Have you ever realised you have been sitting with the same problem for an hour or more without coming somewhere?

Then ask yourself “Are you thinking about the Problem or about the Solution?”

This news letter is sponsored by bash.

This cccommunicate news letter can also be found here.



Code and development

Javascript as first programming language

Even though it hurts deep inside my heart hello I've come to the conclusion that javascript is a good first language. Javascript in HTML that is.

Note that I am talking about programming for kids and youngsters here, not university level. If a kid should learn to program the interest must be kept up; WoW or FB is way more fun than inheritance, quick sort and IoC containers. Surprise: games today come with graphics, not text, not even ASCII graphics.

- http://inventwithpython.com/blog/2012/03/03/nobody-wants-to-learn-how-to-program/

Remote control a web browser so you don't have to install the browser on your machine

The head line says it all.  Gratis.

Spoon has more virtualisations, a small metric ton of applications really.  Just browse around.  Gratis.  

- http://spoon.net/browsers

What can you use in which browser

According to rumour the link below leads to the best updated table over feature/browser.  It also has a search field for narrowing down the technique you are looking for.

- http://caniuse.com/

- http://caniuse.com/#search=canvas <- example of search

Why not to use OR/M

The energetic presenter does a comparision between OR/M and cake mix.  A comparision that doesn't hold if you ask me.  But she is fun and she has some good points.

For one she is pointing at SQL is a pain to write but then shows the Hibernate counter part wich is pain with salt on top.

- http://vimeo.com/28885655

Dates in Json might be standardised to ISO8601

When Json was designed Date/Time wasn't one of the primitives so every implementer have had to decide for themselves.  Bad idea.  This means talking datetime from dotnet to javascript  might or might not fail.  Ruby does their own stuff.  I haven't checked Python and don't know if there are differences whether PHP runs on Windows och Unix.

Now SHanselman has written about it and he is famous enough to make a difference.  Any standard is good in this case but we are lucky ISO8601 was decided and not one of the dreadful US formats.

- http://www.hanselman.com/blog/OnTheNightmareThatIsJSONDatesPlusJSONNETAndASPNETWebAPI.aspx

Find the Nuget packages you need (win)

Sometime during the lifetime of Visual studio 2010 came yet another extension/addon/addin manger. This one was called Nuget and it was better than its forerunners.

There was a stab at making a catalogue of extensions but above all was the command line interface. I bet on the command line interface getting a GUI in a not too faraway future but still preach the goodness of writing text instead of clicking buttons.

Below is linked a site which categorises Nuget packages and let people vote on them.

- http://nugetmusthaves.com/

Projects, methods and leadership

Workflow of Git

Below is linked a good example of Git workflow.

Don't worry about the Nancy context of the article, the article is general.

- https://github.com/NancyFx/Nancy/wiki/Git-Workflow

Why I avoid TFS (win)

The first reason I point out to customers to not use Microsoft Team foundation server is that every contributor has to have a license. This makes interacting with the project only possible for a chosen few.

Once that is sorted out, that not only the server has a cost but some, not all, users too; I ask the customer to read (go fish!) and understand (legaleze) under which circumstances the customer is allowed to interact with the contents of his own project.

And then tell me, because I have since long given up on understanding the ever changing rulez by Microsoft.

- http://blogs.msdn.com/b/bharry/archive/2012/03/08/even-better-access-to-team-foundation-server.aspx <- teh rulez. now easier than before. soon changing again

Pair programming not always good

My headline is the less bombastic than the original which might be written solely to draw readers.  The article is more balanced and talks about mixing pair programming with other techniques.

Which I totally agree on.

One can only pair program for so long before the brain over heats.  My solution is to only pair for short time and take regular breaks; more breaks than when programming solo.  Also don't pair program for a full day.

The article popped up on my Twitter feed to so I guess it, like the infamous SOA-is-dead article, has gotten some spread.

- http://m.techcrunch.com/2012/03/03/pair-programming-considered-harmful/

Tipthanks FHultin

Products and releases

Replicant - a truly free mobile phone OS

Android is only free so far.  When it comes down to bluetooth, wifi and above all 3G and the very telephone protocol things get closed.  This is what Openmoko set out to change once (built on linux IIRC).

Now someone tries to do the same but with Android as base instead.  I am not exchanging my Samsung Galaxy S2 as of now but hope the project will change my mind in the future.

- http://replicant.us/

- http://www.techworld.com.au/article/417902/replicant_developer_interview_building_truly_free_android <- interview

SisoDb - a document database with sqlserver as backend (win)

The developer lives in Gothenburg which at least would make the product rain proof.

It is a document database competing with RavenDb and more.  I haven't delved into how it stores the data but it is something with dynamically created tables.

I decided to contact the author who kindly replied:


Varje typ av dokument (e.g ShoppingCart) får ett gäng tabeller. En modertabell som innehåller en JSON representation av dokumentet och sedan en tabell per datatyp (int, bool osv). De sistnämda tabellerna används för sökningar och håller key-value representationer av varje skalär egenskap i en objektgraf, dvs. alla löv, inklusive de som ligger under nästlade arrayer. Anledningen att de har olika tabeller per datatyp är för att kunna skapa bra individuella index samt att frågorna inte skall behöva belastas av exepelvis sträng data om du bara ställer en fråga mot en egenskap som är en integer.Mer info:  http://sisodb.com/wiki/core-concepts 


RavenDb, a well known competitor in the dotnet hemisphere uses Json.  I am not betting on what is best.

Other competitors are MongoDb that is written in C++ and CouchDb which is written in Erlang. Erlang makes the latter both very kewl and completely schtoopid.

- http://www.sisodb.com/

- http://daniel.wertheim.se/2012/03/11/ranting-is-good-for-you/ <- if you are interested some of the thoughts behind sisodb and some figures in  in comparision with ravendb

Thx DWertheim

Linux from scratch - build your own linux

The "product" in this case is the 345 pages long document.

This could be a nice project over a couple of weeks.  I mean that the compile times are quite long so one probably shouldn't make it a all-nighter.

I hope it isn't gcc switches that makes up the most of the contents. <smiley/>

- http://www.h-online.com/open/news/item/Linux-From-Scratch-7-1-published-1463152.html

- http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/ <- the very site

List of all countries in several data formats

Very useful when needed.

- http://dev.umpirsky.com/list-of-all-countries-in-all-languages-and-all-data-formats/

Tipthansk MrM

Always innovate - small computer

Yet a computer-on-a-hdmi-dongle has come to my awareness.  This is called Always innovating and it looks stunning.  Inspector Closeau, who is the inventor, has some nice casts which will take a few minutes of your life.

The price will be 100€ or less.  I don't know if the remote with accelerometer comes with that price.

- http://alwaysinnovating.com/

- http://www.engadget.com/2012/03/01/always-innovating-hdmi-android-ics-dongle-hands-on/ <- more goodness for the alwaysinnovating dognle

- http://www.fxitech.com/products/ <- a norwegian competitor that looks to fall short in feature count

- http://www.raspberrypi.org/ <- another sexy small computer for a low price

Tipthansk MaTh

Groupme - multi SMS and conference call

Groupme has managed to lower the barrier for sending SMS to many.  Send 1 SMS and pay for 1 SMS even though there are many recipients in the group you have created.  I haven't found out how they make their money but I guess they technically use a combination of SMS and long poll.

One can also connect a conference call.

I haven't tried the solution but the idea is nice.  Anyone?

- http://groupme.com/

PHP 5.4.0

Go get!

One of the new stuff is something they call Trait.  It is sort of a static class with methods and this class can be inserted into other classes.  The Trait has rudimentary access to the classes it is used by it, absolutely not a full inheritance.

I refuse to dive in to the road map of PHP but I dare a guess this is the first step for AOP in PHP.

- http://www.php.net/

Free application for building Android apps

Originally from google as open source but dropped, picked up at once by MIT and now live again.

A graphical interface for building Android apps. I have tried it, just download and click away.

- http://developers.slashdot.org/story/12/03/06/0553258/mit-app-inventor-back-online

Visual studio 11 beta is out (win)

Go get!

I am presently running it and it looks nice.

- http://blogs.msdn.com/b/jasonz/archive/2012/02/29/welcome-to-the-beta-of-visual-studio-11-and-net-framework-4-5.aspx

Visual Studio ideas box (win)

Vote for what needs to be updated in Visual studio.

Especially helpful now with 2011 just out the door.

- http://visualstudio.uservoice.com/forums/121579-visual-studio

- http://visualstudio.uservoice.com/forums/121579-visual-studio/suggestions/2676719-do-no-add-color-to-visual-studio-11-beta <- don’t forget to vote if you want to keep the new colour scheme

Security, privacy and rights

Open source instruments for heart surgeons

As should most medical appliances be; it is open source.

Here is the cool stuff that I dreamt up a couple of years ago but someone has made reality of: Using computers and robots to move the instruments faster than a surgeon can; operate on a beating heart by letting the robot move the instruments with the heart while the surgeon uses a virtual image of what he is doing.

The project is hindered by patents.  I wonder how many will have to die before we stop this patent craze.  Say a heart-lung-machine factory hold a patent to the very idea of operating a ticking heart by robots.  It isn't in the factory owner's interest to let mankind forward.

- http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/health/med-tech/how-raven-the-smart-robotic-helper-is-changing-surgery

US seizes .com domain bought and owned outside USA

A com domain.  Bought outside USA.  Owned outside USA.

It was a sports betting site and that is supposedly illegal in Maryland where the site was used by users.

So if someone does something illegal with your .com or .net or any domain which is not country bound you might be just out of luck.

- http://blog2.easydns.org/2012/02/29/verisign-seizes-com-domain-registered-via-foreign-registrar-on-behalf-of-us-authorities/

- http://yro.slashdot.org/story/12/03/06/1720230/us-asserts-super-jurisdiction-over-dot-com-dot-net-and-dot-org-domains <- more info and comments on the subject

Asafaweb - fast check on some common dotnet vulnerabilities

Doing a thorough security on a site is expensive, boring and cumbersome.

But a quick-and-dirty solution is better than not doing it at all.

Enter Asafaweb.

- http://asafaweb.com/

- http://www.troyhunt.com/2011/09/building-safer-web-with-asafaweb.html


Piracy or not - Theoatmeal nailed it

Besides money going to the slow, awkward and cumbersome distribution companies instead of the author Theoatmeal really nailed it.

Build it and they will come.

Keep harassing people and they will leave

This article was at first  filed under Security but I decides noone reads it.

- http://theoatmeal.com/comics/game_of_thrones

Daily science fiction

Get your daily dose of S/F.

365tomorrows is Flash fiction. It means very few words and hence a fast read.

- http://dailysciencefiction.com/

- http://365tomorrows.com/

Watching tv series on the 'net

Tired of tv series coming at a special time colliding with your real life?  Why not look online on tv shows created for the new medium called "the web".  It is a sort of information highway but with moving pictures.

Did you know that movies with sound in them where called "talkies" back in the day?

- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Web_television_series

Linux games

A few cccommunicate letters back I wrote about Linux not being a good gaming platform.  I stand corrected: it is good but still not among the best.

So I gathered, with some help, two links that leads to hundres of links and thousand hours of gaming.

- http://www.lgdb.org/ <- linux game database

- http://www.cahilig.net/2011/07/29/100-best-free-and-high-quality-linux-games <- one of all the lists on one of all the subjects on one of all the sites

Tipthanks JSandén