Intergen

Leaving Intergen
15 February 2007 in Business & Intergen | Comments (3)

After a fantastic three years working at Intergen I’ve decided it’s time for me to depart and start my own company. I’ve always wanted to run my own company and I’m at a point where I can realise that dream. I’ll be posting more about the business in the future on this blog and look forward to this exciting new chapter :)

For anybody wishing to find out more please either leave a comment or contact me on usual means.

 - JD

Yet another Intergen blogger
19 September 2006 in Blogging & Intergen | Comments (0)

New Blog

Intergen recently had James Newton-King join the company. James maintains his own blog and is responsible for creating the JSON.Net library as well as several other components that he has available on his site.

So far James is known for being great cannon fodder for all the Halo guys at work :)

- JD

I need more action
11 September 2006 in General & Intergen | Comments (8)

Recently I’ve had a spider around my desk at work – I come in each day and it’s built an even bigger web which is kind of interesting. Gabe has been having a chuckle all day about this photo he snapped claiming it’s proof I don’t get any action!

I couldn’t resist posting the picture though, either I’m too busy to action things or I’m not busy enough :)

To Action

Note that I’ve sharpened the label that says “To Action” on the tray to make it easier to see :)

- JD

Nick is Blogging!
8 September 2006 in Blogging & Intergen | Comments (0)

Nick Urry, a fellow employee of Intergen has started blogging also on the bluecog domain. He’s a bit of a crazy guy, in a good way, and is likely to post about technology, monkeys and chocolate. He’s kicked off with his thoughts on the WTF is Web2.0 debate. He’s still working on the look and feel of the site but he has a keen eye for good looking sites so I’m sure it will come up sparkly.

So stop over, leave a comment, and make Nick feel welcome.

rss Nick’s Blog

 - JD

TechEd 2006 in review
24 August 2006 in .Net & Code & Events & Intergen & Windows | Comments (3)

teched2006.jpg

First off, it was fantastic. I’ve only been to TechEd twice but Microsoft put on a great event. Everything went unbelievably smoothly and the atmosphere was really good. We arrived on Sunday afternoon and everything was already humming.

I managed to attend quite a few sessions and all of them had great speakers.

One thing that I didn’t expect, but was happily surprised about, was that the Live initiative really is shaping up to be a compelling offering across the board. My earlier reservations have been quashed and I’m looking forward to the further development of the Live platform over the next six months. I guess the key message I would share about this is that perhaps while the live.com portal might not be your kettle of fish, the other services really are quite compelling.

Speaking of Live, the Web in general was well discussed. Rowan Simpson from TradeMe presented a few times and was an excellent speaker. I think he added some balance to the event – making it clear the back end doesn’t matter if you don’t solve a problem for your end users in an easy to use manner. Congratulations to them on achieving 1 billion page views per month as well, that’s impressive.

Office 2007 was represented very well at TechEd. I attended several sessions about Office and picked up a few things. The whole stack of Office, Vista and Live is going to be compelling.

Intergen, where I work, was running the hands on labs again this year which is always enjoyable and a great way to meet other people attending TechEd. Hopefully everyone tried them out and learnt a lot.

TechFest was a heap of fun. It was similar to last years event however that was great considering the success of last year. This was another great place to meet other people in the industry but, sadly, we couldn’t convince any of the ladies at TechFest that were near to jump up on my shoulders for The Feelers however I was pleased to see more representation of woman in technology at TechEd this year :) . Some of us ended up at Globe and had a great time there until the wee hours (as well as meeting even more great folks).

Then last night we had the mad dash to the airport. As much as I love TechEd it’s just long enough to make me appreciate being back in my own bed :) I’m sure everyone else had a great time.

This post is quite a quick brain dump of my thoughts, I’ll probably follow up over the next few days with this I remember as being useful or cool :)

- JD

Off to TechEd
18 August 2006 in Intergen & Microsoft | Comments (4)

Well I’ve been pumping out the posts lately since I’ll be heading off to TechEd this weekend. Hope to see some of you there and just a heads up on the lack of posts for the next 5 days or so :)

- JD

Developing with web standards
17 August 2006 in Code & Intergen | Comments (1)

Many of us know that it’s a good idea to ensure what we develop is compliant with relevant standards (HTML 4.01, XHTML, maybe even E-Government Web Guidelines). However when it comes to actually ensuring that you’re developing sites that conform to these types of standards it can be difficult to validate that you’re doing it right.

I’m not going to delve into E-Government Web Guidelines in this post (it’s a much bigger kettle of fish than I can bring myself to write about at he moment) but will look at some tools that I find invaluable in aiding the development of pages that conform to W3C HTML & XHTML standards.

The Web Developer Toolbar

webdevelopertoolbar.gif

This is a fantastic extension to FireFox. It gives you great features – more than you would want me to talk about here – just trust me, it’s amazing. A couple of highlight features however that make standards development easier:

  • Validate Local HTML
    This uses the doc type and submits local HTML to the appropriate W3C Validator. Perfect for dev environments where your pages are not publicly accessible.
  • Validate Local CSS
    Same as above but for CSS
  • Validate Feed, Links, Section 508 and WAI
    Each of these does their own validation, but can’t be done from local unfortunately but still fantastic for meeting more standards.

On top of this there are features that just help you out in a big way. Several features that I use almost every day when tinkering with HTML:

  • View Style Information
    This gives you a cross hair to click anywhere on the page and it shows you exactly which styles, from what CSS file, are being applied at that point!
  • Outline Table & Block Elements
    Rather than applying border styles to everything, just click the button and see where the tables and block level elements are. Colour coded for extra greatness.
  • View Source
    Doesn’t sound like a biggy but it opens the source in a background tab, not a new window – fantastic.

As I mention, there are hundreds more features. If you touch HTML at all this extension should be installed right after FireFox. Click here to visit the homepage of the Web Developer Toolbar.

Web Accessibility Toolbar

This tool is an add-in to Internet Explorer and adds much of the functionality that the Web Developer Toolbar adds to FireFox. There are a few differences but they’re similar enough for me not to write heaps about this tool (refer to my feature comments about the Web Developer Toolbar).

Click here to get the Web Accessibility Toolbar.

Both of these tools should be installed, especially if you’re doing ASP.Net development as the server controls in ASP.Net render differently depending on the browser you’re using (you can make some changes using Browser Caps if you’re interesting in really getting into it).

- JD

Stu’s blogging too!
16 August 2006 in Blogging & Intergen | Comments (4)

My blog feels like it’s just for advertising new blogs lately! Anyway, blogging fever is catching up with more folks from Intergen and Stewart Robertson is the latest to join the fold.

Stu is a developer at Intergen and his blog is a mixture of personal entries as well as his thoughts on development and test driven methodologies (as well as other geek things :) )

RSS Feed Stu’s Blog

- JD