Author Archives: Scott Motte

About Scott Motte

Programmer and tinkerer. Fledgling Devangelist @SendGrid. Follow me @scottmotte.

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Articles Posted by Scott


Long Live the Informal Hackathon

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The Major League Hackathons–Penn Apps, MHacks, BoilerMake, and HackTech–are great. Go to these. But go to the small hackathons, too. Good things come from the small, informal hackathons. And you can even easily organize one yourself. The very first hackathon was small. I’m stating the obvious, but hackathons did not start as large organized events with multiple sponsors. They started as informal get-togethers. People like you, the makers and creators, got together to create something cool. Where to Start Hold informal hackathons. Get a handful of friends, pick a venue like your co-working space or apartment, and pitch in for

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Keep Your New Year’s Resolution to Code More

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The year 2014 is here and with it New Year’s resolutions. My New Year’s resolution is to commit more open source code. Little apps like this one by Nick Quinlan are helping to keep that at the forefront of my mind. Specifically, I want to complete a 30 day GitHub commit streak. I’m bad at remembering to commit so I built an application to remind me. It’s called github-streaker. It checks your GitHub commits each day. If you haven’t made any commits that day, it sends you a reminder email using SendGrid. You can deploy github-streaker in just a few

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A Sinatra and Heroku Application Template in 20 Lines

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Heroku is a great web publishing platform. Additionally, Sinatra is a great ruby web framework. In this post, I’ll show you how to quickly combine the two. I have created a sinatra-heroku-template app to make it easy on you. All files combined, it is only 20 lines of code. Do the following to get it up and running. git clone git://github.com/scottmotte/sinatra-heroku-cedar-template.git gem install bundler bundle heroku create yourwebapp git push heroku master bundle exec heroku open That’s it. You now have a bare bones Ruby app running in production on Heroku. Add your own code as necessary. Here’s a breakdown

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Get Going with Go and Redis

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Go is a promising language. It’s a strong replacement for Java, it’s similarly productive to writing Python, and it is an excellent tool for writing servers. I’m starting to dive into it in my spare time, and in this blog post I will show you the basics of getting started with Go and Redis together. This tutorial assumes you’re running a flavor of Mac OS X and are comfortable with Terminal. Setup Install Redis Run the following commands on most *nix command lines to download, unpack and install Redis: wget http://download.redis.io/redis-stable.tar.gz tar xvzf redis-stable.tar.gz cd redis-stable make sudo make install

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Let’s Deprecate the Password: Email-only Authentication

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Passwords suck. They are hard to remember. The average person re-uses the same password across the majority of their accounts. Can you blame them? It’s easier, and people have lives to live – not passwords to manage. It’s mainly the technorati that use tools like LastPass or 1Password. Passwords also tend to never expire. It is rare a site requires you to change your password – and it’s discouragingly user un-friendly when they do. What if we could remove the password? That would solve the above problems. Let’s try. Introducing Handshake.js I’ve built a solution called Handshake.js that is an

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How We Found the Cloud Integration Trifecta

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Cloud Foundry makes developers’ lives easier. You can build, test, deploy, and scale applications quite quickly – freeing you up to focus on the core of your product. It’s great, but what will prove to be even greater is the Cloud Foundry services. The ability to quickly use services from Cloud Foundry adds a lot of power to you the developer. You can add databases like ClearDB, MongoLab, and Redis, application monitoring with New Relic, or email sending with SendGrid. Did you know that you can also create your own services? You can, and you can add them to the

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Beginner’s Technical Guide to the SendGrid Parse Webhook

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The SendGrid Parse Webhook is a powerful tool with many use cases. Once setup, all incoming email for a domain or sub-domain is directed to your application. What you can do is endless, but it can be a bit tricky to grok if it is your first time. In this tutorial, I am going to take away any confusion and show you how to setup your first SendGrid Parse API implementation. Sometimes, it helps to have a full working example so I’ve created one for you. It’s built in Node.js, and you can find it on GitHub. We are going

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