Approximity blog home
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The Gates - Central Park, NY   13 Feb 05
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Christo put gates all over the Central Park :-).

Estraier 1.2.26   06 Feb 05
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Estraier is a full-text search system for personal use. Its principal purpose is to realize a full-text search system for a Web site. It functions similarly to Google, but for a personal Web site or sites in an intranet. It has fast searching, conspicuous results, relational document search, the ability to handle Japanese text, and support for handling a large number of documents. Installation is easy.

Changes: A plug-in to show spelling alternation of the search phrase was added. A bug in the search server was fixed

Preparation counts!   06 Feb 05
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I am sure you have heard about this lady’s sailing expedition.
 > Early this morning, one of the Sony VAIO laptops that power
 > the critical information systems onboard B&Q - including
 > routing and navigation software - suffered a meltdown. The
 > VAIO's have survived 70 days without a glitch, despite continual
 > pounding onboard B&Q but last night's storm was the last straw
 > for one of the two hard disks. At 0750 Charles Darbyshire,
 > Technology Manager, received a call to report the failure and
 > just seven minutes later, MacArthur had replaced the hard disk
 > with a pre-start mirrored backup unit, re-configured the software,
 > and was up and running again - preparation counts!

Building and distributing ruby applications   06 Feb 05
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Found this posting by Erik in the ruby-ml.

This URL points to the place where I’ve dumped my thoughts about building, packing and distributing Ruby applications. Theory and practice. The ultimate goal is to be able to distribute just one executable which contains both the application and the Ruby interpreter.

That’s achieved by the combination of Tar2RubyScript [1] and RubyScript2Exe [2].

It’s definitely worth reading if you have to distribute your Ruby applications!

gegroet, Erik V.


It's Official, Struts is History!   04 Feb 05
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A big thanks to Sven C. Koehler who made my day by emailing me that info. :-)

As announced in the Apache News Blog that there will be no further work to develop Struts 2.x.

[ANN] Ruby 2.0!   24 Jan 05
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 From: Chris Pine <>
 Newsgroups: comp.lang.ruby
 Subject: [ANN] Ruby 2.0!
 Date: Mon, 24 Jan 2005 02:29:57 +0900

 Big news!

 Ruby 2 (a.k.a Ruby Secunda Kathrine Pine) was released January 22, 2005
 at 1:51:42 pm (PST) after a few hours of intense, last-minute debugging
 and deployment.  We've been working on this project for just over 9
 months and are quite pleased with the results!  (Well, my wife really
 did most of the work, though I *did* play a seminal role in the initial
 project conception phase.)

 <<< THE NAME >>>

 Ruby     -- named after our favorite language, of course!
 Secunda  -- our second child (after C), and the second Ruby
              (in the roman tradition of numbering your children,
                          e.g. "Quintus" and "Octavius")
 Kathrine -- named after the lead programmer on this project
             (a tradition in her ancestral development house)
             Pine     -- yes, our last name, but also Matz once told me that
                          "matz" is Japanese for "pine"!

 <<< FEATURES >>>
 * Powerful audio output (even on those little tweeters)
 * Net Wt. 9 pounds (or a little over 20k carats as Dave Thomas notes)
 * FIFO digestive queue
 * Ruby.length == 20 inches
 * UNBEATABLE copy protection
 * Dark brown hair
 * Just plain FUN!  (true to the Ruby lagacy)

 * FIFO queue occasionally behaves like a LIFO stack
 * Ruby.sleep(ALL_NIGHT) seems to resume unexpectedly
 * While C (her big brother) sends plenty of messages to Ruby,
   Ruby doesn't seem to respond to C calls.

 Screenshots will soon be available here:

 Currently, though, we've only put up our pre-release screenshots (and
 around 4000 pictures of C).

  <<< DOWNLOADS >>>
  You wish!


Honda accord advertisement   08 Jan 05
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Amazing ad :-).


Nice slogan, too .. "Isn’t it nice when things just work?".

Target Costing (was: Optional Scope Contract)   01 Jan 05
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Kent Beck postd this to the XP-ML.
  I don't have a sample contract. The times I've worked this way the contracts
  have been verbal, not written.

  There were some comments about what to call these contracts. One analogy I
  found with the help of Greg Betty at Intelliware is "target costing". Target
  cost product development starts with a target cost (a $400 digital camera,
  for example). From that you can figure out how much you can pay to
  manufacture the product. The goal is to pack as much functionality as
  possible into the product given the price, either by reducing the cost of
  components or the cost of assembly. This process is called value
  engineering. I think Bill Wake's ideas about unbundling point to an
  effective way to do this in software development.

  You could write a target cost software development contract by specifying
  how much the contract would cost, along with the quality levels/practices
  and the process for choosing scope. The difference between fixed cost and
  target cost is that fixed cost contracts imply that the scope is fixed,
  while target cost contracts explicitly float the scope. One thing I like
  about target cost is that choosing scope is a value-added activity where
  choosing scope in fixed cost contracts is a transaction cost (the principle
  of opportunity at work).

  Kent Beck
  Three Rivers Institute

Why lout is cool and LaTeX not ..   01 Jan 05
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coz u can integrate lout completely in a pipe without needing to delete temporary files afterwards.
  lout -s <<END_OF_TEMPLATE | gv -
  @InitialFont { Palatino Base 11p }
  @Text @Begin
  @Verbatim @Begin
  @End @Verbatim
  @End @Text

Hiring Techies and Nerds Audio   01 Jan 05
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(Source: ITConversations) Guest host Roy Osherove speaks with Johanna Rothman about everyday problems in project management, software delivery and the hiring of technical people. They discuss interviewing strategies, and some bad examples of interviewing technique. Also: How do I improve myself as a project manager?. How do I deal with unrealistic project deadlines? What’s wrong with running multiple projects at the same time? What is the most common management mistake?

Then, the topic shifts to the problems of project management as Johanna tries to answer a tough question such as, "What is the greatest mistake you see project managers do most often?" which leads into an interesting discussion about multi-projecting and why it can pose a problem for your projects. Also, more interesting advice from Johanna emerges when asked to give advice for new team-leaders/managers Johanna also talks about her new book: Hiring The Best Knowledge Workers, Techies & Nerds. And why she wrote it in the first place. To finish it all off Johanna answers one of the questions each project manager should ask themselves every once in a while: "What is the worst mistake youve done as a manager?"

Johanna Rothman is a well-known consultant, speaker, and author on managing high-technology product development. During her decade-long consulting career, she has enabled managers, teams, and organizations become more effective applying her pragmatic approaches to the issues of project management, risk management, and people management. Shes helped Engineering organizations, IT organizations, and startups hire, manage, and release successful products faster. Her assessment reports have helped managers and teams create and execute action plans that help them improve their projects and their processes. She is a sought-after speaker and teacher in the areas of project management, people management, and problem-solving.



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