Random ramblings from @Jcowie

  • Manchester Magento Meetup

    It is with great pleasure to announce the next Magento Manchester User group on the 11th November at Kro Bar Manchester. You can find the official Meetup page here. Organised by Ian Hammersley the Magento Manchester User group is an assets for anyone interested in Magento or works with Magento. So what is the user group ? Well its a place for anyone to come along and talk about Magento or anything they want. We have a great mix of people from business owners to developers who all share a passion and have experience with the Magento E-Commerce framework. This...

  • Quick tip to working on Magento success page

    One of the sections that without fail is a tedious process for me when working with Magento is making changes to the success.phtml template file. I often make changes that require me to iterate my implementation resulting in a page refresh, empty basket and having to complete the checkout process again. Each time I have this pain I mean to look at a way to keep the success page on refresh but always finish the task and move onto another. Not this time. If you want to work on the success.phtml template and dont want to re complete the checkout...

  • Code Each Day. Day 1. Scrutinizer, Travis and Symfony

    Day 1 was a success. I have used Scrutinizer and Travis before in open source projects but never spent the time to really read the documentation about how its used and what it can offer. Following in the rules I set out for writing “Minimum valuable code” each night I focused on getting CI set up for my project and understanding what is possible from the solutions I have used before. So I decided to use; * Scrutinizer * Travis CI The reason I am using two services is because, Scrutinizer free account does not run tests. I plan on...

  • Code each day, The big idea

    Day 1: It all started with a “Big Idea”. Ive been working on some ideas recently around how to share talk ideas around computer science and other interesting topics. Allowing the process from idea to presentation to be more accessible to people. My idea is that people can upload talk ideas they have or want to see that are language agnostic. Conferences meetups etc or even people like you and me can then look at these ideas. Share ideas comment and vote up the ideas so that they might someday become fully qualified talks. The ethos is all around sharing,...

  • A block of code a day keeps the doctor away

    I spend lots of my own time working on self improvement, as well as open source projects ( Mage test ) but recently ive found myself with no real objectives to complete and feeling frustrated with the lack of meaningful progress im making. I also dont want to spend lots of time “hacking” away at nights that im not productive during work time. So I have decided to try something different, Im still working on BehatMage and MageSpec. In fact BehatMage is going to be my main focus to ensure that I can have a stable un opinionated Behat3 BDD...

  • BDD story anti patterns

    I recently took some timout out of reading the many BDD blogs and resources to reflect on my current state of BDD. How I look to enhance communication and how I record this communication so that it still reflects the same intent as when it was first disocvered. Just looking at previous feature files I have created I came to see what I consider BDD Anti Patterns. They are a common theme of “mistakes” that I have been making over X years. In this article I will look at each anti pattern and explore the reason I feel it should...

  • Magento Katas

    What are code katas? A code kata is an exercise in programming which helps a programmer hone their skills through practice and repetition. The term was probably first coined by Dave Thomas, co-author of the book The Pragmatic Programmer,[1] in a bow to the Japanese concept of kata in the martial arts. As of October 2011, Dave Thomas has published 21 different katas. For me Katas are a great way to practice not implementation of code but the process involved in designing and generating code, I can become more of a master and gain a deeper understanding of the tools...

  • Magento Fireside BDD tools part 2

    Todays fireside chat focused on Behat and PHPSpec with a little BDD process as well. We attempted a live demo and with only a couple of technical issues I think it went very well. Below are the presentation notes myself and Allan worked on. The GitHub repository for the presentation can be gound here and as I said in the presentation we can only improve these tools with the help of you.. So add more ideas here What is BDD ? Software development practice that emphasises development through an example-based conversations with users and stakeholders of the system. The following...

  • Magento Fireside TDD tools

    Today was the first installment of the Fireside chats where Vinai Kopp introduced Mocking in Magento using PHPUnit mocking and Mockery. Fabrizio Branca gave a presentation on how to use Menta for blackbox testing. Menta was a tool that I had never looked into before but thanks to Fabrizio and the great work from the AOE team it will be one that I shall look at again. One of the features I really saw value in was the output reporting it produced. This included the ability to capture screenshots are different resolutions to show the same page at different view...

  • Magento Fireside

    Thanks to the joys of “Twitter” I stumbled upon the live hangout for the Magento Fireside chat. It was dubbed as an online meeting place to discues topics as if you are talking to a college. The first talk was all about testing and how different people within the Magento community are aproaching testing, What issues they have faced and where they want to see testing improved. I cant recommend this video enough, Its also great to see that the idea is being developed upon so there are scheduled to be more of these over the coming weeks. For now...