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New and less common technologies

What should we be learning about that we might miss?

     
11:42 am on Oct 11, 2016 (gmt 0)

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What new and less common technologies should web masters be looking at or learning?

I mean anything that is not often talked about. Programming languages, databases, frameworks, web servers, hosting and VMs, whatever....

My list to get the ball rolling:

  1. Haskell - because it is a good tool to have, particularly if your usual tool is scripting languages, and learning it is a stimulating challenge.
  2. Cherrypy WDGI server - only for Python developers, and I am talking about the server only, not the whole framework: it is a simple, production quality way of deploying web apps where convenience of low resource usage is more important than performance or scalability.
  3. Hiawatha web server - a lot of security features, good performance, and the code has been audited. Simple to configure too.


I am just as interested in things that are niche, or have never got the recognition they deserve, as hot new stuff - in any case, new stuff often turns out to be a partial reinvention of old stuff in a new niche.

[edited by: graeme_p at 12:40 pm (utc) on Oct 11, 2016]

12:14 pm on Oct 11, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I am learning Elasticsearch because i have some large datasets which are not suitable for (fulltext) indexing in MySQL.
12:25 pm on Oct 11, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I have used Solr myself (also Lucene based, like elasticsearch). Elastic search has some nice features, but Solr was a better fit for general web search which was what I needed it for. Something that can at least do word-stemming and suggestions is definitely a good thing to have in our toolkits.
12:29 pm on Oct 11, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I'm working with MongoDB nosql database, and Bottle.py WSGI web package. I assume that it is similar to Cherry.py. I run it on an Apache server using mod_WSGI. Bottle is simple. It is straight forward but requires you to build everything, as compared to Django, that is a blackbox.

The other niche thing I use is SVG with CSS animation. I use it to create on-page interactive graphics.
12:36 pm on Oct 11, 2016 (gmt 0)

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@Nick, I have used Bottle myself a bit.

CherryPy is a framework (more complex than Bottle, less complex than Django). However, it includes its own webserver, that is meant to be used as an app server behind a proxy. However, as long as it is not dealing with lots of (or large) static files or high volumes of traffic it is quite a decent pure python web server and can serve static files as well. It is one of the options for deploying Bottle can can be used with anything that can work with WSGI (I have used it with Django too).
1:14 am on Oct 12, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Cherry.py sounds interesting, I will have to look more into it.
9:04 pm on Oct 18, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I've dabbled a bit with CUDA and wrote a hashcash GPU implementation.

More hosts are begining to offer GPU dedicated servers for lease, and it seems like GPU programming will become more central to dealing with the masses of data thrown around online.

I've also been installing NGINX in preference t Apache nowadays. Their proxy_pass setup is quite handy for making apps language agnostic.
6:10 am on Oct 19, 2016 (gmt 0)

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@Nick, it is, both the server (which was what I was talking about) and the framework. Nice to know there are other Python devs here: from most of the discussion you would think everyone used Perl or PHP :)

@brotherhood of LAN, intersting stuff. I think you are right about it becoming more important. There are a lot of other interesting web servers:I already mentioned Hiawatha and cherrypy WSGI server, but Mighty ([github.com ]), Caddy ([caddyserver.com ]) OpenResty ([openresty.org ]) and many more look interesting.
10:33 pm on Oct 20, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I've heard of Caddy and what's said is generally positive. Have you used it at all?
6:01 am on Oct 21, 2016 (gmt 0)

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No. I have been looking at using it because I have clients it might suit but I have not actually used it yet. Have used Cherrypy as an app server, and I have two Hiawatha installs.
9:03 am on Oct 21, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Just to add, I also used Cherrypy briefly to serve static content and a Django app, but that was just a temporary arrangement until I put something more permanent in place.
12:27 am on Oct 26, 2016 (gmt 0)

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The OP had me thinking through what cool/new stuff I've learned in the past 5-years and came to the conclusion that most was simply 'keeping up'.

There is a density to the new versions...
* HTMLn =>HTML5
* CSSn => CSS3
* JavaScript => ES6
* HTTP/1.1 => HTTP/2

To meet server scaling requirements...
* PostgreSQL => PostgreSQL clusters + pgpool + pgbouncer + repmgr

To meet server non-blocking requirements...
* PHP => PHP + node.js

To meet data analysis scaling requirements...
* spreadsheet + PostgreSQL => Hypertable + MapReduce-MPI +
Quantcast File System + Postgres-XL
* 'R' language

To keep abreast of mobile app development...
* Objective-C language
* Swift language

To wave the magic reports wand...
* BIRT (Business Intelligence and Reporting Tools)

Always something more, always something new to learn.
Fun!
When not feeling like take two bottles of aspirin and try again in the morning...

Note: I really dislike frameworks but then I work alone so keeping everyone on the same page is fairly easy! The constraints and overhead are just too great for the benefit.
5:34 am on Oct 30, 2016 (gmt 0)

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There is quite a bit of new stiff there. HTML 5 may be just keeping up, but R and Map Reduce are genuine hew stuff.

Why chose Node for non-blocking servers? Because you already knew Javascript?

I also work alone, but I like frameworks. The benefit is that a lot of stuff is done, tested and maintained for you: form handling, authentication, routing, etc.
3:13 pm on Oct 30, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Yes, I chose node.js because (1) I had an extensive existing server architecture (Apache and PHP) and wasn't about to do a total replace (2) didn't want to add another new language to the learn list and (3) it agreed to play nicely.

Frameworks certainly have their pluses. I'm somewhat contrary :) and don't need the benefits enough to put up with, primarily, extra bandwidth overhead of unnecessary aspects.
Note: I happily refuse to use the latest framework as well, AMP.
11:49 am on Nov 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I imagine most alternatives would meet the first criterion, the second is certainly a good reason. I do not understand the third.

With regard to frameworks we are talking at cross-purposes - I meant back end frameworks, not front end. I am inclined to agree with you about front end frameworks, but I sometimes need to get stuff done quickly (not that I do much front end stuff anyway) - I have to use them, rather than want to use them :(

I avoid adding languages to the learn list simply by using Python for everything (so far, off the top of my head, web backends, GUIs, numerical stuff, text munging and web crawling). I started learning Haskell partly because I had not learned a new language for a long time (I read of lot of tutorials, but I have not really really learned a new language since I started using Python)
10:47 am on Nov 16, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Every day read and learn smth new. Sometimes visit this one [djangostars.com...] . Guys got a lot of interesting info, put new articles from time to time. Really interesting to read!
 

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