Aston J

The Pragmatic Bookshelf – my favourite tech publisher

Posted on: November 29th, 2011 by AstonJ No Comments

Having purchased quite a few programming books from various publishers recently, one has quickly become a firm favourite; The Pragmatic Bookshelf (AKA The Pragmatic Programmers.)
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How to split your home folder onto multiple drives

Posted on: November 24th, 2011 by AstonJ No Comments

This post is part of my series on Clean Lion install for Ruby Development.

Firstly, as far as I know there is no perfect way to do this – ideally you could tell OS X where each directory in your home folder lives (or points to)… and this could have easily been achieved by simple sym links – but – OS X doesn’t allow some folders in your home folder to be deleted! So this is the next best thing – a sym link inside these folders:
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How to set up photoshop for web design

Posted on: November 24th, 2011 by AstonJ No Comments

Firstly calibrate your monitor. Then in Photoshop:
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Setting up a Ruby dev enviroment on Lion

Posted on: November 24th, 2011 by AstonJ 3 Comments

This post is part of my series on Clean Lion install for Ruby Development.

Next we’ll set up our fresh dev enviroment for Ruby. Here we’ll cover installing and setting up:

  • GCC (or Xcode)
  • Homebrew
  • Xcode
  • Rbenv or RVM
  • Ruby 2.1.3
  • Rubygems
  • Rails
  • POW – Optional
  • MySQL & Unix set-up

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How to restore your mail, keychain, and other important files

Posted on: November 24th, 2011 by AstonJ 3 Comments

This post is part of my series on Clean Lion install for Ruby Development.

Following on from your clean Lion install, we’ll now restore important files to make life easier, my list is below yours might vary slightly:

  • Mail
  • Keychains
  • Address book
  • Cyberduck bookmarks
  • Opera wand, bookmarks, speedial
  • .ssh folder

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How to do a clean Lion install

Posted on: November 24th, 2011 by AstonJ No Comments

This guide is based on doing a clean Lion install from an existing Lion install (via upgrade). The reason I upgraded first was because I wanted to make sure all important files (such as Mail/keychains etc) that I will be copying over were already Lion-ready. Please note this post is part of the series Clean Lion install for Ruby Development and all info here is followed at your own risk.
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How to install a SSD in a Mac Pro

Posted on: November 24th, 2011 by AstonJ No Comments

It really is quite simple! Buy your SSD (I purchased the Crucial M4 as it seems to have the best reviews) and get a mounting kit depending on where you want to install the disk.

I opted to install it in the second DVD bay slot as this leaves your 4 HD bays free for other disks. All I needed was a mounting kit, and I got the: Akasa SSD & HDD adapter – fits 3.5″ or 2.5″ HDD into a 5.25″ PC bay. Just make sure your Mac Pro has a spare SATA cable in the DVD bay – just pull out the DVD bay towards you to check (from the side with the Mac open – not the front of the Mac!)
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Clean Lion install for Ruby Development

Posted on: November 24th, 2011 by AstonJ No Comments

I know there’s a few of these posts around, but I wanted to do one purely for my own notes if nothing else. Particularly as I will be setting things up a little differently (partly because I have just installed a SSD and will be using more than one drive and…) because some of the other posts are already out of date, especially since the latest update of Xcode which does not come with GCC. You are welcome to follow this guide, but remember you do so at your own risk.

(Pretty much works for Mountain lion too.)
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Best way to learn Ruby & Rails

Posted on: October 9th, 2011 by AstonJ 63 Comments

That’s no typo, I really did mean Ruby and Rails – but before you run off (those looking to learn only Rails) read on… I started off wanting to learn just Rails too, but I quickly realised two things:

  • Rails will only get you so far – to be anything close to a Rails ninja, you need to learn Ruby (Rails is Ruby underneath it all). While Rails goes out of its way to simplify a lot, once you begin to do more complex stuff you’re going to need to know Ruby – and because Ruby is so easy to pick up anyway it makes sense to learn it from the outset. It will not only save you time in the long run, but will also help you learn Rails as well, because you’ll have a better understanding of what’s going on.
  • Even if you came for Rails, most likely you will stay for Ruby – like so many of us! The more you’re exposed to Ruby the more you’ll want to learn it. Ruby is an awesome all-purpose language with a multitude of uses (it’s not just for web apps!) so is well worth adding to your repertoire. Trust me, it will quickly become your favourite language, but if you still need convincing, check out this post.

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Why RailsCasts deserves to be a success

Posted on: October 5th, 2011 by AstonJ 4 Comments

….and why it will be. RailsCasts.com has been going almost as long as Rails itself – and it’s always been free. Ryan’s produced almost 300 quality screencasts, and if you average them out to 10 minutes each, that’s about 50 hours of footage!
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