Announcing JSON Feed

Straight from the JSON Feed homepage:

We — Manton Reece and Brent Simmons — have noticed that JSON has become the developers’ choice for APIs, and that developers will often go out of their way to avoid XML. JSON is simpler to read and write, and it’s less prone to bugs.

So we developed JSON Feed, a format similar to RSS and Atom but in JSON. It reflects the lessons learned from our years of work reading and publishing feeds.

See the spec. It’s at version 1, which may be the only version ever needed. If future versions are needed, version 1 feeds will still be valid feeds.

Sounds interesting…

PHPUnit Snapshot Assertions – a way to test without writing actual test cases

phpunit-snapshot-assertions – is an interesting addition to the PHPUnit assertions which allows testing against previously created snapshots.  This is particularly useful for testing the outputs of API end-points, format conversion functions, and the like.  Instead of testing the actual functionality, these assertions allow to compare the output of the current test run with the known good output of a previously created snapshot.

This works well for generic text, but even better for widely used formats like JSON and XML, where, in case of a failed assertion, a meaningful difference can be provided.

Here is a blog post providing some more details on philosophy and methodology.

Religious programming

Here is a snippet of discussion I had with a colleague today.  I thought it was funny:

[2:59 PM] Him: this is your prob:
[2:59 PM] * Him sent file IMG_04092012_145925.png.
[2:59 PM] Him: “&” is not valid char in xml
[3:00 PM] Me: hmm
[3:00 PM] Me: how do you know? :)
[3:00 PM] Him: i prayed to the lord and he showed me the way
[3:00 PM] Him: you didn’t, right?
[3:01 PM] Me: I have a different lord apparently :)
[3:01 PM] Him: your lord is not a programmer!
[3:01 PM] Me: no, my lord can parse & in xml just fine … your lord is a pussy :)
[3:02 PM] Him: lol!!

Upgraded to WordPress

I have finally upgraded to this blog to WordPress A couple of security issues with XML RPC are fixed by this release. I was a bit slow, since the fixes were released for over a week now, but not to worry – my PHP installation already had all the fixes for XML RPC installed.

Slashdot is running a story on the issue. One of the comments shows an easy way of upgrading PEAR that not everyone might be familiar with:

pear clear-cache
pear upgrade XML_RPC