Thinking of moving this blog to blogger.com or wordpress.com

Haven't decided yet, but here's a nice summary of the features involved in blogger.com vs wordpress.com.  I wonder if tumblr or posterous are more relevant now?  I've got a ton of this old stuff to port over.  Looks like I won't be able to show comments made by their rightful authors for old posts no matter which site I use.  Decisions decisions.


Hiring PHP5 Programmers

My company has placed an ad looking for more PHP5 programmers to work mostly in the social networking area.  We have a coding test that we give to everyone whose resume passes muster.  It's a basic test, includes some CRUD database functions as well as creating a basic Facebook app.  We specify PHP5 all over the place.

But no one who takes the test ever uses any of PHP5's attributes.  Not one test app has come back using classes of any kind other then the Facebook reference.

Am I being too hard on people for this?  Maybe we need to specify that creating classes is recommended if not mandatory?  I don't  know what the answer is, but I know that upon receiving several recent test apps in "PHP5" that have include files that contain only functions, I'm a little depressed.  And yes, I used the quotes around php5 on purpose.



Ubuntu Add/Remove Program List Empty

For future personal reference (and maybe others as well), installing Adobe Air tends to break the Add Remove app in Ubuntu.  Here's the solution, in a terminal, if you will.


sudo apt-get --reinstall install gnome-app-install


How good system administration is like new underwear

I can't remember the last time I bought my own underwear.  I may not have EVER bought any for myself.  Each Christmas, there's typically a few new pairs of boxers under the tree with my name on them.  Well, more precisely, my name is on the wrapping paper that the underwear come in, not actually on the boxers themselves (because I'm either too old now or much too young to have people labeling my clothes for me).

But I never have to worry about underwear.  There's an unseen process chugging along that keeps my clothes drawers replenished with fresh undergarments.  It's a constant.  The underwear is just there and it just works.

Good quality system administration is like new underwear because it's a constant, it's just there, and it just works.

If the development team is worried about placating the system administration team or if the dev team constantly has to work around various odd limitations in the system, then you're system administration is not like new underwear at all.  It's like a sock that has holes.

You don't want to worry when you put on your socks in the morning that your big toe might shoot out of your sock into the cold morning air, right?  Is there a more uncomfortable feeling?  Similarly, you don't want to launch your new app and have to cross your fingers that the database is going to hold up.  (Perhaps I'm starting to mix metaphors here with all the underwear and socks talk)

But my point is this... When your dev team has to worry about the system administration, they're going to spend more time talking about and coming up with solutions to issues that could probably be addressed by more robust system administration.  That makes your programming projects take longer.  And that's costing you money.  Real countable money.

So get yourself a good admin.  Pay them wisely.  Give them new toys to play with.  And never worry about your underwear again.