Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ category

Unintended coincidence

2010/01/24

To be fair, the book is to appear in March 2010, so most likely the cover image is not ready yet. But I found lack of images for book whose main point is to make explanation illustrated quite ironical :-).

Cure for crashing FourSquare and RunKeeper on iPhone

2010/01/11

Few weeks ago, first Foursquare application and then my favorite RunKeeper app started to fail. The symptoms were simple:

1) attempt to start

2) wait for for 2-10 seconds

3) exit

Analysis of the crash logs did not reveal anything obvious (see ~/Library/Logs/CrashReporter/MobileDevice/NAME:


Process:         foursquare [374]
Path:            /var/mobile/Applications/7F37347B-......1663AA5/foursquare.app/foursquare
Identifier:      foursquare
Version:         ??? (???)
Code Type:       ARM (Native)
Parent Process:  launchd [1]

Date/Time:       2009-12-22 12:39:11.260 -0500
OS Version:      iPhone OS 3.1.2 (7D11)
Report Version:  104

Exception Type:  EXC_BAD_ACCESS (SIGSEGV)
Exception Codes: KERN_INVALID_ADDRESS at 0x20294628
Crashed Thread:  0

Thread 0 Crashed:
0   libobjc.A.dylib                   0x32668ecc 0x32665000 + 16076
1   CoreFoundation                    0x32d83d6a 0x32d4d000 + 224618
2   CoreFoundation                    0x32d4fc28 0x32d4d000 + 11304

What helped was to delete both applications from the phone, including data and let the iTunes install it back. No data is lost, because both services are cloud based – only minor inconvenience was to re-enter login information.

So, Nael – I am back in the game and cannot wait to claim back mayorships for all places I have been ousted 🙂

Attention is new currency

2010/01/05

Some companies just do not get it.

It starts with an email, like this one:

By coincidence, you are on project that has the CRM component so you decide to check it out and click on link. After all, it is free, right, so why wouldn’t you ?

The catch is that it is not free at all. Without realizing it, you have already made your first payment, by doing the sender a favor: as we know, clicking on a link in email is definitely not a good idea and recommended behaviour, unless you know the sender and trust the sender. Which – in this case – you have absolutely no reason to.

The link that promises to lead to the free whitepaper, ends up here:

So the “free whitepaper” is not quite free and you  just continue paying – with most precious currency: your time. First you need to spend the 10-15 minutes to fill out the lengthy form. Then another chunk of your time to actually read what you downloaded, just to find out that (in 9 out of 10 cases) it is useless, fluffy marketing material. If you pay attention to fine print below, you’ll find out that you have just subscribed to unknown number of similar spammy mailing lists and will be receiving many more offers for “free” stuff. Add more payments: time spent on weeding them out from Inbox for the rest of the email address’ lifetime … because majority of Unsubscribe links are (similar to unicorns) purely mythical constructs.

This behaviour is so much last century and comes from today completely invalid assumption: that information is something precious, valuable that needs to be protected, guarded and given only for exchange for your privacy. In today’s world, there is abundance of information that competes for readers attention. Rather then asking for anything upfront just to gain access, the authors should be happy and honored that in the world of so many options, somebody actually wants to invest time and effort to get more familiar with their product or service or whatever are they selling. Because they are selling – the only reason for the form-guarded “free” stuff is to sell, either by using the content in question or by following up. After all, they have all information to reach you …

I am not against selling or marketing – I just want the sellers to be honest about it. If you really want to collect any information for follow up, how about at minimum provide at least a preview of what the information is about. All respected sellers of eBooks do that – give you at minimum free chapter and TOC as free (I mean *really* free) download. This seems to be such easy and obvious thing, that I am surprised that even respectable companies (such as Citrix in this case) go for this ineffective trickery just to squeeze out contact information from possible audience. It is so easy to create disposable email or use services like http://10minutemail.com/

But much easier than using self-destroying email is simply click on next search result link. Why would one expect to gain anything useful from whitepaper produced by company that does not get the basics ?

Here we go again

2009/12/30

This is reloaded version of my previous blog – or continuation of the fork.

First thing to start is to explain why did I do something quite contra-productive as relocate the blog and loose all the audience – however small it could have been.

It would seem that I like restarts and things reloaded. I did pick a new country to become new home for me and my family (if emigration is not a restart, what else is ?).  Back in 2004 we have started Thinknostic to be “Montage Reloaded” – a new incarnation of the company I worked for before and liked it a lot. The same story repeats with blogging.

When I started blogging back in 2006, it was Thinknostic second year and we started to really grow:  we got our own space beyond small sales office in downtown we have had before, built some serious hardware infrastructure, employee numbers started to go into two digit territory and we landed our first 1 M$+ project. My blog at http://thinkwrap.wordpress.com/ was our unofficial presence in the social space. In 2006 I picked the login and account name “thinkwrap”, because it was – at that time – a word that kind-of expressed the approach we were using: something between methodology, best practices and a toolset.

In the three years, the same word ThinkWrap was selected as the new brand when Thinknostic in Ottawa and Pentura Solutions in Toronto (both “second life” companies of Montage origin) merged.  Now suddenly, with “thinkwrap” in URL,  my blog became whole lot more company-bound that I wanted. As everybody can see on dropping rate of contributions, I found pretty hard to post. I was never quite sure whether I really want to present my personal opinion to appear under ThinkWrap brand as something that the company would be saying. Even worse, now we were several times the size as before, with headcount of about 50 – who was I to speak for all these people, when there were so many smarter, more talented and more experienced than myself ?

As result, the whole blog thing came to a big halt – no posts for over 6 months. The only solution I could come up with was restart. Thus, a new, real corporate blog was created that is way more than single guy’s opinion. I am one of the contributors, meaning that you will find posts by myself but also by Nael, Milos, Mike and few more great and talented guys we are happy to have as part of the ThinkWrap. And more will certainly come. See for yourself at http://blog.thinkwrap.com/.

For my personal stuff, I have exported and reimported the content into different WordPress blog and hooked it under domain that clearly indicates that it is my personal blog and personal opinion. Occasionally, I may decide to crosspost some to corporate blog as well, but most of my opinions, suggestions, rants, jokes, book recommendations and crazy ideas will not go beyond this ones :-).

So, I have now new place that completes my virtual existence. You can also find me on Twitter and Facebook (albeit I try hard to keep my Facebook friends to be subset of people I did meet in real life).

Have a good rest of the year and – as my German speaking friends would say:  “Einen guten Rutsch”

We are hiring

2008/08/26

After everything-but-quiet summer, things got even busier and we need to add more great people to our teams.

At the moment we’re looking for

* Junior Java developers

* Intermediate Java developers

* Intermediate .Net developers

* Senior .Net developers

* Junior Graphics/UI/Multimedia Designer

Sorry – no teleworking, you must be local to apply. If you feel like fitting in – or know somebody in Ottawa that would fit, email Miro at thinknostic dot com …

Rogers, iPhone and the dreaded kCFErrorDomainCFNetwork Error 302

2008/08/23

Many people recently (including myself) had experiences difficulties with Web access on the iPhone. Quite often the following error message pops up:

Usually repeating the web page access helps. Sometimes you have to try third time or wait few minutes.

This has nothing to do with signal strenght – as you can see, there are 4 bars and 3G is on. I saw it happen on Edge as well. Reseting the phone sometimes helps, but it is hard to say whether because of the reset or time delay ..

Most people think this is network problem with Rogers data network and I tend to agree. If it was an iPhone or Safari issue, it would not go away with retrying – I think.

It also happens in more than just Safari: the weather does not get updates, Mail fails fetching the last state and so on.

Here are some threads on the issue:

http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=1622181&tstart=0

http://www.iphoneincanada.ca/forums/showthread.php?p=21624

It would not be first time when Rogers would be using paying customers as beta testers of the service. Few years back when hispeed internet was introduced, I remember frequent outages and spending time with their (not so great) techsupport. Eventually, they must have learned how to do it or build up capacities because it went away.

Let’s hope the same happens with the 3G data network. And it better happens quickly, because this service sucks, dear Rogers …

If you are seeing the same issue, please open the ticket with both Rogers and Apple (to create some pressure).

Linux vs Windows – great comparison

2008/08/22

I have been “living in a command line” for last few weeks. Pretty refreshing experience. As result, I had to google a lot, especially when it comes to e.g. subtle differences between tar options on Ubuntu Linux and Open Solaris … While doing that, I somehow stumbled upon this great writeup on cultural differences between Linux and Windows. Nicely written, no flamewars – obviously pro-Linux, but no Microsoft or Windows bashing and lots of insight. Higly recommended.

http://linux.oneandoneis2.org/LNW.htm
I really liked the metaphor about Lego cars 🙂