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Todd Birchard

Product manager turned engineer with an ongoing identity crisis. Breaks everything before learning best practices. Completely normal and emotionally stable.
Welcome to SQL 2: Working With Data Values

Welcome to SQL 2: Working With Data Values

Explore the many flavors of SQL data manipulation in part 2 of our series.

Now that we've gotten the fundamentals of creating databases and tables out of the way, we can start getting into the meat and potatoes of SQL interactions: selecting, updating, and deleting data.

We'll start with the basic structure of these queries and then break into the powerful operations with enough detail to make you dangerous.

Selecting Data From a Table

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Making API Requests with NodeJS

Making API Requests with NodeJS

Using the lightweight node-fetch library for REST API requests.

If you're the type of person to read technical Javascript posts in your free time (you are), you don't need me to tell you that JQuery is dead. JQuery themselves have proclaimed JQuery to be dead. The only cool thing about JQuery is who can remove it from their legacy stack the fastest, which begs the question: why is the

NodeJS Todd Birchard avatarTodd Birchard Todd Birchard avatar
toddFeb 23
Feb 20
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Welcome to SQL: Modifying Databases and Tables

Welcome to SQL: Modifying Databases and Tables

Brush up on SQL fundamentals such as creating tables, schemas, and views.

SQL: we all pretend to be experts at it, and mostly get away with it thanks to StackOverflow. Paired with our vast experience of learning how to code in the 90s, our field work of PHPMyAdmin and LAMP stacks basically makes us experts. Go ahead and chalk up a win for your resume.

SQL has been around longer than our

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S3 File Management With The Boto3 Python SDK

S3 File Management With The Boto3 Python SDK

Modify and manipulate thousands of files in your S3 (or DigitalOcean) Bucket.

It's incredible the things human beings can adapt to in life-or-death circumstances, isn't it? In this particular case it wasn't my personal life in danger, but rather the life of this very blog. I will allow for a brief pause while the audience shares gasps of disbelief. We must stay strong and collect ourselves from such distress.

Like most things

Python Todd Birchard avatarTodd Birchard Todd Birchard avatar
toddFeb 23
Feb 18
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Manage Database Models with Flask-SQLAlchemy

Manage Database Models with Flask-SQLAlchemy

Connect your Flask app to a database using Flask-SQLAlchemy.

By now you're surely familiar with the benefits of Python's core SQLAlchemy library: the all-in-one solution for basically anything database related. Like most major Python libraries, SQLAlchemy has been ported into a version specifically compatible with Flask, aptly named Flask-SQLAlchemy.

Similar to the core SQLAlchemy package, Flask-SQLAlchemy provides an ORM for us to modify application data by easily creating defined

Flask Todd Birchard avatarTodd Birchard Todd Birchard avatar
toddFeb 23
Feb 06
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Easily Build GraphQL APIs with Prisma

Easily Build GraphQL APIs with Prisma

Jump on the GraphQL Bandwagon with a little help from Prisma.

The technology sector is reeling after an official statement was released by the UN's International Council of Coolness last week. The statement clearly states what status-quo developers have feared for months: if you haven't shifted from REST to GraphQL by now, you are officially recognized by the international community to hold "uncool" status. A humanitarian crisis is already unfolding as

GraphQL Todd Birchard avatarTodd Birchard Todd Birchard avatar
toddFeb 23
Feb 03
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Google BigQuery's Python SDK: Creating Tables Programmatically

Google BigQuery's Python SDK: Creating Tables Programmatically

Create tables in Google BigQuery, auto-generate their schemas, and retrieve said schemas.

GCP is on the rise, and it's getting harder and harder to have conversations around data without addressing the 500-pound gorilla in the room: Google BigQuery. With most enterprises comfortably settled into their Apache-based Big Data stacks, BigQuery rattles the cages of convention for many. Luckily, Hackers And Slackers is no such enterprise. Thus, we aren't afraid to ask the

Big Data Todd Birchard avatarTodd Birchard Todd Birchard avatar
toddFeb 23
Feb 02
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From CSVs to Tables: Infer Data Types From Raw Spreadsheets

From CSVs to Tables: Infer Data Types From Raw Spreadsheets

The quest to never explicitly set a table schema ever again.

Back in August of last year (roughly 8 months ago), I hunched over my desk at 4 am desperate to fire off a post before boarding a flight the next morning. The article was titled Creating Database Schemas: a Job for Robots, or Perhaps Pandas. It was my intent at the time to solve a common annoyance: creating database tables

Big Data Todd Birchard avatarTodd Birchard Todd Birchard avatar
toddFeb 23
Jan 23
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The Hostile Extraction of Tableau Server Data

The Hostile Extraction of Tableau Server Data

Say no to proprietary software constraints. Say no to vendor lock. Say yes to freedom.

I try my best not to hate on Tableau. It was the software’s combination of power and ease-of-use that drove me to purchase a license in the first place. Ever since then, I’m finding new and exciting ways Tableau intentionally locks users out of their data.

I gave the Tableau Server Client Python library a spin recently in

Tableau Todd Birchard avatarTodd Birchard Todd Birchard avatar
toddFeb 23
Jan 17
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Psycopg2: Postgres & Python the Old Fashioned Way

Psycopg2: Postgres & Python the Old Fashioned Way

Managing Postgres Database connections in Python with Psycopg2.

Last time we met, we joyfully shared a little tirade about missing out on functionality provided to us by libraries such as SQLAlchemy, and the advantages of interacting with databases where ORMs are involved. I stand by that sentiment, but I’ll now directly contradict myself by sharing some tips on using vanilla Psycopg2 to interact with databases.

We never

PostgreSQL Todd Birchard avatarTodd Birchard Todd Birchard avatar
toddFeb 23
Jan 15
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