Heat Maps & Other Updates

This is a quick post, I’ve not been all that active on here recently because I’ve just been loving my day job! 😅 – I’ve also been coding, tinkering & experimenting in my spare time.

One super awesome project that I’ve worked on during my short time at QuoteOnSite is allowing our users to essentially have the ability to replay sessions, when our users send out quotes or invoices, etc, they can see how their customers have engaged with these documents.

I won’t lie, at first I was a little unsure on how to start this project, so like most developers I consulted with my colleagues, I did some research, while it started off initially easy, one of the hard parts that I encountered was trying to make these heatmaps responsive. With a lot of trying to think outside of the box, there were no super obvious or simple solutions, not to mention that having come across articles such as this, I wanted to ensure that the feature that we build isn’t one that faces these issues.

Without sharing too much information, I can confirm that the overall project/task seems to have been a success, we’ve managed to build a solution that’s cost effective & some of our customers seem to love this feature already. Despite the fact that we’ve just announced this feature on LinkedIn today!

On other updates, some other projects that I’ve been playing around with is essentially building my own JavaScript library/framework, kinda, it’s more of a starting kit for a vanilla JavaScript project. Some of the requirements are:

  • Build simplicity.
    • While tools like WebPack can be awesome, they can get really tedious trying to keep on top of all the plugins & versions, etc.
    • Take advantage of the DOM, e.g. for something like state management, it could very well be possible to use something like Syml, rather than creating some complex in-memory state manager, why not take advantage of event listeners?
    • Lazy loading.
    • etc.
  • JSX
    • While I do enjoy working with React & Angular, an issue that I have with these tools is that sometimes, you may have some extremely complex application flows. In plain English, I’ve personally found that you either have to write an extensive amount of code, just bloating the code base & making it more verbose than what’s necessary. Or you end up trying to fight/hack against the framework itself, which is worse is up to you.
    • JSX in itself rocks, no need for some template engine or whatever, just throw in some babel configuration & away you go.
  • Minimal configuration.
    • This kinda lends itself to the first point, but the point still stands, personally I’ve really enjoyed playing around with Parcel, I’ve got quite a nice setup running that works with IE 11 and there’s still no config file for Parcel, how great is that?! 😃

Aside from the above, one thing that I plan to play with a lot more in the near future is developing RESTful API’s using Node.js, one thing that I’m going to seriously focus on is simplicity. That means trying to rip out any layers that may be unnecessary, e.g. mappers (entity -> dto & vice versa), etc.

Anyway guys, gals & good peeps, I hope that you think that some of this is cool, I felt that I should just update you guys, just to let you know that I’m still very much alive & well! 😂

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