Rails software development

DhtmlCalendar and Piston

Over the weekend I decided to try (again) to find a Rails plugin for a Dhtml Calendar. The previous one I tried relied on an Engine, and for some totally unreasonable errrrrrrrr reason, I don’t like that. So I came across this: At first it was all sunshile, lollipops and rainbows, but I soon realised that the plugin did not like Firefox.

This was, of course, a right pain. A quick test in IE determined it worked fine. In Firefox, it popup worked, but when you select a date the select boxes did not get updated. I waded through the javascript that comes with the plugin, and it seemed ok, but it simply WAS NOT firing in Firefox.

After some Javascript mangulation (that’s my word but you can use it if you want) I figured out that it wasn’t picking up the HTML form. So, even though the documentation says:

“Note: :form_name is optional unless your form is named. If it is named then supply the name of the form.”

I included it anyway.

And it worked. Yay.

Also, in the past I have used svn:externals to include external plugin into my project, and at the most inopportune time the external site as either (and I have had both of these happen):

  1. The external site is inaccessible at deployment time, meaning that your site is offline, or
  2. The external site updates the codebase to suit a new Rails version that you have not upgraded to, meaning that your site is broken and once again, offline

After doing that once or twice, I gave up on svn:externals and just exported the remote source and checked it into my repository, which is a bit shit because it removes the link to the origin of the code. This time I used Piston.

Piston fixes this. It checks out the remote code as an svn export but it stores the synchronization information as svn properties so that it can later be updated, or locked, or even merge the remove changes wth your own changes. Spiffy!