This is Jonathan. He’s my son and he’s nine years old. He also happens to have a severe allergy to milk. I have a story to tell you about him. If you have a friend or family member with food allergies, I also have something important to share. Something they might find life-changing.
Though mine is still in process of being shipped, Match received their Kindle Fire devices today. I got to play with it a little and test some pages with it. I also needed its user agent string, which I couldn't find on the web. So here it is:
This last weekend I was at html5tx (as I said in my last post), having a grand time and meeting some groovy people. One of the presenters showed what some people would consider a crass picture of a scantily clad woman. I wanted to talk to you about that.
This weekend I had the pleasure of attending html5tx. It seems that fun times were had by all and for posterity’s sake, I figured I would jot down some notes here on the web.
So this is weird for me and a little sad. I've had the same job for five years as of this last August but I'm changing today. This morning in fact. I am not, however, leaving Match. I will now be working under the able leadership of @shanehenderson on Match's mobile team.
So I took all of this week and next off from work. Yay! Looking forward to getting a lot of stuff done…but only fun stuff. I will be avoiding the less pleasant things as much as possible. Need a vacation. Anyway, here’s what I’m hoping to be doing a lot of:
I like my iPod but I'm not a huge fan of iTunes. When I heard about the Zune HD I figured it was time to try it. I want something better, something that doesn't lock up for 20 seconds every time I download a podcast. So with the hope of finding more usability I trotted down to Best Buy on release day (Sept 15th) and bought me the large size Zune HD. Yay! A newer, better, player! The software was very different but eventually I got used to it and could navigate it fairly well. Yay, all is happy with the world.
A few months ago I did lunch-n-learn at work around testing. I wrote down a number of principles that were useful to keep in mind when thinking about when writing automated tests. I figured I would share.
Need to get SMTP up and running on Vista? Well, I was looking around and found this blog post...
Dear reader, if you are a fan of strategy games like Civilization, I have a recommended (and free) game for you. It is called Ikariam. A few coworkers and I are playing the game and are creating an alliance. You should join us. If you are interested, join on the "Ny" server and shoot me an email so we can chat and collaborate.
So today was fun. Somehow my employer got five free tickets to the miniaturized version of the PDC that they had today at the Galleria in Dallas. Thankfully, I was able to go.
I'm on twitter now.
So the other day I wanted to run a VM on my Vista machine for the first time, so I downloaded Virtual PC 2007. I also downloaded the Windows XP IE6 test virtual image from Microsoft to get started. But there was a problem.
I am reading Refactoring: Improving the Design of Existing Code right now. In his discussion on method naming on pp. 110-111 he said something that seemed well said. I thought I would share it.
Happy new year!
Well...it has been a long time since I posted here. It is time to end the silence! I have been meaning to combine the codebases for this blog and my other one and finally got around to it. A number of changes and a great deal of additions later and voila, they're now running off of the same code. I dig it.
If someone likes to blog, they probably blog most about what they are spending their time on. That has certainly been the case with me. Of course, I do spend a lot of time in tech. I do, after all, program for a living. But most of my programming as of late has been pretty typical asp.net programmer stuff, so not much to talk about. Instead...
Merry Christmas everyone!
I have decided to split blogs and move my biblical studies related work to a new site, ArchaicChristianity.com. The blog is now basically functional and I have some book reviews up. I will continue to blog technical and personal thoughts here on this blog. When my biblical studies work crosses into the world of technology, you will probably see posts in both locations. If there is anything particularly important, I may crosspost that as well. But, in general, I think it is time for me to split my work.
It's sad, but I've met a number of these guys. I've even been some of them at one time :)
That's sorta what I said the other night when I fell off a ladder (while painting) and cracked the bone in my right heel.
I have to agree with Jason on this one. A lot of the ALT.NET stuff I am seeing in the blogs and whatnot just seems foolish to me. There are a number of great tools or ideas in the list, but the approach is just silly. Roy gives a disclaimer of "I don't necessarily agree with the list here" and says he will post his thoughts later, but either way he is fanning the flames of thinking in trends and not thinking of what is actually best. I get this same feeling all the time when I listen to agile people. I usually end up agreeing with most of what they say, but they are so often too filled with zealousy that they have forgotten that you can still complete projects just fine without agile. Though I do think a more agile approach would often work great in development work, it is the attitude that is annoying.
Problem two with this list: who considers all this "hot". The bloggers? They make up a very small percentage of the programmers out there. Most of the programmers I run into are completely oblivious to what is happening in the .NET blogosphere. Even if that list is representative of the .NET blogging community (and I think only partially so), we are still dealing with a small minority of the population.
We are supposedly an industry of intelligent people. We have to be smart to deal with all this programming stuff, right? At least semi-smart? If so, let us pick technologies and practices with our head. Let us be able to look through the popular, the trendy, and whatnot, and apply all this in a much more sane manner. That's what they pay us the big bucks to do.
The other night I was sitting with my family at the table and there was a fly that kept flying around. My daughter kept going on and on saying things like "Goway Bug!" (trans., "Go away bug!"), and asking over and over, "Hur mommy?" (trans., "Will the fly hurt mommy?"), "Hur daddy?" (trans., "Will the fly hurt daddy?"), "Hur Nanner?" (trans. "Will the fly hurt Jonathan?"), and "Hur Abby?" (trans. "Will the fly hurt me?"). She likes to cycle through the list of everyone at the table when a bug comes flying around.
It was at this point I sprung into action. Remember that scene from Karate Kid when Daniel grabbed a fly with chopsticks? Well, I was sitting there and the fly flew behind me. As the fly came back around I used what must have been my spider sense as it flew from behind my head, reached out, and in one attempt grabbed the fly out of mid-air, thereby saving my family from further anguish.
No, it wasn't luck. I'm Spidermaninja.
Last night was the monthly meeting of NDDNUG. It's always fun to see and chat with my geek friends. It also doesn't hurt to get free pizza and t-shirts. Woohoo! The meeting topic was OOP 101. The presentation was pretty good...but I think I've covered that stuff before :)
A terrible storm made its way through during the meeting. This storm was just the excuse my fence needed to defeat me once again...
So several months ago the bases on a couple of posts to my 10'-ish high privacy fence decided to rot out. As a temporary measure I put in some stakes and tied some ropes. In an attempt to more permenantly fix this, I put in a big metal pole and put it in cement. Aha! I've got that fence now. Nope. It pulled the metal pole and cement out of the ground. My fence was beating me. Me vs my fence...0 and 1.
Last night the wind blew down my fence. My fence had beaten me again. My feeble attempts could not keep it standing. 0 and 2.
So last night, around 9:45, in the rain, I had to clean up a 30ft stretch of fallen fence. One end had broken into two smaller pieces and were moveable. The largest piece, though, was about 20 ft of wood.
My initial plan did not succeed. I happened to be wearing my Transformers shirt, so I attempted to transform into a construction vehicle of some kind to help me move this fence. It didn't work, but that's no surprise. I had an Autobot symbol on my shirt, and we ALL know that it was the Decepticons that had the nice construction vehicles, the Constructicons. They were awesome, especially when combined together. I hope they show up in the meeting this summer. That would be great. But I digress.
Option two was to move this with my intensely manly muscles. The solution, as it turns out, was to attempt to fold the fence. It sounds strange, but it actually worked. As I tried to fold the fence the wood would give way and it would break. So I broke the fence up and moved it all back in to my yard. I don't think my neighbor would have enjoyed keeping it in hers.
So, in the end, I was not able to keep my fence standing. I lost. A sad day.
Microsoft has some free training in Dallas May 3. See here for information. I'm signed up. Let me know if you're going so we can chat.
There are geckos in my house. Not one of them has offered me cheap car insurance. Now I'm upset.
Sometimes you just get really busy. A task I'm on has taken up quite a bit of my time and has beaten down my spirits for the last few weeks. It's really mostly the latter. In every project I've seen there is good code, mediocre code, bad code, and really horrible code. I've spent the last few weeks in some of that really horrible code. It's the kind of code that makes you wonder what drugs they were on when they wrote it. It's the kind of code that makes you want to change careers. It's the kind of code that makes you wonder if Scott Guthrie would have heart attack if he ever saw it.
But it is mostly over now. My spirit is recovering, and I can get back to reading, blogging and side projects.
On that note, I updated my reading list. So I have gotten some reading done...
Any of you web geeks out there been to Refresh Dallas? Me either. I'm going to check it out tomorrow night. If you're going, drop me a note.
I was in the drive through at Crispy Creme the other day and noticed that they now have whole wheat donuts. Does this strike anybody else as ironic, odd, or at least slightly off?
I continue to get a sporadic spray of comment spam, usually for pharmaceutical sites it seems. I'm still manually reviewing them all (so that doesn't take much time), but it obviously working. No more comment span.
I bought a new iPod yesterday. It is a 30 gig model, black and sleek. I have been using an iPod mini now for at least two years. It has served me well, but the battery stopped charging completely. That obviously makes it much less useful. I would have had to start bringing an extension cord with me to the gym. I wonder how long it would have taken the staff to notice and say something...
I like it mucho. It is thinner than my old mini, but probably close to an inch wider. This makes the screen much more readable, so that's fine. It is also color and plays video, two more things that the mini did not do. It only cost me $25 more than the mini did when I bought it way back, so that's not to shabby either.
But I have two not quite so positive comments. First, I don't like the feel of the wheel as much as I did with the mini. You have to press harder to get it to respond. That's going to take a lot of unlearning. Also, it didn't come with a electric socket charger like my mini did. Apparently they don't come standard anymore. Seems a little cheap. The only way to charge it is through USB...unless you happen to have a wall charger left over from when you had a mini :)
Overall, a big improvement. I'm glad I got it. I briefly considered moving to the Zune, but since I didn't actually know anybody who had one, I didn't want to try it. Maybe one day.
Funny something for geeks.
If you ever want to use vmware, here is an online utility for creating virtual disks and config files. I found it very handy...
Funny. Watch it.
I added a couple new pages to the site. At the advice of a friend I am now keeping a running list of everything I read. It can be found here.
Also, a credits page for the images and code I use on the site that do not originate from my own work. It can be found here.
I also added a link to my aStore. I like the idea of the aStore, but navigation is horrible. Not sure what I can do about that other than write my own :)
With the Amazon Associate program you can link to Amazon about books from your site and, if someone buys the book, you get somewhere between 4% and 8.5% commission on the purchase. Not bad.
The aStore is similar. It is a place where you can list and categorize books. If someone buys a book through your aStore, then you get some commission. Both seem like nice programs.
My aStore has books that I have liked in tech and Greek and would recommend, and lists of books that I find interesting but have not yet read.
I like books a lot. It is the main type of adornment in my study. When some people or sad about something they eat ice cream or chocolate. I either eat a steak or buy a book...or both.
First, it was really small. It was held in a small rodeo arena in Mesquite. Are all circuses as small as this one? Unfortunately, I have no frame of reference.
Second, it was fairly pricey. As I expected, you get coupons to get in fairly cheaply so they can gouge you on pony rides, the bounce house, elephant rides, over-prices mediocre food, and little toy trinkets. The whole fam got in for $20. But we spent quite a bit inside on little things. We bought two flashy lighty things for the kids. One of them stopped working within about 10 minutes.
Third, unlike what they say, it is not fun for the whole family. Abigail (2) was pretty enthralled. It took a while for Jonathan (4) to get impressed. After about 10 minutes of the show he said he was ready to go. We stuck around a while and he eventually started enjoying himself. But for adults...well...calling it lame would be by association an insult to everything which has to this point been called lame. There was so much obviously fake sponteneity. It took about 10 minutes for the "acrobats" and such to actually do something that I didn't think I could do. That's pretty bad. I'm uncoordinated, a slight bit overweight, clumsy, and relatively weak. And I have no experience in gymnastics. The trapeze artists fell once. That was kinda funny.
The supreme act of lame circus-ing was the "volunteer" horse rider. A guy came out to the middle ring and rode standing on the back of two horses. They made a big todo about calling out a volunteer from the audience. The volunteer tried to get up on the horses and fell, and swung around by the safety harness that was attached. In shame she walked off, only to be goaded into doing it again by the ringmaster and the crowd. This time she actually climbed up the horses, but eventually fell off again. Then we saw the trickery. In mid-swing her pants fell off and she was wearing her gymnast-circus-leotard thingy underneath. SHE WASN'T EVEN A VOLUNTEER! That was just the last straw...
If you have really young kids, they might enjoy it. Otherwise, don't waste your time.
I had my birthday supper last night. We went to Saltgrass, of course. I got an extra big slice of prime rib so I could have some leftovers this morning. Steak for breakfast...yummmmmm...
Using Nmap we found out all the ip's on my network (the dvr happens to be 192.168.1.102. I wonder if that is standard.) and the open ports on the DVR (21303 and 21306).
Also according to Nmap it is running, in its words, Microsoft IIS SSL. Hmmmm...I'm a little surprised to see windows on there. Maybe I could run a website off my DVR! Just kidding.
Connecting directly to the ip and port using http did little good. You get back, according to Firefox, and "application/octet-stream". Saving that and opening it in a hex editor (I've got a liking for XVI32) you see 15 03 01 00 02 01 00, which doesn't really mean anything to me. If you use https, you don't get anything.
Of course, I tried to connect to it with IIS manager. Nope. Didn't work.
So, no progress yet. Anybody have any ideas?
No, before you say it, that search engine does not search based on character flaws, finding me to have a "sense of entitlement". Maybe when they come out with one of those I'll be in trouble... The text found was in this post, where I use the phrase.
Okay, go ahead. Jab away :)
"We all know where 'voting' got the Galactic Republic."
Thanks for the chuckle.
I've got some stuff coming up that you guys might find useful. Right now there's nothing that says which posts have comments and which ones don't. That's a little annoying. And there's no way to view posts by category. Those are the significant changes that will be coming soon...
And you HAVE to upgrade. The best new feature? The buttons look slighly different...:)
The other I saw for the first time this morning. You probably have to be a geek to get the reference for this one:
Great Christmas present ideas, I do believe!
But, it is finally back! Woohoo! Different place, though it is close to the other. If you're a .NET geek, and live in Dallas, go on over to their website and come to the meeting this wednesday! It is apparently running different code now as well. It is a lot faster...
This is your thought of the day.
If this is a deep thought...then the future is truly bleak.
Background: The CTO of Match (Mike P) has a line at the bottom of all his emails. It is a quote of Vince Lombardi. "It's not whether you get knocked down, it's whether you get back up." That's a great quote. Lots of truth there.
So somebody made a mistake this week at work that was pretty obvious to everyone. We had a company meeting today that a person in the management of the company (we will call him "Bob") was leading. This very nice and intelligent man is not a native American (I don't mean Indian, I mean he wasn't born in the US), and apparently doesn't know all of our slang.
So he's talking about the high points of the week. And they were nice high points. Then we came to the bad event of the week. Now, imagine you're in a room with about a hundred other people, and you hear Bob talking to you, saying something like this...
"There were some negative things about this week, but we learned a lot from it. Mike has a quote on the bottom of his email that I think is very appropriate. 'It's not how many times you get knocked down, it's how many times you get knocked up.'"
We resumed the meeting...after laughing for several minutes...
Bob...please don't fire me :)
Anybody else have any feed issues?
- Added date, link, and guid to the items in the rss feed.
- There was one issue that caused a few people to throw exceptions (invalid guid for post...don't know how they caused that problem accidentally...). Anyway, it no longer barfs in such cases and logs it, so I can hopefully track it down. See how responsive I am?
- Speaking of errors, I'm no longer showing you my stack trace. Aha! It's generally a bad idea anyway, but I had it turned on because of the problem I was having earlier. It's sorta like airing your dirty underwear...nobody wants to see it.
- Doing a mouse-over on the link to posts (at the top of each entry) will now display the typical link underlining.
Thank you for your patience...
I've been toying with agile concepts for a while in my mind and in my personal development time. I've thought for a while that there were lots of good ideas there, but have been pretty happy with the ideas of more typical, classical approaches to development as well. This book was definitely the most convincing thing I've ever read on agile development principles. It was often just ruthless in its common sense and logic, and I found many times that as they described a problem with typical software development processes I would go "Yeah, that IS a problem." So many things that some corner of my mind knew but refused to acknowledge, they brought out to light and exposed. I can't think of a software development book that has affected me quite the way this one has. I'm about to start my second read just so I can really get it.
The other book was pretty good. I'm currently trying to put his process in place. I really do have lots of things going on and have a hard time managing them. Not so much because the amount of stuff is insurmountable, but because my organization system just doesn't help me remember to do things on time and well. So, I'm trying what he says. We'll see if it works.
As for jury duty, during the actual jury selection process the prosecution and defence kissed and made up, so we were dismissed right before the jury was to be selected.
Not really. Lot has happened since my last post, several months ago. But, I'll just mention one of those, that I have recently taken another job. I started at Match.com this past Monday. I'm enjoying it so far and I am very glad to be back into full time web development. Woohoo!
Okay, I just needed to do another post. Baby steps to posting consistently. Baby steps...
Of course, two things increased the annoyance of this experience. First, the box had a previous beta version of the 2.0 .net framework and Sql Server 2005. I had to delete both of them before starting, but never could actually get through the install. At the very end I was getting a very strange error message that I could not figure out how to get around. Being frustrated, and feeling that the previous betas may just be sticking it to me on this one, I paved over the machine with a new install of 2003 server. Many, many hours later, and only a few cryptic messages later, I actually got it installed.
The other thing is performance. Take their performance requirements seriously. I installed this on a machine that didn't even come close to their requirements (one reason why it took ages I'm sure, but probably not a reason for many of the annoyances I faced). They recommend at the very least 1 gig of ram and a 2.2 ghz processor. I got it installed on a 700 mhz processor and 256M of ram. Yes, it is agonizingly slow. But it works. I can see it in action, even if the action is in slow-motion... Right now I'm considering an upgrade. I haven't even decided for sure if I'm going to use TFS for my development at home. Regardless, though, it would be nice to have a faster machine for my build server.
Using the VS addin:
18 public void ShowSomething()
20 MessageBox.Show("I am a code sample. Hear me roar!");
Using the online code formatter:
1: public void ShowSomething()
3: MessageBox.Show("I am a code sample. Hear me roar!");
Anyway, this one works.
The main reason why I chose DasBlog for this blog is because it is text file based, not sql server based. Makes it a little easier on the setup side. DasBlog is also quite a bit less bulky than Community Server is, though it doesn't come with forums, file sharing, etc.