Linux ready for the desktop? Show me productivity first.

ZDNet has an article titled Linux Ready for the Desktop. While I do enjoy Ubuntu quite a bit (at least on one desktop) and I would never doubt the usefulness of Linux on a wide variety of machines, my concerns over open source systems have become more widespread with issues about forks. Linux is certainly a different scenario than MySQL but consider this – mySQL has been considered a viable alternative for commercial RDBMS’ for how long? It’s been around since 1994 but has only really become a force to reckon with in the past 10 years. Certain incarnations of …

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Dealing with Font Sizes

Andy Kramek offers some great samples of identifying how long a string can be in a particular font. This is something that every UI designer needs to consider when dealing with screen design. While many VFP developers will use FONTMETRIC and TXTWIDTH, Andy has wrapped it all into a fairly easy function to call. Check it out here FoxPro VFP

A New Year…A New Month…A New Technology…

I have (first correction – thanks Matt!) been pulling together links for a larger “start of the year” post and decided to scale it back and try something a bit different. The various sites that AKSEL manages will be going through a “re-branding” exercise in the near future but one of my goals this year is to follow Chris Brogan’s Three Words idea (Freedom. Consistency. Communication – I’m still deciding…) as well as working in some of Mark Riffey’s ideas into my weekly schedule. Rod Paddock asked “What’s in a title” – and pointed out that one thing developers can …

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Usability: Learning New Environments

I realized how quiet I’ve been here and while I have a number of posts waiting in draft, I’ve been so busy it’s been impossible to complete them. But I did want to post this after I dealt with it yesterday. I’ve been on an ASP.Net contract now for about 3 months which is an experience all unto itself – non MVC, non standard ASP.Net app using the DevExpress components. Since this is someone else’s application “framework” and I’m simply a hired hand to help finish it off, I find I’m using parts of Visual Studio that I’ve never really …

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Do you Scale?

Great post by Dare, Scalability: I Don’t Think That Word Means What You Think It Does following up on a post from Scott Loganbill at Google about their choice of “scalable” services. Scalability is a funny question. Every application is designed to handle a certain type of architecture – it’s usually one of those fundamental sales analysis questions “and how many orders do you typically process a day? How many people do you have working for you”. While scalability problems can be due to both technology and design, it’s typically design that is the major culprit. (ok, yes, the guy …

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Say No to Feature Creep

Chris Saad has a great post over on his blog: Leadership includes saying no « Paying Attention Not sure if he just went through a specific scenario to inspire the posting but it’s a great read, especially for technical managers. One of my clients had a problem: they have a list of over 397 enhancement requests to their product. Now, to be fair, some of those are fairly cosmetic and but at least 200 of them require some kind of review for someone to say “no – we are not doing this” So why don’t they? Because when they get …

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Dynamic Languages Strike Back

Garrett pointed over to this post Stevey’s Blog Rants: Dynamic Languages Strike Back which is really a transcript of a speech Steve Yegge gave at Stanford. Very interesting read/video whichever you prefer. When reading about half way through (I’ve marked to come back to but it’s definitely a good read) , I immediately thought of the TIOBE index and how excited VFP developers (including myself) got when we had broken the top 20 – why? because of this quote “So that brings us full circle back to the point of this topic, which is: the languages we have today, sorted …

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Quick VFP Developer Shortcut: Tables into clipboards

Developers create a lot of little “snippets” that help them in a lot of different scenarios. Some of them evolve into larger tools; others turn into hidden gems that get shared among a small select few. (hmmm….SET TANGENT ON ….sounds like an interesting idea for a VFPX project – a snippet sharer – damn! don’t they have that in VS? – I DIDN’T think of that when I was first writing this – why can’t I think of something that VS DOESN’T have? – OK – SET TANGENT OFF – I do think we DO need an IntellisenseX manager that …

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Funny UI Decisions

I’ve been reading KC almost since I started using an RSS (when I grabbed a bunch of the earliest MS bloggers and aggregated them) – and many of her posts are enlightening, some very informational (this is someone who has moved around MS quite a bit in different areas) and some just funny – like this one – KC on Exchange and Outlook : The power of words I guess we don’t call it user interface anymore but rather User eXperience but it’s still the same – how do people interact with your product. And as more resources get outsourced, …

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Awaiting Sedna

According to Craig, Sedna Release Appears to be Imminent… This is, of course, great news for FoxPro developers as they have been waiting (im) patiently for it since October when they released SP2. I had noted it on an earlier post and asked around, finding out that Sedna got put behind VS2008 and SQL 2008 in the “release” queue. (Good to see that Craig is providing more details on it, although an updated EULA from Legal certainly isn’t something I hoped to see – what new things could they have possibly put into it from June’s CTP?) But since then, …

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