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ROR Workshop in SF

Last Thursday I attended a Ruby on Rails workshop in San Francisco put on by Carson Workshops and presented by Geoffrey Grosenbach (topfunky). It was a good workshop for those of us who have played with Rails and are starting to get a little bit more serious about it. It was nice to get a more general exposure to the framework that what I had from reading the first edition of Agile Web Development with Rails. One thing a came away from the workshop completely exited about was that ROR is not only a framework, but a complete turnkey solutions for developing and deployingweb apps that scales from a one man development team to as many developers that it may take to develop the app you are working on (usually not more than four or five.) It was also fun to meet some other cool guys the night before at an informal little get-together. (click for pic) BTW, I am the guy who is standing between Geoff and Josh in the back fighting to be seen in the pic. 😉



Google Doing WI-FI in Mountiain View

I finally saw them, the WI-FI antennas that Google has been putting up all around Mountain View. If I get really board some day I may post a couple of photos of the ones only a few hundred feet from my house. Until that day, you can see the pictures others have taken and blogged about it. The official Google post about this topic can be found here.


Mashups & Money

I have been seeing and developing a lot of stuff realted to mashups of different types. I get all juiced up when I see the combining of content that adds value for users. With so many RSS feeds, podcasting, Google maps, flickr, and a bunch of thoer stuff going on its cool to think about where we are headed. It is now so easy to build an application that uses multiple API’s and services at almost no cost… its just amazing how much internet services have evolved.


My Treo Over Dinner

Not too long ago I was on vacation, out of state, eating dinner with wife, sister and brother-in-law when my co-worker called me and told me that our mail server was not sending mail from app. Well, I was not by my computer, nor a wireless network, or si I thought. Just then, I remembered I had installed tuSSH (a ssh client for PalmOS) so I fired it up and was able to poke around our linux mail server to find everything in order. I called my co-worker back and told him that the emails that he was testing were in his mail servers queue. He called me 10 minutes later to confirm that he had received the email. I love my treo because of how useful it is.


Web 2.0

My company just went to Web 2.0 last week after we (our engineering team) worked out butts off night and day to get our site ready for the conference. It was nice to read some blogs and newspapers talking about us and the conference. What is funny to me though, was all of the other articles I have read about the conference. So many people made comments about how the dot com bubble is back and how many people felt like they were attending Web 1.0.

I tend to agree with a lot of the commentary about the conference regarding the lack of business models and the over passionate cool ideas that really don’t offer much that is new and helpful–only cool. (I will agree however that many great innovations are not always born because of economic factors but…)

I am still very impressed with my companies approach to the business aspects as well as the community aspects. Personally I believe that the best features are driven by the community in which they are used. The whole idea behind the user “need” cannot be overstated. Any how, it is nice to see the dynamics of the internet change as browsers are more fully supporting web standards as well as ajax and other useful technologies. Like most things… there is a long way to go before we can fully harness the power of the information found on the internet.


Gimp on windows

A friend of mine loved  to use gimp on Linux to create some pretty advanced photo manipulation and graphic effects. The other day when I was downloading something for my windows machine I came across a gimp for windows page. I couldn’t wait so I downloaded it and installed it on my machine. It is pretty cool! Why am I so exited about it? Its gimp and it can open Photoshop files.

If you can’t afford Photoshop or choose not to buy it just because you rarely use it, use gimp.

Check it out:

Stop email bots from harvesting your email addresses

Are you as sick as spam as I am? Some people just don’t quite!

Years ago I made three vital mistakes that caused my spam count to go up dramatically and of course got my email address in most every spam list in the world.

The first mistake was , and of course the $5 gift certificate for Amazon sounded good at the time.) I learned my lesson and now use a separate email address ( on sites I don’t completely trust with my regular email address.

The second one was I had my personal email address on my 10 domain names as the contacts. After it was almost too late, I replaced my personal email with a generic email address that I only check when I need to (

The third thing was putting my email address on many web sites as a means for people to contact me (of course my email address was harvested by every spammer on the internet.) So through reading on the web sometime ago I came across a tip on how to write your email address in JavaScript s the users (humans) could click on it and it would work, but bots would not be able to see it unless they had JavaScript enabled. I also added an extra level of security by converting my email address into a string of ASCII codes. It seems to work pretty well.

If you would you like to generate code that you can use on your site with your email address, click here.

If your interested, here are some helpful links:
Email Converter and text to ASCII code output java script –
ASCII Chart I used to create the script –
A post that I used as a reference for converting valid email address characters to ASCII codes –

If you found this useful in any way, please post a comment. Good Luck!


How I found the longest email address in the world

And you thought your current email address was hard for people to understand over the phone. 🙂

One day at work I came across a email address in our db that I was almost completely sure was fake just because of how long it was.

I still don’t know exactly why having the longest email address in the world would be a cool thing but I must say it is unique.

Check it out by going to the web site:

Be sure you set your email field length in your database to accommodate email addresses this large! 😉