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Archive of posts filed under the Uncategorized category.

Does enterprise software mean evil software?

There is an old saying that ‘a leopard never changes his spots’ which, with regards to large companies which are dominant players in a market, can be an unfortunate truth. I’ve just spent a large part of my day trying to configure an application to run in an environment one of the big boys make a […]

Stuff done and learnt over the summer

So with the nights drawing in, and having started a new job several months ago, I thought I’d do a quick recap of the productive stuff I’ve done when not catching rays and enjoying the good weather: Working on several internal and public search applications for a range of customers, using the Twigkit technology to […]

Arrays.asList essentially returns an immutable List

Well… it may not be the most earth-shattering realisation and you can probably get the take home message just from the title of the post, but who knew that you get a runtime exception when you try to modify (e.g. add or remove) anything from a List that has been returned from the Arrays.asList method […]

Bash scripting web tests with ‘wget’

Did you know you can use the command line wget tool to perform simple tests on your web site? In a Linux environment combining the programmatic capabilities of a Bash (Bourne Again SHell) script with wget is pretty easy and allows you to carry out basic load and performance tests. These tests could be run […]

Buenos días amigos! – returning from Mexico

My wife and I finished up a busy 2013 in style with our honeymoon to Mexico and also visited some interesting countries off the Gulf of Mexico. This was an amazing experience, as well as an eye-opening one. I got to spend time with my beautiful wife, of course and also visit what is a […]

Prolog FTW!

Echoing my views on software communities in the previous post, I recently took part in some talks about logic programming and Prolog. There’s some really interesting meetup groups in Cambridge for software development, and this one was no exception. You can view my slides here: http://sdrv.ms/119TGoA If I get time and there is appetite for it I […]

What it’s like being a software developer

Gathering dust in the ‘draft posts’ section of my blog for far too long, here’s some observations about who we are and what we do: Very few people that we don’t already work with understand what it is we do. We can be a ‘rock star’, an unsung hero or a complete failure from one […]

And now for something completely different – meadmaking!

Every once in a while its good to indulge in some of your alternative passions. In the spirit of new beginnings I have started this year well by brewing some mead! Mead is a wonderful honey wine, with arguably the longest history of all alcoholic beverages consumed by man. As a way of recording my […]

Software projects in the new year

Looking on to this new year, it seems it will be a period of change and uncertainty for me as well as ambition and opportunities. Project My university project is developing nicely, to the point I have a prototype demo and am in the early stages of marketing aspects of it as a commercial software […]

A bit of positivity

It seems my blog is receiving a fairly respectable amount of hits, considering the specific and nerdy nature of some of the posts which is nice to know. If anyone reading does have feedback or is interested in further information about any particular topics please do let me know. There are a few things I’m […]

Hotmail interface doesn’t like long words!

I almost couldn’t believe it when I saw it. I emailed myself some rather long URLs to look at another time and on opening the email i was confronted with this: The message displays but cuts off the string of text at a certain point. It allows you to then click a button to display […]

Google chrome bug

Has your installation of chrome stopped working? Have a look and see if the suggestion in this link helps: http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/Chrome/thread?tid=2680b41d121dc73a&hl=en (you may have to hunt for the directory in order to run the relevant file) I became frustrated by this problem myself which has occurred several times now on my Vista laptop. The solution, which […]

Summer holidays and summer work

After taking a lovely relaxed break in Scotland, I’m back home for some serious work over the summer. I’ve been very fortunate in securing some interesting software development work at a company that deals with, to put it in an oversimplified form, automated financial transactions. So far so good, but as a result I anticipate […]

Wolfram Alpha Dev APIs

The recently launched Wolfram Alpha computational knowledge engine is to provide to ‘APIs’, or more specifically, methods of querying the system and retrieving results from web applications. The first query method essentially allows all types of search just as can be used on the Wolfram Alpha site, the second data method allows for more specific retrieval […]

Added RSS fed page to site

EDIT: You can view the page here – http://ssims.co.uk/Portfolio/examples/rsspage.jsp Creating a page to display RSS feed information proved surprisingly straightforward with Sun’s RSS utils package available at http://java.sun.com/developer/technicalArticles/javaserverpages/rss_utilities/ Essentially RSS utils retrieves the XML page containing the RSS feed and processes it, allowing you to retrieve the feed by simply using the custom XML tag […]

RSS Feeds for content management

I intend to integrate this blog’s RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed in my portfolio website as a learning exercise in utilising dynamic feeds. RSS is a format of producing snippets of information, which are often news articles and blogs containing links. An RSS feed is essentially a manually or dynamically updated XML file formatted in a […]

Welcome to my technical blog!

Well it seems I have succumbed to the procrastination aid that is writing a blog. But perhaps some good may evolve from this new venture, least of all it is a useful way for me to develop and sound aloud my own personal views on technical issues in a constructive way. I will start with […]