This is an open-source version of alpha.app.net, the web microblogging client for App.net.
There are a couple of prerequisites for getting Alpha up and running.
- An App.net Developer account
- Python - Alpha is a Django app, so you'll need a Python 2.7 environment. We suggest running it inside a virtualenv.
- Node.js, npm - You will need Node.js and npm installed to build the static files. If you don't already have Node.js and npm installed, you can follow this installation guide.
- Sass - We are also using Sass to compile CSS. To install Sass, follow the Install Sass Guide.
Create an App.net App
Create an App.net application by visiting https://account.app.net/developer/apps/ and choosing "Create An App." Be sure to note your Client ID and Client Secret -- you'll need them in a second.
Set up your environment
Alpha must be configured with your Client ID and Client Secret as well as an App Access Token for unauthenticated views. Care must be taken to ensure that you do not check in your secrets, so we recommend exporting them as environment variables.
Start by exporting your Client ID and Client Secret:
export SOCIAL_AUTH_APPDOTNET_KEY=client_id export SOCIAL_AUTH_APPDOTNET_SECRET=client_secret
Now generate an App Access Token:
curl -X POST -H "Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded" -d "grant_type=client_credentials" \ -d "client_id=$SOCIAL_AUTH_APPDOTNET_KEY" -d "client_secret=$SOCIAL_AUTH_APPDOTNET_SECRET" \ "https://account.app.net/oauth/access_token"
You'll see something like the following:
Copy out the access token part and export that into your environment as well.
Finally, you'll need to make sure that Django is using a unique, secret value for SECRET_KEY. In this skeleton project, we've made it so that SECRET_KEY comes from an environment variable.
Generate a key with, e.g.,
pwgen -N 1 -s 64, and set it as an environment variable:
pwgen -N 1 -s 64 long-random-key-hello export SECRET_KEY=long-random-key-hello
When running the application, you'll need to export these variables every time (or export them in a shell script which wraps them!)
Next, create a virtualenv into which we can install our Python requirements and get a dev server up and running:
virtualenv venv source venv/bin/activate pip install -r requirements.txt # Create the database python manage.py syncdb # Answer no when it asks you if you would like to create a superuser
That should be it!
Running Alpha in development mode
To run the dev server, do the following:
python manage.py runserver
You should now be able to visit http://127.0.0.1:8000 and see the main splash screen for the Alpha project. If everything is setup you should be able to login and start using your own version of Alpha.
Start the static asset compiler
cd pau npm install ./node_modules/.bin/gulp
gulp will start watching your files for changes. When you save any static asset file, gulp will recompile the static assets.
You can run devserver simultaneously in another shell and you should be able to make changes to your static assets and see your changes reflected when you refresh the page.
There are a number of ways to deploy Alpha. Since this is a pretty normal Django app you can find instructions here
You can even deploy to heroku, here's how. Make sure you have the heroku-toolbelt installed.
heroku create heroku config:set SOCIAL_AUTH_APPDOTNET_KEY="$SOCIAL_AUTH_APPDOTNET_KEY" SOCIAL_AUTH_APPDOTNET_SECRET="$SOCIAL_AUTH_APPDOTNET_SECRET" APP_TOKEN="$APP_TOKEN" SECRET_KEY="$SECRET_KEY" git push heroku master heroku run python manage.py syncdb
You should now be able to visit your new heroku instance and use Alpha.