Archive | April, 2008
April 23, 2008

ICT Excellence – Obviously Not In Web Design

The ICT Excellence awards have been announced.

Unfortunately they have a website. I say unfortunately as it is truly horrendous.

If this is one of Ireland's premier awards I'd hate to see what the bad ones are like....

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April 23, 2008

House Hunting Fun

I was househunting again last night via Daft

I work in Carlow, so I need to find somewhere that is close to Carlow, but not necessarily in the town.

Unfortunately none of the property sites seems to offer a "radius" search function and I also can't filter out "sites for sale", which is really annoying.

There are some nice properties for sale under 200k, but I'm still trying to work out if they are within an acceptable commute distance

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April 22, 2008

SixApart Expands Services and Acquires Consultancy

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Blogging company SixApart announced a major expansion earlier today. (They also quietly unveiled a new look for their main corporate site)

The company announced its acquisition of New York based Apperceptive  who will  form the core of their new services division. Apperceptive's team have not only worked on a lot of very high profile projects but have also developed quite a few extensions for Movable Type (I think I've a couple of them installed on this site!).

They've also announced a new advertising solution for both bloggers (publishers) and media buyers. As this is a new service I'd expect there'll be a delay before we start seeing it "in action".

Anil Dash's post on their main site covers their vision in some detail.

Earlier in the day Arvind posted an interview with Anil on the Blog Herald

The services side of the company will probably meet with a degree of criticism from some quarters, but it's not uncommon for software companies to handle a certain amount of this type of work inhouse.

Will this have a negative impact on the developers and consultants who work closely with SixApart?

Judging by reactions on the mailing lists probably not, though the company's detractors were vocal as usual.

What is interesting to see is the range of services that they are pushing. These range from basic installation and tweaking to a full migration and upgrade service.

While the $199 price tag may put off some people I can imagine that a lot of small businesses might be attracted. With the current rate of exchange it equates to a mere 125 euro for a blog "tune up".

They don't seem to be offering design services, which is a pity as I'd love to give this site an overhaul!

EDIT: Fixed a typo spotted by David Raynes' eagle eyes!

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April 20, 2008

A Semi-Productive Weekend

With Jason's assistance I finally got the frontpage of DVDs.ie to look a little bit more palatable. I'm still trying to sort out a new backend and am considering upgrading the server hardware as well. The main complaint I've had from people is that the pricing is in Sterling only, which is understandable.

Useless fact of the day - shredders overheat easily. I've been trying to get rid of accumulated junk mail, old bills, receipts etc., this afternoon and managed to upset the shredder. As soon as it cooled down it started working again. Getting rid of all the paper revealed a number of odd items that had been buried on my desk for the last few months.

I'm currently investigating my options in terms of buying a house. I'm happy with the house I rent, but I'm not so happy with the money going out the door every month and not having anything to show for it. So I had a drive around a few "developments" yesterday afternoon.

I still think it's insane that a small to medium-sized house can cost in excess of 250k!

The mortgage lenders seem to have got cold feet over the last week or so with many of them reducing the options considerably. The days of the 100% mortgage seem to be numbered.

I hooked up my Sky+ box to the amp on Friday evening as I'd received the optical audio cable I needed (nobody seems to stock anything longer than 1m in this country!). The difference in sound quality is very noticeable, though the volume levels tend to jump a lot between channels, so you need to keep the remote control close to hand or risk deafening yourself / the neighbours.

On the topic of AV gear...

A lot of people criticise Monster Cables pricing, but I wonder have they seen this lot

Some of the cables listed, such as the Third, cost several thousand pounds for short lengths. I'd love to know who buys this kind of stuff.

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April 20, 2008

Dilbert.com Needs A New Webmaster

A new look and feel was unveiled for Dilbert.com

You'd think that people would be delighted, but the opposite is the case.

Why?

Well whoever is responsible for the screwup that is the new site seems to be living in the past.

The new Flash animations are simple Flash. There's no reason why they wouldn't work in most browsers on most platforms, but if you visit the animation section using Linux you get a lovely message:


Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows XP Media Center 2005, Mac OSX 10.3 or Mac OSX 10.4 is required to view this page

So you grab yourself a copy of the UserAgent Switcher extension for Firefox and "spoof" a "supported" browser. And of course the entire thing then works fine.

Doh!

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April 17, 2008

CD Wow Defaults On Payments?

The ups and downs of CD WOW have been interesting to follow.

According to an email that I received in the last few minutes CD WOW hasn't paid some of its bills and the main websites are currently not up.

Their Irish blog is, however.

Odd.

Update: A followup email informs me that their account is back in order

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April 17, 2008

Mac Keyboard Shortcuts

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As a newcomer to the Mac (or returning to one if you include my experiences with them in the 80s and 90s) I haven't had time to really explore some of the basic things.

Silly little actions that come naturally when using my Linux or Windows machines cause me minor headaches, as I don't know the quick way to do them.

This helpful page has a load of keyboard shortcuts, that I'm adding to bookmarks immediately!

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April 16, 2008

Mac Air Up For Grabs

Paul Walsh is giving away a Mac Air via Twitter

More details here

To be in with a chance simply "follow" wubud on Twitter

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April 16, 2008

Latest Iron Man Shocking News!

If you've seen the trailer for Iron Man this should interest you:

Wildly Popular 'Iron Man' Trailer To Be Adapted Into Full-Length Film

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April 15, 2008

Ebay Shipping Calculations Gone Wild

One of the things that drives me mad is when a "cheap" item has a high shipping price.
You know the scenario I'm sure. Item "costs" about 2 euro, but by the time you pay for shipping it's suddenly 30 euro.

If you're using eBay.com from Ireland there's an option to show the estimated shipping cost as part of the display columns. If I can't see a price or it's simply too high I won't bother bidding.

Now there is a difference between "too high" and simply "insane"

Check this out (click to enlarge):

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It's obviously a glitch in their system, as the items' listings show a much saner shipping price.

Don't you just love computers?

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