Yesterday I found a typo in a pull request description while browsing another team’s project which I stumbled upon. I mentioned it to the author but it turned out that that part of the text came from the repository’s pull request template, which means every pull request will have this amusing but irritating mistake. I sent them a pull request, modifying the template, to fix the mistake at the source and avoid it in future, and thought that would be the end of it.
It turns out that template was written once and then copied across to new repos, which means this typo actually exists in almost all the pull requests in all of that team’s projects. Well that escalated quickly. This is the point where the average person probably says “OK whatever, it’s not worth it for something so small, there are too many repos, it’s just a small typo, never mind” and stop. A very determined person might actually start opening browser tabs and psyching themselves up to do pull requests. I open my terminal emulator and start writing a for loop.
I’ve decided to give Wakatime a second try. It’s a tool that tracks the time you spend programming on different projects by integrating into your IDE. This works well for typical development work where you open your IDE in the morning and type code in it, do commits with it, and everything else related to the project and Wakatime will track that.
I don’t work like that though, so I had two issues with it last time, both resulting in a lower reported time spent working:
- I spent most of the day working on different remote servers and it would be a hassle to set it up in the text editor on each of them and it would undoubtedly cause slowdown on the older servers
- I use the command line tools as my IDE, so the time recorded opening the text editor to make some changes is not representative of the time spent working
This time it’s different because nowadays I virtualise most of the services I work with, using Docker on my local machine, and I’m hoping that using the Wakatime Z Shell integration will give a better record of time spent working on a project.
Installing the Wakatime zsh plugin is as easy downloading the script and sourcing it in your
.zshrc file. The only issue is it depends on the Wakatime CLI, which is usually bundled with Wakatime integrations, just not this one. The README file instructs you to get the CLI with
sudo pip install wakatime but that leads to a system that’s difficult to maintain: Ideally you’d like to be able to install it from your distribution’s package manager but there’s no official ArchLinux Wakatime package and nobody has written a package script for it in the AUR yet. Luckily it turns out to be pretty easy to do.
The CLI is Python based and available for download on pypi (what pip does when you
pip install). There are clear instructions on the ArchLinux wiki on how to make a Python package with the distutils tool that comes with Python, and a prototype Python package script you can use as a starting point.
All I had to do was fill out the fields in the example package: The download URL, version number and md5 hash are found in the pipy page. The licence, website, description and everything else is on the GitHub page. The result looks like this:
# Maintainer: Siôn le Roux <firstname.lastname@example.org>
pkgdesc="Command line interface used by all WakaTime text editor plugins"
python setup.py install --root="$pkgdir/" --optimize=1
# vim:set ts=2 sw=2 et:
After installing the package built from this script, everything works as expected, so I’ve published it to AUR as
wakatime. If I’ve made any mistakes packaging this, please report them as issues on the package script’s GitHub repository or leave a comment on its AUR page.