The New York Times opens up the code and data that generates their Senate forecasts #

The New York Times is taking a crack at forecasting the results of the upcoming Senate races. They’re currently predicting a tossup, but we don’t have to just take their word for it. The code and data that runs the election-forecasting model is open to the public!

The model is built with R, a programming language for statistical computing. I’d love for somebody with some R knowledge to write an article that walks through the codebase explaining how it all fits together. Ping us if you’re up to the challenge…

Gogs is a self-hosted Git service written in Go #

Gogs looks like a nice, new (still in Alpha) option if you want to self-host some Git repositories with a web interface similar to GitHub’s.

Gogs

It’s written purely in Go, so installation should be dead simple. From the README:

Gogs only needs one binary to setup your own project hosting on the fly!

Worth a look.

minicron: a system to manage and monitor cron jobs #

minicron is a web interface to manage and monitor scheduled tasks across a series of servers. It’s still in early development, but the tool sets out to solve a pain that anybody with more than a few servers has probably felt. I know I have.

minicron is pre-semantic-1.0 and has a roadmap in the readme. Looks like a great time to get involved.

Build beautiful programming books with Git and Markdown #

There’s a lot of innovation (and iteration) going on in the online publishing space. GitBook continues that trend by offering a command line tool built specifically for creating programming book and exercises.

You write your book in Markdown and from that GitBook can generate a static website, PDF, eBook, and even JSON. Here’s what the results look like:

GitBook Preview

A tool to check your site for The Heartbleed Bug #

A very nasty OpenSSL bug called Heartbleed was made public yesterday. Millions of websites around the world are leaking private information despite using SSL/TLS.

Is your site vulnerable? Find out with Filippo Valsorda’s Heartbleed Test.

Here’s a link to our test for thechangelog.com. We run on Ubuntu so we followed these update instructions and in 3 minutes we were fixed.

Remediation steps differ depending on operating system, but with Heartbleed Test we can all make sure we’ve patched up properly. Thanks Filippo!

UPDATE: Filippo provides a web-based tool to check your site, but we suggest downloading the source and running the tool from your own trusted host. Here’s a How To if you need help! (Thanks to AndrĂ© Wendt for the suggestion and Jan Lenhardt for the gist)

SVG Loading Indicators! #

Useful and stylish SVG-based loading indicators that are as easy to use as:

<img src="loading-balls.svg" alt="Loading icon" />

Oh, and make sure you spot the Cylon

ngxtop: real-time metrics for nginx server #

ngxtop is shaping up to be one of those tools that I didn’t even know I needed, but now I won’t know how I ever lived without it.

ngxtop parses your nginx access log and outputs useful, top-like, metrics of your nginx server.

Need we say more? Check the readme for some nice examples of what this Python script is capable of.

Metalsmith: a static site generator with lots of potential #

Segment.io’s Metalsmith doesn’t excite me because it’s a static site generator. It excites me because its everything-is-a-plugin philosophy turns it in to a potential swiss army knife for any project that manipulates a directory of files.

It could be a project scaffolder. It could be an e-book generator. It could be a build tool. It could be a documentation tool. It could be something I’ve never even heard of before.

Check out their examples to whet your imagination.

Glyphr is a free, html5 based font editor #

Looks like the Glyphr team set out to lower the barrier to get in to font design.

Professional font design programs are very complex, and quite expensive. Glyphr is accessible, streamlined, and made for font design hobbyists… and it’s free!

At first glance, it appears that they’re off to a great start. Check out the sandbox if you want to play around with it.

Pickadate. Any date. #

If you have need for a mobile-friendly, responsive, and lightweight jQuery date & time input picker, look no further than pickadate.js. Amsul pinged us to say that he just released version 3.4 of his popular library and is quite proud to say that pickadate.js is now ARIA-enabled. He states:

This is an update I would highly recommend everyone to get because of how crucial accessibility is.

If you’re already using pickadate.js, this is a great time to upgrade. If not, give it a look!

Thoughtbot brings us rcm for serious rc file management #

If you believe that constantly improving your rc files (dotfiles) is Serious Business™, you gotta check out Thoughtbot’s latest open source project: rcm, an rc file manager

In his introductory blog post, Mike Burns describes rcm as:

a unification of the existing shell scripts, make targets, rake tasks, GNU Bash constructions, and Python hacks that people copy and paste into their dotfiles repo, with a classical unix flair

Autoprefixer wants you to forget about vendor prefixes #

CSS preprocessors have been around for awhile, but Andrey Sitnik’s Autoprefixer takes the opposite approach: it parses your CSS after you write it and adds any necessary vendor prefixes using data from Can I Use.

As the browser landscape changes, your outputted CSS changes to fit. Without you having to do a thing. Andrey says:

The best tool is a tool you can’t see and one that does the work for you

I have to agree with him on that.

A nice collection of CSS-based loading indicators #

SpinKit from GitHub’s Tobias Ahlin uses CSS animations to create smooth and easily customizable animations, but look out if you need to support older browsers:

The goal is not to offer a solution that works in every browser—if you’re supporting browsers that haven’t implemented the CSS animation property (e.g. IE9 and below), you’ll want to detect support for the animation property, and implement a fallback

The demo features 8 different styles for you to pick from. #6 is pretty rad if you can find a good use case for it. Check ‘em out!

Zone.js from the Angular team

While I was at the first annual ng-conf last week (excellent conf, btw), Brian Ford of the Angular team gave a great talk about a new library he released called Zone.js.