Skip to main content

FreeAgent Geckoboard widgets....its a trust thing

So I've been looking at how simple it would be to get Geckoboard widgets up and running to visualise your FreeAgent data....and the answer is, pretty easy really. The idea I had was for a text widget to display your due invoices. The FA api is pretty comprehensive and this data is available via REST as XML - authentication is http basic using your FA username and password.

I created a new FA widget user for my account and assigned it permissions up to the Invoicing Level - this protects my more sensitive data. Wrap all this up in a Google-AppEngine (GAE) app and there you have it - your FA pending invoices....

In glorious public view....oh dear

Ok, no problem - we use the Geckoboard ApiKey to secure it so that only requests with the correct ApiKey (that we set in the widget configuration) will be allowed access to the feed. Or rather I use my Apikey - it works in my GAE app as I can hard code the apikey check into it...this app instance cannot be used to provide FA data for your account as it means sharing your ApiKey with me...hhmmm - as trustworthy as I am and with a lock down FA user it's still too unsecure for my GAE widget to provide your FA data. I could generate and share a unique ApiKey for your widget but that's not what I want - I don't want to have to administer this in any form!

Furthermore - my GAE app would also need your FA widget user credentials to be able to make the FA api call to grab the data - you don't want to provide this on the url as querystring params and it can't be POSTed from your Geckoboard widget. Ideally you would tell me them - I would store them and use them when your widget called for the data - not something I want to do/offer from my what was once simple FA widget data feed!

So this problem makes something like GeckoboardApps make a hell of a lot of sense. They already have the ApiKey problem licked with a random key and feed url and I suspect storing any credentials securely is also part of the package! Nice...

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Walk-Thru: Using Wolfpack to automatically deploy and smoke test your system

First, some history... The advent of NuGet has revolutionised many many aspects of the .Net ecosystem; MyGet, Chocolatey & OctopusDeploy to name a few solutions building upon its success bring even more features to the table.

I also spotted that NuGet could solve a problem I was having with my OSS System Monitoring software Wolfpack; essentially this is a core application framework that uses plugins for extension (Wolfpack Contrib) but how to unify, standardise and streamline how these plugins are made available? NuGet to the rescue again - I wrapped the NuGet infrastructure (I deem NuGet to be so ubiquitous and stable that is has transcended into the software "infrastrucuture" hall of fame) with a new OSS project called Sidewinder. Sidewinder allows me to wrap all my little extension and plugins in NuGet packages and deploy them directly from the Wolfpack application - it even allows me to issue a new version of Wolfpack and have Wolfpack update itself, sweet huh?

Abou…

Resharper add-in idea - highlight IDisposable vars

[Update 18th July 2013]
@RobGibbens and Greg Hurlman picked up on this - Rob pointed out that there is an FxCop rule that can do this and Greg suggested a Visual Studio extension. I've had a quick look at the Visual Studio options and it looks like an "Editor Extension" is a good fit....hmmm, Project New, click...doh...dammit I really don't have time for this but it looks a fun little diversion! I'll update here if I get anything working.

[Original Post]
Had an interesting idea for a Visual Studio Resharper add-in the other day but don't have the time to implement it so thought I would put it out there...it might already exist (and hopefully someone can point me in the right direction) or someone will build it (Darren Voisey where are you?!).

The idea is very simple really - when you have a variable for an object that implements IDisposable it gets highlighted or a tell-tale is displayed to let you know it should be disposed or should be wrapped in a using sta…

Geckoboard Countdown Widget v2

v2 is here, now with added colours! This time using the RAG Numbers widget to display your date countdown - as you get nearer the date the number will change from green to amber then red.

The new url is: http://geckocountdown.appspot.com/rag/?date=2010-12-25&tz=0&msg=Days+to+Xmas!
Note 1: notice the new /rag/ path and the msg querystring param.
Note 2: the original v1 url still works


To use this on your Geckoboard add a new "Custom Widget/RAG Numbers" widget. By default the number will turn amber at 10 or less days to go and red at 3 or less days to go however you can change these with the querystring (see below).


Required querystring params
date: "yyyy-mm-dd" format, this is the target date to countdown totz: timezone offset in hours from GMT that you are in. Can be negative if you are behind GMT
Optional querystring params
msg: the label that appears next to the number of days (remember to encode spaces as +). The default is "Days Remaining" if you…