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creating and searching for events does not currently work in the deployed Heroku version, because the sunspot solr gem (which we use for searching in the app) requires a paid Heroku add-on (Websolr) to work. However, everything works well if you run the app locally.


  • imagemagick

  • psql


  • have config/local_env.yml with the following in it: S3_BUCKET_NAME: ‘yourbucketname’ AWS_ACCESS_KEY_ID: ‘your_access_key_id’ AWS_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY: ‘your_secret_access_key’ AWS_REGION: ‘your_aws_region’

  • run these from the root of the app:

    • (NOTE: Any time ‘rake` is used, you may need `bin/rake`)

    • rake db:migrate (only needed if your database isn’t up to date)

    • rake sunspot:solr:start

      • rake sunspot:reindex

        • do this any time after changing a “searchable” definition for a model

    • rails s


  • heroku addons:create websolr

  • add the following to the heroku config (see $ heroku config:set S3_BUCKET_NAME=your_bucket_name $ heroku config:set AWS_ACCESS_KEY_ID=your_access_key_id $ heroku config:set AWS_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY=your_secret_access_key $ heroku config:set AWS_REGION=your_aws_region

  • add the following for static files to be served unless/until Apache or NGINX takes care of it for us. $ heroku config:set RAILS_SERVE_STATIC_FILES=true

  • before committing and pushing to heroku: $ bin/rake assets:precompile

    • and be sure to point to static assets using AssetTagHelpers like image_tag, javascript_include_tag, and stylesheet_link_tag rather than putting them straight into the html with html tags! Something like the following will not work in production! : <!– <img src=“/assets/Middlebury_Panthers_logo.png” alt=“Mountain View” style=“width:175px;height:75px;”> –>


  • confirm that user wants to leave the page if they’ve entered text w/o submitting a form and want to exit/go back/take a link away from the page

  • make pages responsive (so they look nice on any size page)

  • use sunspot (solr) to enable matching substrings in fulltext search

  • make it so a given user can’t have two open sessions at once (i.e. be logged in in two places at once)

  • in user ‘show’ view (i.e. user profile), grey out events in the past

  • password recovery

  • email confirmation/validation upon creating a new account

  • replace panther at top of page with CampusEvents logo


  • get solr working on heroku – or switch to Bonsai with Elastic Search because websolr is $20/month minimum.

  • Explicitly declare how to boot our server process via a Procfile.