Intoli Blog

Have a great idea for an article?

We're always looking for guest contributors or article suggestions. Shoot us an email at blog@intoli.com, we would love to hear yours!

Why I still don't use Yarn

But Isn’t Yarn the Best Node Package Manager? If you’re only comparing it to npm, then the answer is unequivocally yes. Yarn is generally much faster than npm and gives you deterministic builds by default, built-in integrity checking, license management tools, and a host of other goodies. Despite all of that, I still usually don’t use yarn. I avoid yarn for one simple reason: disk space usage. I feel like a bit of a curmudgeon here, but I find it a little absurd that it can easily take 100 MB, or more, to store a project consisting of a couple hundred lines of JavaScript if you want to use modern tooling (e.

Continue reading

The tech videos that have most impacted me as a developer

Introduction Over the years, I’ve collected a handful of videos that I deeply enjoy and that have had a significant impact on me as a developer. These are videos that I love introducing people to and I’m happy to have the chance to share them with you here. I find them all inspirational in their own ways and they serve as a continuous reminder for me to keep an open mind and to take creative approaches to problems.

Continue reading

Predicting Hacker News article success with neural networks and TensorFlow

Hacker News Title Tool Enter a potential title for a Hacker News submission below to see how likely it is to succeed or to be flagged dead. Once you play around a bit you can read on to learn how exactly these predictions are made. Background Submitting an article to Hacker News can be a little stressful if you’ve invested a lot of time in writing it. An article’s success really hinges upon getting the initial four or five votes that will push it on to the front page where it can reach a broader audience.

Continue reading

Email Spy: A new open source browser extension for lead generation

Introduction Lead generation is a top priority for most successful companies and helping businesses find potential clients is a big part of what we do here at Intoli. Today, we’re pleased to announce a new open source marketing tool that makes it possible to find contact emails for any web domain with a single click. It’s called Email Spy and you can get the source on GitHub or install it directly as a Chrome extension or a Firefox addon.

Continue reading

Running Selenium with Headless Chrome

UPDATE: This article is updated regularly to reflect the latest information and versions. If you’re looking for instructions then skip ahead to see Setup Instructions. NOTE: Be sure to check out Running Selenium with Headless Chrome in Ruby if you’re interested in using Selenium in Ruby instead of Python. Background It has long been rumored that Google uses a headless variant of Chrome for their web crawls. Over the last two years or so it had started looking more and more like this functionality would eventually make it into the public releases and, as of this week, that has finally happened.

Continue reading

Implementing a Custom Waiting Action in Nightmare JS

Nightmare is a popular browser automation library specifically designed with ease of use in mind. A typical Nightmare script chains together semantically named user actions like goto and click to perform any given task, resulting in simple and readable code. These actions of course include a few methods for waiting on the page to fully load: you can wait for a selector to become available, for all static resources to load, or simply wait for a fixed amount of time.

Continue reading

Using Firefox WebExtensions with Selenium

The WebExtensions API In 2015, Mozilla announced that they would be deprecating XPCOM and XUL based addons in favor of their new WebExtensions API based on the Google Chrome Extension API. There were some vocal critics of this shift because it meant that some existing add-ons would be discontinued, but this was tremendously positive news for add-on and extension developers. Writing cross-browser extensions had previously been an absolutely miserable experience, and many developers understandably chose to only target Chrome due to its market share and relatively pleasant API.

Continue reading

Using Google Chrome Extensions with Selenium

Running Google Chrome with an extension installed is quite simple because Chrome supports a --load-extension command-line argument for exactly this purpose. This can be specified before launching Chrome with Selenium by creating a ChromeOptions instance and calling add_argument(). from selenium import webdriver from selenium.common.exceptions import NoSuchElementException # Configure the necessary command-line option. options = webdriver.ChromeOptions() options.add_argument('--load-extension=path/to/the/extension') # Initalize the driver with the appropriate options. driver = webdriver.Chrome(chrome_options=options) The above code will setup a Selenium driver for Chrome with the extension located at path/to/extension preinstalled.

Continue reading

Terminal Recorders: A Comprehensive Guide

Recording a terminal session and converting into a nice animated GIF to embed on a website. Sounds pretty simple, right? I’ve occasionally wanted to embed terminal recorders into blog posts, but it wasn’t until recently that I decided to actually look into some of the tools available to do it. It turns out that there are a lot of them. That alone isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it also unfortunately turns out that most of them have some pretty serious issues.

Continue reading

Fantasy Football for Hackers II — An Interactive Visualization of Average Draft Position vs Season Projections

ADP vs Season Projections In the first part of this series, Fantasy Football for Hackers I, I walked through the process of coming up with my own draft strategy using scraped projections and simulated rosters. A lot of people pointed out that I probably would have done better if I had just looked up the average draft positions and picked the best available players. As one user on /r/fantasyfootball so eloquently put it:

Continue reading