Anjan Nair
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Sunsetting Rufus - A Glimpse Into The Making

Sunsetting Rufus - A Glimpse Into The Making

With Heroku stopping its free tier services for everyone, it's time to throw in the towel peacefully.

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Anjan Nair
·Sep 24, 2022·

3 min read

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Table of contents

  • What Motivated Me To Build It?
  • The Open Source Way
  • Ending Note

Pre November 28th, 2022 a historic number of applications, bots, websites, etc. were hosted on Heroku for free. My application built using the discord.js module for NodeJs was one of them.

What Motivated Me To Build It?

Short answer - The pandemic.

Long answer - September 26th, 2020 marks my first commit to the GitHub repository which hosts the source code to Rufus. It's been 2 years.

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Back then I had just gotten started with NodeJs and had a basic idea of what JavaScript was. Discord was fairly popular and was gaining attention due to the pandemic. Everyone was hopping onto Discord to play games together or live stream movies with their loved ones.

I started noticing some issues with the platform back then. It simply was not user-friendly at least at first. If you're totally new to Discord without any exposure to any other similar IRC-type applications you'd have found it overwhelming too. Bots back then had no slash commands. Each bot had its own custom prefix.

Here is where I started. I started building a guidebook for those new to Discord. Simply call Rufus with the appropriate command and it would guide you. Imagine this to be the Bitwarden of all passwords, remember one prefix/command, and conveniently view the prefixes/commands of other bots. Convenient right?

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The Open Source Way

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With every commit to the source code, the bot started taking shape, new commands started getting added, and more people requested me to add features. The motivation to complete this bot was surreal. I'm not joking when I say this but the constant support from online friends as well as other developers I met during the journey was something I hadn't witnessed before.

A few months after the initial commit I received my first pull request on the repository which felt good because people were beginning to notice the project. From code cleanups to restructuring the code and making it better the open source at GitHub helped mold the project to what it is today.

The bot started gaining stars and I started meeting new developers who built such bots too. It would be useless if I don't mention Dev Shah with whom I had a great time collaborating and writing code. This is someone who at a young age had some really good hold on programming.

Ending Note

Thank you for being a part of this journey. Like every good thing, the chapter of Rufus has come to an end. It is time for me to move ahead. From the 28th of November, Rufus will go dark. There are no plans to rewrite the bot to match the latest Discord API nor are there plans to migrate servers to another hosting service. Nothing can possibly beat the convenience of the free service Heroku offered developers.

If you have read this till here, presenting a list of websites that provide free hosting below. Be free to test them out and then settle on which one can scale up to the project you have.

You can find the GitHub repository for the bot here - Rufus Discord Bot

Sites where you can get free hosting (Source) -

 
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