Three Days is Too Many Days

So, my last blog post was three days ago, and it feels like forever ago. I finally got over the hurdle I wanted and my portfolio is live and ready to be viewed and adored by the masses ( Here’s part of what has taken me so long to return to the rest of the world.

I was having a bear of a time trying to get one of my portfolio sites live (check it out here). It’s still not exactly where I want it to be, but it’s all about showing something that works. The last bit I’m working on has to do with style more than functionality so it was time to release it into the wild. Basically, each picture should have a small panel around it, but for some reason the panel is stretching across the page and my tweaking of the CSS isn’t changing anything. If you haven’t worked with CSS before, my friend Efrain found the perfect analogy:

I had to switch the way images were being uploaded to AWS/S3 since the service I use to host my apps (Heroku), won’t let you store images directly. To some of the more seasoned developers out there, this may sound like a small thing, but I’m still getting comfortable with the technology and I have some reason to be a little skittish about it all. During our class the first time we built a site hosting images remotely, a classmate of mine had a run-in with some “dark internet” bandidos who racked up $1,600.00 in charges to his account in one night.

So, I was slowly working to make sure everything was linked correctly between AWS and my app. AWS even has secret keys so you have to make sure everything is just right from AWS to your app to Heroku and round and round again. This was hard enough but I was also using a new (to me) gem called paperclip to process the images.

What is a gem, you ask? Well you can read someone’s attempt at completely not answering that question here, but to make a long story short, a gem is a library you load into your app that (hopefully) adds functionality quickly. A lot of our time at the Iron Yard was filled with building parts of our apps step by step, sometimes taking hours if not all day (or longer), only to then be shown a gem you can load and have the same part up and running in minutes. At one point our instructor showed us an admin gem that he had up and running in the time it took my classmate Bharvi to answer her phone, take a few steps and tell the person calling she would call them back. Literally one minute later the app had a fully functioning admin back-end.

So, I loaded the paperclip gem, and had to update another gem called nokogiri in order to get it working. Once I updated nokogiri, and tried to run the command to save my gemfile, the styem told me that a third gem, sdoc, needed nokogiri to be at its older version. Again, I don’t want this blog to be all about the intricacies of coding, but I just want this on record so someone will read this and nod knowingly, having been in this pickle before.

Maybe you figured your way out of it, email me if you did. Or maybe you did like me and took a nap, haha. I spun up a new app from scratch and this time used some gems I was more familiar with and got the app up and running. So, long story short, no, I haven’t fixed that CSS yet. Get off my back!