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My name is Jeff.

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Storytelling with Scrolling Map Background

May 18, 2018 | Posted in Data Visualization,GIS

For a recent project, we were helping a group from the Environmental Sciences department translate some of their academic research on a particular type of bird into a more general narrative targeted towards a general audience. As a part of this process, we wanted to create a section of our companion site that illustrates the […]

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Simple is Always Better

April 18, 2018 | Posted in WordPress

One of the hardest things to do as a developer is to resist the urge to add additional complexity where it does not add value to the overall solution. As technologists, we tend to think this stuff is cool, and so sometimes we fall victim to this trap. Let me illustrate with a recent example. […]

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Reflections on Data Visualization in Observable

April 10, 2018 | Posted in Data Visualization

Continuing my exploration of data visualization tools, I circled back to where it all started for me: D3. For those of you involved in developing data-driven apps for the web, you most likely have a love/hate relationship with D3. You look at all of the cool examples and think, “Wow! That looks great,” but then […]

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Digging into the Gutenberg Editor

March 15, 2018 | Posted in WordPress

After a decent amount of foot shuffling, I finally decided to step up and dig into the Gutenberg editor that will ship with WordPress 5.0, whenever that is ready. There has been a lot of chatter in the WP ecosystem over the last year or so about when this update will be ready, how it […]

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Using AWS for Data Analysis

February 12, 2018 | Posted in AWS,Data Visualization

I’m not really sure when this happened, but over the last several years, I’ve started to spend a lot of my personal and professional time working on building out data visualization tools and workflows. In a recent meeting, someone referred to us as data scientists, and we’ve had a good running joke ever since. While […]

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Web GIS with Leaflet and WordPress

February 5, 2018 | Posted in GIS

Over the last several years, it seems like I’ve worked on a lot of different map-based applications for a variety of purposes. Some of them have been focused on the digital humanities, like the Moton Museum Civil Rights Tour, while other have been more business-oriented, like this one that I started while at VAFB. I’m […]

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WordPress JavaScript Snippets

January 30, 2018 | Posted in JavaScript,WordPress

This post is really just a placeholder for some new JavaScript tricks I’ve learned for WordPress over some of my latest projects. I’m sure these won’t be groundbreaking, but it’s worth it to document them here, at least for myself.   Working with REST API on Multisite The first snippet deals with using the REST […]

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Making a Chatbot with Amazon LEX

December 11, 2017 | Posted in AWS

What follows here is an exploration of an evolving project I’m working on to provide some additional touch points for current and prospective students in online courses at VCU. Chatbots, AI, Machine Learning, and other terms with similar connotations seem to be all the rage nowadays, but using publicly available cloud services, we can get […]

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Resetting Triggers in Google Apps Script

December 1, 2017 | Posted in Google App Script

Occasionally, when you are running a Google Script attached to a spreadsheet or document, the triggers that run those scripts can sometimes start to malfunction. Over the last five years, I haven’t been able to identify meaningful patterns for why these triggers and the associated scripts fail, but it just happens sometimes. However, here are […]

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Query Timeout in MySQL Workbench | Error Code: 2013. Lost connection to MySQL server during query

November 4, 2017 | Posted in SQL

This is kind of a silly and duplicative post, but I spent too much time searching for the right answer, so maybe this will help the right course of action bubble to the top faster in the future. The Issue I was trying to run a query on my local SQL install (whatever MAMP manages […]

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