I first came upon Elixir in 2013 (wow, it’s been 8 years?). I was looking at Erlang and a friend of mine said
that there’s this new language being built on the same VM, you should look at it. I gave it a whirl and the
rest is history, as they say. I’ve written it on and off, sadly never professionally, resulting in lots of
stuff, some even in production. Elixir gave me a new joy in programming.
None of this would be possible without the hard work of people I’ve never seen. People who have received
nothing from me but have decided to give me the tools to work with anyway. To help me avoid mistakes. To ease
my experience. To expand my view of programming beyond what I could have thought of myself.
For this I want to thank you, as it’s the least I can do.
I’ve written about Elixir configuration
in an earlier post,
describing the differences in the configuration styles. If you don’t know how Elixir
configuration works, I suggest reading it also. In this post, I will demonstrate a system
for configuring an Elixir project using the config/runtime.exs system introduced in
Elixir 1.11. This system is how I configure my projects, so feel free take it as inspiration, but
it’s not a law that you have to follow.
Configuring Elixir applications is a common problem point for new developers and I’ve seen many
questions about it in the community chats. So I thought to write down my knowledge in case it helps
People commented so nicely on my first build tool FBU
that I decided to push it to the Elixir package manager Hex.pm. I renamed
it, though, since people pointed out that it could be used to build anything, not just the
front end. So now it’s called (still unimaginatively) MBU: Mix Build Utilities.
EDIT 2017-04-04: I have since renamed the project to MBU: Mix Build Utilities and published it on
Hex.pm: hex.pm/packages/mbu. I have edited the links and code examples in this post to
tl;dr I wrote my own build tool using Elixir’s Mix:
It’s no secret that I somewhat dislike the state of modern
is the ecosystem and tooling around it. There’s a lot of innovation and hard work going on
in very many fragmented projects, resulting in reimplementations of already solved problems
and a ton of half working, alpha quality, 0.x versioned packages with unknown support status.
With these packages, you start your project by building an elaborate house of cards that is
the build system. And you dread the day when you need to touch it again.
This is a project that I’ve been working on for a month or so on my free time (of which there really isn’t too much). I started it on my company’s 12 hour hackfest, where I didn’t get anything worth showing done (it was all backend stuff), but now it’s ready to be published. *drumroll* So, it’s time for the reveal:
What better way to spend a slow weekend than by writing another blog engine? Plenty, actually, but that’s what I did
anyway. The result of this work: Mebe! This blog is now powered by a wonderful mix of
Elixir and Phoenix. It has all the features that Laine
had, with the addition of an actually working Disqus comment system. It’s also search engine indexable, which I thought
I didn’t care about, until I didn’t have it anymore. Not that I’m aiming for tons of visitors, but writing about some
tech problem I have fixed is kind of pointless if no one can find the post by googling for it.
I had some free time this weekend, so I decided to pick up on an old piece of code I wrote back when I started learning
Elixir. It’s a URI parser I called Nurina (the word nurina is Finnish and means
grumbling or complaining — it sounded funny and it contains the word URI). It’s not really a well put together piece of
code but more of a learning excercise. I also decided to avoid using regular expressions entirely and instead used
pattern matching to parse the whole URI — an additional challenge.