The Flash Virtual Machine

Sometimes I wonder if Macromedia isn't going to succeed with Flash where Java failed... on this particular topic of harware and OS abstraction. Flash Lite makes their virtual machine (aka "player") more real than ever. Russ has all the details so I won't even try to repeat them here! :P

Understanding marketing

I received the following in a spam, but I thought I was an interesting image:

You see a fabulous girl/guy at a party. You approach them and say, "I'm fantastic in bed." That's Direct Marketing.

You're at a party with a bunch of friends and see a fabulous girl/guy. You have one of your friends approach them, point at you and say, "She's/He's fantastic in bed." That's Advertising.

You see a fabulous girl/guy at a party. You approach them to get their telephone number. The next day you call and say, "Hi, I'm fantastic in bed." That's Telemarketing.

You're at a party and see a fabulous girl/guy. You get up, straighten your clothes, walk up and pour them a drink. You open the door, pick up their bag after it drops, offer them a ride, and then say, "By the way, I'm fantastic in bed." That's Public Relations.

You're at a party and see a fabulous girl/guy. They walk up to you and say, "I hear you're fantastic in bed." That's Brand Recognition.

Offshoring/outsourcing software development

This thread in Ask Joel is the most interesting discussion I've ever read abut offshoring/outsourcing software development!

It's getting incredibly long though, so it's really hard to read through. But the first 25 comments are definitely worth reading.

My personal take on the subject is roughly this: I believe software is art more than science. I think the best approach to make it look like engineering is something along the Unified Process - that's what the IT world has learned the hard way for the last 30 years! One golden rule of UP is to have the users and the coders communicating, to have them understand each other's constraints...

This doesn't mean I think nothing can be outsourced, but you certainly cannot carelessly offshore a whole IT department to a place with a radically different culture and expect that communicating with specs will "just work"! :|

If offshoring software development is ever going to succeed we'll need a whole new set of skills and tools (internet being one of them) to master it, and we're not even close! However, I think the experience of open source software projects developped by an international community are an interesting experience to this.

I would probably elaborate on this if I wasn't this busy reading the thread at Joel's right now! :>>

I love WiFi! (well, actually...)

I mean, you gotta love it!

A picture is worth a thousand words:

I love WiFi! (well, actually...)
Working on the balcony

Okay, so much for the showing off. A few hours later:

  • I had to switch to a "High Contrast" Windows color scheme (now I know what these are for!) to be able to see something with my sunglasses. And without the glasses, the sun hurts my eyes!
  • I had to move the table more in front of a window to get better signal strength...
  • I had to plug in the power adapter since WiFiing through the walls really sucks a lot of power...
  • I had to clean the screen at least four times before the sunlight stopped reflecting on the dust... (sorry for sounding like I had never tried to open a laptop outside :.)
  • And now the neighbours are mowing their lawn! Damn it!

Yeah, next time they tell you nice stories about WiFi in the magazines, don't believe what they say! :-/

PS: This is just for fun, I still enjoy WiFi very much. Example.

Video conferencing: future is now!

Okay now, sometimes I really feel stuck in south of France when I need to be working with people in Paris! Phone + email was cool until my phone bills rocketed in the past few months... :-/

Recently, I decided, with a couple of business partners, to give internet video conferencing a shot! Guess what my biggest surprise was?

It actually works! And pretty well!

Not only could we see each other while talking but it was even better than the real thing: sound quality outstrips mobile phones! Especially when compared to SFR (the crappiest - but very common - network we have in France).

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