Pimp Monkey

Adam has a quick post up about the possibility of running two firefoxes (over on his blog, CodeMonkey) .. AND of a little piece of smiley software that installs for a bunch of messengers/browsers. It screamed CRAZY CRAZY too me, but I crumbled under the pressure of the peers (or peer in this case) and installed.

Anyway, I do have a dev post drafted .. just need to finish it soon. Apologies for the great long downtime.

Not to give away the new post, but I have one excuse. Fear Oblivion, for it will consume thy time. Walking to work this morning, I actually thought about pulling out my blizzard bow and taking pot shots. Bad. On so many levels.

More later.

Uma Is Watching Me

‘Over here in Oz, there’s some kind of magazine that’s advertising it’s latest cover all over the bus-stops etc. The one I walk past every day has had quite a few different posters in it.

For the past week or so, it’s been a big picture of Uma’s head/torso staring at me. It’s kind of haunting.

And this morning it got me thinking.

What instances within Development do we have the chance to bombard our users with whatever kind of advertising we wish?

Well, firstly. I think there will be some new-fangled stuff coming along in the next couple of years. Innovation isn’t done yet in our domain.

But the biggest one that springs to mind is … Loading Screens.

Of course, these are mainly within the realm of games, but not entirely. The OS gets a chance. Adobe software has it in the splash screen that starts up, running all the initialisation stuff. Which is entirely similar to how Sims did it. "Reticulating Splines" in-particular has stayed in my memory, even though it was my wife who played the game.

But Loading Screens, and other minor off-shoot paradigm-ee screens, are very effective when done well. Most games these days give you hints about the game. General hints. Some pictures of some format or another will appear.

I installed Oblivion last night, and it had some cool pictures on install.

World of Warcraft has recently upgraded to giving hint out on their loading screen. Along with cool drawings of their world (these were always there, well, since retail at least).

But what about other forms of software? Surely there are ways to subtly ingrate some form of advertising, whether it be of the product in question, or other, more calculated, subjects.

The problem with software, business software mostly, is that people don’t want to wait. I want to fire the program up and use it.

So that just means that the advertising has to be smarter. Games have an in. People are willing to accept some length of load times.

But other applications need to look at things differently. I’m not sure about where this thought is headed. I don’t have anything definitive yet .. but it’s not a bad one.

And anyway, this thought has run it’s course for the moment.

So if you’ve got some ideas, comment away. If not .. (with the sound of the Hypno-Toad) Comment Away.

Some Kind of Infinity

Sometimes it would be nice to own the Tardis. Or even Professor Farnsworth’s Smelloscope. Something out of the ordinary.

But then, you get plenty of chaos in life as it is. Just you’d like it to be fun ‘tv’ adventerous chaos .. which rarely steps into the boundaries of reality.

Currently, I’d really like to be granted, no holes barred, from some source, preferably kept under great secrecy, one million dollars.

I’m not reaching for the stars .. it’s not that much to some people.

It’s been a while since posting. I’ve been busy with work and side-projects .. have just finished up the first version of my project/task management web-services system. I’ll put it up here, pimp it on the clarion newsgroups. Get some feedback.

Am just examining my options of what to undertake next. It would be nice to take some time off, Oblivion has been released, and the drool is hanging off my mouth as we speak. But it’s not really an option at the moment.

I’m really thinking hard of ways to achieve some supplemental income. I’d like to get some experience with proper contracting. Small jobs, get in, do the work, get out. That sort of thing. It’s proving a little harder to do that than anticipated.

At the moment, the web scene is in flux. In my opinion that is. There are plenty of web jobs going for work that hasn’t caught up with the fact that the lines are blurring very fast between desktop and web. It’s a brave and bold new world. I’d like to be a part of that. The problem with doing the little side-projects I love is that they don’t bring in any cash. Of course, if I were more entrepenuerial (spl) I’d have figured out some kind of method to bring in said cash. But so far, I haven’t.

Of course, it’s possible that just around the bend something will break open.

I’m going to end this rambling post before it goes into negative coherency. I’m not my normal bubbly self. And this is not the normal Dev Dawn post.

‘Nuff Said.

Not The big Bad Wolf No More

Microsoft have been the beaten pinata for many years now, with increasing frequency. However, I think in the last year or so, with the rise of Google slowed with various amounts of bad press, they are no longer just the big bad wolf. They still might be that, but there’s a couple of youngsters joining them. And the wolf is showing some cunning.

Acquiring Winternals (and SysInternals) might be seen as a loss for the community, but I’m of a mind to think it’s a pretty smart move. Mark (on his blog) seems to truly believe in making Windows a better product. I hope this happens.

The one object of issue in my mind is the massive inertia of Microsoft. Sure, acquiring Mark and Bryce (although the blog doesn’t say Bryce is joining the move) is a great strategic decision. They have developed some great, even awesome :), tools.

But can they actually make a change?

Well, I think so. There is a shift, possibly small, but it’s happening. If Microsoft continue to acquire agressively, then perhaps they are changing the way they work. Maybe with the passing of Bill it’s no longer a totalitarian government. Maybe they see the mistakes made and are actually changing (not just wanting to change).

Here’s to Microsoft becoming more agile and making Windows a better product with each passing day.

The Changing Winds of Trend

Looking at Avalonstar last week, it woke within me a better understanding. Of what you ask, and well you should.

I don’t have a true innovative mind. I have a progressive, or evolve-ment brain. I can see the good in things around, and can emulate it, perhaps change a little, modify.

The idea of changing the way the information is viewed. This is the better understanding. No longer having the smaller incremental changes to a blog. A major list of posts, sidebar with comments, with latest posts, with asides. Headings up the top.

Avalonstar takes a bigger leap. The information has been reordered. No long is it in the blog format. Which is good. And by blog format I’m talking about what I think of as the traditional blog.

This morning I found a couple of other themes that are popping up. They take this idea. It’s a good thing, because I was thinking about entering the smithy and putting my own hand to creating a new way of presenting the information to you, the reader. Fortunately, others are doing this, with much greater skill.

So with that in mind, I’m probably going to change the theme of Dev Dawn.

I’d like to be able to let readers choose their theme. This would be a nice bit of additional functionality. We’ll see.

Paul Stamatiou is another blog that is taking this route, at least, I think that’s what direction he’s going, heh.

New Site Layout :)


In other news, I’ve reached an alpha stage with my latest small project. It’s a simple task/project management system. The cool thing is, it’s built with the new NetTalk 4 (from Capesoft), in Clarion.

So it’s built as a web service I guess. The exe runs, listening to a certain port, and serves the html to any browser pointing to that IP:Port. The server exe has ability to modify all of the files, while the browser interface is a simple login and access to the Tasks (and one level of Sub-Tasks).

I’ll be putting it up here once I get a few of the very large bugs written out. And some more functionality.

So now, let us depart for better things, until next we meet, seek the narrow …

The Light Dawneth

It took me a while, but I think I may understand what happened to the feeds. Can’t believe it didn’t occur before. Two days ago was when the upgrade to 2.02 happened, from 1.5 (WordPress). So yeah, that’s a pretty viable reason.

In other awesome news, this Wired article showed me a new development tool .. Playsh.

It’s a pretty cool concept. The environment is a text adventure / MUD. You traverse through the code structure (routines I would think, procedures, etc) by normal text travel. North, South, …

From the Sourceforge page, here’s their Summary :

playsh is a narrative-driven "object navigation" client, operating primarily on the semantic level, casting your hacking environment as a high-level, shell-based, social prototyping laboratory, a playground for recombinant network toys.

Not sure what increases in productivity it would give. But there’s definately an old-school coolness about it.

The Wired article gives some better background. There is a definate goal behind the development of playsh. And it was created to solve another problem, which is a fine way for a tool to be birthed. There’s nothing better than creating a tool to achieve that goal and realising that the tool is far more important than the original goal.

The FeedInator

So I get in a little late to work this morning (rugby injury slowing me down), and my Feedburner scripty pic tells me my feeds are now … 4.

Yesterday, when I left, the figure was somewhere in the low thirties. So you can imagine my surprise.

Either I’ve been hoaxed that whole time by bot feedreaders (I don’t even know if they exist, just thought that it might be possible), or quite a few people got really annoyed and bailed from my feed.

So if you’ve recently done the Mr Holt from Dev Dawn, drop me a line and tell me why. I’d like to increase the Feed Figure if possible, so let me know what the bizo is. Perhaps my content? Or the funny jokes? Maybe it was the acrid stench?

If you’ve been struck by any/all of the above, please, let me know.

Cheers and All That,