If you’re using AWS Fargate and need to pause your containers so you can gracefully deploy a new version, you could use the StopTask command. However it has a timeout value that you have to worry about before it sends a SIGKILL which might stop a job midway causing unpredictable results.

Rather than worry about this, I looked into a way to gracefully pause the worker but the previous solutions I came across assumed SSH access to the worker was available, which is not an option in Fargate world.

Looking through the Laravel Worker.php sourcecode, I came across an undocumented event called Illuminate\Queue\Events\Looping (available since 5.5). If you’re wondering how it works — it gets fired from the daemonShouldRun() method inside the main worker loop of Illuminate\Queue\Worker.

Some lessons learnt whilst creating and publishing an Ionic based mobile app to the Google Play and Apple iOS App stores.

A couple of my colleagues had built mobile apps with jQuery Mobile and Cordova before but none of us had gone through the full process with Ionic yet. Ionic is a cordova based hybrid mobile framework which bundles up AngularJS as well as a set of mobile friendly GUI components, responsive styles and more. After sifting through the Ionic documentation and running through a few egghead.io videos on AnguarJS I wanted to build something.

I recently had a need to calculate stamp duty on the go and with all the duty regulations publicly available I figured it was an easy problem to try solve (not that it hadn’t been solved by numerous other app developers before). I’ve now built this app and released it for Android and iOS. The source code is all available on github too, so for those AngularJS buff’s out there, feel free to tell me if I’m doing something stupid :). …

I’m a bit late post this, since it was over 6 months ago when we did this hike, but better late than never right? This post contains a video log of our ascent of Toolbrunup Peak in the Stirling Ranges located about 350 km south east of Perth or 120 km north of Albany.

Toolbrunup Peak (1052m) is the second highest peak in the Stirling Ranges after the well known Bluff Knoll (1,099m). The Toolbrunup climb is a bit more technical though, with sections of large granite bolders that you’ll need to get on your hands and knees to get over. …

Over easter my wife and I had the pleasure of walking the Cape to Cape track, located in the South West corner of Western Australia. This blog entry talks about how we went and some tips for others considering the trek.

To sum up the Cape to Cape walk in one word: tough.

As we opted to be self sufficient with food, shelter and water, it meant carrying about 10–15 kg’s each. For non-sherpa’s like us, carrying this kind of load through soft sandy beaches, is the very definition of the word. A lot of people we saw along the way just carried daypacks and either had friends pick them up at the end of each day or had a vehicle arranged to be left at their day’s end point. But to be honest, I think that being self-sufficient is a far better way to go, as you get to stay overnight in some really remote and amazing places as well as learn to conserve your supplies. …

Whenever these conferences come around, I always question if its worth the cost. This one was particularly difficult because it was in New Zealand, some 5000+km’s away from Perth. Reminiscing on the value of last years Drupalcon Sydney and with some generous subsiding from my employer, I was fortunately able to attend. As per last time, I came back not just with new ideas, techniques and things to experiment with, but also feeling inspired and excited for Drupal!

Coding Sprint

The Drupal 8.x coding sprint, business day (suits!) and PreviousNext training days kicked things off on the first day. I hadn’t been to a coding sprint before and had heard great things about them, so I gave it a go. People of all experience levels are encouraged to attend as there are tasks and activities to suit all. Dman was curating things and had organised us with a hitlist of Drupal 8.x issue queue items to attack. I had a go at a few of these and then eventually got into some drupal 7 to 8 contrib conversion tasks with PreviousNext. I only started the process off for a smallish module but plan to come back to this at a later date. I hadn’t previously done any Drupal 8 coding so this was a bit of a steep (but nevertheless fun) learning curve. One of the other things I ended up doing was chatting a lot to people with similar passions for Drupal and open source. …

From Kala Patthar

It may sound a little strange, but after getting married, my wife and I decided to go do some trekking in Nepal for our honeymoon. It’s not your typical honeymoon destination, but we wanted to experience something special. After coming back, I couldn’t think of any place I’d rather have visited. Time and future holidays will tell I guess, but anyway, here’s a few thoughts, tips, and info on visiting the region.

I was lucky enough to have a GoPro camera during this adventure, and caught what I could on video (and stills). The downside was I had the camera configured incorrectly in a 4x3 aspect ratio, so no wide screen, which most people have come to expect now days — you’d think someone with an IT background would get this kind of thing right, but not in this case! …

First things first, get your Visa’s sorted out at least a few weeks before your holiday. You can order them online from vietnam-visa.com. This saves your time and money, when going through customs. I’m not sure what the alternative method for getting a visa is, but when you get off that plane and are confronted by Military style customs officials, you don’t want any trouble.

We stayed at Hanoi Elite in the Old Quarter. They organised a hotel transfer for us, as apparently there have been a lot of taxi scams in the past. …

Some lessons learnt trying to get a Garmin eTrex H GPS unit working in Mac OS X Snow Leopard, for the purposes of sending/receiving tracks/courses, etc.

Earlier this year, I decided to take up bush walking for the purposes of fitness and to see a bit of the outdoors. After doing the ‘on track’ 15KM Eagle View walk at John Forest National Park, I decided I wanted more and wanted to go off track. To do this safely though, you need a real GPS unit to ensure you can get to where you want, without getting lost! …

My thoughts after visiting Uluru and Alice Springs in the Northern Territory of Australia.

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of visiting Alice Springs, up in the Northern Territory, to meet a new client for work.

My Boss really wanted to check out Uluru (or Ayers Rock) whilst we were there, so we made a side trip with some clever flight scheduling and a hire car. Side note: Uluru is some 400KM’s away from Alice by vehicle!

Anyway, prior to arriving at Uluru we made the decision, after reading reports online, that we’d not climb the rock, in respect of the wishes of the Aboriginal people. When we got there though, the climbing path was closed anyway, due to the rain! Yes, Rain! We decided to take the 3 hour, 10KM walk around the Rock, and it was especially special, because we had stunning water falls coming off all around the rock. I managed to take a quick video along the ‘base path’ i.e. …

I’ve been back home for almost 4 weeks now, but am only just finding the time to write a bit of a summary of my partner (now fiancé!) and I’s first trip around Europe!

Yes, I’m engaged! I’d be a pretty bad future husband if I didn’t mention this in the first paragraph, wouldn’t I! Still can’t believe it, but I’ll reveal the details to those who I know in person, sorry! This post is mainly about sharing the lessons (both the easy and hard ways) we learnt on our trip.

Below is an approximate route of our journey through…


Alex Bergin

Software Developer in Perth, Western Australia

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