Day 10: Fixes to DBIx::Class::InflateColumn::Boolean

I'm finding my new position at OpusVL ever more valuable. We like to put extra time into getting to the bottom of an issue because we rely so heavily on open-source software. Problems we discover in the modules we use are worth investigating for their own sake, simply because the amount of time already put into the modules by other people is years; years we didn't have to spend ourselves.

Today I discovered that, if I ran my Catalyst application under perl -d, it didn't actually run at all.

After much involvement from various IRC channels I came to the conclusion that the problem was in Contextual::Return; or rather, the problem was in the 5.14 debugger, since it seems OK in 5.20.

Anyway, Contextual::Return was employed by DBIx::Class::InflateColumn::Boolean, which I was using because SQLite doesn't have ALTER COLUMN. We test components of Catalyst applications as small PSGI applications with SQLite databases backing them, which has its own problems, but in this case the issue was the column in question being closed boolean NOT NULL DEFAULT false, and SQLite not translating "false" as anything other than the string "false", and then shoving it in a boolean column anyway.

So DBIC faithfully gave me "false" back when I accessed the row, and "false" is true, so everything broke.

So I inflated the column.

This all resulted in a patch to DBIC:IC:Boolean, authored by haarg, removing the dependency on Contextual::Return entirely.

This may be a case of avoiding rather than fixing the problem, but since the problem appears to exist in the 5.14 debugger, the only way to fix that is to update to 5.20 - or whenever it was that it was fixed.

It also prompted me to rebuild the SQLite database to remove that default. Turns out DBIC doesn't fill in default values when creating rows.