DIY Developer

Power tools, software, 3d printing


Don't switch to Ghost blogging platform (yet)

I’m a typical developer. I often can’t resist the urge to try different platforms. My current blogging platform (blogger) has numerous limitations. I started looking for alternatives, and Ghost appeared on the radar.

Ghost is a ground up blogging platform, being developed under the premise that other platforms (such as word press) are becoming overly complex.

Before I go into too much detail, I should point out that Ghost is beta (maybe even alpha software).

Continue Reading

Linking to Google Drive images from your Blog

A good number of us have content stored on google drive. Wouldn’t it be handy if we could reference that content in our blog posts? Good news, you can!


  1. Go to your google drive account.
  2. Ensure the folder the item is in, is shared (use the option Anyone who has the link can view).
  3. Share the item (use the same option as above). Copy the “Link to Share” link.
  4. Paste the link in the linkifier below
  5. Copy the link produced, and insert it into your blog via any of your usual methods

Continue Reading

Entity Tags (Etags)... what they are and why they rock

Last week, a coworker asked me a question about Etags. I’d never heard of of Etags - in spite of them being around since 1999! In a nutshell, an etag is an identifier assigned to a specific version of a hosted object by a webserver - for the purposes of caching. Etags operate as follows: A client sends a HTTP request for an object. The server returns the object to the client, along with the ETag value (as an Etag field, eg: ETag: “686897696a7c876b7e”). Continue Reading

Auto mocking with AutoMoq

AutoMoq is a nice little package I came across today. The AutoMoq home page describes it as follows:

AutoMoq is an "auto-mocking" container that creates objects for you. Just tell it what class to create and it will create it.

Why is this useful? Consider the following scenario. We have a BananaCakeFactory class, that relies on a Banana Repository. Here is the constructor:

Continue Reading

VS2013 Web Essentials Zen Coding is a huge time saver for web developers

As a web developer, I have regularly found myself needing to type a large amount of HTML layout code. Your page starts to grow, and your eyes begin to glaze over as you type DIV after DIV.

Enter Zen Coding. In a nutshell, ZenCoding is a set of editor extensions, allowing a developer to use shorthand for common tasks. Microsoft have incorporated these extensions into Web Essentials for Visual Studio 2013.

Continue Reading

Nested Dependencies in MVC4

Given how complex the average MVC4 application can become, it is likely that you are going to come across the situation where you build up a dependency chain. It may look like this: Controller -> Provider/Manager -> Dependency

 A common scenario may be that your controller needs a Lookup Manager, and that manager needs a cached query passed in.

In this scenario, the Unity.Mvc4 nuGet package comes into play.

Continue Reading