Banking Vietnam: Hanoi

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 27 May 2010 at 04:23

We are attending the Banking Vietnam conference in Hanoi. One key lesson from this is that business analytics and profitability reporting are important missing parts of Vietnamese banking infrastructure. There is also a strong interest in risk management issues and helping Vietnam move from a cash economy to one based on electronic and formal payment mechanisms.

Is Online Data Private?

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 20 Apr 2010 at 20:06

I was rather surprised today to read that data stored on "cloud" services might not have the same legal privacy protections in the US that data has when stored inside your home (or business). This came to my attention after a Wired Magazine article (April 20, 2010) about Google's recent openness about government worldwide requests for information.

A broad consortium of tech companies and privacy groups recently announced a push to modernize the nation’s privacy laws so that data stored by third parties, especially by so-called cloud computing services like Gmail, are treated just like data stored on citizens’ home computers. Currently, e-mails stored online lose much of their legal protection after 6 months, and the Justice Department recently tried to get at unopened mail online...

East Agile Open Source Palm webOS

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 20 Apr 2010 at 02:41

East Agile one of Palm's recommended webOS developers in 2009. During their validation process, we created an photograph album application that lets users drill down into the EXIF tag information that describes the characteristics of their photos. Palm offered to place this application on their store, but instead we opted to make it open source in order to help the developer community. The code has been available on github since January 2010. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scrappy Hosting for OS X

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 17 Apr 2010 at 11:15

I rather like the idea of co-location for mac minis. It seems like a really cost-effective choice for a lot of applications. Essentially, if you want a lot of memory, and disk and cpu, and don't need vast bandwidth, then Mac Mini co-location could be a really low cost option.

Good applications for this sort of hosting would be departmental applications, websites like eastagile.com, or even advanced analytic and data applications that are stable in terms of size. We do not use Mac Mini hosting, but the idea is intriguing for such applications.

This is not for everyone. If you need massive bandwidth and a highly flexible infrastructure, with lesser needs for cpu and disk then Joyent, Engine Yard or Amazon EC2 are better options. And Joyent and Engine Yard have impressive expertise...

Having a hard time finding talent?

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 16 Apr 2010 at 18:16

You're not alone if you are having a hard time finding a talented Ruby on Rails developer or two for your new venture, or data expertise to help you make sense of your rapidly growing pool of customer behavior data. Apparently, a hiring boom is emerging in the US technology industry, and talent is once again scarce. The discrete turnaround is particularly apparent in data from Dice.com, a site that traditionally has a focus on independent contractor IT job postings.

New York, Silicon Valley and San Francisco have actually been growing in demand for some time. But now the trend is starting to appear across the country and the coasts are just seeing their markets get hotter.

Using DNS for low cost Failover

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 16 Apr 2010 at 16:31

It could make exceptional sense to make use of yourdns host for load balancing and failure toleranceby usinground robin and DNS Failover. This could save the substantial expense of dedicated load balancing hardware or machines to run load balancing software or scripts. And of course, the load balancer itself is an extra point of failure that could be avoided by having this logic handled by your DNS provider.
For one domain, just list a set of IP addresses in the DNS records, each for different redundant machines. Traffic is spread across this list of servers using a round robin approach. Combine this with DNS Failover which checks to see if the machines at each IP are working and redirects if necessary. Essentially, if a machine goes down, it can just get dropped from the round...

A Mobile Phone App Specification

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 30 Mar 2010 at 10:06

The following cards define the specification for a simple taxi cab trip tracking application for a mobile phone platform. This is the sort of thing we could implement easily across multiple platforms (iPhone, Android, Blackberry, Symbian, and Palm WebOS) using custom code and tools like Rhomobile's Rhodes framework.

Look at these cards from two perspectives. First, what do you think of the idea? If a lot of people like it, we might make it. Second, consider that this is typical of the detail we need before we start working with a client to begin an engagement. We would take diagrams like these, break them into small, prioritized user stories and features, then start development that same afternoon.

This is the main screen for the application.

There was a step before this next...

Micro website for micro browser

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Posted by Anonymous on 25 Mar 2010 at 02:00

Fishphone.com: Personalized web content for your Polycom Phone

  • Tweet from your Phone?
  • Weather and news reports on your phone?
  • Pictures and personalized directories on your phone?

1. Introduction
Together with emerging VoIP technology to reduce costs and increase sound quality, the features of VoIP phones are also enhanced: some new models also have a micro web browser such as the Polycom SoundPoint phones. Unfortunately, most Polycom SoundPoint users can not take advantage of the micro browser on their phones. 

Microbrowsers support only a very limited set of HTML and most websites can not be viewed properly on them. Recognizing the potential need for web content that can be viewed on a Polycom micro browser, East Agile has developed a web application that helps...

Screen Recording is the new Screen Shot

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 05 Mar 2010 at 12:41

For agile software developers, Apple's new Quicktime 10 is a great new tool. Now with a few clicks, you can demonstrate a feature or a bug by recording your desktop as easily as you might use Ctl-Shift-4 to capture part of your screen.  This is somewhat limited by an inability to record sound, especially the developer or user explaining the feature or issue at hand.  I think this new functionality is a real benefit despite the fact that a lot of video editing people have been trashing the new Quicktime 10 video utility that comes with OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard).





A more advanced option remains the use of professional tools like Telestream's Screenflow ($99), which allows voice recording, text callouts, and potentially smaller file sizes. But other than that,...

Frequently Asked Questions 11

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 23 Feb 2010 at 03:25

AJAX

What is your experience with AJAX? What are your preferred frameworks? Can you provide any URLs for examples of your work?


We have a lot of experience using AJAX with a variety of frameworks and libraries ranging from Prototype, Yahoo UI to jQuery. A recent example of our work with AJAX can be found at:http://knowmyfood.com.