Blog Index

How to Resolve Accessibility Issues with React Helmet

May 28, 2019
an open book with reading glasses and a cup of coffee nearby
The attribute is an essential part of the HTML element. It identifies the main language of the document's content. This is used by screen readers to determine the pronunciation of words. Screen readers have a default language setting, but will respect the language specified in the element if they differ. However, if this attribute is missing, and the language of the document is different than the screen reader's settings, the user will receive a subpar experience with incorrect pronunciations. For more information on the accessibility of this attribute, check out Deque University's detail page.React Helmet and JSXIn many React development scenarios, the shell HTML template is not immediately available to the developer. In other instances…
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Shaping JavaScript Usage with ESLint

May 23, 2019
A person shaping clay by hand on a pottery wheel
I have used ESLint for a long time, often extending the recommended rules from various plugins. I only read a rule’s documentation if I wasn’t sure why it was being flagged in the linter. Last month I read through and manually set 381 ESLint rules, reading the accompanying docs for each rule. I discovered that ESLint is more than enforcing community guidelines on code quality. It also helps to shape use of the language as a whole and through project specific rule usage.Greater control for team objectivesThere are a number of rules the recommended configurations of ESLint or various plugins do not enable by default. These rules serve specific needs of a given project. They can be enabled and configured on a per project basis and provide…
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How to Manage Snapshots with ESLint

March 18, 2019
Individual holding a camera lens with mountains and lake in the distance
Jest Snapshots can be a valuable utility for monitoring code changes for UI components. They can also become a scourge if they become too large. The line between the two isn't always clear. Snapshots don't offer a clear mechanism to determining how large they are. This makes it easy to create large snapshots that are hard to diff.The likelihood of a thorough review on a snapshot diff decreases in relation to the size of the snapshot. I have both observed and committed broken snapshot updates into repositories as part of a branch. The danger lies in making intentional changes to a particular feature and updating the snapshot without checking for other breakages. If the snapshot diff is large, it will likely not receive as thorough a review…
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Iterating Quickly with GraphQL and Gatsby

March 11, 2019
Grey geometric triangles
Over the past month I have been adding features to the blog that I had put off for long enough. As I aim to write more, it was time to address some glaring omissions in my initial implementation. This included adding proper category and tag pages, post metadata, and other small features. Gatsby's tight integration with GraphQL enabled quick iteration and development of these new features. Some features required as little as adding a utility field to a GraphQL query to implement.Data selection per queryOne of GraphQL's core features is the ability to select only the required data. A selection set is the specific data requested within a given type. GraphQL uses a declarative data structure. This means that the API consumer specifies the data…
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How to Manage Dependencies with Confidence

February 25, 2019
Rock balancing in nature
Managing dependencies is a core part of maintaining a project long term. Projects run the risk of decay if not maintained. The evolution of the environment around them can also introduce decay. Dependency management can be an intimidating and error prone process, if not approached with a plan. About a year ago, I went to update the dependencies for a full stack JavaScript application for the first time in over four months. Not knowing any better at the time, I ran and updated all the server and client dependencies in one fell swoop. Looking back I shudder even thinking of that and what happened next. It took two to three hours to get beyond the red React error screen. It was another hour or two until I felt comfortable that everything was…
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