Monthly Archives: October 2013

My Program is Running Slow and I Don’t Know Why! (Unix)

There are different reasons why a program under Unix/Linux could be running unexpectedly slowly when moved to new hardware (that is nothing to do with Halloween!), particularly for C or C++.  That is, the program normally runs well, but for some reason when in production it behaves badly.  Here is what I do personally to […]

Why Writing Documentation is Good for Your Career

Most programmers do not enjoy writing documentation. But did you know writing documentation can be good for your career? Here are my top reasons why: You show management you want others to understand – you don’t want to hold others back or hold the company to ransom because you are the only one who knows […]

You can’t improve what you can’t measure

I have came across this phrase repeated during my career from different people. It has a few forms You can’t manage what you can’t measure You can’t improve what you can’t measure By measuring something it will automagically improve There is a lot of truth in this. Why? There are a number of aspects If […]

Why is Encoding So Confusing?

To embed strings into HTML you have to escape or encode characters such as <, >, and &. To embed strings into URLs you have to encode characters like /, and ?.  JavaScript has different rules if you want to embed content in string literals.  And then if you want to embed JavaScript in HTML […]

HTML Escaping for Secure Web Pages

Cross Site Scripting (XSS) is a well known challenge for web sites to protect against.  The Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) has great resources such as the XSS Prevention Cheat Sheet that is a worthwhile read for anyone wanting to understand the issues deeper.  I came across the issue again in a discussion of whether Magento […]

Visualizing Magento 2 Module Dependencies

Magento 2 is working on improving the module dependencies problem from Magento 1.  If you look in app/code/*/*/etc/module.xml you will notice there are now dependency declarations in these files.  Knowing full well WORK IN THIS AREA IS NO WHERE NEAR FINISHED and the current files were probably generated automatically by grep commands or similar (so any […]

ImageMagick PHP Windows installation pain

I am not a PHP expert, but I was having a play with the latest Magento 2 code drop on GitHub.  I thought I would share some little experiences in case helpful to anyone else. I have Windows 7 on my laptop, so I am running XAMPP for my stack. I had an older installation with […]