LaSalle Software News #2: Polishing Up

Tuesday December 1st, 2015

Episode Summary

[Please note: This looks like a transcript, but it is not a transcript!]

Welcome to my second LaSalle Software News podcast. This podcast is published at the top of the month updating you on what is happening with my LaSalle Software.

This is Bob Bloom, coming to you from Toronto, Canada. Today is Tuesday, December 1st, 2015.


DIY Scaffolding Turned Into LaSalle Software

When I decided to get into doing real web applications based on the superbly fabulous Laravel Framework in the spring of 2014, I could not find any satisfactory web app scaffolding.

Software that had a built-in blog, login management, user management, permissions management, administrative back-end; and, a bunch of other accroutements.

So, I built my own, which turned into something a lot more comprehensive and wonderful. What I now call LaSalle Software. 


November was an Incredible Month!

Last month, November, was an incredible month. A most enjoyable month, using my own LaSalle Software myself, for my own business. 

I released Version 1.0 last month; and, deployed my own six web apps based on LaSalle Software last month. 

It's been a long time coming, and finally the day has arrived it is all released and deployed for real. It feels great!


I especially enjoy understanding the database. You laugh, but I have had to reverse engineer mangled database tables much too often since freelancing. There is a lot of very fine discussion about mangled coding. But not a lot of discussion about constructing sane databases.

Mangled databases cost clients lots of money, money down the drain. Mangled databases inexorably lead to mangled coding. I have invoiced for expedient mangled work-arounds quite a lot. Not insignificantly due to purposefully mangled databases and coding for the express intent of making code indecipherable, lest someone repackage and redistribute said open source software for a cheaper price. 

Quoting Oracle's wiki, "Normalization is a ... database design [made] for efficient access and storage of data. These steps reduce data redundancy and the chances of data becoming inconsistent". 

I have a uniform way of naming fields. For example, the primary indexed field is called "id". 

I have standard handling for lookup tables.

My database is normalized, with a uniform structure; and, is generally sane and follow-able. 


I especially enjoy understanding my front-end design, and being able to modify it at will. Over the years, ready made templates and themes for WordPress and Joomla have become incredibly bloated, to the point where it is a major exercise making changes Not to start a rant here, and not getting into the what's and why's, so suffice to say that it has been an absolute pleasure being able to change anything and everything on my front-end template with minimal fuss. 

As great an achievement releasing version 1.0 and deploying my own web apps, using my stuff for real is itself a starting point. No surprise that it did not take long to start a wish-list of features. 


LaSalle Software Development has Settled Down 

LaSalle Software development has settled down. 

Going through my 150+ original blog entries, it's pretty clear that the backward incompatible Joomla versions; moving to web application based on the Laravel Framework; and, doing a re-write when Laravel released version 5.1 Long Term Support version took a heavy toll on doing stable software development. 

Well, things have settled down profoundly. Things are pretty sane, now. LaSalle Software Version 1.0 is released. It needs some polishing up, which will be released as Version 1.01 by Christmas. 

LaSalle Software Version 1.01 is a pretty serious, comprehensive, basis for building custom web applications within sane timeframes at sane prices. Pretty much what I set out to achieve. 


Version 1.01 Fixes

Without explaining what these things are, here are the major things I'm working on for Version 1.01. It's all on

  • remove the javascript confirmation modal box for record deletions -- add a new custom blade file instead
  • fix pivot table deletion omission
  • add a new "apply changes" button to admin form automation
  • modify default listing to 100 records by ID descending
  • a new file upload/media manager
  • simple, but needed, refactor of the admin API's baserepository.php
  • add Elixir 4.0, and refactor front-end and admin for Elixir 3.0, font awesome, among other things
  • round out user management, access control, and login management


2016 is the Year of LaSalleMart Development

There is no doubt that 2016 will be the year of developing ecommerce software. Which, I have to tell you, I think in a way is absolutely insane, because there is so much ecommerce software out there. Well, a funny thing abou that... there is a lot of ecommerce software out there, but not a lot of Laravel ecommerce software. I suspect there is a lot of Laravel ecommerce software development out there, but for in-house only. It seems that each week brings yet another software-as-a-service ecommerce solution, but that is not really what I want. 

As a prelude to developing LaSalleMart:

  • I will deep dive, finally, into unit and integration -- and whatever else -- testing
  • I have started to learn the Vue javascript language
  • I am in the midst of learning about API development, the scope of which has taken me by surprise


Lumen - Mandrill Email Microservice

The one thing I want to squeeze in, a pet project over the holidays, is setting up an email service using Laravel's Lumen microframework, in conjunction with Mandrill. Basically, I want to get inbound and outbound email working within a web app. I could use this for my podcasting web app. As well, it would be great to get contact forms to send emails to the app, as part of customer management. You can see why I invested effort into setting up the basic packages for CRM software. 


On My Flagship Site...

On my flagship site, I have a page enumerating detailed features of LaSalle Software. As well, I published two screencasts. 




You have been listening to a production. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of SouthLaSalleMEDIA dot com, nor of the organizations represented. Links and materials discussed on air are available in the Show Notes for this show. Information contained herein have been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but are not guaranteed. Podcasts are released under a creative commons licence. Some rights are reserved. Email correspondence to the attention of Bob Bloom at info at SouthLaSalleMedia dot com.


Monthly report on the good, the bad, and the ugly of my ongoing LaSalle Software development. Produced by Bob Bloom, founder and developer of LaSalle Software.

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