Want to build a simple web application in Ruby? Consider Sinatra.

Sinatra is a domain specific language, or DSL, that serves as a lightweight Ruby framework for creating simple web apps. Chances are, you’re already working with Sinatra if you’re reading this post.

While Sinatra doesn’t require you to follow the common Model-View-Controller (MVC) design pattern for your application, building an MVC app with Sinatra can help you learn how these pieces — models, views, and controllers — work together.

I recently worked with Sinatra to build a database-backed MVC application that uses Active Record. The app helps job seekers…


The magic of regex

My first encounter with regular expressions, or regex, felt a bit like magic. I had just started diving into programming and was looking for a way to remove all punctuation from a string. A StackOverflow page recommended using a regex that looked something like this:

I used the code as prescribed, and voilà, all punctuation disappeared. How the mashup of characters worked was a mystery to me, but it did the job.

Viewing something as magic, though, means most of its usefulness remains hidden, and therefore, out of reach. A recent Ruby project brought me back to regexes and…


I pursued a career in the nonprofit field because I wanted to solve social challenges alongside a group of passionate people. I just left my nonprofit job after 8 years to study software engineering for the same reason.

From prioritizing passion to prioritizing problem solving

Many people enter the nonprofit sector with the hope of aligning their career with their personal passion to better society. I was one of them. When I finished college with a communications degree in 2013, I believed my career would only be meaningful if my job directly supported an important social cause. I felt strongly that working for a nonprofit was the…

Stacey McKnight

Studying full stack development through Flatiron School

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