A Simple CLI for Convertkit

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When I need to check a person's details on Convertkit, I need to log in to Convertkit and search for the person's email address. This process takes time, energy, and clicks.

I'm not in the state to check a website when I'm doing work. I want to find the person's information quickly and get stuff done.

So I created a command line interface for [Convertkit][1].

Element.focus vs aria-activedescendant

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When you build JavaScript components, you need to manage focus for both keyboard users and screen readers. The WAI-ARIA specs say there are two ways to manage focus:

  1. Using element.focus and tabindex
  2. Using aria-activedescendant

Which should you use and why?

I did in-depth research on these two methods and I'd like to share my findings in this article. Take a seat and grab some popcorn because it's going to be a long article.

Overcoming my panic towards accessibility

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Accessibility is a big part of JavaScript. If you build anything with JavaScript, you need to make them accessible.

I've been afraid of touching accessibility for a few years now. This fear magnified when I began writing the accessibility lessons for [Learn JavaScript][1].

Today, I want to share with you why I became afraid of accessibility, and how I overcame this fear.

Installing MongoDB on Mac (Catalina and non-Catalina)

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I had to reconfigure my Macbook after sending it for repairs. During the reconfiguration period, I noticed the instructions I linked to in ["Setting up a local MongoDB connection"][1] were outdated.

Here's an updated version on how to install MongoDB on a Mac.

Designing Learn JavaScript's course portal

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Learn JavaScript is my flagship JavaScript course. It helps people go from knowing nothing about JavaScript to becoming a professional JavaScript developer.

Today, I want to share with you how I designed Learn JavaScript's course portal.

<Image src="/assets/2020/ljs-portal/login.png" alt="Learn JavaScript login page." />

Getting keyboard-focusable elements

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If you create JavaScript widgets, one of the key parts to accessibility is managing focus.

To manage focus, you need to find keyboard-focusable elements.

Multi-line gradient links

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When I saw the CSS Tricks redesign, I was hooked. I loved the links with gradients. I told myself I'm going to use gradient links for my next project.

That's what I did for Learn JavaScript's course portal. The links look like this:

<Image src="/assets/2020/multi-line-gradient/link.gif" alt="Blue color link with blue underline. When hovered, the text has an orange to yellow gradient; underline becomes solid orange." /> I want to share what I learned about creating gradient links

Year-end review: 2019

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2019 has ended. Once again, I want to conduct my year-end review in public. This time, in a lot more depth and rawness compared to the previous years.

Mongoose 101: Population

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MongoDB documents have a size limit of 16MB. This means you can use subdocuments (or embedded documents) if they are small in number.

For example, Street Fighter characters have a limited number of moves. Ryu only has 4 special moves. In this case, it's okay to use embed moves directly into Ryu's character document.

<Image src="/assets/2019/mongoose-population/ryu.png" alt="Ryu's document." /> But if you have data that can contain an unlimited number of subdocuments, you need to design your database differently.

One way is to create two separate models and combine them with populate.

Mongoose 101: Working with subdocuments

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You learned how to use Mongoose on a basic level to create, read, update, and delete documents in the [previous tutorial][1]. In this tutorial, we'll go a step further into subdocuments

Mongoose 101

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Mongoose is a library that makes MongoDB easier to use. It does two things:

  1. It gives structure to MongoDB Collections
  2. It gives you helpful methods to use

In this article, you'll learn how to use Mongoose on a basic level.

What to do if you're struggling with a Bootcamp

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Bootcamps are fast-paced learning environments.

Most people who enroll in a Bootcamp do quite well when it comes to HTML and CSS. But many people struggle with JavaScript. Some even get depressed about programming because they can't understand JavaScript.

If you're one of these people, I want to let you know that you're not alone. I receive emails from people like yourself occasionally.

Here's one I received from Seth.

<Image src="/assets/2019/bootcamp/seth.png" alt="Email says: I joined this coding bootcamp mid August and I was so much green to programming. I was really motivated and have been having so much interest in programming for quite a while now. I have been learning Javascript since I enrolled and I have grasped a little concept but right now I feel like QUITING, AM GIVING UP on coding. I don't feel the motivation anymore like I no longer get what the facilitator is saying. I really dont feel being in that bootcamp anymore. " />

Understanding Homebrew

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Homebrew is a package manager for Mac OS. It lets you download binaries, packages, and applications with a single command.

In this article, I want to explain how to use Homebrew.

Protecting and syncing secret keys

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You should never expose API keys or secrets. If you expose them, you might get into trouble. Once, I almost had to pay an excessive amount because my friend leaked my Amazon API key by accident.

What's the amount? I can't remember, but I think somewhere between $20,000 to $60,000. Thankfully, Amazon waived the charges.

It's big trouble if you expose your API keys. So don't expose them.

The best way to protect your API keys is to use environment variables.

Handling Errors in Express

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I had a hard time learning how to handle errors in Express when I started. Nobody seemed to have written the answers I needed, so I had to learn it the hard way.

Today, I want to share everything I know about handling errors in an Express app.

What programming languages should you learn?

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There are LOTS of languages. Picking one (or two, or three! 😱) can be scary and overwhelming at first. In this article, I want to share three things:

  1. What to consider when picking languages
  2. What NOT to worry about when you pick languages
  3. Recommendations for languages to learn

The difference between HTML, CSS, and JavaScript

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In this article, I want to explain the difference between HTML, CSS, and JavaScript with an analogy. I hope it helps you understand what these languages are, and what they do.