Monthly Archives: July 2006

Vista and Cars

Darren should know the dangers of comparing things like operating systems to motor vehicles, Bill Gates certainly has. Darren does have a good point, Vista doesn’t have one single killer feature that appeals to everyone, it has thousands of killer features which appeal to different groups of people, and which other groups can’t see the value of.

For example – one of the killer new features for me as a developer is the way the start menu no longer creates columns going across the page when there are a large number of software packages installed. I had the “pleasure” of going back and using a Windows 2000 desktop last week, I can tell you now that a short amount of time doing that made me appreciate how much more productive I am on the Vista platform.

What operating system upgrades do is set a baseline which can shorthand discussions, for example, because I know that Vista is going to ship with WPF, WCF and WF I can simply say “you must be running Windows Vista to run this software”.

I think that everyone has forgotten that the thing that drives platform adoption – applications. Vista will make desktop applications sexy again – irresistably sexy, and that will drive Vista sales.

Coffee: Good and fast.

Coffee, without a doubt is the drug of addiction of choice for most people in Australia – I suggest that 90% of the Australian population drinks more coffee than beer or wine (90% of all statistics are made up), so its not surprising that the busiest time for serving coffee is a dash before start of business after most people have just reached the office after being caffeine deprived for at least one hour.

The humble coffee shop Barista therefore becomes a critical cog in getting people to work on time and alert enough find their way back to the coffee shop at morning tea. Given this, you may be surprised to hear that not all Baristas are created equal – I was reminded of this fact this morning.

I’ve been working out of Sydney for the later half of this week, and on the way to the client offices I stop off at the coffee shop (Voodoo Coffee) at the bottom of their building. I walk in, place my order at the counter then stand at the end of the counter ready to catch it as it flys of the production line. Its fast good coffee, in Canberra I can often get good coffee, but it seldom comes fast.

My theory is that there are two measures that matter when it comes to getting coffee, speed and quality and that quality ranks highest. Unfortunately I think that the distribution of those qualities amongst the Barista population looks something like this:

BaristaSpectrum

My daughter the punk.

P1010483This is my four year old daughter. I think she is a real cutie, and its easy to think that when she poses for the camera like this. This photo was taken today after she had her haircut, of course my wife didn’t bother asking my opinion about whether I thought she should get streaks in her hair or not. Can’t see the streaks? Check this out . . .

P1010481

And we probably all know about that program on TV at the moment called “Honey, We’re Killing the Kids” where they horrify parents by telling them how their kids are going to turn out in the future. Well, I don’t need to go on that show to know what Bella is going to turn out like.

With a mother like Nicola, and a father like me, Bella is going to turn out like this geek chick from NCIS.

P.S. Bella – if you are reading this ten years from now, right when you are starting your rebelious phase, I want you to know that I knew it was coming – you can’t surprise me!

We will never be able to afford the ink!

Over the past month Nicola and I have been teaching Bella some basic computer skills through the use of some semi-educational computer games. The B has really taken to it with gusto and she now uses both a mouse and a trackball as if it was an extension of her arm (its amazing to watch actually). She is also picking up on her keyboard skills but her alphabet (which she can recite) skills are really the limiting factor there.

Anyway – this week Nicola installed a Sesame Street program onto her computer which allows Bella to draw pictures using different brushes and stamps. However, on consequence of teaching a child how to use a computer is that they actually learn how to use a computer, and in this case, Bella taught herself how to navigate a few of the menus to find the printing feature.

We will never be able to afford the ink!

My TechEd 2006 Bloggerview

Defintion: Bloggerview
Meaning: What you get when you conduct an interview via on a blog.

Geoff Appleby just shot me an e-mail letting me know that the interview he conducted with me has been posted up on the TechTalkBlogs group blog. It was an e-mail interview where my responses are posted to the blog (I’m calling it a bloggerview because I’ve always wanted to invent a new word).

Oh – and Geoff – I hope the clan starts feeling better!