Welcome to Techcoil

Technologies coil to form a greater whole, thereby facilitating the exchange of information between people.

That was how Techcoil was named. Launched in 2010, Techcoil was designated to serve as a memory lane, as well as a testing ground for web related technologies.

We have articles to some technical problems, book recommendations for reading pleasure and self-improvement and some tools to help make some work a little faster.

Latest blog posts

How to sort a python dictionary by keys

I am a fan of hash tables when I need to implement logic that augments computation results to a common data structure that need to be used across several function bodies. The ability of the hash table in providing constant access by key helps me in keeping my logic from taking too much time to complete.

Python's version of hash tables are known as a dictionaries or associative arrays. Apart from augmenting computation results to values of my Python dictionaries, one common task that I often perform is sorting the results by the dictionary keys. In this post, I document how I can sort my Python dictionary by its keys.

How to generate n-grams in Python without using any external libraries

There are many text analysis applications that utilize n-grams as a basis for building prediction models. The term "n-grams" refers to individual or group of words that appear consecutively in text documents.

In this post, I document the Python codes that I typically use to generate n-grams without depending on external python libraries.

Ways to implement the Singleton pattern in Java

After you got started with Java programming, chances are you will want to use some design patterns to organise your Java classes.

One common object oriented design pattern is the Singleton pattern. The Singleton pattern is a technique where you can apply to ensure that there is only one instance of your Java class per runtime.

The Singleton pattern is usually used for grouping functionalities that allow callers to act on a single set of state. Examples of cases where the Singleton pattern can be applied include:

  • A class that keeps track of a customized configurations from a configuration file.
  • A class that facilitates interactions with a database system.
  • A class that performs logging.
  • A class that caches data read from previous database calls.

This post documents some ways to implement the Singleton pattern in Java.

Latest proof of concepts

Proving that we can use jQuery to push a dynamically generated file to the web browser based on the user's input

In order to demonstrate the possibility of using JavaScript/jQuery to push a dynamically generated file from the server backend to the browser, a sample scenario was created.

There is a number dial that changes rapidly and a text field for the user to enter his name. When the user clicks on the "get lucky number" button, jQuery is used to send the lucky number on the number dial and the user name to the server.

The server generates a text file based on the input from the user and sends the file back to the browser. The browser will then show a download dialog box for the user to decide whether to save a copy of the file or view the file using one of the native applications found in his/her computer.