No more yulemsee? Not this one…the twitter client one

Well, I thought the yulemsee web based twitter client was dead the moment twitter for android took over.

I assumed wrong. A few people approached me asking how come the domain yulemsee.net expired and they can’t access the web app. While I never said in-your-face, it really doesn’t make economical sense to me to keep it online. I know the hosting fees are very low…but even then is it really worth it? Maybe sentimental value for the few people who remember what Yulemsee for twitter was before Twitter for Android and IOS upped their game.

That hit when inmobi closed my account, and took away all the accrued revenue while at it, was really demoralizing because in yester years Yulemsee could run without requiring any financial input from my day job. And by Yulemsee, I mean all the domains. It sucked huge donkey balls really because till today no explanation was given. I may be playing to some sort of inferiority complex, but I’ve always assumed it’s because they figured I’m from a toothless country plus the cost of seeking legal redress would overwhelm the amount being sought. Really sucks.

Anyway, away from that, I’ve been off the blogging scene for a while now, not for lack of want, but time. I have so many things I wanna catch up on since I got over my depression early this year, and getting back on the path I was on little under four years ago is proving to be a bitch but I’m getting there. I want to start sketching again, especially for showing off online, I wanna lose the excess weight I gained and most importantly i want to recover my social life, and swim more and travel.

Additionally I want to blog more about code( this blog ) and my perspective on life(the other blog)… I’ve gotten really good at using the closure library to the extent I’ve actually dropped jQuery from most of my web Development projects, although I let it stay because of bootstrap; other than that I never really write any javascript requiring jQuery. Also gotten really good at wordpress and I want to venture into chrome apps and android applications from next year. I wanna learn Java more deeply, also planned to begin in 2014. And work on getting my masters, funny thing I’m not yet sure how I can integrate Climate change and code…maybe weather simulations…time will tell.

This site will get a facelift presently. My pal from MakeOne is helping me with the design…an official facelift… I won’t compromise my writing for ads though. Content First

Be on the look out for more from me. Cheers people.

 

Vanity 1

Yulemsee - screenshot
‘So we are all going to ignore the elephant in the room? This sentence, “Twitter no longer allow you to log in directly…” It has been at the login page since 2011 and nobody has ever pointed it out. For shame people. Frankly it irks me, but who am I to speak up… Anyway it’s 2013 and i finally located the blueprint for Yulemsee 2…the papers had been lost somewhere in the house…and the way that house is tiny…but not like that closet so many guys on twitter have been living in. It’s a house.
But i don’t have any inspiration for coding anymore. I just want to buy a guitar, randomly, and sit in coffee places, looking pretty, with it beside me waiting for women to approach me, curious if I’m famous or something(artistic). Maybe I’d have a notebook to make it look like I’m writing some seriously soulful lyrics. When it has been established that yes I am kinda sorta famous or talented, they ask me to belt out something; I’d be like “umm, this is a coffee place and that would be disturbing the peace…do you want me to be arrested or thrown out for doing something i love?” Then I’d act all hurt like she was insensitive and the way I strive to be a peaceful being. She’d be remorseful and offer to even pay for my coffee and suggest we move to somewhere more “umm…private?” The very fact that my coffee has been paid for would justify me having left code development and for all intents and purposes, I’ve already won!
Then maybe she leads me to the dark alleyway near the coffee place then presses close to me and softly whispers, “your wallet, fucker!” All through the throbbing of arousal, because I can feel breasts on my chest and her perfume is intoxicating, because we coders never get to touch women except in the spunk soaked posters, all I hear is “fuck her”, so I never question why she is refering to herself in the third person.
Anyway a few minutes later guitarless and shoeless I’d look at the glass half full and reason that at least it wasn’t a laptop, mine, that is expensive. Still glass half full I’d probably quickly rub one out with the memory of a woman’s body against me still as fresh as possible.
On second thought, I’ll stick to coding! At least i got free coffee in that little thought experiment :(

Introducing Google Closure

First thing, happy 2013 people!!!

For the longest time i have been looking for a scalable javascript library for large/heavy applications. When i say that i mean, i didn’t want a library where one small problem results in the failure of the whole thing. I had come across Closure several times in the past but I needed fast code so i relied on frameworks i was already familiar with like jQuery, actually, only jquery.

Jquery has its perks, a shit load of documentation and a large base of plugins for just about any need. For closure all you get are two measly tutorials and a demo. Plus when you search on google many of the comments regarding Closure are really negative, talking about memory leaks and other stuff from people trying to sound smart about things they really don’t know. Most of it is from 2009, when, i think, Closure was introduced to the world.

So after Christmas i got bored and took my first real try and Google Closure. Normally when i want to learn something new, i start by going through the core. That’s how i learned how to work with Codeigniter and WordPress. When you know the inner workings of a framework, you’re actually better suited to building something stable and useful with it. I don’t plan to be technical in this entry, so i have to admit my experience with Closure the last week has been nothing short of amazing, and a great learning experience.

I have created a category for closure related articles where i’ll be posting tutorials/walkthroughs and what i’ve learned so far. I’m also attempting convert some jquery based frameworks like Kendo Ui and Jquery Tools to a Closure equivalent. I am a fan of http://tympanus.net/codrops/ and I have learned a great deal through their tutorials and I’ll be using some of their stuff to extend Closure components.

So far I’ve made this really cool audio player using Closure and Soundmanager that plays tracks from soundcloud. At it’s most basic it can play/stream music from just about any source. Its fully functional including a wave form visualizer, equalizer visualization, peak visuals, and the volume control remembers state using html5′s local storage feature.

Here’s a screenshot.

Audio Player Screenshot

Audio Player Screenshot. The inline website version updates the track duration to the playlist item’s duration. Will update it by the time i put it up here

I’ll put up the working thing when i figure out how to display tutorials and their corresponding demos here.

I’ll also post the jquery based player that is currently in use on www.capitalfm.co.ke/radio. It has/had several defects that necessitated the overhaul of its core. But here’s a before and after screenshot

The player to the left is the current jquery powered one. The one on the right is generated using Closure.

side by side

The design is by the brilliant @asaphChange

Easter Eggs

First i begin by saying i’m ashamed about the title, i promise I’ll harakiri once i’m done with this entry!

As a developer i am proud of my work because at the point in time i came up with that code, it was my best. I treat coding the same way i do writing, it has to come from the heart; that’s why i can spend hours buried in php and when i come out i’m all good, in fact i feel refreshed, albeit hungry because sometimes i forget to eat.

Anyway, before we develop a website, by ‘we’ i mean the whole team, designers and marketing folk and me, we request the client to allow the final product to have a link-back to our company site portfolio. It’s standard practice because the final product will belong to the client so we need permission for that. What i’m saying is it’s nice to ask before putting your link on somebody’s website. So far none of our clients have refused. All of our clients are amiable. The people some of them hire to manage content on the other hand…

I won’t even go into their inferiority complex plagued psychology deeply! Anyway, the hirelings sometimes request so many unnecessary changes on the design that the end result is just ghastly! Not even mentioning the overly extended timelines because of nitpicking and misinformed change requests. If the client…ahem -hirelings, ignore advice and common sense and just throw in their changes the initially really good design, they just muck up the whole thing. While the code behind it is immaculate [oh the vanity - Editor], the presentation is just shoddy! Why hire a designer if you’re gonna insist on completely overhauling his work and doing everything your way? You gave the direction you wanted the project to go and approved the design throughout the first stages up til the end, then later when everything is approved and we’re into development time you start with it? Most people want to feel included in something that is why you hire a small team because they will approve and come up with something good within reasonable time, but everybody…? This one won’t like a certain colour….just because. Another one will just suggest a change for the sake of being heard.

Worse is when these issues arise after all the functionality has been coded! While we employ strict MVC, some design change requests result in major functionality adjustment also. Moreso knowing the code had been custom adjusted for the particular needs of the clients as initially agreed upon. I guess most clients assume that once the design is done the website is practically finished and i’ll just open some Photoshop like software with a killer GUI and drag-drop the functionality into the design and voila! Website done! Programming is rewarding but unappreciated work, since all the credit goes back to the designer anyway.

Some of the mutilations usually lead up to me removing our branding/back-link from the client’s website, because i shall not be associated with a shoddy website because you can’t go explaining to new clients the real reasons your last website sucked plus they don’t really care about the code, the site should just work. So it’s struck off the portfolio and that’s that….or is it?

A shoddy looking website doesn’t negate the fact that the coding was done well, which is where i’m glad i’m not a designer by profession, those people get it rough, so i usually have the website generate the benchmark stats commented in the source html, take it as giving myself a pat on the back for creating a site that is tweeked to run on as few queries as is possible for a dynamic website or that magnitude. Within that i usually throw in an unsalted sha1 hash of my twitter handle with the ‘@’ included

<!– code b6d64bcac79c624ff78306929b43e1b925f4bf95 , design d2181f4c572229844e739a66923eebccc9004673 –>

Not much of an easter cookie but it makes me happy in the face of doing double…triple, quadruple, millionple* work. Eventually we found a way around that. Besides, it’s not like it’s my work that has been mutilated, my code stays put, most of the time. Unless, God forbid, somebody said i code shoddily… This is for the critics once i start sharing code here!

While most clients make us rich(…ahem…we make each other rich, they give us money, we give them tools to make themselves richer), there are those exceptions that really frustrate, rather, their hirelings really frustrate and it’s not good when there’s nothing wrong with a site but they insist on making uninformed changes. But all fair in love and war….and the paper-chase?

Here’s the photo of me committing harakiri. I hired a stuntman. It was actually an atheist jihadist(that make sense?), i said “Thank God we’re on equal footing with no deity we believe in, screw religion, my codes are to die for, you game? Ok, you go first” he just said “Amen brother!” the rest is captured in a thousand words.

harakiri

Redoing the twitter client

As most yulemsee for twitter users know, the application is made/based on the open source by David Carrington. Being the lazy coder, I’ve waited and waited for a new version of the open source(i don’t contribute, too much work….blergh), but it’s still dated August 2011, which sucks major salty donkey balls.

Ok, i’m not really that lazy. I know the code behind it almost by heart so troubleshooting is usually easy for the php based issues; twitter api issues on the other hand really bum me out. Currently pagination in the Direct Messaging section doesn’t go beyond the first page, probably because rather than rely on the whole “page=n” GET to mark retrieval of the messages the api was switched to use the since id and max id, because of the volume of tweets and the whole snowflake for id generation  over  auto increment thing. And they added entities.

That is just one of the issues, also noticed you can no longer edit your profile and the api redirects you to a 404 page. At first i thought it was a restriction on the maximum length of your profile name that triggered this but it turns out it happens each time the application tries to update. Haven’t really checked the api documentation for announced changes yet but i will as soon as i get enough time.

I plan to do the new Yulemsee nicknamed “Version 2″(i know right? very creative) from the ground up. Already identified the oauth library that will be the backbone…highly adaptable in case of changes in the api especially since in Api 1.1 all requests have to be signed whether a user is logged in or not. The rate limiting is a bit more flexible than it is on 1.0. Awesome.

Anyway, hopefully i’ll be done by the time Api 1.0 is deprecated in March 2013. Wish me luck.

Oh, don’t know if you noticed but there are no ads on yulemsee. I know! Where are those awesome ads that y’al used to click all the time making me really really rich? Did i become so rich off them that i no longer needed them? Sadly no, they helped offset the bill for the two domains yulemsee.com and .net, rather, would have but inmobi decided “fuck this guy” then the other person was like “yeah, i mean, this is pee-nuts…do they issue this amount in notes anywhere even in that country called Africa?” and the first guy replied “yeah…maybe in monopoly…they’d give you a…a…a small metal shoe because of the polio or a plate for receiving them food handouts” and the second guy was like “haha you’re so funny, Bob! i wish i was your pinky ring” and the first guy was like “huh? what?” and the second guy said “i said ‘yeah fuck him’” and the first guy was like “oh, ok…yeah fuck this insignificant user in the large user-base that inmobi has, because we can never go down and we’ll setup a million offices in Nairobi where we’ll be so successful in Kenya and Africa at large that Google will beg us to go easy on them with their trashy admob and DTP bullcrap”

So yeah, inmobi closed my account with all the revenue accrued…enough for 1 year’s worth of hosting for one of the domains. Sucks. They contacted me on twitter to raise my hopes then unfollowed me because they knew I’d probably commit suicide because i take unfollowing very personally and they were trying to be thorough. But on a serious note that was unprofessional, they could have come up with some reason like violating their terms(which i didn’t) or the classic one “We do not support payments to that country yet, please check again later”. According to many forums i’ve visited that happens a lot, the former i.e! For shame inmobi, for shame. Use that money to buy back a little something called integrity, i hear it’s priceless.

Content managers insist you have to add images to your post to spice up the article through visual stimulation…sooo….. I’ve inserted a photo of a cute flower baby. Enjoy!

3ccd9228b360804c8df6a494a9978224

Support for Yulemsee.org

It has been roughly a year since we set up yulemsee.org after we started experiencing errors with the main domain yulemsee.com. We have long since fixed that and the server hosting the .com domain is now capable of handling the increased traffic comfortably (the host swore on his kids’ lives).

Please Note: We are only discontinuing yulemsee.org and redirecting the traffic elsewhere.

The Yulemsee twitter client services are still available on http://twit.yulemsee.com and http://yulemsee.net. Don’t worry, even if you can’t remember we’ve updated the links on twitter.

Anyway in case you’re wondering why we’re doing this(we owe you an explanation, i guess):

  1. The hosting for yulemsee.org is actually way more expensive than for yulemsee.com and yulemsee.net combined.
  2. The problems that forced us to go for yulemsee.org, namely slow server response and regular timeouts on yulemsee.com have long since been sorted out.
  3. The host for yulemsee.org really sucks at providing us with the statistics we’d have otherwise used to lure advertisers and supplement the income from the InMobi ads. The revenue currently being generated is barely able to pay for hosting of one of the domains, but we aren’t complaining; yulemsee wasn’t intended to pay our bills.

As you’ve noticed, we’re trying to streamline Yulemsee as a brand and extend the family of applications from being web based only. Additionally we are doing our best to keep Yulemsee from being a profit oriented venture(for now) as we work to bring our services to a competitive level.

Let me take this chance to assure you we value your support and we take security issues seriously, plus that also keeps us from violating any of the Twitter API usage policy. And we will NEVER install any freakin tweet longer service…keep it within 140 characters like everybody else.

Cheers and thanks for using our services :)

Ben