ellyssian: (penguin)
I like the looks of Typesafe Slick. The Lifted Embedding is pretty cool, and would be great to get at data and really do all kinds of things most other languages couldn't dream of.

When I first started working with Scala last year, it struck me that a lot of the things I was learning were things I always found myself wanting to do in an imperative language but they just couldn't do it or they were things (like the recursion) that everyone always said to stay away from because they'd break down and fail in 4GL.

I'd really love to have a plugin for the Caché object database... while accessing it with SQL would be cool, it would be great to just be able to get the objects working together. They're still adding support, though, and with Caché being a niche market tool (although I'd love to see it in more widespread usage) it's not likely to get there unless someone writes it. I'll get right on it... and add it to my to-do list. =)

Of course, my interest in Caché is surface-deep at this point. I love the interface for maintaining the dbs, doing the admin, and running SQLs and object queries and stuff. I haven't spent the time working with it to see how it does with a more strenuous workout. The job I was hoping to interview for a while back fell through before it started, so I focused on what was applicable to other things... but I'd kind of like to work with it some more. I have no idea if it scales as well as their marketing material says it does, and I have no idea how many arms and legs it costs (but I expect it's pricey), but I like the promise it has, and the little I've used it has impressed me.

I'm thinking I might need to develop an app or two using those technologies and see how it goes. With scalability in the language and scalability in the dbs, there could definitely be the promise of handling gobs and gobs of data in a much more efficient manner than other tech I've worked with.
ellyssian: (penguin)
Developers: Just an FYI for those using OSX and upgrading to Mavericks: it hoses your JDK, taking you back to 1.6. If you need the latest and greatest (and I ran up against this submitting a Scala assignment last week), you'll need to reinstall the JDK after the upgrade. Also, make sure you install the JDK itself ~ the runtime environment will not update the Java version used by the command line. Just putting this out there in case anyone is wondering why Java suddenly stopped working as expected ~ and then forgot about the JDK/JRE differences!

Updatia

Sep. 19th, 2013 01:19 pm
ellyssian: (Default)
The Poetry Page @ EverettAWarren.com has finally been updated with some improved content.

On a fairly closely related note, there is now a GreenManEnvy page, which ties in that site, and provides another avenue to help promote GME.

A few other minor changes were implemented throughout the site.
ellyssian: (Default)
Read this earlier:
Stop Making Me Sign Up

I understand the drive to build the almighty contact list. I wonder how much of a sell it would be to get clients to back off a bit and take it step by step? Key point: build trust before requiring their data.
ellyssian: (Default)
The next round of changes over at EverettAWarren.com have been completed.

The main fix was to get rid of those really ugly iframe blocks to show content from this blog on the site. The clunky frames have been replaced with CSS-prettified RSS feeds. This brought about an unplanned but welcome change in that links throughout the site now show a dotted underline when you hover over them.

On a couple pages ~ specifically services and writing ~ content will now show and hide itself by clicking on text that will show the same hover behavior as the links.

I made a few minor tweaks and additions in content, and a few other minor prettifications, as I worked through the changes.

I'm pretty happy with how things are looking. The Tolkienesque font for the buttons is still moderately cheesy, but I like how it looks better than the other dozens of options (out of the gazillions of fonts I have installed) that I took the time to look at. Then again, I am a fantasy author, and a programmer... so if Tolkienfonts fit, wear 'em, I guess.

The bread crumbs for navigation are still to come. The RSS changes are significant enough that I wanted to get this out now and not risk starting on the crumbs without the time to finish and deploy the changes tonight. When the crumbs do appear, should the old standby bottom-of-screen navigation go away? Let me know what you think ~ I'm curious!
ellyssian: (Default)
Just when I had caught up with my coursework, I went and spent all day yesterday working through all the pages of EverettAWarren.com to match the appearance of the changes made on the splash landing the day before.

I'm now half a day behind on lectures in the Systematic Program Design course ~ although I wrapped the lectures in the Digital Media & Mobile Apps course ~ and I have a nearly mostly almost usable website as a result.

Most of my time was spent on a somewhat known bug with Safari, and various workarounds thereof, involving onload and the DOM. Theoretically, the onload event triggers after the page has loaded completely. Safarially, the onload triggers prior to any elements being loaded, even if you move the script to the last part of the page, and no matter if you make the proper sacrifices, chant the appropriate chant, and check windspeed and direction prior to loading the page.

I could see that Safari could run the exact code ~ it did so in a JSFiddle ~ but couldn't do it on its own.

In a production situation, I would have bagged the image maps ~ the problem came in while trying to resize the maps with window resizing ~ and gone with individual buttons much sooner than I did, or forced a static window size, but it was just too much fun playing with some more complex Javascript than I have in a while.

The current state of the site:
  • CSS implemented across the site
  • All pages changed (with the exception of the EARN Financial Plan Calculator) to use the CSS
  • Some updates to content as I noticed they were needed
  • Navigation to all major pages completed
  • Main graphic simplified to improve load times


I still need to:
  • Improve the graphics on the small buttons (they've been resized up and down as I figured out the best size, and are fairly fuzzy as a result)
  • Build graphics for the various tags on the blog page
  • Get rid of the ugly iframe handling of the blogs and use RSS or something that can be integrated into the site
  • Breadcrumbs and/or clean up the original text link navigation
  • Write the poetry page already
ellyssian: (Default)
There are going to be a lot of changes over at EverettAWarren.com...

Some of them have already made it to the landing page!

Although I still want to keep the site simple and straight-forward in support of the multiple primary purposes it has (promote my writing, host my resume, promote my business services), I do want it to look a little less basic and more spiffy, as it were.

After the initial facelift ~ which I still need to carry out across the site ~ and a tiny bit of refactoring, I'll be improving the navigation. Prettifying it, really, as it works now... but I'll be using buttons instead of text links, and that sort of thing. After that, I'll finish the refactoring and get everything cleaned up, especially CSS-wise. In that way, the site will better reflect my coding ~ although it will still be on the simpler side. It just doesn't need a whole lot of bells and whistles.

As a further in-construction disclaimer, the main image on that splash page is currently huge, with ridiculous load times. That has already been fixed, and will get better once I push the next round of changes out.
ellyssian: (penguin)
I completed the first assignment ~ for credit ~ in the course. 10/10 so far.

Also, it's funny... I can remember so many times hearing about all the evils of recursion. While the three parts of the assignment could be completed using other means, all of those possibilities require significantly more code and complexities.

Looking forward to the next set of lectures and assignments!
ellyssian: (penguin)
I made a few quick tweaks to the ol' resume... adding in the courses-in-progress, but mostly making the changes because it might be interesting to a potential client or an employer to know that I was one of the early signatories of the Agile Manifesto. Considering I came across a number of help wanted ads specifically mentioning agile software development, or one of its practices, as a requirement or a preference, this is a pertinent fact!

Progfun!

Sep. 22nd, 2012 01:27 pm
ellyssian: (penguin)
While prog music is fun, I'm actually referring to functional programming...

Last Tuesday, I started a course on Functional Programming Principles in Scala, from École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, taught by Martin Odersky, via Coursera.

Although there's no college credits involved, there is a certificate ~ provided I successfully complete all the assignments and get some decent grades.

It's one of three courses I'll be taking this Autumn, and perhaps the most, forgive any pun, functional. While all of the courses will go on the resume, functional programming and Scala coding are going to be search terms on the job search. Combined with my database programming experience, that should make a pretty powerful incentive for companies to throw some money my way, whether it's as an independent contractor or as an employee.

I'm working through the first real assignment now, although the (not-counting-towards-the-final-grade) example exercise received 10 out 10 points, so things look good so far!

(Of course, it's also fun... I'm really liking the partial application of a function... I can think of a lot of places where I wanted to do that in other languages that just weren't capable of that sort of thing...)
ellyssian: (Default)
I updated a number of pages on EverettAWarren.com ~ the About... page is better, a bit more tuned for the writing than some of the business services I offer, but in some ways stronger for that as well. There's also a full bio, mostly written back in 2004, with some quick and dirty updates... more needed, and editing, too, but it will work for the interim. The resume and business services page were also updated, mostly to better reflect my experience with database design and programming. Enjoy!
ellyssian: (Default)
I noticed that some of the Mac and Windows transcription software seems a bit sensitive... case sensitive, that is.

The file extensions for audio files, such as .wav or .mp3, were choking up in some software and opening in others. After more than a decade of being desensitized to extension case thanks to various Windows products, and despite much more than a decade using the Mac and UNIX and Linux and other software where .wav and .WAV are not equivalent (at least at the operating system level), it took me a while to catch why this was happening.

I am so used to modern software (i.e. the applications, not the operating system) understanding that an extension is an extension, and the file type doesn't change just because .wav is not .WAV or, more importantly, vice versa. It seems that some programmers of audio transcription software aren't making much efforts on file type recognition. They are failing on the surface level: they will accept .wav or .mp3 (or many other file formats), but they are not able to comprehend .WAV or .MP3, when other software can easily understand them and not allow an extension (a legacy of ancient DOS history) to cripple them and prevent them from working properly.

So while the programmers are fixing that, they should also see about their installation procedures and register the software for the file types it can handle ~ on the Mac, this makes the difference between opening a file directly at the file, or having to go and open the app and then load or open the file...

Simple things, and they can be worked around, but, really, it all comes down to lazy coding...
ellyssian: (Default)
I may not have announced it here, but here is what it's all about:

There's going to be a lot more going on around these here parts.

I'm going to tie my LJ account in to my personal website, everettawarren.com, and use it to help promote my:

1) business support contracting services (web, programming, writing, editing, photography)
2) writing (poetry, short fiction, books, whatever else comes along)
3) music (several things in the works)

... and so on.

The posts with the "evsite" tag will be pulled for the frame on the site; I'll probably do something similar with the poetry and writing tags.

I expect that I'll be adding more posts intended for the site ~ which means writing about what I'm doing creatively (which I've always done here) and maybe a bit about technology (it's been a while since I discussed programming!) and business topics ~ but I'm also likely to start adding other content once I start showing up here for more than a quick read of what everyone else is writing... who knows, I may even get back in the habit of commenting again!
ellyssian: (Plow)
Yay!

I just plowed about 3-4" off the driveway.

Took the plow shoes off - if the gravel's not set in its ways yet, oh well...

That means I didn't leave 1-2" to ice up, it's mostly down to the ground. Didn't look like I got that much gravel scraped to the side. I think the shoes dig up more when they slice down into the ground, because the last time I picked up a lot more.

I'm going to switch hats and write a bit of the course extracts for PA PIMS - maybe the course extract itself - then plow the nature center and come back and finish the course instructor and student course extracts. Probably need another round of plowing this afternoon or evening.

I'm going to take Rachel along for the ride if she wants, on account of school being closed. Justin does have class today, so he won't be able to go. Rachel hasn't been yet, and Justin went on our first not-quite-enough-snow attempt in January and on the actual-snow-fall the last time out.

Anywho, time to code...
ellyssian: (Default)
I had posted some of these updatia type things over the weekend - a time when some people allegedly don't read up on LJ.

So, for a limited time only1, you can see the collected updatia of this past weekend, right here, with a handy, summarized group of links. Some of these entries are friends-only for various reasons, but the summaries are rated mostly safe for all ages (with a disclaimer regarding humor or lack thereof).

I took a serious beating over the weekend, although much of it might be termed "enjoyable." First, as I was recovering from a mental beating at the hands of incompetent vendors carrying out the bidding of the state legislature here in PA, I had my head stuffed into a 3XL helmet, my body wedged into a slightly smaller space than it would prefer, and I then proceeded to pilot my scrunched body around a series of acute angles at 45mph. My arms were nearly ripped from my body by the attempts to aim myself in the right direction, and I probably lost a few pounds in sweat. This was good, because I think the weight loss improved my best lap time by about 10 seconds for each of the three heats, to come in solidly dead last most of the time. See here for detail, more or less.

I spouted poetry later on Friday night, and It Was Good. No - Great. Greatest Hits, more like it. Been too busy to write new material, so in with Ye Olde. Had fun anyway. Woke up cold and getting colder, as power was dropped for at least 5 hours on Saturday morning. Only way to judge is that it did get colder as time went on, so it might only have dropped shortly before our 5am reference point. More on that, plus Rachel & Soccer and Justin & Music.

Sunday, Justin and I started to disassemble a tree thats about 80' tall, although we were only dissecting bits that were about 60' off the ground, for the most part. Some limbs are starting to rot through - some have already fallen all around my car, and I'm not about to let the poor, dead thing have any more time to practice its aim. Anywho, we took down a small portion of it, and more will have to wait for the weekend and a little daylight. We joked that when we're done, we'll be Olympic-level athletes, but, realistically, we'd probably need to take down another two or three trees to get to that level. All that stretching and pulling and tugging on ropes has definitely compensated for the scrunching and bending and folding on Friday, so I definitely feel like a Norse god - yep, I'm Thor. Play-by-play here.


1: This Omnibus Edition of Weekend Updatia will expire when it's deleted, LJ croaks, the infrastructure in the country is destroyed via thermonuclear war leaving a few survivors in a post-apocalyptic condition similar to that made popular in so many 80's stories, or until entropy wins and the universe kicks back and chills for a while, which every may apply first. Some conditions and restrictions may apply, please see your dealer for details.
ellyssian: (Default)
Yes, that means all network connections will be severed for enough time to stop two all-day processes after they've been running for five hours...

This inspired said programmer (not me) to invent the saying "son of a motherless chicken..."

Me? I was thankfully half the way through installing six hot fixes to a SQL Server. I've decided to hold off on the last three - turned the server off, as it is UPSless - until after the storm has passed. Literally.

Anywho, 3/4" hail. Looked like it was snowing for a minute there. Water running so deep and fast on the street, cars are having trouble navigating the canal street. An intersection within view appeared to have more than a foot of water on it.

To the tune Point of Know Return:

How long... till the network drops
How long... till the power surges
How long... until Exchange Server returns


(or something like that... the coworker mentioned above began singing it as I was typing this... =)
ellyssian: (Default)
Could you have a tool (VB) that lacks an upper case command and is obscene enough to - at times! - misremember that parts of the text you are copying and pasting (from Notepad or Word) have a significant portion explicitly set in upper case.

At least it gets the half in lower case correct.

(I didn't make up the conventions used, I'm just trying to follow them without handtyping a godawful brazillion characters of code. Over. And over. And over.)

n - 1

Nov. 29th, 2006 03:29 pm
ellyssian: (Default)
I am *so* glad we received full agreement and management support for enforcing an n-1 policy with our software products...

Whazzat? n-1 refers to the newest software release, and the one prior to that. Theoretically, an n-1 policy limits our ability to support more than one version back without charging obscenely high additional fees, to attempt to recoup a portion of the funds lost attempting to recreate abandoned environments and ancient technology.

Of course, as anyone who has ever glimpsed the real world from afar might have noticed, theory and practice have never been introduced. I don't think they've even been invited to the same parties, or hang out at the same bars.

This message is brought to you by multiple check-ins to multiple version control archives of the same files. Because n is ready to ship, and customers are still running n- the ol' sidewise 8.
ellyssian: (Default)
Spent the day in Philly yesterday, specifically at the Marriott downtown. We had our annual developer's meeting there.

In addition to presentations by other employees, I also attended ones by Microsoft, Intel, and a few others. Scary, but I actually think some of the new tools in .net 3.0 look like they'll be fun. Not sure how much we'll do with WPF, but WCF better get some usage, or we won't be living up to corporate expectations. I haven't yet redesigned everything with the new services based architecture, but I will sooner or later. Of course, that will all be in my head, as have most of the changes that would have had us half-way along that path some five years ago. Now if I can only figure out a way to integrate our other product into a services based form, that would be fun...

Had dinner at the Hard Rock because a number of other places within walking distance of the hotel closed. Before 6pm. How can a restaurant in a city not remain open until at least 10pm? On the ride home, we noticed how many gates were pulled shut, how many places locked down. And how popular concertina wire was a roof ornament. And how many abandoned buildings there were.

Strange city, Philly. Half-expected to see anti-aircraft turrets poking out over the wire, but, I suppose their threats come from the street, not the sky. All in all, it's not that I feel unsafe there, despite all the barbed wire fences around churches and so forth, but that I feel vaguely unclean while there. So much of the city seems to be in disrepair, moreso than the other metro areas I am familiar with.

That, and, although it towers over the Lehigh Valley, it is a short city, with few exceptions.

As this was only a 16-hour day thing, I didn't make any attempt to meet up with any Phillyfolk - I expect to be there for our Client Conference in the fall, and hopefully will be there for the entire time, which will give me at least one free evening. I'll post more info when I have it.

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ellyssian: (Default)
Everett

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