Saturday, March 31, 2007

Photo of the Day

Bainbridge Island, Washington

Friday, March 30, 2007

Mary Jo Foley starts an MVP rumor

I do not usually read Mary Jo, unless somebody mentions one of her articles as interesting.

Craig Berntson blogged yesterday about one of Mary Joe's articles where she comments on a suppossed idea that Microsoft might clamp down on MVPs in the future. I don't read it that way and don't agree with that conclusion. That sounds like poppycock and would make no sense at all for MS.

Today, another MVP, Alun Jones makes a comment more inline with my thinking where he categorizes her comments as nonsensical. Come on Mary Jo. This was not one of your finest moments.

10 Things Software Development Has Taught You

Andrew McNeil refers to a good post listing "10 Things Software Development Has Taught You". I especially like #3 "Learn to say No". This was always one of the hardest things to do for me. Well, I'm a nice guy, somethimes to my detriment.


Photo of the Day

Cherry trees in Magnolia neighborhood, Seattle

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Photo of the day

6th Avenue at night, Downtown Seattle

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Photo of the Day

Downtown Seattle, view from Kerry Park.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Photo of the Day

Seattle skyline from the Bainbridge ferry on a sunny day

Monday, March 26, 2007

Photo of the day

Seattle skyline from the Bainbridge ferry on a foggy day.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Photo of the Day

Pike Place Market

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Photo of the Day

Pike Place Market - Seattle

Friday, March 23, 2007

Surprise, Microsoft Listed as Most Secure OS reports that a Symantec research report listed Microsoft's as most secure OS.

Symantec, no friend of Microsoft, said in its latest research report that when it comes to widely-used operating systems, Microsoft is doing better overall than its leading commercial competitors.

The report found that Microsoft Windows had the fewest number of patches and the shortest average patch development time of the five operating systems it monitored in the last six months of 2006.

I know Microsoft's software security guys are working diligently to try to squash these critters. It is reassuring to see their effort recognized. There is still a long way ahead as the bad guys keep looking for holes every day. Just gotta keep going.

(Via Michael Howard)

Photo of the day

The Foxgang at the 2007 MVP Summit (click on link to see who's who)

Thursday, March 22, 2007

DBI Tech continues to support Visual FoxPro

DBI Tech announces that they will continue supporting control for VFP and Sedna, in response to Microsoft's announcement that there will be no VFP version 10, which I blogged about here.

That's a great move from a great company (I used their controls for years with great success).

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Missed Ted's blogiversary!

Garrett said it best. I missed it due to being out of town for a couple of weeks, first at the 2007 MVP Summit, then vacationing around Seattle.

Back home today after a good but crowded red-eye in Alaska Air.

Happy blogiversary, Ted! Let there be many more!

(now back to try to catch up on reading, get back to work tomorrow, and of course start processing the tons of photos I shot).

Monday, March 19, 2007

Photo of the Day

Art Deco - Ocean Drive - Miami Beach

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Great visit to Seattle and the NorthWest.

We are still in Seattle, winding down our trip. The weather is not always the best, as it is to be expected this time of year. Mostly overcast, sometimes a light drizzle, but adding up the time we lucked out and had a good day and a half of sun.

In the past few days we visited Northwest Trek, a wonderful wildlife park on the way to Mt. Rainier. Unfortunately the Mountain is closed due to the weather and earlier floods, but we had a great time (photos will be posted later).

Today we took the ferry to Bainbridge Island and drove to Port Townsend and Port Angeles. We liked Port Townsend's old Victorian town. Very quaint and full of little stores. Port Angeles is bigger and did not impress us much. The weather had to do with it as it was cold and gray.

From Port Angeles we went up into Olympic National Park's Hurricane Ridge. The weather at Port Angeles was awful but the rangers assured us that the top was clear. The drive was hard passing through the clouds on a narrow winding two-lane road, where visibility for the first 30 minutes was down to about 40 feet in front of the car, made for an interesting trip. Once we crossed the low clouds reaching the top at 5200 feet it was sunny and not too cold. The view was awesome. Unfortunately the 45-minute drive down was harder than going up as the fog got thicker and visibility was extremely limited. All-in-all it was worth it.

Once leaving the Olympic Peninsula, the weather improved and it cleard up by Bainbridge Island. This made the usually nice ferry ride, all the better as we had the afternoon sun right on the Seattle skyline. Can't way to process the photos into my Seattle Gallery in a few days. Still a couple of days to go, then back home to the palm trees.

Photo of the Day

Ocean Drive - Miami Beach

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Photo of the Day

Leslie Hotel, Miami Beach

Another one on the Art Deco series, also featured here, here, here, and here.

Still in the Seattle area

Some people asked me about the 2007 MVP Summit photos. I am still in the Seattle area, vacationing for a few days. I only have sporadic access to the net and did not bring the equipment to download and process all the hundreds of photos properly.

Rest assured that when I get back, the photos will be in the Events section of my gallery. This should be by March 22nd at the most.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Photo of the Day

Lincoln Theatre - Miami Beach

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Photo of the Day

Colony Theater - Miami Beach

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Visual FoxPro Sedna goes Open Source - VFP lives on

As most of you know by now, the Microsoft VFP team announced that Sedna, the next release of extensions to Visual Foxpro 9.0 will be released by the end of Summer (Northern) 2007. The annnoucement also confirms what we in the Fox community knew for a year or more, i.e. that there will be no release of Visual FoxPro 10.

Some people I talked to feel shocked and surprised by this announcement. This shouldn't be so. Look at it this way, FoxPro is a mature product with a great set of features. It does the job well and does it fast. What features could Microsoft add to this great platform that would justify the amount of money they would have to spend to create a new version, test it and release it? There is no set of features that could add that much more value to what we already have.

On the other hand, the very good news in my view, is that Microsoft has agreed to release Sedna and all its extensions as a free product. I'll say it again. Free, at no cost to you whatsoever, ready to download! This, plus all the community enhancements in projects like SednaX (at make FoxPro an even greater value.

Yes, VFP 9.0 SP2 is on track to be released later this year (also free). Official Microsoft support runs until 2015. There are thousands and thousands of FoxPro apps running out there, many of them still in old versions like VFP 6.0 or even FP Windows, and yes, FP DOS 2.6! This goes to show you that the Fox will live for many many years to come.

The MVP Program, and FoxPro support forums and newsgroups, let alone blogs, will continue to exist as long as there is a community and a need.

By the time official support expires FoxPro would be 23 years old in Microsoft plus almost 10 years before that, in one form or another! What other piece of commercial software, with the exception maybe of Flight Simulator, has had such a successful run?

Let's rejoice, the Fox will live on for years to come.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Out in Seattle for the week

I'll be at the MVP Summit in Seattle all week. I probably won't have access to blog from there but be assured that I'll bring back lots of photos for the Gallery and Blog.

I'll get to meet all the VFP MVPs attending plus a few more friends from other areas.

See you in a few.

Photo of the Day

Portugal's Atlantic Coast, North of Lisbon

Friday, March 09, 2007

Fasten your seatbelts!

You have to see this amazing video of the fastest car there is: the Bugatti Veyron. The video is from a segment of Top Gear, a BBC TV series by James May.


Photo of the Day

Palermo Park - Buenos Aires - Argentina

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Photo of the Day

Palermo Park - Buenos Aires - Argentina

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Photo of the day

Salzburg - Austria

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The next total lunar eclipse: August 2007

I forgot to mention, when I wrote about the total lunar eclipse his past Saturday, that the next one (total) visible from our area is going to be on August 28, 2007. Here is a diagram showing all the details.

Photo of the Day

Holocaust Memorial - Miami Beach

Monday, March 05, 2007

Lack of education can kill you, extra education lengthens your life

Massimo Pigliucci at Rationally Speaking blogged a while ago about the finding of several studies reported by the BBC and The New York Times.

According to the BBC, a disturbing 27% of people in Britain are convinced that the likelihood of them becoming affected by a major sickness is a function of “fate,” not of how they manage their life style.

"Dr Lesley Walker, director of cancer information at the charity, said: "It is alarming that such a large percentage of the British population do not realise that half of all cases of cancer can be prevented by lifestyle changes."
Education is statistically more important than any other single factor, including race and socio-economic status according to these studies.

The levels of general education in this country are going down, according to my informal observations. I keep finding that education has a great effect on forming opinion and believing in fate or supernatural causes for everyday illnesses and occurrances. Lack of basic science and math education allows people to fall for cons and fallacies, making people believe in the "Que sera, sera" way of life. Why is this not surprising?

Photo of the Day

Coral Gables - Florida

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Photo of the Day

Flying Squid - Haulover Park - FL

The Kite Store in Haulover Park, North of Miami Beach flies a great collection of kites. Saturday they flew the giant squid (100 ft long!) among others. You can see the whole sequence here.

Eclipse was a bust in Miami

The full lunar eclipse from yesterday was a little of a bust for us on Miami Beach. There were lots of people on the beach, looking East at sunset but low clouds near the horizon prevented the moon from being visible when it came out. It took an hour after sunset for it to climb over the clouds by which time totality was over and the eclipse was already receding.

Maybe next time for me but here are a couple of photos by some friends:

A view from Scotland, from Belgium and a nice montage.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Photo of the Day

Vienna - Austria

Friday, March 02, 2007

Photo of the day

TechEd - Boston 2006

Redmond Mag: FoxPro Lives!

Doug Barney at RedmondMag wrote an article praising Visual FoxPro. and mentioning the release of the February CTP of Sedna.

I spent years covering databases for InfoWorld and Computerworld, and perhaps the liveliest market of all was FoxPro. Originally a dBase clone, it grew to outshine the Ashton-Tate tool and was eventually bought by Microsoft.

I even spent a week in Orlando at a FoxPro user group, and boy, those folks were hardcore. Some looked like they hadn't left their keyboard in a decade!

Microsoft tried to kill off FoxPro in favor of both Access and SQL Server, but users never let 'em.

So what is Microsoft to do? Build a brand-new version that's .NET 2.0-compliant and works with Visual Studio. With this kind of tweaking, I'd give FoxPro another 10 years, at least!

It's good to see at least some coverage in the media.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Boys and their Toys

Bill , a fellow flight simmer and scenery designer extraordinaire, had the pleasure of visiting an RC Flight Club while on vacation in Hawaii recently. These guys are serious and even have jets. That’s right, some of these guys actually build and fly jet-powered RC fighters!

He filmed a flight by an RC F-16 that is a must see. Check it out!

While we wait for Europa images, check out Saturn's!

While we wait for images of the close fly-by of Europa and Jupiter yesterday night, NASA has just released today new gorgeous images of Saturn taken from the Cassini spacecraft currently in orbit.

Look at some of the higher resolution prints and be amazed!

(Thanks to BA for the heads up).

New Horizons Probe slings by Jupiter

NASA's New Horizon's Pluto-Kuiper belt probe has done its closest approach and fly-by of Jupiter yesterday at 12:43 am EST, taking advantage of Jupiter's gravity as a speed assist to shave off 3-years on the way to Pluto in 2015.

It also passed by very close to some of Jupiter's moons and took close photos of IO and Europa. I am sure those photos will gbe awesome and should be published in the days to come. Can't wait to see them.

You can see details and on the New Horizons Pluto Mission website.

Memories of Hurricane Andrew

John Koziol posted an interview with him after losing his house durring Hurricane Andrew (in late August 1992). It brings back memories.

...Koziol got stranded upstairs, isolated from the equipment he had stayed to protect, when the hurricane whipped into his neighborhood. It came on so suddenly and so fiercely that the doors blew off their hinges and knocked him down twice. He survived by using a mattress to create a cave in a closet. Only afterward did he notice that the sheetrock on his bedroom walls had disintegrated into powder...
I was living in Miami Beach at the time and we received nowhere near the strength and the damage during Andrew that he had. We were the lucky ones.

Photo of the Day

City Hall - Coral Gables