Tue, 30 Aug 2016 08:26 +0100
By most measures, Apple is well overdue a refresh of its Mac and MacBook lines: 2016 has seen nothing on that score, and the latest press event announced for next week doesn’t really tell us any more. One of the more persistent rumours for the new machines, whenever they may turn up, states that the row of function keys on the new MacBooks will be replaced by some kind of context-sensitive “touch strip”
Sweet baby Moses, if this is true then I hope to all that is holy that Apple know what they’re doing. Anyone who uses Lenovo hardware will recall the (justified) screams that greeted the Carbon X1. Here’s a reminder:
My goodness but that was an aberration.
Thu, 21 Jul 2016 17:37 +0100
I have a recurring, not to mention infuriating, issue with Fusion which has existed since I started using the software in those heady beta days (2007?). To wit: drag n drop from the host to the guest OS just stops working for no apparent reason. Occasionally, this extends to copy and paste too. One way to address this is to restart the VM (bah!) or when it gets really bad, repair the VMWare Tools installation. Nasty.
When the problem happened again today, I decided to dig a little deeper, and found fragments of commands in various web pages / discussion fora. This pair of commands does the trick for me, so I’m posting here in the hope I find them again (this tip is for when using a Windows guest):
And there you have it: basically a forced restart of the VMWare Tools layer.
Wed, 20 Jul 2016 14:20 +0100
It’s terrifying, especially hot on the heels of the brexit farce here in the UK. Consider this comment, made in a book four years ago and derided at the time:
The Republican Party has become an insurgent outlier in American politics — ideologically extreme; contemptuous of the inherited social and economic policy regime; scornful of compromise; unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition.
We’re all going back in time.
Wed, 1 Jun 2016 17:25 +0100
You know a blog is pretty much dead when its author misses said blog’s fourteenth birthday by almost three weeks. Chortle! Oh well, happy birthday little website: you’ve done well!
Mon, 25 Apr 2016 17:27 +0100
Quite rightly, the world has gone nuts over the loss of Prince Nelson Rogers last week. Hell, I’m listening to some of his music right now, and I’ve had some insanely sad moments this weekend pondering his death, whilst also thinking about the other entertainers we’ve lost so far in 2016 (Alan Rickman, Victoria Wood, David Bowie, Ronnie Corbett, Paul Daniels and many, many more).
But this stuff happens. We need a little perspective as people lament the passing of genius. No, we won’t see the like of Prince again, but that doesn’t mean that the world is a poorer place. Consider: we have a massive backlog of superb music, and we have myriad other artists past and present to listen to. It salts my spuds when I hear people wail about there being a lack of decent music nowadays. It’s the myopia of nostalgia: just look around. The media won’t deliver the good stuff to you on a plate, but that doesn’t mean it’s not out there.
And if you won’t take my word for it, read a very splendid take on all of this from another musical giant, Steve Lawson:
There’s a shit ton of music out there, way more amazing music than you could ever imagine. So please stop trying to tell me that all the good stuff is dead. Try harder.
Mon, 18 Apr 2016 11:15 +0100
Over the past few years, I’ve had cause to tinker with Visual Studio and its stable-mates more and more. Quite a few corporates have laid their eggs in the Microsoft basket, and the tooling is better than ever. .NET, Entity Framework, Web API, MVC .NET… some Good Things have been happening, all spurred on by intitiatives like “coding-by-convention”, the rise of node with its simple approach to the server runtime.
I was mildly interested when Microsoft announced Visual Studio Code, and the ability to build stuff on OS X, but the really good stuff is happening now:
All good stuff. However, if the last two weeks have taught me anything, getting into the Microsoft cloud (i.e. Azure) and developing stuff is a massive pain in the arse thanks to their byzantine web sites, myriad sign-up screens with lack of SSO and the ridiculously complex MSDN / Azure set-up that Microsoft have (it’s up there with IBM Partnerworld). Still a lot of work to do.
Mon, 20 Jul 2015 08:34 +0100
Charles Miller has just written a neat take on why blogging isn’t the thing any more. Writing on a standard platform would probably help too: I must move this site off of my home-grown Domino template some day!
It takes a lot of time and inspiration to write a long-form article, so most blogs filled the gaps between with links, funny pictures they had found around the Internet, short pithy commentary, snippets of conversation, interesting quotes, jokes […] With Twitter you could do that on your phone, have it pushed to your friends/subscribers in real time, and have the same done back to you with equal ease. It wasn’t even a competition.
Read more: Charles Miller, The Death of Blogging.
Sat, 21 Mar 2015 12:59 +0100
Long time readers of the site will know that I adore Steven Wilson’s music, whether with Porcupine Tree, Storm Corrosion or as has been the case for the past few years, his solo material. I’ve attended gigs on all of his tours to date, sometimes twice—this time around being no exception: Woowar and I attended both the London and Wolverhampton shows.
As ever, fantastic stuff with spell-binding lighting and visual elements. On his current Hand.Cannot.Erase. tour, Wilson has made use once again of the talents of Jess Cope and co. at Owl House Studios to produce a beautiful animated film as backdrop for one of the centre-pieces of the new album, a track called “Routine” (which features a choirboy by the time of Leo Blair… yes, from that Blair family!)
The tour has moved to Europe now: if any of my continental chums can make a show (lots are sold-out) I recommend you do so. Wonderful.
Sat, 31 Jan 2015 16:11 +0100
Just been sitting here pondering the mess that is my desk and wondering where to start—both with the desk…
It might be time for a tidy-up pic.twitter.com/upCI7AOoob— Ben Poole (@benpoole) January 31, 2015
… and with how to summarise the past week. Was it a swansong? No idea. All I know is, I’m so glad I came to Florida this year (I’m a part-time Sphereian), and yes I’m feeling those delicious post-conference blues on a grey wet Saturday :-)
We at LDC Via missed our terrific friend and colleague Matt White a hell of lot, but we tried to push on through. I reprised my role as “big spoon” in the room sharing arrangements with woowar and all was well. Let us see if I can summarise (in no particular order)…
Tue, 11 Nov 2014 20:03 +0100
As Indigo, Juno, Kepler and company came and went, tweaks were made, user interfaces polished: fair enough. But of late, Eclipse has become more and more sluggish, and downright Domino Designer-ish on occasion (which is clearly intolerable!) The last straw for me was when both Kepler and Luna decided to periodically “forget” that they had integrated JUnit test-runners: a re-start was required to render test-running functional once more.
Time to change.
At a number of clients I noticed other Java developers crowing about IntelliJ IDEA. I’ve had good experiences with other JetBrains products (TeamCity and ReSharper, specifically), so figured I’d give it a go. I’m glad I did! Of course, one cannot simply forget years of Eclipse-focussed muscle memory, but I have found IntelliJ to be fast, responsive, logical, and chock-full of good features. Compared with Eclipse, IDEA makes good use of space, and an ability to quickly tuck away individual panes / windows / views / call-them-what-you-will is useful too. The JUnit shizzle is integrated well, and tests run very quickly. IDEA has extensive refactoring support too… in short, it’s all there, and I’m converted.
If I have piqued your interest, be sure to check out what’s coming in version 14, the next major release. There are some splendid things coming, like an integrated decompiler, scratch files and in-line operator expressions evaluation.