codeBrane Blog

DevOps In Action

Wednesday Apr 19, 2017

The modern developer is expected to know how to set up their development server where they put their app through its paces and the process of doing so is known as DevOps. In theory it sounds easy. Just run some Puppet scripts, deploy and get down to testing. In reality it can be a bit gnarly. What if it’s an old server with no Puppet support and everything’s custom installed by hand?

Time for Agile to GROW

Friday May 20, 2016

Many years ago, when I worked in industry as a driver developer, I used what was essentially the Waterfall method of software development. I had no choice as that’s what the company used. The team wrote and maintained detailed requirements documents. Lots of bullet pointed paragraphs, sub-paragraphs, indices, glossaries, what’s the point of these?

Software development in industry vs academia

Thursday Feb 4, 2016

There’s a fair amount of speculation in both camps about what you can expect from each environment and as I spent my formative years as a software developer in industry, I thought I’d compare my experiences of both. The main difference is the motive. In industry it’s profit. If something doesn’t directly contribute to profit it doesn’t get done. If something doesn’t support something that brings in profit, it doesn’t get done.

migrating from octopress to hugo

Thursday Sep 10, 2015

packt publishing free learning initiative

Thursday Aug 20, 2015

Packt Publishing contacted me about their Free Learning Forever initiative, where they make available to their readers and customers a free ebook. Every day. Now that’s a pretty generous offer but why would I want to publicise something like this? I’m a great fan of CPD (Continuing Professional Development). I do it in my technical role, in my mountain guiding role and in my photography stuff so I know how important it is and this offer just seems too good to miss.

installing a shibboleth sp from source

Thursday Jul 2, 2015

I’ve been working on an interesting project recently, along the lines of public access to university library resources (walk-in access). I’ve developed an Android app, set up an iBeacon for the App to detect and a backend which interfaces to Active Directory but between the app and the backend is some gubbins. That gubbins is a Shibboleth Service Provider (SP) and although I wrote my own one many years ago, I decided to go with the ‘official’ one and build it from source.

rescue a usb backup disk

Friday Jun 26, 2015

So I plugged the WD My Passport mega-tera-huge USB drive into the mac, ready to do a backup and nothing appeared. That sinking feeling and the faint sound of a year’s worth of backups spiralling round the u-bend. I went into a terminal and tried some fsck_hfs options but just got: NO WRITE ACCESS UNEXPECTED INCONSISTENCY; … RUN fsck_hfs MANUALLY and other gubbins such as: Resource busyjournal_replay returned 16


Wednesday Oct 29, 2014

Sometimes it’s nice to sit down and have a look over what you’ve been up to over the last month, so I brewed up a nice mug of coffee and did just that. It’s been pretty busy with different development projects jostling for space in the old brainbox but with judicious use of Jira (release management) and Stash (git), it’s a pleasurable experience. Toolkit Image Bank Languages: Ruby, Javascript

the shibboleth sonnet

Thursday Oct 2, 2014

It’s National Poetry Day today! So I thought I’d publish a poem I knocked up a while ago. It tells the tale of a Shibboleth IdP when contacted by a fake SP, using the credentials of a long vanished real one. #The Shibboleth Sonnet I shall compare thee to a crypto key, that lives in darkest corner of a disk, unused it seems for aeons until thee have probed my single sign on with your kiss.

your very own raspberry pi and iphone butler

Sunday May 4, 2014

This post is about creating your very own digital butler. You’re iButler if you like. Who will welcome you into your room with a butlerish pleasantry and wave you goodbye as you leave. Let me introduce you to Bluetooth the Butler and his sidekick, piBeacon. What I’ll be doing is getting a Raspberry Pi to act as an iBeacon (piBeacon), broadcasting some data and then getting an iPhone to pick it up.

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