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Custom Link Shortener for SAAS Apps

Ever need a link shortener for a project your working on? Want something you can host? I put something together this weekend specifically designed for saas style companies.

Drop three files into your project, and then make short links to your little hearts desire. The application itself can be hosted on it’s own domain – or within a directory. It allows every link to be connected to a specific customer account, and user id.

You can also add custom variables onto the links themselves for location, person ID, and 3 others (a,b,c). Imagine an email with one link, but being able to track total clicks, and who clicked. Plus we also break down device data, and geo-code the IP address (though that seems a bit inaccurate – eh).

Easy to make custom landing and error pages (just use a folder and it’ll grab and display the content.

Check it out in action here

https://freshv.in/ – Landing
https://freshv.in/sijfsdkfj – error
https://freshv.in/coco – redirect to the coco site

Grab the Code Here:

https://github.com/FreshVine/link-shortener

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Why I gave up my Bike Helmet – and you should too

no-more-bike-helmets

I enjoy biking into work. It is only a mile and a half, but it is all urban biking next to and in between cars. It’s a fun way to get around town, and it feels great. I also never wear a helmet. There are looks that people give me for it, but it is a conscious decision I’ve made.

Last year I stumbled across research that showed wearing a helmet while biking does little to protect you. That individuals who wore helmets ended up in more accidents than those who did not. It’s very interesting, and counter to the cultural story we are told about bike saftey. There are two articles from earlier this year that describe the issue much better then I can. I encourage you to read them here and here  (also linked to below).

A few quotes for the lazy:

If there was conclusive proof that bike helmets reduce the total number of serious head injuries compared to other normal activities, then I’d reconsider my stance. But if I’m not the kind of person who wears a helmet when I take a walk or get behind the wheel of a car, then there’s no logic to me wearing one when I’m on a bike, particularly if I’m confident in my urban bike safety ability.

Meanwhile the proof is pretty strong that vehicles give me more space when I’m biking without a helmet. In a city biking, that’s the kind of injury I’m most concerned about.

Why it MakesSense to bike without a helmet

And

Other data shows that despite increased voluntary helmet use by adults in the US and Great Britain, the overall number of cyclist fatalities hasn’t been affected.

On the whole, when large numbers of people begin wearing helmets, we really don’t see a benefit in the head injury or fatality rates.

Stop Forcing People to Wear Bike Helmets

Photo Credit: Henry

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Ignore SSL Certificates in QT

I’ve been rebuilding our check-in application for Fresh Vine this past week in QT. Moving away from Adobe Air has been a while coming since it seems like they are abandoning the environment. Developing our app in HTML5/JS/CSS will allow our team to fix/improve the app more rapidly.

As a part of my dev environment I’m using a locally hosted version of our API (using the Hosts file to direct it local). The issue is that QT checks for the validity of SSL certificates, and I am using a self signed cert in development. Being that my remote file requests come from javascript, I could not simply catch the exception and manually override it. I needed to keep QT from looking for certificates all together.

The below code was difficult to find, so here is to hoping it helps someone else. It alters the configuration of the SSL handler for QT in your app. We are going to comment it out before production to ensure no funny business happens, but for dev this is perfect.

Hope this helps some other poor soul out there strugling to dev out locally. Please don’t leave it in when publishing releases.

The goes at the top of your app’s *.cpp file.

#include <QSslConfiguration>

The goes in your primary app function. I believe the default is main(). I placed it after  `QApplication` and before we instantiated our viewer (`Html5ApplicationViewer` in our case). Setting the PeerVerifyMode allows you to disable any checks for the cert.

int main(int argc, char *argv[]){
    QApplication app(argc, argv);
    ...

    // Ignore SSL Errors [Comment out before production]
    QSslConfiguration sslConf = QSslConfiguration::defaultConfiguration();
    sslConf.setPeerVerifyMode(QSslSocket::VerifyNone);
    QSslConfiguration::setDefaultConfiguration(sslConf);

    ...
    // Load the viewer to hold the application
    Html5ApplicationViewer viewer;
}
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What Would I Say?

There is a website that will dig through your archive of Facebook Status updates and generate new potential status updates you could post by mashing together parts of old posts. There were some pretty good ones that were actually pretty accurate (though most were really weird). Below are a few of the ones I found funny. You can get your own by going to their site – what-would-i-say.com
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