Eric Richards' place of techno (as in technology) happiness, rants, and corporate love.

Browsing Posts published in September, 2006

If you’re using InfoPath B2TR you will find we did some major revisioning since Beta2 around the IOLECommand list. We removed a bunch that didn’t need to have their own command for status. You need to download the latest example source code of using IOLECommands (and hosting) for InfoPath 2007.

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It’s true, I started coding using a TRS-80 Color Computer, with a whopping 4K of memory. After Dad sat down and tried to type in a problem and ran out of memory, we both decided to move to the 16K Extended Basic (it could draw circles and shapes, too!).

My first program, I’m pretty sure, was something like:

10 PRINT “Eric was here!”
20 GOTO 10

Whee! Look at that go! Okay, now, how do I stop it?

I agree with Salon’s Why Johnny can’t code : there is not an easy, interactive language you can just start typing and get fun results, and then build on. The closest to it is JavaScript and a web page, but debugging JavaScript is about as much fun and cleaning grout.

Maybe today’s crazy kids start by getting an existing program, studying it, and then starting to hack and modify it. But man, your first memory corruption issue… oh, wait… your first hard to figure out mystery exception being thrown can make most budding programmers bitter enough to reconsider business school.

Basic was good enough and the platform limited enough that it didn’t get overly complicated and that was perfect for learning. I don’t see how Basic could emerge again today. There’s too many directions. Maybe. Maybe someone will decide that with just the right intersection of features, a new viral programming language for beginners can be written that is loose and forgiving and doesn’t require OOP and exceptions and all that crap we know we need now we’re all grown up.

Garmin has announced new BlueTooth GPS and software packages.

I’m half thrilled. I think I could trust their GPS to do a better lock than the current BT GPS I have. I hate that, when I’m mapping trails around my property and looking at the screen on my GPS, it shows me moving all about while in fact I’m standing still.

I’m seriously considering getting a Garmin 60csx by the end of the year. It has USB and a super antenna that works within foliage / obstructed views. I want that.

But, dang, I want BlueTooth, too.

I want to get the high-accuracy of the 60csx and be able to wireless use that, too, on GPS enabled apps on my PocketPC. Those GPS apps might be location software (like a road-map tool or Windows Mobile Local Live… or Live Local… or whatever we’re calling it). Or it might be an app I’m using that can leverage locality information. For instance, I might be writing a blog entry on my PocketPC (or laptop w/ BlueTooth) and it would be great to add some GPS meta data to the posting.

I could buy multiple GPS devices but… why bother? I really want just one.

So I’m holding out on the 60csx. I’m not expecting Garmin to release a BT enabled outdoor GPS by year’s end. But if they – or Magellan – do, I’m going to seriously consider buying it.

(Oh, and another interesting device: the Sony GPS-CS1. It’s on a carabineer and its purpose is to bounce along with you recording your track so that you can download the track later and GPS tag your pictures [using the GPS EXIF record in JPG, I guess]. This is another interesting example of Geo-Tagging, but way, way specialized if you ask me. Hopefully you just get GPX and it has more than one use…)


I visited Windows Marketplace at lunch and immediately found some interesting PocketPC apps. It’s nice to have one place to go to visit for software vs. going all over the web and then wondering about the integrity of the app you’re about to download. I also look forward to trying the digital vault.

Link: Click here to visit Windows Marketplace

Good news: lots of plugins! Especially a Technorati tag plugin. Yeah!

Bad news: oh, the laziness factor kicks in and Eric just downloads plugins vs. writer his own… boo. 

Windows Live Writer Plugins

This is more of a reminder for myself. Lately, I’ve been loading onto a 2GB USB drive all the resources and tools I’d ever want, so that no matter where I am I can plug the drive in and have the tool I need for the job at hand.

I think I’ll even save an HTML version fo Scott’s blog post, just in case…

Scott Hanselman’s Computer Zen – Scott Hanselman’s 2006 Ultimate Developer and Power Users Tool List for Windows