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Gary Bell profile picture

Gary Bell

A Senior Developer working mostly with PHP and JavaScript, with a bit of Python thrown in for good measure, all on Linux. My tooling is simple, it's GitLab and JetBrains where possible.

Work

Senior Developer

Last 250 comments

Have you ever managed a team?

I have previously managed a team, and am currently doing so. ...

Minimize the below code

You could try: if (isNaN(parseFloat(customerIdNumber)) { ...

What online image sharing service do you use?

I'm running into this issue a lot lately. I'm seriously consi...

What describes a productive day for you?

Generally it's a feeling I get at the end of the day. Sometim...

What screen resolution do you have?

If I had a better spec on my personal device, even at 14" I'd...

What screen resolution do you have?

I think next time I'll be going for a 15.6" one. The 17" one ...

What screen resolution do you have?

I'm in the fortunate position to have 2 screens, and only be ...

Do you schedule your blog posts?

Yes. It's my main reason for using a CMS. I wouldn't remember...

Essential PhpStorm plugins

I'm sure the post has some good content on it, but I (and I'm...

How do you manage the content for your portfolio?

Currently Ghost.org. I've started writing the content in sour...

What's your attitude towards hype?

If it's younger than a couple of years old, then I'm not like...

What web analytics tools do you use?

I'm only using Google Analytics at the moment. The reason is ...

Feedback on codepen project please!

I like it, it's cool. I don't know what the challenge is, bu...

What tech did you use to build your personal website/portfolio? 2020 Edition!

I wanted to remove the maintenance and patching of the applic...

What tech did you use to build your personal website/portfolio? 2020 Edition!

My website garybell.co.uk is built using (and hosted on) Ghos...

How did you do this year with content creation?

I have a feeling my struggle throughout the year is going to ...

How did you do this year with content creation?

"My blogging process" - That's going in the backlog under "Co...

JavaScript Password Strength Detector

It's not so much a password strength detector as a length det...

How did you do this year with content creation?

I know I covered this on Twitter, but here's an expanded vers...

Are developers becoming reliant on libraries and frameworks.

I don't think it's that developers are being lazy or unskille...

Can you age out of dev?

This is something I am starting to worry about. Whilst I don'...

What DBs would you recommend to master in 2021?

I think the general view on Redis is that it's just a cache m...

What DBs would you recommend to master in 2021?

I'm really enjoying Redis. Fast, stable, and full of function...

Which sites do you spend more time on than you should?

I try and work stuff I learn into blog posts. Makes thinking ...

Which sites do you spend more time on than you should?

Even though I'm not really in to social media, Twitter is eat...

Privacy is about taking informed decisions

Seems like more of a Google purge, which isn't a bad thing. S...

how to resume multiple commands on one command

Have you considered putting the commands in a single shell sc...

Senior software developer. What next?

Finding that right business idea is the hardest part to be ab...

How many domain names do you own?

Only 3 at the moment. One which is expiring soon, but the pro...

Interview week

Depending on where you are interviewing, you may be asked if ...

Should I start blogging?

Absolutely. And as a shameless plug, here's my post on why yo...

What was your win this week?

I had a day off without something going wrong in production. ...

How long does it take for your test suite to run?

I work in a brilliant place where they understand the cost of...

Do you Git Branch in personal projects?

For most projects, yes. If it's a code/development repository...

How long does it take for your test suite to run?

No. Our unit tests run on GitLab so there's no additional cos...

How long does it take for your test suite to run?

Too long. Was 30 minutes, but we've gotten it down to 10 in t...

I have been blogging for a month now...

Some places in the UK would hold you back to. Me? I just want...

I have been blogging for a month now...

If you are getting that level of attention now, absolutely ke...

Don't use Bootstrap

It's a bit of a leap to liken Bootstrap to Java or PHP. Yes ...

Don't use Bootstrap

The reason for choosing it was to speed up the development pr...

Don't use Bootstrap

I always see Bootstrap as being technical debt. It's great to...

Should I use PHP to make a website in 2020 ?

I'd like to see more information on that. The branches on the...

Should I use PHP to make a website in 2020 ?

Around 1/3 of the Internet run Wordpress. NASA uses Drupal. A...

Who should call API in MVC model ? model or controller

This is exactly the reason why MVC is flawed. If the controll...

How to store radio button value in database PHP?

Please do not use mysql_* functions. Doing so is insecure due...

PHP 8 performance 🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🚀

Just checked my CI job for a small project (and I mean tiny) ...

Have you built any projects with WebAssembly?

No. Well, that was simple and doesn't contribute anything to...

What is your approach for learning a new tech?

I generally start with a tutorial which is relatively similar...

How To Fetch And Update Query In MySQL - PHP

Yes, bad practices. But it also only gives the code without e...

Javascript Tips for Beginners

Thanks. It looked like you were encouraging people to do it. ...

Javascript Tips for Beginners

To make this even better, we can make if, else statements ev...

Post dev.to articles from gitlab

I'd absolutely love to see that. I've been doing a bit of Ans...

Post dev.to articles from gitlab

That's one of my things to investigate next year. And also to...

Post dev.to articles from gitlab

The ghost part was a pipe dream. I need to look at whether th...

What's your experience with TailwindCSS?

Thanks. I think I was just misunderstanding what was needed t...

What's your experience with TailwindCSS?

Thanks. I think I was just misunderstanding what was needed t...

What's your experience with TailwindCSS?

That's really handy. I think we misunderstood what was need...

5% privilege tax for working remotely?

I think this is hitting a stalemate point. Whilst I haven't r...

What's your experience with TailwindCSS?

One of my team members evaluated it to see if it was suitable...

Legal or ethical?

Reach out to the actual Dev.to team and see what they say. Th...

Legal or ethical?

See i saw the part: you may not: modify or copy the materi...

Legal or ethical?

Yes it's illegal. See the terms of use

Opinion needed .

This is going to be hugely opinionated from anyone contributi...

An Answer a Day on StackOverflow

I have to admit, I do like finding things with poor documenta...

An Answer a Day on StackOverflow

I can't remember the last time I answered on StackOverflow, b...

The LGBT+ Community and The Rights to Work

It's frustrating and annoying that this is still an issue. ...

5% privilege tax for working remotely?

It's not that I'm not willing to pay more in taxes. I just do...

5% privilege tax for working remotely?

I wouldn't complain if they hit extra taxes to pay more for ...

Post dev.to articles from gitlab

I'd give it a go. I'm currently writing a series of posts a...

Post dev.to articles from gitlab

This is fantastic. I need to find (ok, or write) one to post...

Wooooooooooo I'm Joining The Forem Team 🌱!!!

Ansible - Yup Terraform - Great Fedora - I'm a Debian guy Bla...

How to provide estimates as a Junior Developer?

It's because people either over estimate their ability, or un...

How to provide estimates as a Junior Developer?

Pro tip: guess, double it, add some more. Then be prepared to...

Square a number: awful answers only

function square(int $root): int { $answer = 0; for (...

What database do you use at work?

The team who implemented it are very aware that it's not supp...

What database do you use at work?

There's a few dotted around in some odd applications. We have...

Have you ever code when you were high? 🥃🤪

This is exactly how I got through some of my modules at Unive...

How To Drive Traffic To Your Side Project

I absolutely need to look into getting my blog out there. I'd...

Laptops - what is more important?

The hard part of determining comfort for laptops is pretty mu...

Have you made recent changes to your workflow to boost productivity?

I've literally had the conversation with someone now. They ha...

Reverse a string: awful answers only

function reverseString(string $input): string { $reverse...

What editor, browser and terminal do you use?

PHPStorm/PyCharm + Chromium (and Firefox) + default Ubuntu te...

Wordpress Performance Plea

I find the Lighthouse Audit from Chrome's developer tools use...

Figure out: how 'junior' a junior developer is!!!

That's a lot to ask of a junior developer without giving more...

Have you made recent changes to your workflow to boost productivity?

I have. I find that I'm not checking my emails every 10 minut...

Laptops - what is more important?

I have an Asus Zenbook, which was a steal when I bought it. I...

Why PHP 8 will be awesome

Part of me thinks PHP 8 will be more or less 7.4 with all the...

Why PHP 8 will be awesome

I really need to spend more time looking into how PHP 8 and t...

Have you made recent changes to your workflow to boost productivity?

I think people have come to expect that email is delivered in...

Have you made recent changes to your workflow to boost productivity?

Not really a workflow thing, but I have started warning peopl...

How do you organize your projects?

I keep forgetting that people do freelance work and actually ...

How do you organize your projects?

What's a finished project? I throw everything under /var/www...

How do you launch your coding projects?

For small projects, I will attach multiple to a single instan...

Why do you still use Php?

PHP powers the majority of websites at the moment. Over 1/3 o...

Have you ever tried any JetBrains product?

Get in touch with them on their IDE specific twitter account....

Have you ever tried any JetBrains product?

I keep telling myself to try the git element of phpstorm, but...

Have you ever tried any JetBrains product?

Every day. I spend my day coding with Phpstorm and use DataGr...

6 Things to Avoid When Contributing to Open-Source Projects

In relation to #1, the "fixes bug #543" part was one of 3 me...

Do you use any antivirus, anti-malware software?

I don't even notice it's there. I only know it's there becaus...

Do you use any antivirus, anti-malware software?

My work laptop (Windows) has Webroot installed. It's part of ...

A laptop without stickers looks naked

I had never put stickers onto my laptop until recently, when ...

What environments do you use to work on GitHub projects?

Probably an age thing. Most web IDEs until fairly recently ha...

What environments do you use to work on GitHub projects?

I don't (I'm a GitLab user!) but I wanted to join in and say ...

Stable distro for development?

Debian is a good choice. It's conservative in its release cyc...

Keyboards - Full size, TKL, or other?

I've rules out a 65% keyboard. I can get away with TKL I thin...

Have you ever made money by selling domains?

Not personally. But I know someone who was offered a substant...

How often have you re-designed your portfolio?

I've done it a lot of times in the past, but I no longer both...

October 22nd, 2020: What did you learn this week?

I had a semi-productive week: I learned about yield in PH...

How many PRs you created in the Hacktober Fest 2020? ✨👩🏻‍💻

1 created 1 merged 0 counting towards total (was on a non-h...

What's your experience on monetizing DEV posts?

If people opt to donate, then low quality posts won't get any...

4 ways to deploy web apps in 2020

I came here expecting to see other offerings, but it's always...

How To Correctly Validate Passwords – Most Websites Do It Wrong

This is great. I hope you don't mind, but I'm creating a PHP ...

Where do you write your DEV drafts?

Drafts? Just type and ship! Actually, most of mine are cross...

How to ask senior devs for help?

To which the usual reply is "which part, there's so much nons...

Keyboards - Does backlighting matter?

Looks nice. Compact and useful. Shame the UK layout is out of...

Keyboards - Does backlighting matter?

I think they can add a slight ambience and potential personal...

Keyboards - Does backlighting matter?

I'm thinking that because my room is mostly light (and my 3 m...

How to ask senior devs for help?

The way I would hope my junior devs would work is as follows:...

Pay cut to work remotely - Fair deal?‍

Not a chance. If it was said that remote workers at my compan...

Linting Jinja Templates using Sparrow plugin jinjalint

Bookmarked. Will look at adding this as a check for my Ansibl...

Do you prefer subdomains or subdirectories?

From a server management perspective, subdomains. It allows m...

It's not wrong to like pink and be a developer

I'm a boy who likes black and blue. Always have. I like them ...

Debate: Symfony VS Laravel

Given that laravel uses a lot of symfony components, I see it...

How do you create your social media handles?

Mostly my name and year of birth. Here and my dev twitter ac...

What's your experience of using Reddit?

Awful. Whilst I see why they don't trust newcomers, sometimes...

What's the most complex project you have ever done or been part of?

I've got 3 big projects to list (not a lot, I know, but stick...

New Career Hunt

Keep plugging away and looking at freelance work for smaller ...

Getting started with GitLab's Cloud Development Kit

I'm glad I'm not the only one to have these issues with web-b...

Never Trust User Input

They offshored the development to the cheapest bidder. It cos...

Never Trust User Input

That's a great story, made me chuckle. I've done a few syste...

What do you use Cron jobs for?

At Home: Send disk space updates to my dashboard ...

Wondering what's in Gitlab 13.5?

I'm looking forward to it. Mainly because I have a few (trivi...

Too Old To Be In Tech?

As someone who hires for a team, I don't care if the person i...

Do you create video content?

Thanks for the feedback, it's greatly appreciated. I think m...

What's your use of Raspberry Pi?

I have an 8GB 4B which I use for PiHole plus backing my NAS u...

Hacktoberfest - Ideas for Contributing as a Beginner

Thanks. I need to look at Github again to compare GitLab CI a...

Hacktoberfest - Ideas for Contributing as a Beginner

tl;dr The vast amount of features, all in one plac...

Hacktoberfest - Ideas for Contributing as a Beginner

My biggest issues is that I can (and do) use GitLab for every...

Hacktoberfest - Ideas for Contributing as a Beginner

1. finding a project that picks your interest This is the ha...

YEAH!!!!! I did it....😉😍

Because the repositories were created today and contributed t...

YEAH!!!!! I did it....😉😍

I'd argue that if you've only done 4 MRs for a t-shirt and ar...

20 Famous Quotes for your DEV Inspiration

Only if you take it as literally as possible. The part "the...

6 Continuous Integration tools you can use for an Open Source project

Thanks. I get a bit evangelical about GitLab because I genuin...

What was your win this week?

I had a good week with a couple of wins: Made my first merg...

Who's participating in Hacktoberfest 2020?

I actually signed up. Now to find a project to work on

Who's participating in Hacktoberfest 2020?

I might give it a go. It could lead to some fun posts and som...

What are your favorite DB GUI tools?

DataGrip by JetBrains. It lets me work with several database ...

Bitbucket, GitHub or GitLab: What's your fav?

GitLab. I don't even try to hide the fact. Just about all of ...

20 Famous Quotes for your DEV Inspiration

I'm quite partial to Ice Hockey (go Lightning!) so it's the f...

Just bought a new laptop for coding!

Thanks. I'll look at that and see what I can find. Anything t...

20 Famous Quotes for your DEV Inspiration

"You miss 100% of the shots you never take"- Wayne Gretzky Ba...

Show off your Mug ☕️🥤🍵

My home coffee mug is shopdisney.co.uk/disney-store-groo... a...

Just bought a new laptop for coding!

I had an MSI GS70 stealth for years before going Asus Zenbook...

Just bought a new laptop for coding!

It's got a 256GB SSD as part of it. RAM is soldered so cannot...

6 Continuous Integration tools you can use for an Open Source project

Rushing to the defence for GitLab here. If you have a big ope...

Just bought a new laptop for coding!

I've got an Asus Zenbook i5 with 8GB RAM and running Ubuntu a...

10+ Top Blog Themes for Ghost

Will have to come back to this and give them some proper thou...

What is the lighthouse score of your porfolio/personal website (and why)?

Desktop: 83, 95, 92, 100 Mobile: 45, 95, 92, 98 It's hosted ...

Websites That Pay You To Write Technical Articles

Applied to a couple. I'm looking forward to their responses t...

Let's discuss: What are your biggest difficulties with Git?

If it's something which even a small number of people have a ...

What are you glad you no longer use?

I was going to say Internet Explorer. Sadly I still have to u...

Let's discuss: What are your biggest difficulties with Git?

I've used git for years, and I've still not managed to get my...

Is git commit --amend truly *important*?

Literally yesterday I was configuring a new CI pipeline for a...

Top 10 Pieces of Advice for Becoming the Worst Developer Possible

It's missing the bonus "Never test anything - that's what pro...

What's your typical RAM usage ?

Currently at 94%. That's low for me. It's usually 98, but I h...

When did you transision to MacOS and how did you find it?

I don't own any other Apple hardware. I have no plans to, eit...

When did you transision to MacOS and how did you find it?

I'm a little concerned I'd struggle with the the shortcuts (I...

What **is** Docker?

MSN?! The nostalgia is strong here! I'm interested in underst...

Where do I get an affordable (or free) RDBMS?

The brilliant part about DigitalOcean is their transparency o...

Where do I get an affordable (or free) RDBMS?

Affordable is a relative point. Depending on your income and ...

What paid services do you use?

I use PHPStorm just about every day. I also use DataGrip quit...

What paid services do you use?

I have the full toolbox. I also got my employer to pay for it...

Why I switched to Linux full time

My personal laptop is Ubuntu, my work laptop is Windows, but ...

What paid services do you use?

Full JetBrains suite. I'd not be without them as a suite of I...

What shared hosting providers have you tried?

I've yet to find a good email host which doesn't charge the e...

What shared hosting providers have you tried?

I've lost count and track of the providers I have used over t...

Coffee drinkers: Do you take breaks?

I only really drink coffee Monday - Friday. It's not for the ...

Why should I Migrate to Magento 2

As someone who currently has to support a Magento 1 site, let...

How does deployment work at your organization?

SSH to one server. Set node to offline. SSH to other server....

What was your win this week?

Managed to get GlusterFS replica created and mounted on 3 nod...

11 Most Asked Questions About PHP

It's also worth mentioning that for "6. When to use self over...

What is your current job title and what do you aspire to be?

Currently "Senior Developer", but I cover all things IT. I'm ...

jQuery Migrate brakes WordPress version 5.5

What both worries and annoys me about Wordpress is that withi...

Which CI/CD tool do you use?

Yeah, but my org has 10k pipeline minutes for a small team, s...

Which CI/CD tool do you use?

If you use Jenkins, or start to, remember to rotate and clear...

Which CI/CD tool do you use?

GitLab. I can have my source code, pipeline, backlog, docume...

Speeding PHP with FFI

If I'm understanding this correctly, this essentially allows ...

I Understand Flexbox!

I'll get there with it one day. I don't do enough front end t...

"The Phoenix Project" Must Read For Developers

The follow up, The Unicorn Project is a great addition to thi...

Which Linux distros have you tried?

Ubuntu Most people have, but this is the one I use daily. Ma...

What's your worst internet explorer story?

The 4095 css rule in IE was always a great one to debug. Havi...

What chair do you use for coding?

Already on my list for my next chair. Especially if I am stil...

Developer/designer?

I'm going to be boring and directly answer a couple of those ...

PHP and BindParam: Pointers are tricky

Had this very same issue last week and fixed it on Monday. It...

5 best IntelliJ IDEA shortcuts

I've recently found the shortcut Alt+F12 for getting me from ...

Technical Debt as a Tool

I agree. Sometimes deadlines simply loom, and you have to mak...

Which technologies would you choose for your next web project?

I'm in the middle of a Greenfield project at the moment, and ...

Never Split The Difference Review

I found it to be one of those books that you'll need to read ...

A Developer's Diet

Wow, this couldn't be any more spammy if it was a supermarket...

Explanation of this code?

The while loop ensures that the loop only runs until the squa...

What IDE / Code editors have you used?

I personally believe it is. I pay for my own license, I make ...

What IDE / Code editors have you used?

I've tried loads to her where I am now. Roughly speaking it w...

The Developer's Deployment Checklist

I've yet to find the right balance between merging and rebasi...

Is a big layoff in tech coming?

I'm expecting staff reductions in the likes of JustEat and De...

How are you keeping up with your hobbies?

Not a lot been happening with mine. But the Stanley Cup is on...

July 31st, 2020: What did you learn this week?

Yup. And after a few days of scoped labels, I have no idea ho...

July 31st, 2020: What did you learn this week?

My bosses value my productivity more than a little bit of mon...

My Macbook

My personal machine is only an it with 8GB RAM and a 256GB SS...

My Macbook

I think the MacBook might actually be the perfect development...

How do you document your side projects?

Documentation, on side projects? Nah! That said, the one I a...

How many side projects have you started this year?

3 projects, but no monetization strategy that's going to remo...

Python or PHP?

I'd say PHP. Yes, I am a PHP developer, but I also use Pytho...

How to version large files with Git

Sub modules are an interesting beast of their own. But yes, m...

How to version large files with Git

Whilst it would still initially be slow, if the large files r...

New Job New Tools

It's not at all selfless, I got a year's free licensing out o...

New Job New Tools

I'm fortunate enough to have had a personal licence for the J...

What was your win this week?

Finally got out of the management mode and back into the deve...

What are the major lessons from the Twitter hack?

There's a few to take away that I can see: If users can do ...

"Why do you want to work for us?" - Interview Question (Demystified)

I don't ask candidates why they want to work for us, but I do...

rsync - 10 examples in 11 days (Day 01)

Looking forward to the rest of the series. On my todo list is...

Coding basics: DRY programming

True. That's one of those things that comes with time and exp...

How far in advance do you plan your blog posts?

I try to build some consistency, and am also trying to build ...

How far in advance do you plan your blog posts?

I find I need to create content regularly or I'll go months o...

How far in advance do you plan your blog posts?

I write by assuming I have no audience - or that future me is...

How far in advance do you plan your blog posts?

Hi Stephanie, Thanks for responding. I have an idea backlog ...

16GB or 32GB RAM for Web Development?

Just checked your profile, and you're a contract developer. C...

16GB or 32GB RAM for Web Development?

It depends on your workflow. My work machine (not a mac) has ...

What do you do within the first 30 minutes of starting your work day?

I actually had to re-read that a few times to make sure it sa...

As a programmer, how do you keep yourself healthy? Tips | Apps | Tools

Some of these are things people have already suggested, but h...

Starting a new journey - blogging 💻

Hi Sunil. Good luck with the creating more content than you c...

Cost-cutting in AWS due to this pandemic Covid-19

I've done a calculation exercise previously for my current em...

Favourite Linux distro

I use Ubuntu daily, and also for servers for the most part. ...

What is a Fork Bomb in Linux and how to stop it?

Not the post you want to be reading whilst waiting for update...

Would you run Linux on your MacBook?

I'm not a Mac user, but I am a Ubuntu user, so it's not reall...

eCommerce without backend?

Use a similar method, but change the sending to use something...

My website now loads in less than 1 sec! Here's how I did it! ⚡

That's what I was meaning by avoiding the database for CMS re...

What language or tool are you curious about, but have not found the time to use or learn?

React and Vue. I've spent most of my career doing developmen...

Git for solo developers

Absolutely use it for personal projects. It keeps me in good...

Care to share some painfully funny debugging stories?

I once spent 30 minutes trying to figure out why my debugger ...

What headphones do you use?

Sennheiser CX6.00BT. I can connect to both my phone and lapto...

My website now loads in less than 1 sec! Here's how I did it! ⚡

I'd probably add "use caching where possible" into the mix. ...

Share your personal blog or résumé website

Mine is garybell.co.uk Blog is current, pages are imported ...

Bad Programming Habits

Some code should be commented, for example any code which is ...

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