The Blog of Tom Webster

Chronic Ranter, Reviewer, and Developer. I speak only for myself, opinions are my own.


  2014-10-26 05:26:00 PDT

I am just on a roll this month! Here's a stupid-simple Sinatra app I created for my wedding attendees. Weddings generate a lot of pictures. An insane amount of pictures. I needed a fast, easy way for attendees to upload their pictures to my Amazon S3 bucket without too much technical know-how. While Facebook and Google+ are really nice for sharing photos, I wanted the originals, in their original forms, without any added compression or tinkering.

Enter DeadDrop, a simple upload web app that works with the local filesystem or Amazon S3. This app accepts uploads of any file type by default, of any size, of any number (these things can be limited, check out blueimp's documentation on how to make this happen). Drag and drop support as well as a fallback form is included.

The app doesn't give out or support links to uploaded files, so it isn't really appropriate for a file locker service at the moment. If you'd like to make this happen, send me a pull request.


  2014-10-25 17:00:00 PDT

Here's a huge project that I'm happy to open source: GreenBoard. It's a simple web app designed to be displayed on a vertically-oriented TV in a manufacturing environment. The premise is simple, you take pre-run measurements, if they come back green, run parts, if they come back red or yellow, you should fix things before you run parts. Without delving too much into specifics, it lets you specify and take measurements against pieces of equipment, and get a quick look to see if they are within the tolerance values you specify. This is probably best illustrated with a picture:

Table cells are colored depending on whether or not they are in-compliance with the values you have specified.

There are some existing products that do this, but nothing was open source or generalized enough to fit the requesting company's specifications, so we decided to build one ourselves.

This was designed with audit compliance in mind, so all tables are using PaperTrail. Even if a user deletes the tables they control, you can still look back on history for audit compliance purposes.

There's still a good bit of work to complete on this project, such as building an API, pulling new values into the page in a modern way, not using a jQuery polling hack (it's really nasty...), moving configuration to environment variables with Figaro, and additional logon methods (for all you Google Apps users out there). If you'd like to help out, check out the GitLab Project. I am accepting merge requests and can help out with deployment or other questions if they come up. Have fun!


  2014-10-01 15:37:00 PDT

I've created yet another stupid simple little app. We love Markdown for our documentation, but with we could make it pretty with Bootstrap. Totally doable with some linking stylesheets and javascript, but we love having everything in one HTML file. From shell script to simple web app, MarkSport allows you to put in your markdown, some variables, and export a self-contained, bootstrapified HTML file, ripe for downloading.

Why not PDF? Some people hate them. Some people love the way bootstrap looks on a mobile device. Etc.

You can check out the app here:

Of course, this is all open source:

HIVEMIND: Open source anonymous imageboard software

  2014-09-20 10:07:00 PDT

I'm happy to announce and launch my newest project: HIVEMIND

tl;dr: It's open source image board software that you can find here:

Over the past year, I've seen certain communities on the internet become more locked down, more moderated, more censored. I'm not referring to any one incident, just a general trend I've noticed, and have been concerned about. I wanted a pet project that would allow people to stand up communities quickly and easily, with their own rules on their own terms. That's where HIVEMIND comes in.

The site I've launched is just a reference implementation, not the grand solution, the solution is the open source software that makes it easy for people to create a public forum, without usernames or real names, to have discussions on any topic of their choosing. It's very early in development, and I have a lot of plans for it in the future. For now, test it out, hack on it, create feature requests and bug reports on GitLab, and if you want: Stand it up on your own server.

Source here:

Install guide here:

Try it out here:

2-Factor: General Discussion

  2014-09-11 09:00:00 PDT

New security talk! Pretty simple, stuff we've seen before, but packaged to give in 30-60 minutes to an audience who may or may not know about 2-factor shortcomings. I gave this talk at OISF and it went over pretty well. You can find it here.

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