Git on DreamHost: Part 2 - Custom Installation


Part 1: Python on DreamHost: Part 1 - Custom Installation

This is the second part in a sequence on DreamHost (disclosure: affiliate code on that link) customization. There are a lot of pre-configured capabilities out of the box, but if you really want to stretch your dollars you can squeeze a lot more from their shared host service.

All developers need some form of source version control. DreamHost has a one-click install for Subversion, which works very nicely. It is easily installed and managed directly from the Web Panel. But what about Git? There is no out of the box support and while most shared servers may have an old version installed, you are left to update/configure it yourself.

Tiago Macambira has a very comprehensive guide up on GitHub that covers most of this and includes scripts to make life easier as well. Check out his tutorial: Private GIT repositories (on DreamHost).

I followed his guide heavily, but decided on two main changes:

  1. Use the latest version of Git
  2. Serve the files from a sub-domain, instead of a folder

Read on to see where I deviated from his steps.

Read More

Python on DreamHost: Part 1 - Custom Installation


This blog is somewhat of a lark for me and I use it to play around with things that I do not have the luxury to try out at the office. Its written in Python and I host it on DreamHost (disclosure: affiliate code on that link). I am on a shared server and the version of Python running there is very out of date, to say the least. Here is a quick guide to get everything up and running with Python 3.4 (or whatever version you want).

Install Custom Version of Python

This is covered in the DreamHost Python Wiki, but I will run though it again here. My server had 2.6.6 installed on it, but I wanted 3.4.1. To do this you'll need to log into your DreamHost panel and create a shell account. Then log into your server and run the following commands:

$ wget --no-check-certificate
Read More

To the Cold Eyes of a Machine, All Single Page Applications Look the Same


I was recently working on a project and bumped into trouble getting Facebook's bot to parse my site. It is single page application, and the content is rendered client side using KnockoutJS. As might be expected, the bot saw identical markup for every URL, and as a result I wasn't able to test the Open Graph stories I was creating. My team and I knew this would be an issue for SEO and originally planned to address it closer to launch; but now that it was hindering feature development the priority just shot up. A little Googling found some helpful posts pointing in the right direction:

Great ideas, however, none of these felt quite right for my situation. First, they all rely on the use of hashbangs, which are converted into querystrings by the bot.!myPage

Read More

Launching a BizSpark Startup


I'm sure a lot of you have heard about Microsoft's BizSpark program, which is a great tool for new businesses. BizSpark is a 3-year, free program that gives technology start-ups access to Microsoft tools provided they meet a few criteria. I recently went through the application process with my start-up Rover's Rewards, and thought I'd document my experience.

Why Sign Up for BizSpark?

BizSpark gives you access to many great products from Microsoft. The most immediate benefit is definitely the MSDN Ultimate subscription. If you work in the Microsoft stack, MSDN Ultimate gives you licenses, licenses, licenses. The licenses don't expire at the end of the three year termination of the BizSpark process; you can use them for business purposes in perpetuity. The MSDN subscription also comes with $150 monthly credit for Azure services. In an early stage company this can go pretty far, especially since you also get discounted hourly Azure rates (up to 40%) for being a BizSpark member.

Read More