Congrats RentPrefs!

Last week we launched RentPrefs a new take on renting an apartment. RentPrefs flips the process around by allowing renters to post their preferences and then allowing agents to match them with listings that fit their criteria.

Anyway, yesterday Xconomy did an awesome write up about them so definitely check it out. We also got a nice mention at the end there!

Happy Friday! Launched!

Recently we’ve launched a new site for a client called Purpose Beverages: . We’ve received great feedback from users so far. The site uses a wide range of technologies. It is built on symfony and uses the Apostrophe CMS to manage the main parts of the site. It integrates with a SMS provider to allow you text into it to find out more about your purchase.

Tēvolution is a new brand of tea on the market that does good with each purchase. Every time someone buys it they done a specific amount(for example 25 cents) to a specific charity. In order to find out how large of a donation and what charity your bottle goes to you can actually text the code found on the bottle to the website, or you can login in on your phone browser or regular browser and enter the code. You will find out how much and to whom you just donated money to!

Right now Tēvolution is just coming to the market so keep your eyes peeled for it! It’s a great product that does good!

Getting an extra ‘Invalid’ or other error on your symfony form?

On a project I’m working on I came across the following problem: we had a email field that we needed to be unique in our system, but we also made sure that it matched a confirm email field. A snippet of our form looks like this:

When we submitted an email that was already in the system we got back two errors:

  • Sorry! A user with that email address already exists.
  • Invalid.

For a while I thought is there some extra validator somewhere that I left on? Where is this invalid coming from? It ended up being due to the way the validators work. If a validator throws an error it doesn’t return that validator’s value. So by the time it gets to the sfValidatorSchemaCompare post validator the value of `email` is null and `confirm_email` has the value you input, thus the seemingly extra ‘Invalid’ message.

This can be fixed easily with a sfValidatorCallback instead of the sfValidatorSchemaCompare. Here is the fix:

This way if the email is blank it doesn’t both making sure that the `email` matches the `confirm_email`. You don’t need to worry about a person just passing two blank emails as the earlier validator(the sfValidatorEmail requires it to be there and valid).

If you are getting an extra validation error, check your postValidators and how the values get to them.

Changing a Doctrine connection with the same name in single instance

On one of our projects that we use multiple connections that are defined at run time we recently were generating reports that required us to change a specific connection multiple times in a single run.    We noticed that even though we would define a new connection, it would not throw any errors but just continue to use the originally defined connection.  Here is how we were doing the connections:

If you called the code above once, it would connect properly to the given DSN. However if you then called it a second time with a new DSN, it would not error and would simply just remain connected to the first DSN. After hunting around a bit it was the problem that Doctrine wasn’t assigning the new connection as the old connection was still open. To get around this we updated the code to the following:

You need to first check to see if the Doctrine Manager has the connection, as if you try to get a connection that doesn’t exist, it will throw an exception.

Hope this saves you some time!

iPhone style checkboxes for Symfony

No one worry, I did in fact survive my birthday and subsequent party!

Anyway, I was poking around for some cool UI elements for checkboxes and stumbled across this neat jQuery plugin – Basically, what it does is converts checkboxes into iPhone style toggles.

Check out a demo at

This is for a symfony project (shocker!), so I figured I’d roll it into a widget and share.

You’ll need to download and include the JS+CSS+images for the plugin yourself and then copy the following code into your project:

Using it is straightforward:

      'show-upcoming-events-nav' => new sfWidgetFormInputiPhoneCheckbox( array("checked_label" => "on", "un_checked_label" => "off") ),