Carbon today() vs. now()

Posted on: 2021-01-13 08:43:55

Beware of Carbon::today() vs. Carbon::now(). They are not synonyms. The former is equiv. to Carbon::now()->startOfDay().

This is important, especially in test environments. If you're thinking that Carbon::today() is actually today... well I suppose it is, but in what timezone?

I had a test that was doing something calculated off of Carbon::today()->subDays(1) and that is not equal to Carbon::now()->subDays(1).

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Notes on using SQLite with Laravel from a MySQL user

Posted on: 2020-12-04 22:44:32

Come with me on a journey to discover how easy (or not) it is to get a large Laravel app working with SQLite.

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Using a CSS Inliner with Laravel

Posted on: 2020-11-29 09:23:15

Here are some notes from my use of the Laravel CSS Inliner plugin. Mainly stemming from problems we had with the responsive CSS getting blown away by the inliner.

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Ah, a blog again.

Posted on: 2018-06-12 19:13:43

I rebuilt this blog in Laravel 5 about 2 years ago as an experiment. Never launched it.

Now I have things to say, so here it comes again.

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Notes on setting up Lockr on Acquia Dev Desktop

Posted on: 2017-09-01 11:01:14

Have been playing around with Lockr on Drupal 7 and want to play around with it locally and so I fall back to Acquia Dev Desktop.

Just as a note, as of the writing of this blog post, Acquia Dev Desktop ships with an invalid openssl.cnf location, so you have to provide one.

I found this out when I started getting this message while trying to create a certificate locally:

RuntimeException: Could not create private key. in Lockr\SiteClient->createCert() (line 37 of /Users/nvahalik/tmp/lockr/src/Lockr/SiteClient.php).

Bummer. Anyway. The fix is simple. Just add the following to your settings.php or local.settings.php (if you're on a Mac):


And if you're using Lockr, make sure this patch is applied. The patch is needed due to this bug in PHP.

Once you've done that you should be ready to lock and roll!

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An open letter to Dries: What are our values?

Posted on: 2017-03-30 23:57:21

An open letter to Dries Buytaert in response to the happenings with Larry Garfield and the Drupal project's values.

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Yield, Generators, and Iterators in Node.js

Posted on: 2017-03-09 12:57:32

Although I love Drupal, lately some of my projects have had me delve into learning new technologies and Stacks. The one I've spent more time with lately is Node.js.

One reason for this is that I've actually known JavaScript longer than I've known PHP. I started doing JavaScript about 21 years ago... (that feels like a lifetime ago). Anyhoo, I digress.

I tried playing around with Koa last night and it seems really slick. However I was trying to map my mind around this whole yield thing as well as how yield and Generators work together with yield to fundamentally change the way Javascript works.

So it finally dawned on me last night after reading some great articles:

That given this code:

var b = function* () {
  yield 1;
  return 4;

let c = b();
console.log( // { value: 1, done: false }
console.log( // { value: 4, done: true }

That in a sense you could rewrite it as:

var a = function () { return 1; }
var b = function () { return 4; }

console.log(a()) // 1
console.log(b()) // 4

Whenever a yield is encountered, it sort-of slices up the function and returns control back to the caller. The next time .next() is called, the yield expression is resolved and execution picks up where it left off.

Just had to write some thoughts down so I could process them.

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Perceived value and my favorite mobile game

Posted on: 2017-02-13 09:53:02

A few weeks ago I started playing Hill Climb Racing 2. It's a fun, addictive game and, best of all, it's free to play. You actually don't have to spend any money (though you do have to watch ads) but if you're patient, you can unlock everything without paying a single penny!

Recently, I figured I'd splurge and pay $4.99 for one of their little "deals" in the game where you get a deal with a custom decal and a heaping helping of these little things called Gems aka πŸ’Ž.

Now, in the game, you buy vehicle upgrades with coins. You earn coins while driving, doing tricks, going longer and longer distances in the adventure levels, and winning cup races. You also earn 2-5 πŸ’Ž every 6 hours through a "free reward" treasure box and a few more every day or two as you win 10 races by completing and winning cups. Anyway, over the course of a few weeks, you could potentially save a hundred or more gems.

Now gems in the game can only be used for two things: opening treasure boxes (which you get when you win a cup) or purchasing coins. You can't actually purchase coins, but you can purchase gems, which, in turn, can be exchanged for coins.

Now, initially when I did my initial splurge, I opted to "buy" (er, maybe convert) 1000πŸ’Ž into coins. I got 130,000 coin out of the deal. Not bad, I thought to myself. That's 130 coin for every πŸ’Ž.

But then I got to thinking... what would I get if I spent more? Here's the available conversions in the game:


Now, I know what you're probably thinking right now... man.. I should really opt for that 5000πŸ’Ž deal where you can get 250C/πŸ’Ž, right? I mean that really is the better deal!

Well, a few moments ago remember I mentioned that you can use πŸ’Ž for 2 things. One is for buying coins, and the other is for unlocking treasure chests. Well, what happens if you only spent your πŸ’Ž unlocking treasure chests? Well...


So with a little patience, it's actually a much better deal to unlock the chests. Sure, it can feel good to get "the best deal" but is it really the best deal? Not really...

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Acquia's Access Log File Format

Posted on: 2016-11-18 22:37:06

I needed to parse some logs and I wanted to know what Acquia's Log file format was. Here it is:

LogFormat "%{X-AH-Client-IP}i %l %u %t \"%r\" %>s %b \"%{Referer}i\"
\"%{User-agent}i\" vhost=%v host=%{Host}i hosting_site= pid=%P
request_time=%D forwarded_for=\"%{X-Forwarded-For}i\"
request_id=\"%{X-Request-Id}i\" "`

Here's a link to the LogFormat reference.

Key tidbits:

request_time is in microseconds. Not milliseconds. So divide that sucker by 1,000,000.

Also, request_id will correlate requests across different log files (e.g. drupal-watchdog-<date> and/or drupal-requests-<date>.

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Building Kick SaaS Installation Profiles

Posted on: 2016-09-16 20:36:21

So back in April of this year, I gave a talk at Texas Camp entitled Building Kick SaaS Installation Profiles.

The slides are over there, but I'm uploading a local copy of them hereβ€”just in case!

Note: no audio is available, but the slides might be pretty handy!

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