Coding, Geekery

Bootstrap Your App for Free Part 1: Tools and Resources

Last year, as a means of doing a deeper dive into .Net Core and to fill a personal need, I built the Bookmarkinator. Simple, fun, and super helpful (at least for me). One of the requirements for this was that I could build a full-fledged app available to the public that cost me nothing (minus some elbow grease). It was a success, and I want to share the tools and resources that I used so that you can bootstrap your own app for free as well.

Continue reading “Bootstrap Your App for Free Part 1: Tools and Resources”

Fixed: Building Android 23 Apps with Gradle in Jenkins Pipeline

I’m working with a team who is building a mobile app using React Native. Everything builds nicely in our local environments (both Mac and PC) and now we’ve been working on setting up our Jenkins pipeline to create a fresh build with each merge request, and publish that out to a location that allows our dev teams to install at anytime. Everything was working great for this… until it wasn’t Continue reading “Fixed: Building Android 23 Apps with Gradle in Jenkins Pipeline”


Dynamically Updating Environment Variables in Postman

If you haven’t used Postman yet for your general development needs while building or consuming a REST (or SOAP!) API, go get this amazing tool NOW and then keep reading. Otherwise, here’s a quick tip to make to help when dealing with frequently changing environment variables, such as session IDs or JWT tokens.

Continue reading “Dynamically Updating Environment Variables in Postman”


Quick Tip: Manually Run EF Migrations on External Databases

Entity Framework migrations are a great thing. They’ve made my development life a LOT easier. Automated migrations can cause problems, especially on a project with multiple developers involved. For that, we use manual migrations through the Package Manager Console.

But how do you manually run these migrations against your test (or live) server when your deployment tool doesn’t run them? If you have access to the database in question, you can add the ConnectionString and ProviderName parameters at the Package Manager Console prompt and make life a lot easier:

Update-Database -ConnectionString "MY_CONNECTION_STRING" -ConnectionProviderName "System.Data.SqlClient"

You can pull your connection string direct from your web.config transform, no special “magic” needed.

Enjoy! Continue reading “Quick Tip: Manually Run EF Migrations on External Databases”


Five Tips for Remote Developers

When I first shifted my career to one as a remote developer, it was admittedly a bit daunting. I was transitioning from a slower paced government position to a fast paced consulting firm. I was jumping heavy into PHP (alongside my .Net work) which I wasn’t fully versed with yet, and I even switched from PC to Mac to be on the same page with the development setup at the main office. Five and a half years later I’m still running strong and have a pretty good take on how to make it work. While my remote developer status will be coming to an end soon, here are the five key things that have helped me be successful. Continue reading “Five Tips for Remote Developers”


Initial Impressions: Visual Studio for Mac

While there was a premature leak earlier this week in the news, you can now officially download Visual Studio for Mac. While there isn’t much you can necessarily say in one day of poking around, in addition to the fact that this is a “preview” app, here are a few initial impressions on it. Continue reading “Initial Impressions: Visual Studio for Mac”