Day: February 12, 2003

  • Ingo Rammer’s Distributed .NET Newsletter


    Early next week, I’ll send out the first issue of my free “Distributed .NET Newsletter”.

    This bi-weekly newsletter contains real world tips and tricks about .NET Remoting, Web Services and EnterpriseServices, and design guidance for distributed applications. You’ll also find the occasional pointers to other free resources like white papers, patterns&practices documents or other great samples on the web.

    You can subscribe to the newsletter in HTML or plaintext format at

    *signed up*

  • Web-Enabled Government Notes

    Web-Enabled Government

    I attended a little bit of the Web-Enabled Government Expo this morning.  I was most interested in the keynote address by Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Internet and American Life Foundation.  I had feared that the rest of the expo would be sales BS and middle management stuff, and it was.  I missed the beginning of his address, but did catch some results of his organization’s research.  These can be summarized in his 7 findings about the internet and e-citizen:

    1. Email enhances communication with people that the user cares about.  For the most part this is extra communication that would not happen otherwise.  Most of the time it supplements letter writing, phone conversations, and face to face conversations.
    2. Different people use the internet differently
      • Kids have their instant messaging, SMSing, the own abbreviated language.
      • Even different types of children use the net (and particularly IM) differently
        • Extroverts come home after spending all day with their friends, then hop on IM to rahash the day and continue communicating with those same friends that they were with at school all day and saw 20 minutes ago.
        • Introverts come home after school (most likely with less interaction at school) and look for a friend online, find new people, and hang out with people online since they most likely lacked that during the day.
      • People take online what is important to them offline.  Finances, sports scores, cooking recipies, religious information.  Whatever they’re interested in offline, they’ll look for online.
    3. The internet helps in everday life.
      • Window shopping outnumbers e-commerce by a factor of 5.
    4. People use the net more seriously as they gain experience
      • You may start using the internet for stuff like online games, but over time, people tend to do serious stuff like do their finances online, track stocks, get financial and government information online, and seek health information online.
    5. The quality of net access matters.
      • Broadband users are more intense
      • They crave more information
      • 15-18% of people in The United States has broadband.
      • Broadband users aren’t willing to sit back and watch a static web, they create content.
    6. E-patients are changing the way they deal with healthcare
      • Before the internet, patients were for the most part uneducated about the stuff doctors were saying.  They were more passive.
      • Now patients can do massive amounts of research on a particular subject easily.  They can arm themselves with this information and bring it with them to their doctors office.
      • Patients are now ‘end users.’  Doctors can be thought of as ‘tech support’
    7. E-citizens are creating a new civic government
      • They comment on government
      • They gather info for voting
      • They turn online for information from national, state, and local governments
      • Interesting: When asked, many people say that they hold privacy as a core value, though in other contexts, they will give out their email address if they might win a car.
      • An Exxon-Valdez style information leak would be devistating for consumer confidence in online privacy.
      • If a website (government or otherwise) is hard to use, it’s a lot harder to get people to come to the site.
      • Also interesting: Most users are oblivious to .com, .gov, .edu, .org. and their implications.  They tend not to realize if a hyperlink takes them off a .com and to a .gov or an .org.

    After the keynote and a bagel,I briefly checked out the expo floor.  It was mostly marketing stuff meant for people in middle to upper management.  Red Hat had a computer running 8.0 (and I’m sure were happy about having Advanced Server rated a COE (Common Operating Environment).  Macromedia was there, as well as WebMethods and some others.  I didn’t really talk to anybody, I felt like I’d be wasting their time and mine.

    I have a feeling that I have more practical experience in web services than most of the people attending and exhibiting.  Web services seemed to be the buzzword of the day as usual.  I figured that I was better off getting back to learning and coding at home than speaking to some marketing guy.  Probably a good call.

    The Ronald Regan Building is quite nice.  Here’s a view of the expo floor:

    Web-Enabled Government

  • Blog Therapy


    I’m still not as comfortable as most when it comes to expression but this blogging thing is helping me a lot.  If only all the social phobes could have their own place — other than the spam-troll-infested Usenet. (I haven’t visited that group much but there’s lots of “snap out of it” and “F*%) this and that”, etc.)

    He’s been a Salon blogger since the beginning of Salon blogs, but he is in the process of migrating over to Movable Type on  Good luck and keep up the blog!

  • Perl vs. Python vs. Ruby


    via Michael J. Tsai: Perl vs. Python vs. Ruby provides a look at the three scripting languages and compares the syntax on small project. There are also some great comments that follow his piece. Thanks Michael!

  • rb.log: Weblogging in Ruby

    Also, everyone please welcome rb.log 0.75:

    rb.log is a full-featured weblogger written in Ruby. It features file uploads, comments, blog- rolling, side-bar editing, bookmarklets, the Blogger API, searching, RSS syndication, and archives. It also performs well on slower machines by regenerating static pages after posts are made.

    The project website is also a good example of rb.log output.  Also, everyone loves screenshots.

  • Castor

    Castor is out:

    This release improves the stability of the framework and the new SourceGenerator.

    Here’s a quick description from freshmeat for those of you not familiar with Castor:

    Castor is the shortest path between Java[tm] objects, XML documents, SQL tables and LDAP directories. It provides Java to XML binding, Java to SQL/LDAP persistence, and then some more. Features include Castor XML: Java object to XML document, Castor JDO: Java object persistence to RDBMS, Castor DAX: Java object persistence to LDAP, Castor DSML: LDAP directory exchange through XML, XML-based mapping file specify the mapping between one model and another, in memory caching and write-at-commit which reduce JDBC operations, OQL query mapping to SQL queries, and EJB container managed persistence provider for OpenEJB.

  • wx.NET


    wx.NET is a .NET wrapper for the multi-platform toolkit wxWindows. Additionally, Mono Weekly News is out and Includes a new interview, software announcements and the PHP/Mono integration. Also, there is work being done to try and port Mono to MacOSX. More info on the ongoing effort, in the list.

    I didn’t see anything Earth-shattering in Mono Weekly News, but it was an excellent wrapup of recent Mono events.

  • Card Readers in Laptops


    Aiming to better connect its notebooks with a growing array of digital devices, Gateway is introducing a portable PC that can read the tiny flash memory cards used by digital cameras and MP3 players.

    This is smart.  Previously, the Sony VAIOs were the only major laptops that would take any memory cards, and those just take Memory Stick.

  • Google SQL

    Jeremy Zawodny:

    I’ve been wanting an SQL interface to Google for so long. 🙂

    He’s referring to the DBD::google module at CPAN.

  • Web-Enabled Government

    Tomorrow morning I’ll be attending the Web-Enabled Government Expo.  A writeup and some photos should follow later in the afternoon, perhaps after class.