Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Progress and More to Come

We made some progress over the last two weeks. We've got the time query running through the software, all the way up to the point requesting the tiles. Now we're diving in to the code of the renderer and tile server to get those tiles that we need!

Week 9: July 14 - July 20[edit | edit source]

  1. After some discussion and direction from my mentor, I'm tackling the tile rendering server bit. I've added a test layer for "Year" in the leaflet.osm.js file.
  2. I've got a first little skeleton in the code but it doesn't lead anywhere yet. I updated the issue tracker in GitHub with my latest and (not so) greatest.
    1. The screenshot is also posted here
    2. As can be seen by the mostly empty layer on the right, I've got most of the plumbing in there but there's no data coming through the pipes.
  3. Digging further into Leaflet and how to use it and I also put up a white flag for assistance in the issue thread above

Week 10: July 21 - July 26[edit | edit source]

  1. At the beginning of the week, I felt a little discouraged after seeing this postin the mailing list about how nomoregrapes built a working slider over an isolated OHM map during the Hackathon at SoTM-EU. I went through thecode he posted on GitHub and linked to it in the GitHub OHM issues tracker.
  2. After a lot of hacking and many false starts (and some help from my mentor), by the end of the week, I found the proper places in the code to add references to the {t} value for searching. My commits and code.

In less positive (and more personal) news, I got word that I was not accepted for the next cohort of the Ada Developers Academy. Keep looking here because after my OPW internship is over, I'll post my progress on my work for the GitHub data challenge!

Monday, July 21, 2014

In the Weeds

I've been spending the last few days in the weeds of Leaflet. For the full play-by-play, you can see the GitHub issue.

My Very Frustrating Day

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Fastest Summer of My Life!

Time seems to be moving faster and faster. I can hardly believe it's time for another two-week report! I spent a lot of time chasing bugs but I'm making baby steps forward and learning a lot about how Rails and JavaScript work in live code.

Week 7: June 29 - July 5

Week 8: July 6 - July 13

  • And the code I've written was deemed not yet ready for prime time - it only works halfway at this point. I will resubmit after I get the code up to production standard.
  • After some useful feedback on the importance of submitting a pull request with only one commit (and some pointers to how-to's on rebasing to make that happen) and the helpfulness of of including *lots* of screenshots showing the software in action, I closed the pull request.
  • One (!!) of the aspects of this project that I have found especially challenging is finding my way through the blending of JavaScript and Rails code. I spent an inordinate amount of time this week chasing down what turned out to be a Javascript syntax error that was manifesting as a Rails error.
    • I've installed the "better_errors" gem to try to assist with errors like this - it will presumably be triggered if it is a true Rails error
    • I've also learned that if I make changes to the JavaScript portions of the code, I have to restart the server in order to see any changes. Most changes to the Ruby code automagically propagates without restarting the server.
  • Screenshots of my progress so far are on GitHub. Searching by year (2008 and 2009) will bring up the Burning Man map layers for those years and recenter the map to that area. Searching by any other year brings up with message that this is a work in progress. (It no longer crashes the map and brings up the dreaded Rails error screen, so there's some progress there!)

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Hoping to Catch My Breath

I've been so immersed in my internship that I've been neglecting this poor blog. I'm still constantly surprised at how much longer seemingly simple tasks take. I'm very slowly getting familiar with the complexity of the OHM codebase. Here's a rundown of the last two weeks:

Week 5: June 16 - June 22

  • I spent far too long this week chasing Heroku errors in an attempt to get a live version of my time_slider2 branch online. After an IRC chat with my mentor, I cut my losses and moved on to the next task:
    • Capturing the start_year value entered from the TimeSlider
  • I found a new resource: a StackOverflow-style QA page for OSM
    • Regrettably, this resource seems focused on map-editing users. It did help me discover when I was headed (meandering?) down the wrong track with the router file in Rails and needed to pivot and work on the router.js file.
  • This was a real Edison week. I found a dozen different ways that don't work. Still at it.

Week 6: June 23 - June 29
  • Completed and submitted my mid-session evaluation.
    • I'm not where I thought I would be at this point in the session. There is a tremendous difference between the code used in tutorials and student-level projects and the real, live code that lives out in the wild.
    • It's more than just the complexity (although the huge leap in complexity would be more than enough to stymie me!) There are unfamiliar conventions and blending of platforms that still surprise me. (I'm still getting caught flat-footed and discovering that the code I'm writing in Rails needs to be ripped out and put into the JavaScript portions of the code base.) I will learn.
  • I'm having a meeting with my mentor on Tuesday, and hopefully that will give me some grounding.
  • I'm making an effort to commit more often and to push up my commits to my branch more regularly. I've been fearful about doing so but last week, I caught myself trying the same failed function twice. Having all of my commits with failures noted well help stop me from doing that in the future.
  • I made some baby steps toward success: