Ahh… Covid-19. From thinking it was just another little outbreak in Asia to months long lockdowns and seeing friends and family succumb to this nasty little virus, it's been a surreal year-and-a-half. Earlier this year we finally got some hope with the rollout of vaccines, and I personally was very eager to get vaccinated and hopefully leave my anxiety to leave the house behind me. I currently reside in Brussels, Belgium, and unlike in the US, the vaccine rollout was, at least initially, painfully slow. The Brussels government did however set up a nice little web application where they would keep everyone up to date with the current age group that was eligible to get vaccinated. The only caveat was that there was no way to keep informed of any changes to the age group other than refreshing the website. Which I did several times a day for a day or two. But, I wouldn't work in tech if it didn't seem a bit silly to perform a manual repetitive task right? :D
I saw a while ago a nice little demo of one of my colleagues at Red Hat who used Red Hat Fuse (based on Apache Camel) to send a message to Telegram, and this seemed like a pretty good way to go since I use Telegram on a daily basis anyway. The advantage of using an Enterprise Integration Pattern based system is that it makes the solution quite flexible, so if at some point I want to send the message to another endpoint then all I need to change is the "to" parameter of my Camel route and I'm good to go. Likewise, if I want to adapt this code to scrape bits of data from another website, then that's a very easy change as well.
Anyway, take a look at the video and let me know what you think!
When a user reported that some of my code snippets didn't work I noticed that the apostrophes in WordPress are automatically changed to curly quotes. That obviously breaks the code when php tries to parse it. I did some googling and found a simple solution: The "Unfancy Quotes" plugin which can be found here: http://www.semiologic.com/software/wp-tweaks/unfancy-quote/
When outputting data from a database using left joins you often get redundant data in your output. Say you have a table with vendor information, and a second table containing the customers for each vendor. If you want to display a table with the vendor names and their customers, you'll most likely want to use a left join.
The problem is, when you output your data you'll repeat the vendor name for each customer they have. It makes the table look cluttered and hard to read. Not to worry though, there is an easy solution!
// get your data here eg
$query = "SELECT v.id, v.name as vendorname, c.name as customername FROM vendors as v LEFT JOIN customers as c ON v.id = c.vendor_id";
$result = mysql_query($query);