Refining Modern Web Development



Migration to a static site: Experience with Metalsmith vs Gulp

I started this site using poet on top of node.js and express, mainly wanting to expand my node skills and use my free Azure credits I got as a Microsoft employee. Azure Websites, the Heroku-like PaaS had just launched (now called App Services). It was a nice experience.

Later on while working at Appuri, we decided to move our public website off of Hubspot as it was a nightmare for our talented designer, Jeff Reynolds, who knew HTML and CSS, to work in. It would need marketing functionality, but we took the approach that whatever we needed could be provided via a 3rd party JavaScript tag on the client. So we didn't need a server at all. We could simply serve it from an S3 bucket cheaply and it will always be up. Circle CI would build the site and sync the bucket.

So how to build it?


A fast and robust way to run Sauce Labs tests in Circle CI

We've been using Circle CI at Appuri for many months now and have been very happy with it. It's very simple and has a great breadth of features, namely the ability to SSH into a build to diagnose it when things get really tricky, as well as docker build services, slack integration, and lots of built-in services. After I hit a wall with PhantomJS, and needing to run our tests on multiple browsers anyways, it was time to integrate Sauce Labs to do our browser testing, which I've had great experience with on many open source projects. In those projects I used grunt-saucelabs as I am not a big fan of Karma as I like to control the HTML page the tests run on as well as the simplicity of mocha-phantomjs and just refreshing a flat file or using browser sync.

However we're using gulp and I didn't want to pull in grunt and have two build systems. Unfortunately there's no gulp-saucelabs, which I contemplated doing (I may sometime), but I found I could simply use mocha-cloud. However, it didn't bring up the tunnel.