Author Archives: Joe Barry

Best Docker Tutorial IMHO

While in the process of trying to learn Docker as part of my Software Architecture class, I watched 5 YouTube videos. YouTube has been a real benefit to me for learning college level science courses. I have had good luck with Biology, Organic Chemistry, and even Statistics tutorials, but have not had much luck so far with Computer Science videos. There are some good ones out there, though, and “Docker Tutorial for Beginners – A full DevOps course on how to run applications in containers [1] is certainly one the best I have seen.

This 2-hour course by Mumshad Mannambeth covers all the bases in a clear and interesting manner and is enhanced with well thought out structure and graphics. The lectures are accompanied by direct access to a full-fledged Docker environment through labs [2] on a website

The course is broken up into sections exploring the definitions of containers, images, Docker itself, why you need it, and what you can do with it. He then goes on to explain the basic commands needed to create a docker image, how to build and run it in a container, the basic concepts of Docker Compose, YAML, and DockerFile.

He leaves the technical details of installing Docker Desktop for Windows and the MAC until later in the video, giving more time up front to clearly describe why you want to use it, what it accomplishes for the software development community, and how containerization is the future of enterprise level software. These installation sections are also well done but are not relevant for those who already have docker installed, or for those without the time to build their own environments. The tutorial and accompanying interactive quizzes on the right side of the site, are resources I will come back to in the future, because of their depth and clarity.

He then allocates about 40 minutes going into docker concepts and commands in depth and follows up with a history and description of the importance of continuous integration using container orchestration tools like Swarm and Kubernetes. He clearly lays out the architecture of a system that is complex, distributed, fault-tolerant, and easy to implement. He details the importance of DevOps, where the design, development, testing, and operations teams are seamlessly connected and have a symbiotic relationship. This makes everyone’s jobs easier, cuts down on departmental finger pointing when things go wrong, and brings product to market much quicker and with less bugs shipped.

He also covers the following areas:

1. Layered architecture

2. Docker registry

3. Controlling volumes

4. Port forwarding

5. Viewing logs

6. The advantages of container architectures over Virtual Machines and Hypervisors.

7. KubeCtrl

I was pleasantly surprised to have found this. Maybe I should give the computer science YouTube community more credit.


[1]  YouTube link:

[2]  Tutorial links:


(1) Why do you need Docker?

(2) Container orchestration tools

(3) Layered architecture

(4) Hand-on Lab

From the blog cs@worcester – (Twinstar Blogland) by Joe Barry and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Blog Entry #2 – Visual Studio Code Extensions and keyboard shortcuts (Part 1)

VS Code’s best feature is its flexibility and extensibility with the use of its ability to encourage the development of 3rd party extensions to tis functionality. I read documentation on these extensions and have watched a number of YouTube videos on other developer’s opinions and have come up with a list I think will be most useful for our architecture class students. Although I initially wanted to highlight these from the perspective of a Java develop, I have changed it to focus on the usefulness of the tool as it will most likely be used in our class, as reflected in the blog entry title.

I will start out with a short list of keyboard shortcuts that I think are essential to memorize. [1,2].

Although there are many extensions which will allow you to the use key-mapping from other editors, I found this troublesome when switching to the (Android Studio) IntelliJ shortcuts, because only the shortcut keys are changed, and not their corresponding menu items. Although I had worked with these key extensions to the point where they were second nature for a while, I switched back to using vscode native commands because of the lack of full integration. I have enclosed a map of these shortcuts at the bottom. These shortcuts are the generally the same between MACOS and Windows with the exception of Ctrl+ being used on Windows, and Cmd+ being used on the MAC. For the sake of clarity, I will use Ctrl+ here, and if you are using a MAC, please swap it with Cmd+”.

It is an important point to realize that for productivity, it is better to use the mouse as little as possible. These commands go a long way to making that happen.

Many more useful shortcuts exist and have multiple entries for different areas of focus in the UI. You can use the same shortcut, for instance, that is accessible in terminal, and also in the main editor, and it is context sensitive to that area. The user is allowed to add or change any shortcuts themselves, and third-party extensions can add their own.

Because of the need to keep this within a 500-word range, I will continue this discussion with my investigate on Extensions exclusively on my next blog post.


These shortcuts are broken into 3 sections (Open/View, Working with files, and Code Editing).


  • 1.         Opens command palate. – Shift+Ctrl+P
  • 2.         Access Settings – Ctrl+,
  • 3.         Toggle terminal – Ctrl+`
  • 4.         Toggle Sidebar – Ctrl+B
  • 5.         Open new window – Shift+Ctrl+N
  • 6.         Close Window – Ctrl+W
  • And, one of my favorites:
  • 7.         Selecting a vertical column of characters – Ctrl+Alt+Shift + Mouse select

Working with files:

  • 1.         Sidebar focus                          – Shift+Ctrl+E
  • 2.         Open File/Folder from Sidebar – Ctrl+Down
  • 3.         Change file tabs                      – Ctrl+PageUp
  • 4.         Quick File Open                     – Ctrl+P
  • 5.         Open File Explorer                 – Ctrl+O
  • 6.         New File                                  – Ctrl+N
  • 7.         File Save                                 – Ctrl+N
  • 8.         Save file/Save All                   – Ctrl+S  or ( Save All Ctrl K,S )
  • 9          lose File                                   – Ctrl+
  • 10.       Delete File                               – Ctrl+Delete
  • 11.       Zoom                                       – Ctrl++ ( Zoom in ) or Ctrl+- ( Zoom Out )
  • 12.       Split Editor                             – Ctrl+\

Code Editing:

  • 1. Navigate through line by word       – Ctrl+Right (Forward ) Ctrl+Left (Backward)
  • 2. Move to beginning/end of line        – Home/End
  • 3. Move line up/down                         – Alt/Up-arrow Alt/down-arrow
  • 4. Go to start/end of file                      – Ctrl+Home Ctrl+End
  • 5. Cut, Copy, Paste                             – Ctrl+X,Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V. If you are hovering over a line or a line is selected, the line will be used. If an item is selected, it will be the item affected.


[1] VSCode Keyboard shortcuts for Productivity – Traversy Media

[2] VSCode keymapping documentation

From the blog cs@worcester – (Twinstar Blogland) by Joe Barry and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Visual Studio Code Extensions

Visual Studio Code (VSC) is currently ranked the 3rd most popular IDE by programmers throughout the world [1] and is only eclipsed in usage by Eclipse (pun intended) and by the “full” version of Visual Studio. VSC is considered a lightweight IDE compared to Microsoft’s Visual Studio Enterprise (VSE). In the last 5 years, it has shot up in popularity and is expected to surpass the bigger weightier editors because of its expansive use of plugins. This architecture is groundbreaking in that it can remain compact and easy to use for simple tasks, but, when necessary, can be enhanced dramatically to deal with any level of expansion.

IDE’s can be ranked by size in 3 categories:

There are 3 levels of integrated development environments these days.

  • The smaller variety are enhanced text editors, (e.g., Atom, Sublime Text, and Notepad++).
  • Medium sized, like VSC, are the up-and-coming editors of the future
  • Larger development environments, (e.g., Visual Studio Enterprise, Eclipse and IntelliJ IDEA and editors based on it (like Android Studio))

The great advantage I see with VSC is its ability to be lightweight out of the box, but with the addition of the right plugins, can support most languages, tools, and coding situations.

I have worked over the years rather extensively with VSE, Eclipse, and Android Studio. Eclipse is a good editor, but it is a toy compared with VSE and Android Studio. All 3 of these IDE’s (formerly and pretentiously termed VDE’s) were powerful, but cumbersome. If you wanted to write a simple framework, you had to stumble through a plethora of menu entries, toolbars, and tabs to find what you needed. What you wanted was there, but sometimes it’s location was  not obvious. Developers did their best to memorize or use cheat-sheets of shortcut key combinations to get optimal use out of their coding time but were limited with a lot of minutiae to wade through.

As an example, if I primarily use java, but sometimes write JavaScript code, I only install the plugins related to those languages.  If I want to use Android Studio key-mapping for my shortcuts, I install that one extension. If I want to make my code align automatically, I install “Prettier”. If I want to see my nested code more clearly and visually interesting, I install “indent-rainbow”.

These extensions can be removed or disabled quite easily. VSC’s activity bar (by default on the left view), will add items to the bar as extensions are installed. I have additions for Docker, Testing, and source-code integration that were added by installing the relevant extensions,  

On my next post, I will lay out a list of the extensions I am finding most useful as a student of a Software Architecture class I am taking. We have used Plantuml [2], Docker [3], Object Oriented design, Design Patterns in Java, and semantic versioning for Docker images. We will be proceeding to use REST API’s, Kubernetes, CI/CD, and microservices architectures. As these new subjects are encountered, it is easy to just snap in the appropriate extensions, and more ahead from there. Beautiful!




From the blog cs@worcester – (Twinstar Blogland) by Joe Barry and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Test Post

Testing I can access WSU FeedWordpress plugin

From the blog cs@worcester – (Twinstar Blogland) by Joe Barry and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.