Crazy Talk

So now, Microsoft goes and bids for Yahoo. The world is crumbling. From what I read, Balmer seemed like a child .. "Google sucks .. because .. they suck .. you know, they think they’re so big .. they suck .. we’re number 1 .. GO TEAM!!"


Things kicked up a notch. Work has begun on the big contract. It’s cool. I’m going to be able to lash out and buy PDF Tools. I’m looking at a really funky support system .. and while building it myself has a big draw .. this thing is already awesome out of the box and costs a few hundred. I couldn’t replicate it’s functionality in ten times that many hours (that fit into it’s price).

The new Robin Hood was on last night (Sunday)!! What’s doing? I heard nothing about it. Caught the tail-end of the episode, and was laughing my head off. I love it that they really are doing the most ridiculous stunts, and yet I find it awesome. Over acting, deus ex machina all over the place (I think I got that right), and a really lame bunch of stories. But they really .. REALLY .. work for me.

Anyway, I have things to do. About four gazillion. No .. four.

I Suggest A New Idea

It seems that something dark the something of man.

I mean.

Google has trouble a-brewing.

Google in Trouble for Suggesting Illegal Software.

It seems the "Suggest" feature of the Desktop Toolbar is in all sorts of hot water. Basically, they filter out ‘porn’ suggestions, but don’t stop filtering the hacks, cracks, and smacks that appear when you type something in.

I guess this is an inevitable growth problem. You can’t really fault Google for returning these things, as it is a search engine. Searching is it’s primary function, at least in the eyes of the adoring public. However, on the flip side, the adoring public is probably starting to think about the consequences, and now people are wanting Google to start being more than just a search engine that filters porn.

From an analytical point of view, they are right.

I mean, if I built a system that could write receipts but wouldn’t do payments, I’d be in the sewers catching rotten fish for my breakfast.

But from all the other points of view, things are not so easy. In the end, it’s about them becoming too large an empire, and these are the issues that will have to be dealth with. People are not comfortable anymore with the idea of Google. Or at least, that’s the way it’s heading.

One time, maybe even a year ago, people still had the dream in their eyes. When talking about Google, I would think I was cool because I could recite the quick rise to power, and tell people that they are taking over the world one search phrase at a time.

People laughed.

I felt like a reporter giving them the truth .. Peter Parker eat your heart out. Him or that Clark guy.

But instead now, it’s not like that. Well, the reporting thing is, the content just changes :) .. heh heh .. but,

It’s now getting to be where there’s a darker side. The idea of having so much power is now reality and so .. it changes from dream-state to totalitarian-state.

I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I’m not into too much political or social questioning etc.

But this is where the babble is leading me today.

So yeah, Google Suggest can’t really stay the same. At least, in a PR sense, they will have to say that _something_ is being done.

On the other hand, they’re Google. If they wanted to, they could probably negatively affect all websites who publish bad stuff about them. That’d be a trip.

Peace out,

Top 10 Google & Technorati “Software Development” Sites–Part 2


In progressing through this article, I came upon this realisation. It’s quite hard to review just a blog. In general. It’s far easier to look at a specific post (or a bunch of them) than the blog itself.

To refine my statement, it’s harder to write a lot about a blog, in general.

Ha ha ha. That sounded so intelligent in my head. I should fire my writer.

Sequels almost always are worse. X2 being one of the notable exceptions.

This article is more of a continuation than a sequel. In fact, I’m not exactly sure why I started with the sequal chatter.

In Part 1 we looked at the top 10 Google "Software Development" links.

This time we’re checking out the Top 10 Technorati "Software Development" Blogs.

So let’s fly and see what’s to see.

Technorati on "Software Development"

  1. — Creating Passionate Users



    This place is pretty awesome. I was grinning at just about all the piccies, and mentally agreeing with fervour reading the posts on the front page.

    This blog is, from the About page, run by three bloggers, Kathy Sierra, Bert Bates, and Eric Freeman.

    This is a very cool site. Of course, I’m only precursor-reviewing it, a scan of the front page and a quick look around. But it gives me hope. When I read the posts, I get a sense of, not family … but similar mindsets. Same direction towards software development.


      The guys at Creating Passionate Users are all authors, and they know their stuff. This is a great blog to have on your shelf.

  2. — Life Beyond Code


    Okay. Wow. Again.

    I’m not sure about anyone reading this, but I’m excited. Just two blogs in, and I’m wondering if every blog is going to speak to me like these.

    Rajesh Setty has a really easy to read style. The current top post, "10 ideas to get new ideas", is quality. These are gems. Write them deep.

    It’s a simple blog. By that, I mean it’s straight-forward. It’s a blog. Posts. Clean and pure.


      Life Beyond Code, at first glance (and no doubt further) is a diamond of a blog.

  3. — Professional PHP Blog


    Jeff Moore has a very specific blog here. From his main blog the catchphrase is : Web Development with PHP, PHP Advocacy and Best Practices.

    The current posts have a fair bit of examination of PHP as opposed to other web languages around today. Well, that’s not true. Not just "web" languages.

    It was interesting reading these posts. And the bookmarks.


      If you are looking to find knowledge and wisdom on PHP, go here.

  4. — Ho John Lee’s Weblog


    Ho John Lee has a pretty nifty blog. You can translate the pages into a bunch of different languages, and the extra links are along the top, instead of toward the bottom, as most sites have them. By "extra" i mean RSS,, Flickr … etc.

    The blog covers most everything, not just Software Development. It’s more that there’s a bunch of categories underneath Technology. So where we (at Dev Dawn) have pretty much a single category, Ho John Lee has broken everything down. Far easier to search.

    Also, there are pictures. I’ve said it before, and most probably will say it again, but pictures make a blog very cool. I’ve neglected this truth, even after uncovering it, but it’s there, nonetheless.


      It seems to me that Ho John Lee’s Weblog is the place to go for insightful and clear thoughts about most anything happening in the technological world. Cool.

  5. — Chris Justus – Server Side Guy


    This is a good blog. You can tell Chris Justus is writing about his own experiences, working within software development. It’s a meaty blog. Got some cool stuff up there now too, the MiteSite Chat is cool. A nice experiment on the way to greater heights i imagine.

    Chris works for Alcea Technologies who have, amongst other things, Bug-Tracking software (which Chris created) in their stable. Now, by works for, I mean … is a founding member / Director, heh heh.

    As with the other blogs, the more I poke around, the more there is to like.


      Chris Justus knows his stuff. More than that, from my cursory reading, he pushes himself further. Working on little projects to enhance his already big-time experience.

  6. — Ugo Cei’s Weblog


    Man alive! The first post at Agylen pointed me here: Crazy Multi-Input Touch Screen. Now this is such a cool video. You have to watch it. I’m breaking the rules a bit, as this isn’t directly to do with the blog … but you have to watch this. Very cool.

    Anyway. Ugo Cei is a software architect (and dev) living in Italy. I like the ambience (posh accent) of this site. Very calming. Zen-like, although I only use that word to mean peace. Which it probably does mean.


    Another cool stick is the top menu. Simple. Four links, very nice. Book Reviews is a great link to have at the top of the page, especially if you have quite a few of them. What is better to mankind than a review? Nothing, except maybe a nice MLT.

    Kudos to Ugo. It’s a great blog.

    And, as seems to be a trend in this list, the more you look around, the more there is to like. This site is Tight. Little marks of careful design and UI are excellent. The borders around various sidebars/posts … love the "my tags" segment. Very classy.

    And now that I have (since the starting paragraph for looked further … if you’re interest in books about development, head here.


      This is a quality site. Not just the content (really careful, well-thought-out book reviews, and other stuff too), but the design. The Look’n’Feel. Quality.

  7. — Smalltalk Tidbits, Industry Rants


    Okay. It took me a while (snail brain, just used links from the blog, not the smart way, which would have been to Google it), but I discovered that Smalltalk is more than just a catchy name for a blog.

    Smalltalk is a portable, pure object-oriented langauge that runs on all popular platforms. It is known for being one of the best ways to learn object-oriented programming. Smalltalk is also a complete environment, designed especially for rapid development and deployment of applications. Read this overview to learn more reasons to develop in Smalltalk.

    Cool. So we’ve now got a blog about a language. No. Not really, from what I can tell, it’s a blog by a gent who works in Smalltalk, amongst other things, and blogs about that, plus a lot of other cool stuff. Coming from Oz, it’s pretty cool to see pictures of the snow.

    The ability to change styles is cool. It suspends my belief that it’s just a single blog engine. In fact, that’s part of the magic. The user doesn’t usually think about the engine of a blog. They think about the way it comes across to them, and the styles here are different enough that changing them is actually a piece of functionality in and of itself (not fluff).


      Ha ha. If I’d actually examined the blog further before writing, and looked properly instead of skimming over words I thought were not important, I would have noticed this … ‘Powered by Cincom Smalltalk‘. Ha ha, man alive, good reporting son.

      This is cool. Writing a blog, with a bent towards a Product, that has been used to create the blog itself. The engine. Nice.

  8. — Dennis Forbes, Pragmatic Software Development


    Here’s a fellow who knows his stuff. Dennis Forbes is a self-confessed uber-guru at coding, database architectures, and can probably code in any language known to man. I made up the uber-guru word, translated it from Dennis’ About page.

    So yeah, he really does know his stuff.

    The top post (at time of writing), is an excellent article on Wiki and Windows (specifically, hosting a Wiki on Windows), but has many sideline wisdom nuggets.

    Very cool. Step-by-step tutorials are really cool. It means someone has taken the time to break down the process into bite-sized chunks.


      The more of these blogs I read, the more I am washed out into the raging ocean. There is so much wisdom out there, so many people with brain-power that boggles my mind. Dennis Forbes’ blog is a quality piece of work. His Notables are really cool. Read them.

  9. —

    Okay, so at the time of writing, I can’t get this site to load. Wierd. Skipping now.

  10. — Teds Space, A day in the life of a .NET Architect


    This one was a little harder for me to get into. Possibly because i’m at the end of this list. But also because it’s heavily tied into the use of Microsoft .NET Passport. Although I’ve got one, it was annoying that I couldn’t actually see the "About" page of the author without logging in with the Passport details … nothing against you Ted, you’re the author, not the engine …

    The blog hasn’t been updated in a little while, but with some brain-power, the posts have some nice info. Not being into MS stuff that much wasn’t really a problem.

    The one thing I would like more of is more of Ted. Most of the posts are a few lines … Personally (and I mean this is my opinion, noone else’s) I want to find out more about the author through the way they write. And I want to read posts with lots of manical laughter (scratch that), with meat on their bones. But that’s just me.


    • Although I couldn’t get into the blog as much as others, this is a blog with some nice info. And the slide show down the bottom is cool. Very nice.

Are You A Sheep? Cause Google Is The Shepherd

I’m a sheep. Baaa Baah. I’m easy to please, and not so smart that I don’t get excited about the "cool new things" that people like Google give to me.

So I’m wondering, directly after typing out my last post, about the effects of Google being the Shepherd. What risks are there, if any? And what about the future? What is it exactly that Google is trying to do? Just become a big Entrepreneur, a Capitalist Giant (man I love, or is it something more?

I think it’s more. Bigger than Ben Hur.

Now I’m partial to a bit of conspiracy. Or rather, the fantastical. I reckon that Nessie is alive and big. I love to imagine that Dinosaurs still walk this planet.


What I’m not gonna say is that Google is out to get control over the entire world. It’s plan lies in a different direction. A vision I think, of Information.

That’s not to say that this won’t be used for nefarious activities. I’m sure it will. But Google, in my mind, is trying to achieve a Tower of Babel in the Online world.

Whoah. That came out of nowhere. Maybe that does change things.

Anyway … if you strike the Babel idea … hmmm, I can’t get that image out of my head.

Blah. Now I can’t remember my point. Stupid imagination.

If Google is trying to bring together a massive fount of Information (which it already has), and mould that into a hundred and one different services to the Interweb, then how does that impact us?

Depends on which part of us you are. If you’re Bill and his mates, then you’re a little worried, and have begun the re-envisioning of a the once monolithic company, towards the new exciting technologies.

If you are like me, a blogger with visions of glory, then I think we can get the benefits of what they provide without worrying too much about the global scale. After all, I don’t mind a bit of a battle in the upper heavens over who is pushing out more new cool stuff.

So I guess, we’ll wait and see. The blogosphere will remain vigilant for news, and will be most excellent at thinking through the issues. That’s one of the great strengths of the blogging world. Maybe each of us hasn’t got a super-brain able to calculate the billions of computations necessary to pull all the different threads together, but there are a million and more blog-brains out here who can think through at least a few threads, and if you put all these together.

Thanks for reading, and reading … and reading.

Why Google Will Be Taught In History

Disclaimer :: This has all been said before no doubt … but that’s the beauty of the net. Of the blog. It’s my version.

At lunch today with John, one of the Dev Dawn Originals, I freaked myself out with a simple statement about Google.

Their genius was not in developing their own product (or not overtly), but in being the conduit for everyone else’s information. They didn’t sell anything Google. Google was the pipe, everything else the stuff that passes through it.

This is what will be taught at schools in a few years, if not now. That Google took the internet and made it their own by enveloping all the entire mess that’s out there with their own pipe/casing/…

And now, furthering this burgeoning empire, they are putting Interfaces on that information. The photos/images, the shopping, the blogging, the email. It’s amazing just how it all breaks down.

The Battle Lines Are Being Drawn

So. Saw this article today, and was excited about the future. Looks like MS is taking up the baton of New&Cool and is trying not to miss the boat. Specifically the AllThingsGoogle boat I think.

It should be fun to see what happens in the next year. Whether MS will come good. I guess there’s a bit of potential. Imagine if they ran Office Online or something. Then truly, we would find out about trust. Would I trust MS to put all my documents online, stored on their servers. Probably not in a million years … but then, maybe with a slick advertising campaign and some nice … not a chance.

However, it is conceivable that they won’t go for the little guy, but instead, market towards businesses. If they were to provide a stand-alone solution, now there’s something that might actually go forward. Imagine being able to set up Office on your network, if it were a web-based app, and have it run as a webservice from inside your network. That is better. Much more trust, because much less trust is needed in the outside. The info is stored on your own servers, but you are using their product.

And this is a different direction to Google. They are getting information. But MS don’t have to get information. The better way would be to undermine Google by offering services that seem like they aren’t taking your information. Instead, they’re giving you web services/desktop-like services at a reasonable price (maybe free), and using the advertising thing. Also, they’re not storing your info, and that could be used very wisely in a marketing campaign. It’s like the desktop, only web.

So that’s my 2.1 cents on the situation. I’d like to see them provide their products as web services, with local data storage, and use other methods of money raising. Of which they could create a new one or two.

I guess though, I’m just thinking, that they could also take the route of offering much cheaper rates if using their services and storing on their servers, as opposed to storing on your own servers. This is a typical strategy, and I’d like to see them take a different approach. Flip it round. Make it more viable to setup your own servers, rather than using theirs. This would go a long way in changing the general perception of MS. In fact, to quote a famous add with some shampoo, it won’t happen overnight, but it will happen.

It’s like the Desktop, only Web.

I like that. It’s got a ring to it, in my sleep-deprived brain at least.

‘Nuff said for now.

Clarion’s Purpose Today

As the first article for this site, I thought what better subject than the beginning. In the world of today, with all it’s newfound enthusiasm for desktop-like applications on the web, what purpose does Clarion have? The gap between desktop and web interfaces is closing, and although i’m sure there are inherant differences that mean they will never completely overlap, I’m sure for the imaginative developer those differences wouldn’t mean squat.

Clarion. It’s an awesome tool. It takes away the fuss of creating base tools in C++ (and other languages) to do the groundwork. Clarion allows you to concentrate on implementing functionality, business rules, data modelling, etc.

This is what Clarion does best. You can create an app in a few minutes. A program that at it’s core collates data.

So how is this different from knocking something up in ajax/php/…? on the web, or even using the big-gun of 4GL programming, Delphi?

The web app will always have an inherent issue with the user. Your data is being stored somewhere else other than the computer you are using.

This is a very important understanding to grasp as the developer. This doesn’t stop web development. I mean, look at It’s that I think we need to be able to develop in both places, taking advantage of the strengths of both approaches.

Security. That large somewhat nebulous concept is the big difference I can see between desktop and web. Where is your data stored? On your computer, or on someone elses? How many people can get access to your data?

I guess in the age of broadband, that difference might not be big. In fact, the more I think about it, the differences are mostly perceived. The user thinks, "Because the data is on my computer, it’s safer." With the amount of press worms and hackers get these days, the general public’s perception is most definately changing.

So if you could take that perception, and give them trust in your product, no matter what it was, you would have something. I think that’s what Google is doing. They have established trust with their clientelle. Which is everyone.

Where is this going? I’m not sure. I started out with the aim to talk about why you would use Clarion in today’s world.

I guess my mind is leading towards this :: that you might not. Depending on the situation, and what were the best tools to use. What the product was. What kind of team you have. The needs of the user, and their understanding. Lots of stuff that goes into the planning of a project.

Clarion does some things very very well. It is second to none, my opinion there, with respect to building a database application. With third-party templates and some of the icon libraries floating around, you can create an awesome, awesome looking app. And with some smart database design, intuitive interface, and exciting functionality, developing in Clarion is a blast.

So I guess, this is more of a global article. My ramblings on choosing Clarion as a development tool. And there aren’t many particularly helpful insights. But it’s an article.