Deployment via Git

I was recently introduced to Git and really started to enjoy it's lightweight branching model. So now I use git as both a source control system and as a way to sync files on the server. In particular, to release a change from my laptop, I first commit the change into my local git repository, run "git push" to push the changes to the server, and then run "git pull" on the server in the public_html directory to get the updated files. No more sync'ing with FTP, which had trouble removing files.

Drupal Performance Problem Solved

My local Drupal instance was getting slower and slower over time, to the point where any click would take at least 10 seconds to process. I enabled Drupal's DB tracing but nothing obvious showed up in the logs. I couldn't find anything wrong with MySql either. The performance of the hosted version of Drupal seemed to be ok so I chalked it up to some weird environment issue.

While scanning the php.ini file for a different issue, I happened on the realpath cache variables. I found a few articles explaining what they did and figured it was worth a shot.

Adding Styles to an Artisteer Theme

I'm quite comfortable writing any of the code that makes up a website but I'm pretty challenged when it comes to making it look nice. I was pleased to discover Artisteer, a program that can create a nice theme for a Drupal installation (as well as other CMS as well). Artisteer has many knobs that you can twist to create a wide variety of themes. With a few twists, I was able to create the current theme, which doesn't look bad but not particularly great either.

Migration to Drupal

I wanted an easier way to add examples and eventually expand from Java to other languages. There are many great open-source content management systems (CMS) around - Joomla, Mambo, Elgg, e107, WordPress, etc. Any one of them seemed like it would handle the needs for exampledepot. However, I chose Drupal for it's heavier focus on customization. I was planning on implementing other non-content based websites in the future and felt that Drupal would be a better base from which to start these projects.

The Original Java Almanac Website

The original version of this site was called The Java Developers Almanac which contained all the examples from the book. The site was created in 2002 and was purely static. Each time I created a new example, I had to regenerate and upload the entire site. The source content that was used to create the book was used in the generation of the site.