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Backend to Basics
Andrew McKnight – 24 October 2018

About a month ago I wrote about my continued tribulations with setting up a Rails installation locally on my dev machine. Once I figured things out, I codified it into a repository holding a simple Hello World! on Rails. Then I wondered what it was like to set up some other backend systems, so I made a collection of Hello World! examples for django, sinatra and node, all deployable locally or on Heroku. Of these, I think that Django actually was my favorite in terms of how the dev environment operates and how code is structured, even though I don’t like Python as a programming language very much.

Also, these are all interpreted languages, and I like to work with compiled languages for applications if possible. (I usually use interpreted languages for complicated scripting that’s too complicated for shell scripts.) I learned enough Rust to put together a Hello World!, and then it occurred to me that there’s another compiled language I can use on the server, that I already know well, and love: Swift!

So I created a Swift server Hello World! using Vapor, which has quite an ecosystem around it today via vapor and vapor-community on GitHub, which have tons of helpful tools for backend needs:

…and lots more. I implemented another example of a Vapor server app with a PostgreSQL database connection, deployable on Heroku: vapor-postgres.

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