Archive for the_time('F Y')

Events for the week
30 May 2006 in Events | Comments (3)

Events in Wellington this week

I thought I’d share a few events that are on in Wellington this week for anyone else who’s interested in mingling.

30/05/2006: Ruby on Rails user group meeting (Join the mailing list, 6:30pm at Syn Bar)

31/05/2006: 7×7 Ideas Forum (Book online, 5:30pm at the Wellington Town Hall)

01/06/2006: UPStart – Software Success (RSVP online, 5:30pm at the Wellington Conference Centre)

Looks like a busy week ahead.

- JD

WebStock
28 May 2006 in Intergen | Comments (3)

For Thursday and Friday I attended the the first WebStock conference here in Wellington. I had a fantastic time and attended all the sessions that I wanted to see. Some of the speakers (Joel Spolsky and Tony Chor) were fantastic and I throughly enjoyed their presentations.

I could spend a considerable amount of time writing about sessions and the time there but John has done a fantastic job of blogging while he attended.

I’d certainly want to go again and if you didn’t attend this time then you should certainly jump at it if they run it again :)

– JD

TradeMe Job Advertising
27 May 2006 in Business | Comments (2)

This is fantastic, I was just viewing the source of a page on TradeMe and embedded in the page is this:

<!–
If you’re looking at our HTML source, you’re exactly the person
who should send us your resume.
View current vacancies at http://www.trademe.co.nz/careers
–>

How cool is that?

– JD

Intellisense for SQL
24 May 2006 in Code | Comments (0)

SQL Prompt is a free (until September) utility from Red Gate Software which adds intellisense support for writing SQL queries to SQL Management Studio (2005), Query Analyser (2000), Visual Studio 2003, Visual Studio 2005 and UltaEdit32.

Check out the webpage to see a basic animation of SQL Prompt in use.

Get it here: SQL Intellisense, Intellisense for SQL Server – SQL Prompt

– JD

Live.com – my thoughts
12 May 2006 in Microsoft & Windows | Comments (2)

Windows Live

There seems to be some discussion about live.com going on in the .net blogging space in New Zealand at the moment so I thought I’d jot down my own thoughts.

I played with Windows Live months and months back when it first launched. I initially thought “heh, that’s kinda cool – I can move stuff around just like in SharePoint”. Then I closed the browser and didn’t go back.

A few months passed and I saw comments about the new live search and I found myself again playing around with the Windows Live portal again. It was more polished – a lot more gadgets had been added. I played for a while longer but at no point did I have any desire to set it as my homepage.

As many people have said – it’s bulky and slow. When I open my browser I have it set to about:blank because I want it to snappy. I hate having my browser slow. It’s 2006 for crying outloud – browsers have been around for more than a decade, why the heck should I need to wait five seconds for my browser to become useable? I have a 10mbit down internet connection – I’m not going to tolerate it being slow. This is a massive issue that I bitch about from time to time – Why have we had a 100x improvement in computing and network speed but everything seems to be getting slower and slower? Anything more than 1 second between clicking the browser icon and having my browser usable is not acceptable in my eyes.

And that pretty much sums it up – from a functional point of view it’s fine. You can do a lot. But from a usability point of view it’s just not something I enjoy using. It almost feels like a typical Microsoft way of doing things – add tonnes of functionality. They need to mix it with how Apple does things – it might not do *everything* but damn, it’s nice to use!

I realise that so far it seems like I’m ripping Live.com a new one – I’m really not. I know I don’t represent a normal cross section of computer users. I like the idea of a single portal but I think people realised that portals weren’t the best idea in the late 90′s. Just because I can personalise it now doesn’t make me want to use it anymore than I did then. This entry would be exactly the same if you replaced “live.com” with “Google personalised homepage”.

Perhaps I’ll change my mind eventually – perhaps it will become a lot faster. Who knows – all I do know is that I find it far too much of a gimmick at the moment. I do think I’ll use gadgets in Vista – but that’s because they’ll be asyncronous – I can use the computer and have them update in their own time. That makes me happy – and once I have gadgets that I can’t live without I’ll becoming a raving fan.

I look forward to the continuing debate about live.com. I would love for people to point out some positives that I’ve missed. I really love the live.com search, I think it’s fantastic. Tim seems to be tracking this debate if you care to read more peoples views.

- JD

Ruby on Rails – Wellington meetup
12 May 2006 in Events | Comments (2)

Ruby on Rails

Tomek (from ZoomIn) is organising a Ruby on Rails community gathering that hopefully will be a monthly event. Likely to be similar to a user group catch up (pizza, drink, geeks) – I’d suggest anyone that’s interested in RoR passes their details to me (there is no fancy mailing list, website or anything yet so it’s quite word of mouth at this stage).

Hat tip to Tim on bringing this to my attention.

- JD

Meeting new folks
10 May 2006 in Business | Comments (0)

So lately I’ve been trying to network a bit more with some folks in IT and business in general. I met up with Ben Nolan of ZoomIn.co.nz on Monday after work and checked out their premises at CreativeHQ. I really liked the atmosphere at CreativeHQ (both professional yet fun) even though it was pretty empty at that time of night. It was great having a chat with Ben and finding out more about what they’re up to and sharing some ideas.

Later we headed off to Matterhorn for some drinks and started talking with some random guy and his partner who were sitting at the same table as us (bars seem remarkably full on a Monday night!). Anyway, after some talking we found out he was looking into an IT venture and talked about a friend of his at this local company we might have heard of – Intergen :) Surprising how small the world is – this guy didn’t even live in the North Island.

It’s great to find that even with such a basic start to networking with some like minded folks at how quickly it grows. It’s almost viral. Tonight I went out for some Butter Chicken to kick back after a software release that I’d been part of. Shortly after Ben turned up with a few friends including a guy (Nathan Torkington) from O’Reilly. He seemed like quite a character even in the few moments of chatting. Grabbed his card and did some googling now I’m home, so if you want to read the first ever review of Shortland Street magazine then check out this link: Shortland Street Magazine Review. I’m sure that’s how he got to work for O’Reilly ;) I enjoy people who don’t take themselves too seriously.

All in all I’ve found it to be a fantastic week for networking – now to just see if I can keep the ball rolling.

– JD

$9000 interest a day
6 May 2006 in General | Comments (0)

This article on stuff.co.nz just made me smile and I thought I’d throw it up on here for other peoples amusement :)

Basically a guy in wellington ordered a new credit card which should have cost him $9.95 but the bank charged his account over 12 million dollars! That’s 9,000 dollars in overdraft interest a day.

Full article: Bank changes 12m for card

- JD