Regular expressions explained.

You can’t really be a developer and not get your hands dirty with regular expressions at some point or another.

If like me your take them to be magic and would like to understand then a little bit better, then this video explains then in a really clear way.

Mailcatcher – debug email development

I have blogged in the past about a good way to catch email in a dev environment. Well I have found a better way.

Check out the awesome MailCatcher that runs as an smtp service on your setup and then presents the mail through a simple to use web interface.

XBMC needs hardware accelerated OpenGL rendering

Over the weekend I ran updates on my Ubuntu HTPC, and upon reboot it came up with the following message “XBMC needs hardware accelerated OpenGL rendering”.

It turns out that when I ran the updates it also updated fglrx, the graphics driver to run the AMD chip in my machine.  This update dropped support (or so it seems) for my chip, and as such broke my machine.

The fix as it turns out is fairly simple.  Press ctrl + alt + F1 to drop into a terminal. Then uninstall any fglrx packages that you have installed. Run this to find installed packages then use apt-get to remove them

dpkg --get-selections fglrx*

then use apt-get to remove them

sudo apt-get remove fglrx

Next, add the fglrx-legacy PPA and install the legacy package

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:makson96/fglrx
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install fglrx-legacy

Reboot and you should be good to go, or at least this worked for me.

Bootstrap Shortcodes

Just a bit of self promotion… Introducing Bootstrap-3-shortcodes.

Something that I have been working on in my spare time has finally made its way onto the WordPress Plugin repository.  The plugin provides a load of shortcodes to help you style your wordpress site using the bootstrap components.

It assumes that you are using a base theme that has bootstrap at its core, such as roots. You can then just use the shortcodes in your content.

Enjoy, and if you have any issues then please head over to the Github repo.

Finally a cure for Vertical Video Syndrome

I am downloading this app as we speak! What a fantastic idea.

Vine magic

This has to be probably the best vine magic [ video editing ] that I have seen yet.

Placeit – Realistic Product Screenshots

Ever wanted to have one of those images that show your product on some stylish computer or phone, but not got the skills in photoshop or time to do it?

Problem solved.  Head over to Placeit to create them really easily!


Fullscreen Firefox with XBMC

At home I run a custom built HTPC running Ubuntu with XBMC as the main interface.  So that the machine boots into XBMC directly, and to avoid any superfluous applications running, I use XBMC directly as the user-session.

Using the Advanced Launcher plugin I was able to launch firefox, but it always launched in what looked like a windowed interface, and only filled about one quarter of my TV.  Clicking on the maximise window button had no effect.

The reason that it was doing this was because there was no window manager for Firefox to use.

The solution that I came up with was to install Fluxbox and with the help of the following script.

pkill -9 fluxbox

The script starts Fluxbox in the background, then launches Firefox, which uses Fluxbox as its window manager, allowing it to be full screen.  Firefox then blocks this script from running until you exit firefox.  Fluxbox then ends and you return to XBMC.

Setup the launcher to use this script, and then you can add it to your home screen, and hey presto, easy access to firefox on you TV.

Flight Facilities – Clair De Lune

Dramatic YouTube comment reconstructions