Thoughts on User Experience

I have to start this post saying I’m not a UX expert by any means. UX is not my professional field. These are just some thoughts I’ve had while seeing and experiencing how UX happens from the designer and user perspective across different systems, websites and companies.

I think the two most important skills a UX designer needs are common sense and empathy.

You need empathy because as a designer, you need to be on the user’s feet. You have to be looking through their eyes. You have to think of yourself as the final user of whatever your are designing. This way you’ll have a closer look at what the user is expecting from your product.

With this in mind, you will also need common sense. When designing experiences, you can’t do fool things. Fools things often happen when business needs or technology constraints are given more importance than what they really deserve. Business will come with good UX first. Not the other way around.

Avoid complicated and sofisticated and go with simple and usable. Always ask yourself if you’d be happy using what you are designing.

I’ve seen that without these basic concepts, results are often mediocre.

How to Install a Beta Version of WordPress

Even though I’ve been a WordPress user for a very long time (about 10 years) I had never installed a beta version. Until today.

I noticed WordPress 4.4 beta 1 was released just a couple of hours before writing this post and it came with a really good looking new theme: Twenty  Sixteen. So I decided to install 4.4 beta 1 to try the new theme as it doesn’t work with 4.3.

So how do you install the beta version?

Well, you have 2 options. You can download the zip, extract it and install it like any other WordPress version or you can go with the fast and easy way which is installing the WordPress Beta Tester plugin first, and then using the plugin to install the beta version of WP. I went with the latter. It all happens in the WordPress Dashboard so it’s very convenient.

After you install and activate the plugin, you have to go to Tools and then Beta Testing.

Captura de pantalla 2015-10-23 a las 11.17.47 p.m.

Here you have 2 options: Point release nightlies and Bleeding edge nightlies. You have to choose Bleeding edge nightlies to get the most recent version of WordPress, in this case 4.4 beta 1.

Captura de pantalla 2015-10-23 a las 11.18.12 p.m.

After that is done, you have to click on the link that invites you to upgrade and voilà, the latest and greatest version of WordPress will be installed. Although, maybe not the greatest because it warns you it’s a bit unstable, but I haven’t had any issues with it yet. The good thing is you’ll get the latest features and will be able to install the newest themes.

How to Protect WordPress From a Brute Force Attack

24 hours ago I started receiving a Brute Force Attack on one of the WordPress sites I have. The site was somewhat protected but that protection wasn’t as well tuned as I would have liked. I’ll share what I did to improve it so you can take action and protect your site in a better way.

Continue reading “How to Protect WordPress From a Brute Force Attack”

Boeing 787-8 Japan Airlines 1:200 Hasegawa

I recently finished this great plastic model that was given to me as a birthday gift this past May. I had not built a plastic model since I was like 14 or 15!

This time though, I had YouTube so I used it a lot to learn new skills that I didn’t know 15 years ago.

The kit was very well built so everything fitted perfectly and I didn’t have to use filler. The only small problem was that the panel lines were really shallow so it was a bit hard to highlight them with thin paint.

Here are some pictures of the building process and the completed model.

I really enjoyed building this plane and I think I’ll continue with a new model soon!

How to install Ruby and Rails on OS X using rbenv

I recently re-installed Ruby and Rails to start playing with it again. This time when I went to to check what was the latest version of Ruby and Rails, I noticed they were not recommending the traditional RVM to manage the Ruby installation anymore, but they were recommending something called rbenv. So I tried it.

Although rbenv has a lengthy documentation page on its GitHub page, the instructions to install Ruby and then Rails where not 100% complete and I had to look for extra information on Stack Overflow and other sites.

Here’s a step by step to install rbenv, Ruby and then Rails on OS X Yosemite.

  1. Install Homebrew, the package manager for OS X. Paste the following at a Terminal prompt:
    ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL"
  2. Now that Homebrew is installed, run the following:
    $ brew update
    $ brew install rbenv ruby-build
  3. You can now list all the available Ruby version and check the one you want to install:
    $ rbenv install -l
  4. Let’s install Ruby version 2.2.2 (or whatever version you want):
    $ rbenv install 2.2.2
  5. If you check your Ruby version now ($ ruby -v) you will still see the existing system Ruby version and not the one you just installed. To fix that, run the following commands to make sure rbenv is in your PATH:
    $ export PATH="$HOME/.rbenv/bin:$PATH"
    $ eval "$(rbenv init -)"
    $ env | grep PATH
  6. Now that we have rbenv and Ruby installed, let’s install Rails:
    gem install rails
  7. Rails is now installed, but in order for us to use the rails executable, we need to tell rbenv to see it:
    rbenv rehash
  8. And now we can verify Rails is installed:
    rails -v

With that, you should be all set up with your new Ruby on Rails installation.

If you have any questions about any of the steps, just let me know!

Seagull 40: Takeoff, basic aerobatics and landing

This is a 3 minute video of my first RC model: a Seagull 40, doing some basic aerobatics a couple of weeks ago.

I’m using a Mobius camera to record and the engine is a OS 46AX II ABL.