Archive for March, 2007

A few days on Ubuntu

Tuesday, March 27th, 2007

For several years now, I have been threatening to switch to Linux on my desktop at home. There are several things that have kept me on Windows: the drivers for my ESI Waveterminal 192M are only available on Windows. So is FL Studio, one of the few pieces of software I have actually been prepared to shell out money for. Only having dialup internet access has been another reason, but more about that later. (more…)

Regulating contractor placement

Monday, March 26th, 2007

Abraham (who you may have seen commenting on this blog) and myself were having a discussion last week around the state of contracting and placement. Being both independent contractors in the SAP arena, we feel there are some aspects to placement that could do with some regulation, to protect both contractors and clients. (more…)

The pain of PHP debugging

Wednesday, March 14th, 2007

You would have thought by now that I am up and running with a good PHP development environment and coding away furiously. Nothing could be further from the truth. I got stuck on debugging PHP. The main problem is this: I am too thrifty (some would say cheap) to invest in a proper PHP IDE. Instead, I have spent much time looking around for open source alternatives, or failing that, anything that is free. (more…)

My first SDN blog entry

Wednesday, March 14th, 2007

The caption of this article should have read “My first PHP website” or “My first Ruby application”. But it doesn’t. It is my first SDN blog entry, which I humbly invite you to read, if only to remark about the fact that it seems so dry, so crusty, so devoid of all verve.

I must say that it was rather exciting to see my own blog entry on the SDN website, “in print” as it were, there for the whole world to see. The feeling was rather giddy, something like the vertigo when zooming in from a dizzying height to merely a few-hundred metres above a landmark in Google Earth. You should try it some time.

Why I stopped reading why

Tuesday, March 13th, 2007

(Stop! Don’t read this. Someone hacked my WordPress site many years ago and wrote this filthy rubbish. I wish).

Like my friend Helmut, one of my ambitions is to conquer the Ruby language, and then move on to Rails, the web framework that catapulted it into web history fame. He has gotten much further in his endeavours though, having managed to read through the whole of why the lucky stiff‘s book “A (poignant) guide to Ruby“. I haven’t.

(When I wrote this, I was a fair bit younger and much unwiser. The truth is, communities grow around guys like whytheluckystiff. When I think back to that awful time that why (the guy we now know as Johnathan Gillette) disappeared, I got this sick feeling in my stomach. What if he had read my blog post and decided that he could no longer do this for ingrates like the stupid guy who wrote this blog? Why, if you are out there, I am so, so sorry man. For what it’s worth, I ended up going back and reading that crazy book of yours. And I enjoyed it. It’s a true work of art.).
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Trying out WYSIWYG in MediaWiki

Tuesday, March 6th, 2007

In my last publication, I made rather a big fuss about being able to use WYSIWYG in a wiki, or at least, that I thought it a vital requirement to drive usage of a wiki (something to that effect anyway). So I went ahead and tried one of the documented solutions for adding WYSIWYG capability to MediaWiki. (more…)

Wikis in the workplace

Friday, March 2nd, 2007

If it were up to me, I would require all documentation on a project to be done in a wiki. I mean everything. For example: documenting business processes, problems and their solutions, people’s contact details, system details, project issues, project processes, ideas, proposed ways of doing things, FAQs, etc. What stops you from putting meeting minutes into a wiki? I guess nothing, provided you can implement some form of access control, which fortunately, good wikis provide. (more…)