Sunday, July 26, 2009

Canadian downtime

I'm going on vacation for a couple of weeks in a few days. This is our semi-annual visit to the parents-in-law in Canada. Should be good weather and is so far in the "outback" that doing nothing and relaxing is the norm. Looking forward to it, though I'll be taking some papers to read and write. Blogging will take a back seat though.


I don't use Facebook or any social networking site, but I know people who do, including my wife. So I was surprised and annoyed when I heard via Savas that "Facebook has agreed to let third party advertisers use your posted pictures without your permission. Click on SETTINGS up at the top where you see the log out link. Select PRIVACY. Then select NEWS FEEDS AND WALL. Next select the tab that reads FACE BOOK ADS. There is a drop down box, select NO ONE. Then SAVE your changes. Please repost!"

I'm doing more and more work with "the cloud" (whatever that means!) and it's things like this (security, identity, trust) that concern me. Maybe when I finalize my opinions around this and other aspects I'll write something up. For now beware. And if you're on Facebook maybe you should change your setting?

Saturday, July 18, 2009


I grew up on Richard Feynman though wasn't really able to appreciate him until I started my physics undergraduate degree. He's definitely a hero of mine. One of the best programs I've watched about him didn't actually concentrate on his deep physics background, but was about his trip to Tuvalu. So it was with pleasure that I came across Project Tuva from our friends at MSFT.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Memories ...

While looking for something else, I came across this old ANSA/Esprit project proposal from about 1989. One of the earliest external project memories I have and a good one too! Then I thought "Oh, that's 2 decades ago! Oh frack!"

Saturday, July 11, 2009


So far my adventures in JDK 1.6 land have been constrained to a 10 year old Windows box, so I decided to upgrade my Mac. Unfortunately the machine I've got isn't 64 bit so the official Apple version doesn't work. Fortunately the SoyLatte distribution seems to work very well. Yet another example of good open source at work.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Scala round 2

I mentioned earlier this year how Mic had pointed me at Scala. I haven't had nearly enough time to play with it (which usually means me implementing a transaction service in the language!) but from what I've seen I'm impressed. It's interesting to read what others think too.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Walking with Dinosaurs

I remember watching Walking with Dinosaurs when it first aired on TV and being impressed with the graphics and story. The rest of my family were equally impressed. So when we heard about the Arena Spectacular version and that it was coming near us, it was something we had to see. I took the day off work to make sure no one could plan anything for me to get in the way and we went to see it: well worth it and I'm extremely impressed! So if you like dinosaurs or your kids do then go and see it if you get the chance. If you don't have any kids then borrow some so you won't look out of place!

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Principles of Transaction Processing

I've known Eric as a colleague and friend for a long time, but my first run in with him was with his and Phil's first edition of Principles of Transaction Processing. Along with Jim's book, it has a key place on my bookshelf. Over the years I've probably bought a dozen or so copies for various groups I've worked with. Well it's good to be able to say that they've released a second edition. I was one of the reviewers of the book over the past couple of years so I know this is a solid replacement for the original. Well done!