Chinese Practice Sheets

I’ve been looking to start practising my Chinese more deliberately than I have been, particularly my character recognition. I couldn’t find any character practice sheets that I liked and so I made a couple of my own.

Dive Through the Layers

I’ve been working with a container image for a Django application and was surprised to find that an image for a simple application was 1.2 GB. I wanted to understand how this storage was being used and came across Dive, a tool for navigating container layers.

Docker Compose: Conditional Services

Docker Compose provides a succinct way to define services that make up an application. However it doesn’t allow services to be marked as optional so everything is started by default. In this post I outline a use-case for optional service and show how I defined service dependencies to provide a solution.

The Sidecar Pattern

The sidecar is a multi-container pattern used to provide additional functionality to a containerised-application without requiring changes to the application itself. The sidecar is the foundation of popular tools like the Istio service mesh. But how does it work? In this post, we’ll learn more by implementing one from scratch.

WireGuard - the most stable VPN yet

There are two reasons I regularly use a VPN connection on my portable devices; to give myself some privacy when using untrusted networks and to get around network filtering or censorship when traveling abroad. I’ve recently settled on a new favourite, WireGuard. In this post I’ll take you through how to get set-up with your very own WireGuard VPN.

Server Timing Client-Side

Browser tools have come a long way in helping us debug the performance of web applications. They have been constrained by the fact that they can only display client-side performance metrics, leaving us to look elsewhere to gain an understanding of back-end performance. I recently came across the Server-Timing specification that allows developers to augment this with a limited set of server timing information.

OSX Ignoring $PATH Variable

Over the last couple of days I lost the ability to copy and paste from Vim using the macOS system clipboard. I hadn’t knowingly changed my Vim configuration and the only major change I’d made recently was to upgrade to macOS Catalina. This post points outlines how I resolved the issue and points the finger squarely and Full Disk Access on Catalina.

Learn Go: by Concatenating Strings

Joining strings is so common that many of us take it for granted. While working through the exercises in ‘The Go Programming Language’ book as part of the London Study Group, I wanted to understand the differences between the various approaches for joining strings. This is what I found.

Beyond the Tour

Last Wednesday I gave a talk at the London Gophers meet-up about life Beyond the Tour. This post includes the video and slides from the talk, but also looks at a couple of the doubts I had going in to the event. Were they justified?

Multi Architecture Docker Builds

Docker has had the ability to build multi-architecture images for a while. I’ve never had cause to use it, until now. In this post I’ll walk through building a docker image that should work on your laptop and a Raspberry Pi.