Day 66 – Species+ Team end credits

Pull request – what a pride and joy! We did it last week and then today once again.

Karolina was bravely preparing two tables with most visited species on Species+ (two tables, because Agnieszka suggested her to divide results from two databases – CITES & CMS). Soon after the pull request her computer broke down 😦

At the same time Magda was working on adding interaction to the line chart. Our mentors had requested a new feature – clicking on a particular week in a chart could open a view with top-10 species for that week. Now after a few days of work it’s ready 🙂

This is how Rails Girls Summer of Code 2014 ends for us. We learnt A LOT. Coding is sometimes like playing detective – you have to think logically and search for the new solutions. This was more than adventure – this was the new beginning.

So, thank you all:

– our coaches – for your endless patience
– our mentors – for all the challenges
– our supervisor Laura – for help and empathy
– all the organisers – just for being there

What’s next? In October Karolina starts her career as a junior developer in Rebased. Magda is going to continue her learning, prepare her own app and then look for an internship next year.

See you on GoTo conference in Berlin! We’ll let you know how it was.

Day 56

Summer is slowly changing in autumn. In our project everything tends to a happy ending 🙂 We completed our tables and chart. Our mentor Agnieszka suggested us to do some small modifications. We were doing it for the whole last week. At the moment we’re almost ready and preparing our code to the pull request. Of course Agnieszka already gave us another tasks to keep us entertained 😉

In the meantime we took part in a really cool meeting: Warsaw Ruby Users Group invited us to tell a few words about Rails Girls Summer of Code. We prepared ourselves to the presentation very carefully. Obviously we felt a little of stage fright, but everything went quite well. Of course we had to face with some difficult questions, for example: what exactly is a taxon? 😉 We don’t know if our explanations were good enough but participants seemed to be satisfied.


So, back to work!

Day 43 – day off

Yesterday we didn’t turn on our computers even once. Why? Because it was the official Rails Girls Summer of Code Day Off. We decided to spend that day separately – you know, sometimes it’s good to stay just with your own thoughts…

Karolina had enough time to read a whole book (for those of you who don’t know polish – book is about minimalism as a way of life). She said it was absolutely fantastic not to hurry and stare at the watch for all the time.

Magdalena is a huge fan of nordic walking and walking through the mountains and forests in general. Of course we don’t have any mountains in Warsaw, but luckily we have quite large forests. So she spent her time here:


Yes, it was really necessary day. Now we feel as if we have more room in our brains… room for coding of course!

Day 39

Yes, we were very silent for over two weeks, but we are alive and kicking! We just didn’t want to write for the next time about learning Javascript – it would be boring. But the time for implementing our theoretical knowledge into practice has come and we decided to share our tasks.

Karolina took the responsibility for generating the top ten most visited species. It came out that default version of PostgreSQL used in Species+ app doesn’t work properly with json. She started to install the higher version… and after a few days she became the real PostgreSQL expert 😉

Magda is currently working on passing particular data from our ahoy database to the activities page. She installed two Javascript libraries: c3 & d3, then Gon gem. At the moment she is figuring out how to write in Ruby something like: “Dear Javascript. Here you have 2 columns in ahoy events table. Please be so kind and show the line chart where we plot the percentage of ‘Taxon Concept’ and ‘Search’ events over time.” She experiments, tries many different solutions and obviously she has fun.

But recently there were also difficult, rainy, gloomy days. Sometimes we feel as if we were crushed by a half-ton stones. Everything seems so overwhelming and you think: “No, it’s definitely not for me. It’s too much. I have to write to Anika and tell her I want to give up. I can’t manage.”

Did you have such moments during the RGSoC? Me, Magda (actually I write this note today) felt it last week. This is the short movie for those of you who are in doubts:

Day 27


On Friday we were working on our visualisation page (as you probably remember it was our next challenge). This time everything went smoothly – we completed the task and the same day commited the brand new code to the repo. At the moment the page is empty, but we are going to fill it with some charts & graphs very soon. Another task is to add a list of top 10 visited species & subspecies to the activity page per taxonomy.

We are still busy with learning JavaScript. Sometimes it seems to be easier than Ruby & Rails, but immediately afterwards it surprises us with another syntax error. But the real fun is yet to come – without JavaScript we won’t be able to create visualisations…

In the meantime we had many fantastic meetings. 28th July we had nice hangout live chat with RGSoC organisers, Anika & Floor, and 2 teams: Participate and Code Padawans. 2 hours later Magda was a guest at Warsaw Women in Technology meeting. She said a few words about Rails Girls movement and RGSoC in particular.

10511336_696483660407533_4606876193576761162_(CC BY 2.0) Jakub Bożanowski

Yesterday we summarized the first month of RGSoC with our coaches: Tomasz & Piotr, mentors: Simao & Agnieszka and with our supervisor Laura. They were proud of our progress and said that our questions are getting smarter every day – it means it’s definitely not bad 🙂

Day 23

It’s extremely hot outside, but it doesn’t matter, we are really happy. You can congratulate us, yesterday we made our first pull request! Our mentors merged the changes into the integration branch. We’ve just started a new task – it’s creating a publicly accessible page, where various visualisations and reports will be available. That’s why at the moment we’re trying to get familiar with JavaScript. For now it’s less strange than we expected, but stay tuned… Who knows what will happen?

You probably are curious, what do we use to learn.

1. This.
2. That.
3. And sometimes that as well (beware, it’s in Polish).

Have a nice day!

Day 19

Long time no see!

What’s new:

– we got into another task – we have to add ahoy tracking to Species + API requests. This time it’s just pure experimenting, trying one method and then trying another. Everything works and after a while it doesn’t. But now it’s definitely not so frustrating – exactly the opposite, this is precisely how we imagined developer’s work.

– next week will be full of meetings. On Monday we probably will have a hangout with Team Participate and Team Code_Padawans. Can’t wait to see/hear them! Later on the same day we are going to attend Warsaw Women in Technology meeting. We’d like to say a few words about RGSoC. In the middle of the week we also plan to participate in huuuge summary conference call – with our supervisor Laura, our mentors Agnieszka & Simao and of course with our coaches. We are going to summarize our first month in the project.

Coming back to coding. Have a great weekend!

Day 14

It’s like neverending story – when everything seems to go fine, some kind of gem jumps out at us and screams: GOTCHAAAAA!

OK, let’s get to the point. As you probably remember, our task was to create a webpage in Species+ admin panel to view raw data collected by ahoy_matey. We were sure it’s relatively simple.

Our application uses CanCan gem. It’s an authorization library for Ruby on Rails which restricts what resources a given user is allowed to access. But CanCan actually surprised us. It did authorization using model, which name it tried to take from the name of the controller. But there was a difference between controller’s name and model’s name 😦 We had to communicate to CanCan very strictly about how our ahoy’s model is called.

Let’s be honest – without our coaches’ help finishing the task would be completely impossible. Thank you Tomasz & Piotr! You’re great!

So, at the moment we have our dream pages with raw data and figuring out how to make postgreSQL results table fully visible.

Have a nice weekend 🙂

Day 12

Coding, _real_ coding, at last! Since yesterday we work on creating new page (or pages – we still don’t know that) in Species+ admin panel to view raw data collected by ahoy_matey. Our page doesn’t need to be perfectly esthetic, but it has to show postgreSQL table and contain pagination. We discuss and try different solutions and at least one time it came out that collective work really rulezzzz. Karolina did something her way, Magda – a little bit differently. After merging the results we received *something*… and it seemed to work 🙂 Of course our page is still far from being excellent, but please be patient 😉

What else…? We still try to become familiar with Git. Without great success. Perhaps we just need more time. In the meantime we discovered another git online training 🙂

Day 10

Last Friday our gems finally started to collect all the necessary data.
But when we were comparing, what kind of information they generate, ahoy_matey came out to be better than impressionist. Surprisingly, it gives us more useful data, including user’s browser, operation system, device etc – while impressionist gives only ip 😦

So, we start new week of RGSoC in quite good moods. So far we learnt a lot about gems and their compatibility problems, but also about git. By the way, have you already seen that training?