Showing posts with label eileensnotes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label eileensnotes. Show all posts

Thursday, April 10, 2014

EileensNotes - major changes will be introduced

In April, a major change for EileensNotes will be introduced.  This will include the upgrade in infrastructure , some cosmetic changes in layout and a few functional changes.

In fact, the new layout and color schemes have been already applied to current version of EileensNotes.
EileensNotes is now using much lighter layout and more organized user interface for easier access to all features from any screen.

( Fig. 1 - EileensNotes use smaller but clearer fonts in all screens )

( Fig. 2 - Popular tags are displayed on top of screen along with a search box )

One noticeable change I have made to EileensNotes is to use smaller and clearer fonts in every user interface screen along with different colored labels.  Also, the navigation top bar has a new color scheme as well.

The other change that's useful for all users is that I have placed popular tags along with a search box on top of Q&A and Advertisements pages.  This will help users quickly access or search any information.

Another new feature for Questions and Answers, which will be introduced shortly, is enabling user to answer any question privately. It means that only the user who asked a question will see any private answers going forward.  If you are a tutor or teacher and want to privately answer to any question posted by your students, then this is the feature you will need to use when answering a question.

EileensNotes is working hard to provide a better tool to all students and learners, and I will continue to do work hard for my kids and students to achieve their academic goals.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Upgrading EileensNotes to Rails 4 + DEVISE

My personal project, EileensNotes, has been running on Rails 3 + Ruby 1.9.3 (with Nginx and Passenger) with no issues since its launch.

Recently, I started to study all new great features introduced in Ruby on Rails 4 and decided to upgrade EileensNotes to the new version as well.   So, here I'd like to share with you on what I have done when upgrading to Rails 4.

This is one of series that I will continue to post, so please feel free to ask any questions related to Rails 4 upgrade.  I updated my gem file to ensure that all of my gems support Rails 4.0.0.

DEVISE - one of my core user account management gem

To simply test if my "user login" works ok on Rails 4, I performed the following basic tests manually on my test platform.

  1. Create a new user
  2. Reset my password
  3. Update my account

Before I tested "creating a new user by using SIGN UP," this was the first thing I had to add to application.rb in controller directory.  Take a look at your user model carefully that you created for DEVISE, and you need to update the following protected procedure accordingly.

before_action :configure_permitted_parameters, if: :devise_controller?


# updated to support Rails 4
# secure parameters and permit only these parameters from form for DEVISE

def configure_permitted_parameters
    devise_parameter_sanitizer.for(:sign_in) { |u| u.permit(:email, :password, :remember_me) }
    devise_parameter_sanitizer.for(:sign_up) { |u| u.permit(:email, :password, :password_confirmation) }
    devise_parameter_sanitizer.for(:account_update) { |u| u.permit(:email, :name, :password, :password_confirmation, :current_password) }

Ok. After my updating application.rb, the "Sign Up" worked and I had to confirm if my email address was valid.  Since I did not use any local "smtp" or "email emulator" in my development platform, I simply opened a development.log file to search for the body of confirmation email.  I had set up my mailer for DEVISE so that it sent an email having the confirmation token.

I simply copied the confirmation token (URL) and pasted it in my web browser to validate user email address.  This was supposed to simply work, but there was an error so my email couldn't be validated.
There is one change DEVISE made in its new version for Rails 4, and this was what I had to change accordingly to make it work.

There were three places where this change needed to be applied, and they were all in "mailer" for DEVISE.  So, simply search for these three url commands in DEVISE mailer directory and change yours accordingly with bold faced variable name.

confirmation_url(@resource, :confirmation_token => @token) %>
unlock_url(@resource, :unlock_token => @token
edit_password_url(@resource, :reset_password_token => @token)

Now, the URL with a confirmation token should work.
So, I manually deleted a new user from my user table and signed up again.  This time, it looked like the confirmation token URL looked slightly different with a shorter format.
The validation worked with no issue after applying those changes mentioned above.

To ensure @token was the right variable, I performed the following two more tests manually.

  • Resetting a password
  • Updating my password
  • Updating my user account

So far, all sign up/sign in/edit account/reset password worked with no issue.
I was able to log in to EileensNotes test platform and could continue to test rest pieces inside the application.

DEVISE was my main core "user management" gem I chose without any hesitation as it was being widely used in Rails community, and I was always able to get updates from GitHub for changes and additional document.

But, recently, I had chance to read a new book called "Learning Devise for Rails" published by PACKT and I think this is a great extra resource to all Rails developers who currently use/or will use a DEVISE.

Having a set of core Rails books beside you always will make you feel secured.

This is my first series of "Upgrading to Rails 4" and I hope that I helped someone with this blog today.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Upgrading EileensNotes

EileensNotes is now being upgraded with a new web framework, Rails 4.0.0., and I will share my "post upgrade" experience with you on this blog.

Also, I will soon introduce a new web application which helps you get more productive in your daily life.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

How to categorize your question in EileensNotes

In EileensNotes, you can label or categorize your question with proper keyword(s). In many web applications or sites, these categories or labels are also called tags.

EileensNotes also follows this trend, so you can easily categorize your question when posting a new question. (Fig. 1)

Fig. 1

Keyword(s) will be automatically hyperlinked, so using a meaningful or proper name for keyword will expose your question to other users much more easily.  After posting your own question with keywords, the posted question will just look like the question in Fig. 2.  In this question, the author used three keywords to categorize this. math, middle school, 7th grade math

Fig. 2

As I mentioned above, all of these keywords are hyperlinked.  What this means is that clicking on each category keyword gives you a list of all questions having the same keyword in categories.

In main "All Questions" and "All Advertisements" pages, EileensNotes gives you top 20 keywords that are currently used. This is also called tags cloud in other web sites, and this will let you easily navigate Q&As and advertisements by category. (Fig. 3)

Fig. 3

EileensNotes is an online Q&A site, started out of the bedroom of my daughter. It is now for all students and learners. Post/Share/Bookmark Q&As, and post your ADs.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

EileensNotes, a Q&A site that I have developed originally for my daughter…

This is a Q&A site, that I have been developing for my daughter, and it is now open to all people.

What is EileensNotes?

  1. It started out in the bedroom of my daughter as a small web application 
  2. It was initially for Eileen’s notes, but now it is for everyone’s notes

EileensNotes was born on September 2011.