Tech note: Documentation is good

A new member of the District 101 Toastmasters team has volunteered to take over the back-end code I wrote; we spent much of this evening getting all of the necessary prerequisites set up on his machine (things like a current version of Python, MySQL, and the like).

It took a long time, with lots of head-scratching on my part. One of the hardest parts was installing Python packages. It was easy to find out what packages had to be installed, but some of them (for example, the Python bindings to the MySQL database) are referenced by one name (MySQLdb) but have to be installed by another (mysqlclient). It’s not terribly difficult to find the right name, but it requires searching, and I found myself wishing I’d documented what really needs to be installed.

I had – three years ago. And it’s on GitHub. I’d just forgotten about it until after we’d fought our way through the installation process.

Maybe I’ll remember next time.