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Rob Crocombe

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Software engineer at Ravelin.com

Blog posts

Azure gives me a headache

What should happen when you delete a web app and create another with the same name? Azure thinks it should sometimes show you the new app, and sometimes give you a “404 Not Found” error, depending on how it feels. We use Azure for deploying production versions of CS Blogs, for reasons I won’t go into here, and it’s been a real pain. The lack of documentation for deploying Node.js apps that are mor… Read more →


Azure gives me a headache

What should happen when you delete a web app and create another with the same name? Azure thinks it should sometimes show you the new app, and sometimes give you a “404 Not Found” error, depending on how it feels. We use Azure for deploying production versions of CS Blogs, for reasons I won’t go into here, and it’s been a real pain. The lack of documentation for deploying Node.js apps that are mor… Read more →


Lessons learned from csblogs.com v1.0

In April this year, Danny Brown and I began re-writing csblogs.com. While version 2.0 looks and acts the same, a lot has changed under the hood. Here are some of the things we’ve learnt along the way. MongoDB wasn’t for us While I didn’t have much of a hand in this choice, mongoose.js was easy to develop with at the early stage of development. We later realised MongoDB was not good for relational… Read more →


Lessons learned from csblogs.com v1.0

In April this year, Danny Brown and I began re-writing csblogs.com. While version 2.0 looks and acts the same, a lot has changed under the hood. Here are some of the things we’ve learnt along the way. MongoDB wasn’t for us While I didn’t have much of a hand in this choice, mongoose.js was easy to develop with at the early stage of development. We later realised MongoDB was not good for relational… Read more →


Code Generation Service, now open source

It’s been almost a year since I finished my masters degree at the University of York, and I’ve finally gotten around to open-sourcing my dissertation project “Code Generation as a Service”. That sounds like the right amount of time to recover from stressful report writing and dealing with the Eclipse IDE. The project is a web service that allows software engineers who specialise in Model-Driven En… Read more →


Code Generation Service, now open source

It’s been almost a year since I finished my masters degree at the University of York, and I’ve finally gotten around to open-sourcing my dissertation project “Code Generation as a Service”. That sounds like the right amount of time to recover from stressful report writing and dealing with the Eclipse IDE. The project is a web service that allows software engineers who specialise in Model-Driven En… Read more →


A new PC build for 2016

For me, building a cool PC is as much fun as using it. When I moved to America, I couldn’t take my PC with me – it’s just too big and heavy (and rather old now) – so I decided I would build a new one from scratch. I wanted something suitable for gaming, to catch up on games I missed last year (The Witcher 3, Tomb Raider, Fallout 4 etc.) and I also plan on getting this year’s games to play on it (l… Read more →


A new PC build for 2016

For me, building a cool PC is as much fun as using it. When I moved to America, I couldn’t take my PC with me – it’s just too big and heavy (and rather old now) – so I decided I would build a new one from scratch. I wanted something suitable for gaming, to catch up on games I missed last year (The Witcher 3, Tomb Raider, Fallout 4 etc.) and I also plan on getting this year’s games to play on it (l… Read more →


Readability: Slack vs HipChat

By now I’ve used my fair share of both Slack and HipChat (team-focused messaging services), and I couldn’t figure out why I did’t like Slack’s user interface. I think I’ve finally figured it out. I was recently looking into the best layout for positioning labels in forms - vertical, above the input, or horizontal, inline and to the left of the input. I found this UX Exchange answer and subsequentl… Read more →


Readability: Slack vs HipChat

By now I’ve used my fair share of both Slack and HipChat (team-focused messaging services), and I couldn’t figure out why I did’t like Slack’s user interface. I think I’ve finally figured it out. I was recently looking into the best layout for positioning labels in forms - vertical, above the input, or horizontal, inline and to the left of the input. I found this UX Exchange answer and subsequentl… Read more →