What's New

April 07, 2019

We are very happy to announce the new Photos and Files applications! They offer a richer set of functionality than their predecessors, and are much easier to use on mobile devices. The Photos, Photo Stats, and Videos apps have been consolidated into the Photos application to make it easier to view photos or videos.

Additionally, there were a few minor updates as well, including:

  • Show links to the new Photos and Files applications at all times
  • Updated underlying libraries
  • Removed some of the social icons

As always, if you have ideas on how to improve the site, or those applications, please contact me!

February 25, 2019

Made a number of changes to the codebase, both large and small. The larger items are in preparation for improvements that are coming soon (I hope). Some of the notable changes for this release:
  • Update client libraries (Bootstrap, Angular, and other dependencies)
  • Migrate some Angular apps to AspNetCore, as they did not have a real client side story, and were originally used to get my feet wet with Angular 2 given their simplicity
  • Improve the underlying APIs to be more RESTful
  • Integrate NSwag to publish Swagger/OpenAPI docs
  • Lots of prep work for the upcoming improvements, but won't say much about that to keep it a surprise

September 11, 2018

In addition to a handful of small updates over the past months, there is one major feature just released. It is now possible to upload files to the website once you have logged in. It took a while to implement, as I took an opportunity to play with the following:
  • SignalR
  • NGXS
  • ng2-file-upload
  • file-saver

June 04, 2018

It has been a while since the last update, here are the highlights in the latest release:
  • Broke the site into 3 smaller pieces with narrower focus: auth / api / www
  • Implemented IdentityServer4 for improved auth, and improved security for MaW Photos Android app with help from AppAuth
  • Upgraded to ASP.Net Core 2.1
  • Upgraded to Bootstrap 4.1
  • Upgraded to Angular 6.0, updated all other JS dependencies, and incorporated oidc-client for auth (no longer depends on cookie from site)
  • Migrated to Let's Encrypt certificates
  • Simplified user profile by dropping unnecessary fields
  • Added an initial attempt at an unimpressive webgl shader
  • Addressed a few outstanding issues
If you have any problems with the new site, please let me know!

November 02, 2017

A number of updates since the last post:
  • Significantly reduced the size all photos for the site with minimal visual quality impact. This should improve performance in the photo applications. Note that the print version of photos are not affected.
  • Change the SizePhotos app to incorporate this new process so photos are optimized on a go-forward basis
  • A few security improvements:
    • Increased password complexity requirements
    • Improved password reset error messaging
    • Protect against open redirects
    • Add support for GitHub authentication
  • Upgrade Angular apps to v5.0.0 and CLI 1.5.0, which improves performance

September 12, 2017

Some minor updates tonight:
  • update email functions to generate pretty HTML emails
  • fix a bug with password reset functionality
  • more JS updates - Angular upgrades, import more libraries via npm rather than including via page scripts

August 25, 2017

Finally deployed a major update of the site. While many of the updates were infrastructure level improvements, there were some user facing enhancements as well:
  • Upgraded OS to Fedora 26
  • Upgraded to .NET Core 2.0 / ASP.NET Core 2.0
  • Switched from Supervisord to Systemd to manage the ASP.NET service
  • Migrate from EF to Dapper for DB access
  • Enable users to opt in and authenticate with different social accounts
  • Upgrade Angular apps to 5.0b4, for improved performance and some minor animations
  • Enhanced favicons
  • Replaced FontAwesome with inline SVG
  • XML tools are back now that the relevant APIs were added back in .NET Standard 2.0
  • Numerous other code cleanup and improvements

December 11, 2016

Minor updates to the site tonight:
  • version upgrades for client applications
  • some additional code cleanup
  • soft launch of the 3D version of the photo app

November 17, 2016

Excited to announce another system level upgrade for the website, namely:
  • Upgraded Fedora 23 to Fedora 24, which include Nginx and Posgres upgrades
  • Upgraded to RTM .Net / ASP.Net Core 1.1.0
  • Nginx is now upgraded from SPDY to HTTP/2

I have been waiting for this update, as I've been wanting to get on Fedora 24 for some time, but have been holding out for .Net Core support. It is really great to see all the great work going on in .Net. The commitment to open source is really amazing. It is funny to think back to 2002 when I was wanting to be a Java developer rather than .Net! I am very happy I took the .Net path!

I have also been playing with a new app that is still very much in development. Hopefully I will have something to announce by the end of the year.

November 05, 2016

Today I set out to make a relatively small tweak to try and squeak out a little performance. Let's be totally honest here, this site is super low traffic, and doubt this will be noticed by anyone, but am always curious to try and optimize how this runs to learn new things. As such, I thought I would change nginx/kestrel to communicate over unix sockets rather than tcp. I thought I would do this quickly in the morning before soccer, but this has ended up taking many hours. The main issue was identifying and updating SELinux to allow nginx to access unix sockets. The docs on my github repo will be updated in the next day or two with these steps, so check it out if this topic is of interest to you.

Although I wanted to throw in the towel and just go back to tcp, I am glad I stuck with it and finally got this to work.