

VPS Showdown: DIY Edition

My very first “Linode vs. DigitalOcean” post dates back to a simpler time back in February of 2013. Over the past 5 years of doing these posts, the benchmarks have evolved and subjectively “improved”. Now I used to post the commands I was running with each benchmark but since I […]

URL routing in PHP

The other day I was checking out what folks are querying to get to my site. Of course a ton of people get here looking for VPS comparison, but what surprised me was the volume of queries for “PHP routing”. Back in 2015 I had posted a basic page rounding […]

Get your own dotfiles

These are my dotfiles. There are many like them, but these are mine. A lot of folks do it. They publish their dotfiles because they want other people to enjoy them. Free as in Freedom and all of that. And there’s not a damn thing wrong with that workflow. I […]

DigitalOcean flexible droplets compared

Switching it up this month. DigitalOcean recently released flexible plans at 15$ per droplet and I thought it would be fun to dig a bit deeper into them instead of just doing a side by side comparison of the different providers. These droplets come in three varieties: 1 GB of […]