Software development techniques behind the magic user interface

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I wonder how many people, as I did, found themselves thrown into confusion by the death last week of Jean Ichbiah (pictured), inventor of Ada.  Learning that the inventor of a computer programming language is already old enough to have lived 66 years (Ichbiah was 66 when he succumbed to brain cancer) is a little like learning that your 11-year-old daughter has grown up and left home or that the first car you ever bought no longer is legal because it runs on gasoline in an age where all automobiles must run on water. How can something as novel, as new, as a computing language possibly already be so old-fangled that an early practitioner like Ichbiah can already no longer be with us? The thought was so disquieting that it took me immediately back to the last time I wrote about Ichbiah, and indeed about Ada Lovelace for whom his language was named. It was in the context ... (more)

Personal Branding Checklist

This is a checklist of items you need for an all-encompassing personal branding strategy. Personal branding is the process of marketing and selling yourself as a brand in order to gain success in business. Personal branding is a continual process just as knowing yourself is a continual process. As you grow, so does your brand. The need for personal branding arises from the fact that globalization has increased competition in the workplace. As the wheat is separated from the chaff, if you are left standing, you are left standing with others of good caliber. The playing field is now that much more challenging since your competition is as good as, or better, than you. To paraphrase David Samuel, the bloke who got me into personal branding after I saw him speak a few years ago; he spoke about of why you need personal branding. His audience was a group from a large teleco... (more)

How to install Nola, the free accounting package for Linux

(LinuxWorld) -- The Information Technology (IT) industry serves acronyms for breakfast, lunch, and dinner seven da... (oops! I meant to write, "24/7 365"). I've searched diligently for the right Linux accounting solution since Q4 Y2K minus 2, and naturally enough, there's an acronym for the type of application we are evaluating together here. Nola (as we are deploying it) is a LAMP application, which merely means that it runs on Linux, it's Web enabled and served to the network with Apache, while data is handled by the MySQL database, and users see, and interact with dynamic Web pages generated by PHP. Disappointed? Well, don't be. It is an important factor in deciding whether Nola merits attention. As an application, Nola can be visualized as part of an interface, or front-end, to the MySQL database, and consists of a collection of .php scripts -- ASCII text file... (more)

How to install Linux over a network

(LinuxWorld) -- Linux doesn't exist in a vacuum. The PC industry remains driven by Microsoft and the ever-upward hardware requirements of each successive transmogrification of Windows. Linux distribution developers recognize this and expend great effort attempting to ensure each new release of their product installs and configures more easily than previous versions -- on well-equipped, late-model PCs. That's a good thing, but as a result recent Linux converts have never installed Linux on the sort of minimal hardware that makes Linux server-centrism so cost effective: Aged 486s and first-generation Pentiums with little RAM and no CD-ROM drive. In Part 4, we ripped into the nuts and bolts of post-installation Linux PC X terminal configuration. For those whose powerful network still lies dormant for lack of an installed operating system on the desktop machines, we tu... (more)

New Xandros CEO Has Big Linux Plans

Andreas (Andy) Typaldos has just been appointed CEO of Xandros - developer of installation-friendly, Linux-based operating environments offering Windows compatibility - by its board of directors. The 30-year technology veteran and entrepreneur founded of AxsOne (formerly Computron), a global software firm supplying Fortune 500 companies with financial services, financial applications, workflow, and data-management applications, and was an early investor through Linux Global Partners in Ximian, Xandros, and CodeWeavers. He is also Chairman/Managing Member of Enikia, a state-of-the-art system-on-a-chip semiconductor company focused on delivering broadband and multi-media distribution over electrical power lines. “Xandros has a top product, many Microsoft users are waiting for," Typalso says. "The touch and feel of their known Windows desktop, with the stability and s... (more)

Channel: A Communication Components

Motivation One nice feature of the Java language is having many useful programming facilities (or APIs) built into its core language packages. To write a client/server application, one can use the socket classes in the java.net package by modifying from any existing client/server codes. For instance, David Flanagan's "Java in a Nutshell" book (pp.145 to 148) [1] provides sample codes for implementing client and server with multi-threading features. However, it depends on your application. You may need to replace the readLine() and println() methods of the DataInputStream and PrintStream classes respectively with appropriate I/O methods (e.g. readInt(), writeFloat() etc.) of the respective subclasses of the InputStream and OutputStream I/O classes in the java.io package. In this way, one can write client/server applications by manually modifying and extending Java c... (more)

A Real-Time Physical Inventory Solution Using PocketBuilder, ASA, and a Wi-Fi Connection

Why do a physical inventory? A physical inventory count is necessary to reconcile the quantity on hand stored in a database versus what is really on the shelf. In a retail environment, this process is typically done once a year. In a perfect world, these values would always be in sync. The value would be decremented when items are sold and incremented when items are received. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Consider shrinkage, shoplifting, and, my personal favorite, software bugs. Through a case study, this article will show how easy it is to architect a wireless real-time PocketBuilder application to replace a hardware-based data collection device used for physical inventory updates to an enterprise database. Specifically, a Symbol PPT8800 Pocket PC will be compared and contrasted to an American Micro M5000 Laser barcode scanner. We will show how the Po... (more)

Corporate Applications on a Mobile Device Near You

In the enterprise building mobile applications is as much about integration and the corresponding challenges as it is about pure application development. Recent industry reports reveal that more than 70% of mission-critical data and most of the pivotal business logic that runs worldwide commerce still resides on existing host systems. Based on this dependency, as well as their speed and power, host systems are unquestionably here to stay for most large organizations and will continue to be a foundation for business success as organizations design and implement new business initiatives. However, many of those same organizations have also invested in packaged applications (SAP, Siebel, Oracle Applications, PeopleSoft, etc.) to manage their businesses. When building mobile solutions that leverage these systems, enterprise developers want to use the existing business logi... (more)

Nick Carr's Cloud-Network Disconnect

Virtualization and cloud computing are promising to change the way in which IT services are delivered and, in effect, transform computing as we know it today.  I think the promises are likely to come true, if and only if critical technology issues are addressed. Nicholas Carr told a recent audience at IDC Directions that "Cloud computing has become the center of investment and innovation."   While he is not a technologist, his sometimes shocking insight into the transformation of IT have been prescient, even if he doesn't sweat the details of how complex IT infrastructures can morph into the equivalent of today's public utilities. To his credit Carr has predicted the rise of the cloud computing press release, multiple cloud conferences and panels and even the SaaS repositioning exercise.  He also foresaw the rise in Amazon and Google cloud announcements, perhaps year... (more)

Eclipse Special: Bill Dudney Looks at Eclipse M8 Close-Up

To view our full selection of recent Eclipse stories click here As a kick off for this new column I figured I'd go over some of the good, bad and ugly in the new Eclipse M8 drop. I have been using M8 for two weeks now and I've accumulated a lot of notes of what I like and don't like in this latest of the drops before we get 3.0 final. Over all I am really impressed with this release. I went through the release notes and tried to comment on each aspect of what was documented as well as a couple of nice things that I found that are not in the release notes. Eye-candy - in the form of new welcome stuff. I like the look of it and seems to be very useful for RCP based apps. Since I'm not writing any RCP apps I probably won't have to write anything to plugin into the new Welcome extensibility points it's nice to know it's there. Cheat Sheets - very cool and very useful for... (more)

Sony Ericcson Selects Symbian for New Smartphone

Sony Ericsson says it has "emphasized its continued commitment to Symbian OS" with the announcement of its next-generation smartphone, the P990, which will be the first commercially available smartphone to adopt the enhanced Symbian OS version 9.1 and UIQ 3 software platform. This flagship UMTS smartphone is Wi-Fi enabled, has a 2 megapixel camera with autofocus and features a new hardware keyboard beneath the flip-down keypad. The phone will start shipping during Q1 of 2006. The P990 is the next in a line of successful Sony Ericsson smartphones - the P800, P900 and P910 – and is based on the same concept and form factor. To ensure a large proportion of applications are available on the new Symbian and UIQ software platform when the P990 goes on sale, Sony Ericsson has decided to announce the smartphone well in advance of availability so that developers have t... (more)