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Showing posts from May, 2016

Making websites using Bootstrap

Because I had nothing better to do on a Friday evening, I (finally) took a look at the Bootstrap framework. For those of you who don't know, Bootstrap is (sort of) a library that provides building blocks that can be used to build responsive websites (as I understand it). About an year ago, a friend of mine used it to setup his personal website while applying for grad school. I, on the other hand, was lazy, among other things. So my interest in understanding and using bootstrap got put in the attic as I waited for the right time™to do so.

Well, yesterday seemed to be as good a day as any so I ploughed through the example/templates provided by the wonderful people at Bootstrap. And all I did was edit and modify the templates as I needed/wanted them to be and voila, in under 6 hours, I had 4 websites.

The first is based on the Jumbotron-Narrow template and my version of it can be found here. All of the code is available on my Github repository and this is how it looks like -



The sec…

A preliminary look at my activity on Facebook.

Because I have nothing better to do on a Friday night, I downloaded whatever data that Facebook had on me, which you can as well by going to this part of Facebook and clicking on the "Download a copy of your Facebook data". It might take a couple of minutes but you'll finally get a zipped file, one that will contain a "wall.htm" file inside of it.

The contents of this "wall.htm" file is what I'll constrain myself to at this moment. Here's a small part of the file to give you an idea of the kind of information available in this file.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12<p><divclass="meta"> Monday, January 11, 2016 at 1:13am UTC+05:30 </div> Rahul Poruri shared Lunarbaboon&#039;s photo. </p><p><divclass="meta"> Sunday, January 10, 2016 at 6:32pm UTC+05:30 </div> Rahul Poruri shared a link. </p>
As you can see above, there between the <p></p> HTML tags are &…

sync fork with remote git

Software developers or open source software (OSS) contributors that use GitHub to manage their projects probably use one of two git workflows :

fork master branch, i.e main repository, to create a personal copy of the project --> clone fork to local workstation --> create a new local branch from fork --> make relevant changes on local branch --> commit changes to local branch --> push local branch to origin, i.e your forked copy on GitHub --> submit a pull request (PR),clone master branch, i.e main repository to create a personal copy of the project --> create a new local branch from master --> make relevant changes on local branch --> commit changes to local branch --> push branch to origin --> submit a PR. Which of these two workflows the developers follow depends on many things. And now that I've introduced you to the basic workflow and the premise as to why/how I ran into a problem, I can tell you about the problem and the solution for it.
If y…

Using git to work on a project across OS and machines

If you're working for a company/team that develops a product that can be used on Windows, OS X and Linux, then you will have to test the changes you make on all three platforms to see if things are working the way you intend them to.

I presume that you're using version control, I personally use git, to manage the code base for the project. Say you make changes to the code base on an OSX machine and everything looks fine so you push the changes to a branch. Now, you will want to look at the changes on a different OS to make sure that the changes are behaving well, which you can do using


1 git checkout --track <remote>/<branch-name>
I hope you're familiar with  git checkout, which can be used to change to a different working branch or it can be used to remove changes made on a file on the current branch. The additional --track argument tells git to create a new branch from a remote branch, where the remote is usually set as origin. You're probably familiar w…

A preliminary look at the contents of physics department websites

Before going any further, I just want to add why it is that I went through this exercise and why I think it is worth sharing with people. Deciding on a graduate school is a very tough decision to make for a student interested in pursuing a PhD and the design and content of a department website is of course going to weigh in on that decision. If we can't find the information that we're looking for, we might feel discouraged about joining the department. As such, in my opinion, it is in the best interest of a university/department to maintain an up-to-date website if they want to attract graduate students of high caliber. I am not going to be specific about the absence of the web presence of any specific lab or group or person because that's not cool. While individual faculty should strive to maintain a web presence, the responsibility falls upon the department to create a minimal web presence for it's faculty. I hope people won't get offended by what I'm saying…

Pocket reading list : Week 1.2 of May

The CIA Waterboarded the Wrong Man 83 Times in 1 Month : In the name of the war on terror, the American government seems to have carried out operations that violate human rights and numerous international laws. This is one such account of a man tortured, maybe even for the sake of learning how effective the methods of torture were, and not coincidentally, the man was trained by the CIA to fight against the Russians, the very agency that tortured him a decade later.

Being A Developer After 40 : Now that I'm on the path to becoming a software developer, I'm taking such articles seriously. This is an account of a software developer who has over 15 years of experience in the industry and who has seen one fad after another pass. A question that every software developer has to address at some point or the other is whether or not they are programming in the right language, whether or not they are moving forward, with respect to the community and what not. And this guy has pretty good…

Pocket reading list : Week 1.1 of May

What North Dakota Would Look Like if Its Oil Drilling Lines Were Aboveground : I'm fascinated by beautiful visualisations and I want to learn how to make them sometime in the near future. This is one such visualisation, that appeared on New York Times' The Upshot, where they depict the oil wells drilled to extract shale oil/gas in southern US but instead of drawing the wells underground, where they actually are, the authors drew them above ground, to provide a scale as to how deep/tall they are. What is also surprising is the sheer number of bore wells and how close they are to one another. No wonder extracting shale oil/gas at this level is causing serious environmental harm!

Seven Features You’ll Want In Your Next Charting Tool : There are lot of tools out there, offline and online, language dependent and language agnostic, that let you convert a dataset into a meaningful chart/plot/visualisation that will help you convey the message in the data a little easier. This is a bri…