Simon Willison’s Weblog

Items tagged django in Mar

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Weeknotes: django-sql-dashboard widgets

A few small releases this week, for django-sql-dashboard, datasette-auth-passwords and datasette-publish-vercel.

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Weeknotes: tableau-to-sqlite, django-sql-dashboard

This week I started a limited production run of my new backend for Vaccinate CA calling, built a tableau-to-sqlite import tool and started working on a subset of Datasette for PostgreSQL and Django called django-sql-dashboard.

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Django: Added support for asynchronous views and middleware (via) An enormously consequential feature just landed in Django, and is set to ship as part of Django 3.1 in August. Asynchronous views will allow Django applications to define views using “async def myview(request)”—taking full advantage of Python’s growing asyncio ecosystem and providing enormous performance improvements for Django sites that do things like hitting APIs over HTTP. Andrew has been puzzling over this for ages and it’s really exciting to see it land in a form that should be usable in a stable Django release in just a few months. # 19th March 2020, 3:43 am

New governance model for the Django project. This has been under discussion for a long time: I’m really excited to see it put into action. It’s difficult to summarize, but they key effect should be a much more vibrant, active set of people involved in making decisions about the framework. # 12th March 2020, 5:27 pm

Describing events in code (via) Phil Gyford built an online directory of every play, movie, gig and exhibition he has been to in the past 38 years using a combination of digital archaeology and saved ticket stubs. He built it using Django and published this piece extensively describing the process he went through to design the data model. # 28th March 2018, 3:41 pm

Building a combined stream of recent additions using the Django ORM

I’m a big believer in the importance of a “recent additions” feed. Any time you’re building an application that involves users adding and editing records it’s useful to have a page somewhere that shows the most recent objects that have been created across multiple different types of data.

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The key to using Wagtail effectively is to recognise that there are multiple roles involved in creating a website: the content author, site administrator, developer and designer. These may well be different people, but they don’t have to be—if you’re using Wagtail to build your personal blog, you’ll probably find yourself hopping between those different roles. Either way, it’s important to be aware of which of those hats you’re wearing at any moment, and to use the right tools for that job. A content author or site administrator will do the bulk of their work through the Wagtail admin interface; a developer or designer will spend most of their time writing Python, HTML or CSS code. This is a good thing: Wagtail isn’t designed to replace the job of programming. Maybe one day someone will come up with a drag-and-drop UI for building websites that’s as powerful as writing code, but Wagtail is not that tool, and does not try to be.

The Zen of Wagtail # 1st March 2018, 4:10 pm

Wagtail 2.0. The leading Django content management system just released it’s 2.0 version—now Django 2.0 and Python 3 only, and with a new rich text editor based on Draft.js. I really like Wagtail—it’s full-feature,d mature, well-documented and philosophically aligned with how I think a CMS should work. I also like this line about the new Python 3 requirement: “Call us reckless neophiles, but we think that, nine years in, Python 3 is looking pretty solid.” # 1st March 2018, 4:06 pm

The Onion Uses Django, And Why It Matters To Us. The Onion ported their main site from PHP and Drupal to Django in three months with a team of four developers, including a full migration of their archived content. Their developers answer questions about the switch in this thread on the Django sub-reddit. # 25th March 2010, 6:43 pm

Using Django as a Pass Through Image Proxy (via) Neat idea for running development environments against data copied from a live production site—a static file serving handler which uses a local cache but copies in user-uploaded files from the production site the first time they are requested. # 22nd March 2010, 7:18 am

Cache Machine: Automatic caching for your Django models. This is the third new ORM caching layer for Django I’ve seen in the past month! Cache Machine was developed for zamboni, the port of to Django. Caching is enabled using a model mixin class (to hook up some post_delete hooks) and a custom caching manager. Invalidation works by maintaining a “flush list” of dependent cache entries for each object—this is currently stored in memcached and hence has potential race conditions, but a comment in the source code suggests that this could be solved by moving to redis. # 11th March 2010, 7:35 pm

Announcing django-cachebot. The ORM caching space around Django is heating up. django-cachebot is used in production at and takes a more low level approach to cache invalidation than Johnny Cache, enabling you to specifically mark the querysets you wish to cache and providing some advanced options for cache invalidation. Unfortunately it currently relies on a patch to Django core to enable its own manager. # 6th March 2010, 12:48 pm

Is johnny-cache for you? “Using Johnny is really adopting a particular caching strategy. This strategy isn’t always a win; it can impact performance negatively”—but for a high percentage of Django sites there’s a very good chance it will be a net bonus. # 2nd March 2010, 11:44 am Johnny Cache. The blog entry announcing Johnny Cache (“a drop-in caching library/framework for Django that will cache all of your querysets forever in a consistent and safe manner”) to the world. # 1st March 2010, 11:48 am

Southerly Breezes. Andrew Godwin is slowly assimilating the best ideas from other Django migration systems in to South—the latest additions include ORM Freezing from Migratory and automatic change detection. Exciting stuff. # 15th March 2009, 1:17 pm

django-gae2django. An implementation of the Google App Engine API (datastore, memcache, urlfetch, users and mail) that runs on Django, allowing you to take an existing application written for App Engine and deploy it on your own server on top of Django. # 9th March 2009, 3:37 pm

It’s time for a change. Jacob Kaplan-Moss is joining Revolution Systems, who will now be offering professional Django support “to companies who need a Django expert on staff, but can’t afford someone full-time.” # 4th March 2009, 10:30 pm

Django snippets: Smart {% if %} template tag. Chris Beaven’s drop-in replacement for Django’s {% if %} tag that adds comparison operators (less than, greater than, not equal etc) while staying backwards compatible with the less able original. I love it. This is one place where I no longer favour Django’s stated philosophy: I think it’s perfectly reasonable to use comparisons in presentation logic, and I’ve found that in my own code the lack of an advanced if tag frequently leads to pure presentation logic sneaking in to my view functions. # 3rd March 2009, 3:03 pm

Django Development with Djblets. The Review Board team have extracted a library of useful Django utilities from their application. The first to be documented are helpers for reducing boilerplate in custom template tags. # 31st March 2008, 1:19 pm

Exposing calendar events using iCalendar in Django. A simple abstraction around the vobject Python library. # 30th March 2008, 6:31 pm

xPyUnit: Uniting in Python with XML reporting. Should be just the ticket for integrating Django’s testing framework with Cruise Control. # 27th March 2008, 12:35 pm

Setup mod_wsgi for Django and Shared Hosting. Tutorial by David Cramer; attached are useful comments from mod_wsgi author Graham Dumpleton. # 26th March 2008, 2:42 pm

FormWizard: multiple-step forms in Django. Available in recent trunk versions. # 26th March 2008, 1:23 pm

Djangofriendly (via) Ryan Berg’s attractive new site collecting ratings and reviews for web hosts that support Django. I’m still happily hosted on a bytemark VPS, which isn’t currently listed on the site. # 26th March 2008, 8:47 am

Better Use of Newforms. Two really neat techniques: using an inclusion tag template to DRY your custom form templates, and adding what-to-do-next methods to the form class itself to cut down on the application code in your views. # 25th March 2008, 10:53 pm for (via) I’ve published the file from as an example of simple Fire Eagle integration with a Django application. # 22nd March 2008, 7:23 pm, OAuth and Fire Eagle

I’m pleased to announce It’s a simple site that does just one thing: show you a list of the five Wikipedia pages that are geographically closest to your current location. It’s designed (or not-designed) to be used mainly from mobile phones.

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Version 2.0 of mod_wsgi is now available. Includes features that should make Python (and Django) on shared hosting much easier: a non-root user can touch their WSGI script file to restart just their application’s daemon processes when they make changes and Python virtual environments are supported to allow different versions of packages without interference. # 21st March 2008, 1:23 pm

mysql_cluster (via) My Russian isn’t all that good, but this looks like a neat way of getting Django to talk to a master/slave setup, written by Ivan Sagalaev. UPDATE: English docs are linked from the comments. # 21st March 2008, 8:45 am

Simple Exception Response for AJAX debugging. Neat solution to the problem of Django error pages showing up as raw HTML in the Firebug Ajax log. # 19th March 2008, 4:44 pm