Software Development

Python Unicode Encode Errors

It’s sometimes stressful when working with string conversion in Python while coming across encoding errors. An example is the following error that was generated when I converted a JSON file into CSV so that I can analyze the data using pandas:

‘ascii’ codec can’t encode character u’\xe9′ in position 2

The JSON file was generated from an Influx DB instance via cURL. These links from Stack Overflow really helped. Please read the first two answers from each question. The second question’s most voted answer gives a detailed description on why you should not do a system wide change to utf-8 encoding as opposed to the first question’s most voted answer.

Further reading: Getting unicode right in Python

Internet of Things

Python UUIDs

An interesting article I read on generating UUIDs using Python:

I’m currently exploring the use of UUIDs to create unique identification for IoT sensor devices.

Will post more later here on what I find out and how I’ll implement it. I’m currently implementing a virtual sensor since I don’t have the actual devices. My host device for the sensor is a *NIX based system. e.g. Raspberry Pi Raspbian (for testing), MacOS (for development).


Add JS to Drupal 8 website

For the last two months I’ve been working on my first Drupal 8 website. Its quite a huge leap from version 7 but the new features and methodology of working with a Drupal CMS is way better.

One bit I struggled with was inserting a custom Javascript file that made use of jQuery functions. This is how I managed to do it (I assume you know how to develop a Drupal 8 theme and how to develop with Drupal 8 in general):

In the theme_name.libraries.yml file, define you library and add the js file i.e.

  js/main.js: { every_page: true }
    - core/jquery
    - core/drupal.ajax
    - core/drupal
    - core/drupalSettings
    - core/jquery.once

Save the file. Next, edit the to add the library i.e.

 - 'theme_name/custom-js'

Save the file. Open your custom Javascript file e.g. main.js and add you code in the following format. The code demo below ensures Drupal’s no-conflict policy for Javascript libraries. We want to ensure that the different libraries you use function independently. This example caters for jQuery:


    // insert your code here


Save your file and you should be good to go.


Create Drupal 8 Custom Page Template

Simply place the following code in the .theme (theme_name.theme) file that is located inside your theme folder. Replace theme_name with the actual name of your Drupal theme.

function theme_name_theme_suggestions_page_alter(array &$suggestions, array $variables) {
// Add content type suggestions.
if ($node = \Drupal::request()->attributes->get('node')) {
array_splice($suggestions, 1, 0, 'page__' . $node->getType());

Then create a file under the template folder and name it according to your node content type e.g.


Then add your custom code for that particular page.