How to install and configure PHPUnit on Linux

PHPUnit is the canonical unit testing framework for PHP. Even for simple projects and learning exercises, unit testing pays big dividends. This article provides a way to install and configure PHPUnit on Linux.

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Posted in PHP, Programming.

Core Git command line reference

Inspired by Jeffrey Way and John Nickell, I am making a renewed commitment to using Git primarily from the command line. While the command line may seem like many steps backwards from using a rich graphical interface, I am finding that it makes me much more aware of exactly what each step of Git is doing and it provides infinitely more quick repeatability.

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Posted in Git, Programming.

A sad Thunderbird hiding in the Texas hill country

For as brown and boring as much of southern Texas can be, there are many great motorcycle rides to be had down here. There isn’t anything that rivals the beauty and challenge of the Blue Ridge Parkway (for me, at least), but there is definitely motorcycle fun to be had down here. I took Glodean (my white 2012 Victory Cross Country Tour) out last Sunday to see what I could find. I live near the northern intersection of 281 and 1604 in San Antonio. This was the starting point of my latest Sunday ride (shown in the map below). I headed west on 1604 to SH 16. I much prefer two …

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Posted in Motorcycling. Tagged with , , , .

Hot and Sour Beef Noodle Soup

I’m a big fan of Chinese hot and sour soup and make it every once and while. Learning to make hot and sour soup taught me that the two key ingredients that contribute the most to its flavor profile are finely crushed white pepper (the hot) and Chinese black vinegar (the sour). You can get the Chinese black vinegar in any Asian grocery store, a well-stocked big-box grocer, or at Amazon. It is expensive on Amazon–I pay less than $4 for a bottle locally. Any mom and pop Asian grocer will have it. Beware there isn’t a rational substitute. Search this ingredient out, it is important! This quick, one-serving recipe isn’t hot …

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Posted in Asian, Recipes. Tagged with , .

Laravel’s Eloquent ORM versus Query Builder

Laravel offers two ways to work with your database: Eloquent ORM. Eloquent provides an active record-based ORM. It provides a fluent interface with built-in relational capabilities. Query Builder. The Query Builder provides a flexible, and also fluent, way to create SQL queries. It provides an intuitive way to create SQL queries with nearly all of the flexibility of using SQL direct. Making my way through learning Laravel, most of the videos and articles I read focused on using Eloquent for database access. However, I found that using Eloquent for generating JSON, at least for some tasks, limited the control I had over how result set JSON was generated. This article …

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Posted in PHP, Programming.

Kung Pao sauce

I really like to make Kung Pao dishes. But I have never found a bottled Kung Pao sauce that suits me. When you get a Kung Pao dish from a great Chinese restaurant (and “great Chinese restaurant” can be a pretty grim looking, from the outside, mom and pop shop) it has the perfect combination of zing, flavor, and body. None of the bottled sauces I’ve ever tried provide that–in fact, most are just plain bad. So I spent a couple of months zeroing in on a Kung Pao sauce recipe that suits me. This one isn’t quite there yet, but it’s very close. I want to try grating a little fresh ginger into it. I think that …

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Posted in Asian, Recipes. Tagged with .

Filtering XML with LINQ to XML

In the old days, if you wanted to sort and filter XML, you turned to XSL. But XSL is fiddly, hard to test, and requires an in-depth knowledge of XPath. That’s to .NET’s LINQ, dependence on XSL has been dramatically reduced (if not, eliminated!). This article takes a look at how to use LINQ to XML to sort and filter an XML document.

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Posted in C#, LINQ, Programming.