Build a scalable Twitter clone with Django and GetStream.io

Have a look at this tutorial on how to build a scalable twitter clone using django and getstream.io

Django & Performance & Python & Stream Framework tschellenbach 04 Dec 2014 1 Comment

Django Facebook 5.3

The 5.3 release makes it a lot easier to get started with Django Facebook.
Documentation has had a major overhaul, many small bugs have been fixed and setting validation will complain if you make mistakes during the install.

Have a look at the new docs. Especially the bit documenting how to use OpenFacebook will be interesting to many people:

Getting an OpenFacebook object
Making calls

The full docs are linked on github.

Django & Facebook & Fashiolista & Python tschellenbach 04 Dec 2013 123 Comments

Build a scalable feed using Stream-Framework and Django

It’s been a year since the original version of this blogpost was written and it’s time for an update. The Stream-Framework is currently the largest open source solution for building newsfeed. This post will point you in the right direction if you want to build a newsfeed using Stream-Framework and Django.

We’ll be building an example app like this Pinterest style demo.

Besides the open source Stream Framework we also offer a hosted solution for building newsfeed applications at getstream.io. The example application code for the hosted version can be found on Github.

For the open source framework the example app code can be found here.

Django & Python & Scaling & Web Development tschellenbach 18 Oct 2013 210 Comments

Django Facebook – 1.5 and custom user model support

Django Facebook now officially supports Django 1.5 and custom user models! Go try it out and upgrade to pip version 5.1.1. It’s backwards compatible and you can choose if you want to keep on using profiles, or migrate to the new custom user model. Installation instructions can be found on github.

Contributing

Thanks for all the contributions! My startup (Fashiolista) depends on a reliable Facebook integration and maintaining it would not be possible without all the pull requests from the community. Contributions are strongly appreciated. Seriously, give Github a try, fork and get started :)

About Django Facebook

Django Facebook enables your users to easily register using the Facebook API. It converts the Facebook user data and creates regular User and Profile objects. This makes it easy to integrate with your existing Django application.

I’ve built it for my startup Fashiolista.com and it’s currently used in production with thousands of signups per day. For a demo of the signup flow have a look at Fashiolista’s landing page (fashiolista.com)

After registration Django Facebook gives you access to user’s graph. Allowing for applications such as:

  • Open graph/ Timeline functionality
  • Seamless personalization
  • Inviting friends
  • Finding friends
  • Posting to a users profile

Django Facebook helps you quickly develop Facebook applications using Django.
Let me know what features or issues you are encountering!

Django & Facebook & Fashiolista & Python & Web Development tschellenbach 11 May 2013 78 Comments

Django Facebook hotfix, update to 5.0.13

Last night Facebook changed the format they use for codes. (codes are an intermediate step in the process of requesting access tokens.)

This change broke the caching for the convert code step for Django Facebook, breaking login, connect and registration functionality. Fortunately this was quickly reported by developers in a country where there was no Queensday yesterday.

I encourage everybody to update to 5.0.13 to make sure your Facebook integration keeps on working.

Django & Facebook & Fashiolista & Python & Web Development tschellenbach 01 May 2013 114 Comments

Open graph and timeline sharing using Django Facebook

As many apps will find out today, Facebook is removing it’s offline_access permission on October 3rd. For most apps this will mean that many of your open graph shares start failing.

Fashiolista has built up quite some experience with tweaking this and today we’ll be sharing some tips. The actual code we’re using has been included in the latest version of Django Facebook.

1.) Store and retry your shares

There are several advantages of storing your open graph shares in the database. You get:

  • Stats
  • Error tracking
  • Ability to retry individual shares
  • Ability to retry a user’s shares if you get an updated token
  • Ability to delete shares (since you store the Facebook object id)

Especially the ability to retry shares was important to us. Django Facebook provides a convenient OpenGraphShare model to store all your shares in. Have a look at the example below:

class DjangoModel:
    def share_to_facebook(self, graph=None):
        from django_facebook.models import OpenGraphShare
        #this is where the magic happens
        share = OpenGraphShare.objects.create(
            user_id=self.user_id,
            action_domain='fashiolista:love',
            content_type=content_type,
            object_id=self.id,
        )
        share.set_share_dict(kwargs)
        share.save()
        result = share.send()

Note that we store all info required for sharing to Facebook in the OpenGraphShare model. The actual Facebook API request is sent when you call share.send().

Using this flow has the benefit that Django Facebook will retry your open graph shares if a user’s token updates. By doing this more of your open graph shares will actually reach Facebook.

2.) Extend your tokens

Facebook’s has deprecated offline access. By default you will now get a short lived access token (usually 1-2 hours). Often you will want longer lived tokens though. For example when your app keeps a user logged in for 30 days, storing a token once with a duration of 2 hours doesn’t get you very far. If you need longer lived tokens, you can now extend your token via a Facebook API call. These long lived tokens will keep working for 60 days.

The high level API for extending tokens is located in:

user.get_profile().extend_access_token()

In the new version of Django Facebook your token will be automatically extended upon connecting with Facebook. There is however a performance overhead to this extra API call. That’s where the following point comes in:

3.) Use Celery

Calling the Facebook API is something which takes quite a bit of time. If you’re unlucky a single API call can easily take up to 2000 ms. Celery is a tool which allows you to easily run tasks in the background, ensuring your pages stay fast for the users. At Fashiolista we use tasks for checking comment spam, adding loves, clearing cache, posting to Facebook and extending your Facebook access tokens. You can learn more about Celery in this guide.

Setting up Django Facebook to use Celery is trivial. Simply set the following settings to True.

#Use celery for storing friends or likes
FACEBOOK_CELERY_STORE = True
#Use celery for extending access tokens in the background
FACEBOOK_CELERY_TOKEN_EXTEND = True

Using Celery speeds things up enormously for the end user, so I recommend using it.

Concluding

Upgrading to the latest version of Django Facebook and implementing these tips will get you a very solid open graph implementation. Let me know in the comments what steps you’ve taken to get these numbers up.

Django & Facebook & Fashiolista & Python tschellenbach 03 Oct 2012 79 Comments

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