Archive for February, 2005

GoDaddy is a very cheap domain registrar, but not that great in terms of a web hosting provider. When I learned that they were blocking access to my site and blog from many non-US countries and that I couldn’t change that behavior, I decided to switch.

I knew that Hosting Matters was used by many of the really high-volume blog sites and when Stacy at Sekimori Design was working on my new site she suggested (OK, strongly suggested) that I consider swithcing to them.

It took me a little while to come around, but Stacy made the switch this weekend and it now appears to be complete. Same site, better hosting provider.

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My Treo 650 arrived a few days ago after about a 10-day backorder. My Cingular SIM slid easily into the Treo’s external SIM slot without having to remove the battery as with most GSM phones. Within seconds after doing this I was on the Cingular network and able to place and receive calls and surf the Internet with the included Blazer web browser. It took a bit longer to configure the included VersaMail application to check mail, but all-in-all the initial setup was a breeze.


My 1000-plus entry phone book synched in a just a few minutes including all of the notes and additional details that I often include in my Outlook contacts database. It was nice to have all of that at my fingertips again instead of a rudimentary list of names and numbers.

Other than a car charger, I had not purchased any accessories before the phone’s arrival. Now that I’ve had it a few days, I’ve added a 1GB SD flash memory card, a spare battery and ordered one of the Piel Frama leather cases.

While the PalmOne-provided contact and email applications are adequate, I am trying out Iambic’s Agendus Professional Edition which allows more ways to slice and dice your contacts, emails and schedule and integrates them all nicely together without having to switch between applicataions.

The only real disappointment so far has been that my Jabra FreeSpeak BT250 BlueTooth headset’s advanced features do not seem to be available from the Treo. I can use it to place and receive calls, but not for voice activated dialing or voice commands. According to the folks over at TreoCentral, this is a pretty common gripe and we’re still in the finger-pointing stage of the respective parties working out a fix.

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When not writing about his travels in the UK or sushi in Paris, Graham has been writing about what it takes to produce “Good Software”. So far he has two entries in the series, part 1 and part 2.

Update: Two more parts are now up. Part 3 and Part 4.

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webMethods employee, Ben Booth, has a new blog. {Hat tip – Graham}. He has some great posts on Agile vs. RUP, Eclipse tips and a humorous and oh too familiar story about a failed attempt to leave his home quietly at 5:45 in the morning.

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I have used various web-based survey tools in the past and found them expensive for smaller efforts and difficult to use to boot.

This morning I took a short survey on blog usage created by a grad student at USC’s Annenberg School for Communication.

The tool that she used, Survey Monkey, is very inexpensive ($19.95 / month) and I liked the user interface (at least from a participant’s perspective).

I wouldn’t be surprised to see a new Web Monkey-based survey on your favorite webMethods community web site in the not-too-distant future.

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Now that I’m a soon-to-be Treo owner, I’m finally interested in learning about the zillions of PalmOS apps out there (I never cared much before).

This list identifies the apps that are compatible with the Treo 650.

Update: Treonauts has a post on some essential utilities for the Treo 650.

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OK, I know I’ve been a bit of a phone-geek lately and have always been a bit of a gadget freak. That said, I was excited to finally place my order an unlocked GSM version of the new PalmOne Treo 650 today. Dan and Ray have been bragging about their Treo’s for some time now, but I was holiding out for the GSM version that would roam automatically when I travel internationally. Sprint has offered a CDMA version for a while now, but the GSM version was just released today in both an unlocked version and a Cingular-locked version.

It’s still a bit pricey, but not bad when you consider that it is both a Palm PDA and quad-band GSM camera phone.

The Treonauts blog has a good review of the 650 and now that it has been released you can get all the details from the PalmOne web site.

The only bad news is that the ship date is 1-2 weeks out due to high demand, but at least its on the way.

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I recently had to install Oracle 9i on Redhat Enterprise Linux Advanced Server 3 (RHEL AS 3). My client’s Linux sysadmin pointed me to an incredibly useful how-to guide prepared by Werner Puschitz. I followed it carefully and was able to successfully complete the install in about a day. I can’t imagine how long this would have taken without his help.

I did hear that Oracle 10 was a snap to install on RedHat but haven’t verified that personally.

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