Category Archives: Programming and Software

Retarded Job Post of the Day


• 3-5 years experience with Enterprise Service Bus products, (SAP, TIBCO, Oracle Fusion, BEA, WebMethods, etc.), SOA principles and SOA derived workflow tools, BPEL, Business Activity Monitoring (BAM), etc.
• 3-5 years experience in OO design and development in a variety of areas: J2EE, EJB, JSP, JSF, Struts, Servlets, Java Transaction API (JTA), JDBC, SOAP, WSDL, XML, XSL/XSLT, Web Services, WS-* standards, and Java Business Integration (JBI).
• Experience with the SAP Java development environment, Netweaver Developer Studio (NWDS) and Netweaver Development Infrastructure (NWDI) strongly desired.
• Experience with C#, AJAX, ASP.NET, SharePoint development, Visual Studio.NET is highly desirable, as well as C++, CORBA and Win32 and POSIX development.
• Experience in SAP basis, and knowledge of SAP Web Application Server.
• Knowledge of both the ABAP and Java stacks of the SAP Web Application Server (SAP WAS). Familiarity with SAP Enterprise Services Architecture is a plus
• Knowledge of procedural SQL (PL/SQL, T-SQL), database loading (DTS, SQL*Loader) and ETL systems a plus.
• Experience with DataWarehouse design, development, optimization & tuning

So basically they want a senior Java Developer who also knows C#, Web Development, Win32, DataWarehousing, ERP, SOA. Just looking for your everyday systems programmer/Unix/Windows/Enterprise IT/Web Developer/DBA/ERP guy.

Become an IT Professional in just 3 months!

The UT is reporting that MicroSkills, a San Diego “certification mill” has closed abrubtly, leaving students out thousands.

Students stunned as school closes

I used to pass by the MicroSkills campus (located in a strip mall on Miramar Road) every day. Mostly I noticed that they seemed to play a lot of hackey-sack in the parking lot.

The funny thing is they are still running their commercials on TV – “Start a lucrative career in IT! Become a certified IT Professional in just 3 months!”. The problem is that the cost of that cert is about the same as the cost of your average 4-year degree at a CSU school!  Never mind that you can get a Microsoft Cert for the cost of a couple thick books and the 400 dollar fee for the exam.

so into Podcasts right now

So I’m totally into these podcasts from the Itunes music store… for those who are not ‘with the whole podcast scene’ or a ‘hardcore podcaster’, a podcast is a downloadable radio show.

Since this is the Internet, 99% of the 4,546,212 podcasts in existence consist of 2 dorks arguing over who was darker: David Gahan or Robert Smith. Or talking about how Library Science will Democratize Social Software through RSS feeds.

I have to say I have been sorely disappointed with the tech-related content. Most of the content seems to center around Open Source, Macs, RSS or Blogging, etc… I guess this is the stuff people are into these days. IT Conversations (ITC) is well-produced show that suffers from serious dork-itus. Listening to Robert Scoble, I could only think that this guy’s skin tone must be that of light mustard.
Ira Flatow’s Science Friday is the standout.

However, it should be known that many quality radio stations and a few high-rent Internet-type productions are out there. NPR, BusinessWeek, KCRW, local radio, etc… My favorite is Le Show.

Here’s the current faves for yours truly:
Ira Flatow (NPR)
60 Minutes Podcast
Harry Shearer (Le Show)
Marketplace (American Public Media)
BusinessWeek cover stories
Warren Olney’s ‘Which way LA’ and ‘To the Point’
NPR Story of the Day

That said, I have heard enough Scooter Libby coverage to last me a long, long time.

An old WSD post

>I’ve been meaning to respond to this for a while. I sense a strong
>condescending disdain for CF in your “tone” also apparent in your
>recent implication that CF is a “pet” language.

It’s so unfortunate that by voicing an unpopular opinion I appear to
continually piss off so many people on this, but I’m going to try my
best to make some sense of it.

CF is not a “pet language”. Any technology, no matter how powerful, can
become a*pet* to any developer who becomes so emotionally attached to
it’s existence that they attempt to continually justify and evangelize
it regardless of set or setting, regardless of appropriateness or fact!.

People get attached to inanimate things, especially in the computer
world. Languages, hardware, vendors, OS’, I don’t get it. To me, it’s
completely silly, it’s boring, and it’s part of this ridiculous
“tool-tunnel-vision” culture that exists in the developer world.

I don’t care what programming language a person likes. As far as I’m
concerned, they are all (mostly ) the same and it’s all good. What I do
care about is so-called “software journalism” that attempts to take a
group of products and spins them in a manner that puts the author’s
particular favorite on top as being “more capable”, when the only actual
value that can actually be quantified is purely subjective. This is my
gripe, this is my complaint about the Sitepoint article and the Ben
Forta stuff. Re-read these articles and tell me that they are really
anything other than marketing literature and fluff. When I see it, I’m
gonna call it out. That’s how I am.

That’s as far as it goes for me. You like CFMX, that’s cool. I don’t.
You will not convice me that it is *better* than anything else out
there. I know what CFMX can do. There is no feature set that in CFMX
that is not comparable to a feature set in Language X. There is
*nothing* it can do that 10 other things can’t. It may do it
differently, maybe in less LOC, but I’m sorry, a web app is a web app is
a web app. You can rant and rave all you wish. Spin it into a
compliment if it makes you feel better – CFMX is as capable as any web
app dev platform out there!

Note I have not once taken any personal stance on a particular
technology or programming language throughout this discussion. I
haven’t advocated anything. Macromedia and Microsoft and Zend and Larry
Wall and Sun don’t pay me to preach their product. I get paid to be a
web developer. I choose a tool of my preference when I have the chance.
Sometimes, I use whatever is handed to me.

Most people don’t take it personally . I don’t take it personally when
the C programmers bag on PHP/C#/Java for being a toy language. Hell,
those guys bag on EVERY language. They make faces at me, make noises
like someone farted in the cube. But no one really cares! We’re all
there to program and get paid for it. First day of class, I told my
teacher I was doing some C# stuff, he told me to “learn a man’s
language”. That’s funny shit!

What is it about Macromedia & Apple products that create this intense
emotional attachment? Is it the fact that for many, it’s their “first love”?

Taking an objective view of the *products* I choose to build my
livelihood around is something I take very seriously, but never to the
point where I cannot make an objective decision about technical merit.


So I recently upgraded my trusty G4 Powerbook to the lastest and greatest Mac OS Tiger. After moving nearly 10GB of music to an external HDD and removing a shitload of debris files, the new OS seems pretty sweet.

I had to free up some space for the 3.4GB install… 1.8 GB of printer drivers! rsync did a better job moving my iTunes library to an external HDD than finder did.

Huge amount of Language files in the upgrade which you can remove separately. I actually do a lot with multi-lingual web stuff so I typically need EN,JP,FR,DE, Simplified Chinese etc… but I install them as needed and these days do very little testing with my personal computer anyway.

Not noticing any real stability or speed improvements (OS X is pretty damn stable anyway), is updated, nothing special there either. There are some new tools and a new XCode release which looks sweet, but I don’t use it.

Unfortunately I have run into some trouble with my massive collection of photographs. I tried to use iPhoto to manage them but this software is a complete pig and spends about 90% of it’s time paged out to disk. Today I’m trying to figure ouy some way to manage 6 years worth of images.

Although the new Dashboard feature is cool, it’s a complete memory hog and was first to be killed. Firefox also continues to hog and leak memory (just like on windows)… after 3 or 4 days a typical firefox image will take up anywhere from 50-100MB sitting idle.

More fun can be had with the new iTunes version, just released. Since I have my iTunes library on an external HDD (firewire) I expect a little latency, but overall it seems like iTunes is just gobbling memory even if no music is actually playing.

All in all, Mac OS X is still the best Home / Workstation OS in my book, but they need to come up with a better reason to pay for an upgrade next year.

Tabby Tabbareens

So the app I’m working on needed tabs. I figured this was the perfect chance to use some of those sporty CSS tabs that just take an unordered list and makes purty tabs. Since it’s just CSS.. it would be simple, right?


I tried nearly every example on
this page, and to my astonishment, most of them completely failed to work at all. Why?

First things first – HTML/CSS guys are not necessarily programmers. That means they may miss that pedantic little charater trait which forces you to scrutinize every single tiny possible boundary case to keep your shit from breaking.

In no particular order (an unordered list!), here’s the problems I ran into:

– Absolute Positioning: Face it, this shit doesn’t work. Nothing better than seeing the tabs rendered on top of each other.

– Inflexible designs: Some of these tabs can’t handle more than n tabs before they start overlapping or doing other weird stuff. Most can’t handle wrapping at all.

– Hacks and unsupported standards: “Supports XHTML 1.0 Strict and CSS3″… hmmmm mmmmkay… Problem here is that no one cares about that shit.

– Relative sizing and spacing: Normally this is a good thing, but this shit has never really worked and it ain’t about to start. My favorite was people using em’s to set header widths and watching everything get scrunched into a teensy little wad in the corner of the screen.

– Ones that just don’t work… at all. Some of these rendered out as oddly colored bars which seem to resemble a child’s Lego™ creation. Others had nice little submenus rendering a good 6 inches above the menu itself. I love that!

So, in conclusion, the reality of CSS in 2005 is that it’s barely adequate to make tabs in a web browser.

Classic my foot

I am working on some old sheisty ASP code today. Here’s a couple nice nuggets for all the poor souls who have to write VB all day long.

1. Get and use Emil Malinov’s VBSTemplate class. This will give you codebehind / Smarty / Mason -style templates. That means no HTML in your code, silly. There is one additional method you want to add – a Return() method to return the parsed template as a string – you’ll thank me for it.

Next, get Nick DelMedico’s clsDatagrid. That’s right kiddies, an ASP.NET-style datagrid for your “Classic” ASP pages.

Finally, you’ll need a couple fairly basic functions to deal with stuff like select boxes (VBSTemplate will handle the textboxes and textareas.)

ENPT Done Good

Microsoft Corp. on Tuesday said it would buy anti-virus software maker Sybari Software Inc. in a direct challenge to Symantec and McAfee Inc., which currently dominate that market.

Read More…

Sybari is literally around the corner from the Lee homestead on Larkfield road in the old Post Office. Way to miss out on that pre-ipo equity Sass!

Posted to JoS

I like to look at technical job markets in the US in terms of consumer / producer roles. Speaking strictly in the mile-high hypothetical sense, there are a few producer cities nationally and several large consumer cities.

Given these gross generalizations, California remains the premier location for companies that create technology – with Silicon Valley as the ‘capitol’ of the tech microeconomy. The historical significance of Xerox PARC, Stanford, Berkely, HP, Apple, and the Sand Hill road VC complex cannot be underestimated. If you are looking at companies producing consumer or enterprise software, SV is the core.

That said, some say the SF bay is a true microeconomy and is still experiencing some strange effects from the tech boom/bust cycle of the past few years – including an unprecidented runup in housing costs that has endured despite a calming here in SoCal. Also, the recent trend toward consolodation in the software industry is arguably turning SV into Oracle-ville.

LA / OC on the other hand tend to be more technology consumers, with fewer bona-fide software and hardware shops. Still, compared to many other cities, the LA / OC area has a robust and varied tech job market, and without the constant influx of world-class talent of the SF bay, this area may be a bit more amicable toward job seekers. LA is surprisingly affordable given the SoCal housing boom, but it’s not a lifestyle that everyone would like. OC is intensely expensive in coastal areas and offers a bit more of a suburban lifestyle.

Surprisingly, the town I live in, San Diego, has a strong technical job market. Note that the majority of jobs here are true engineering jobs – due to the proximity of UCSD and the strong military presence. So while a shrinkwrap apps developer may not find much in SD, the embedded, wireless, or ASIC / VHDL guys seem to do really well at places like Titan, Raytheon, SAIC, and other defense subcontractors. Be forewarned – expect a high cost of living on the OC / SF bay level – and a pay scale that is not on par with the cost of living. Security clearance is a huge asset here.

Seattle, Portland and the Pacific NW also have producer / consumer job markets, but I have a feeling that without Microsoft and Amazon there would not be much of a tech center here. Although I consider the Pacific NW to be among the most beautiful areas in the US, it’s also somewhat “rural” for a boy raised on Long Island, NY.

Colorado also has a history as a center for engineering. If I remember correctly, Colorado was a center for swiss machining for many years. Boulder / Denver / Fort Collins offer a lot for an engineer and have a low cost of living compared to California, but Boulder has experienced a huge runup in home pricing recently.

In the Northeastern US you have Boston standing out as a producer economy. The legacy of MIT and DEC still live on. Boston’s high cost of living and brutal winters will scare off some, but Boston is arguably the center for R&D on the east coast.

New York and DC tend to be true technology consumers – NY moreso than DC. If you are in the enterprise apps space (doesn’t sound like you are), it’s hard to imagine a better locale. DC has experienced trmendous growth as a technology producer in the past 5 years, in my opinion due to the war, increased use of technology for homeland security, and the proximity to the Navy’s infrastructure in coastal Virginia. Again, security clearance will give you an edge in DC, while in NYC, an MBA might be more effective.


So your boy Sass has been put in charge of a team of developers – the catch is: they’re in India.

Welcome to the new American workforce – 5 guys overseas, and 1 guy to get blamed when they screw it up!