Cheap Online Storage Service With No Minimum Fee

Amazon S3 Storage Service provides a really great deal on massive online storage.

Amazon have spent a lot of money designing a massive online data storage center with the principles of speed, reliability, cost effectiveness, simplicity and scalability. The storage center is based on a lot of cheap components, but data is kept safe with replication.

You only pay for storage and bandwith that you use. There are no setup costs and no minimum fee.

Read More

Which Drupal Aggregator - feedparser, leech, aggregator2, etc

Drupal's core aggregator is not the best. I recently started looking at the list of Drupal module aggregators available to try and find out which one was the best and most likely to be updated.

In particular, I was interesting in being able to create feed items as normal Drupal nodes instead of the specialized aggregator items.

The two best choices at the moment seem to be the feedparser and leech modules.

Read More

"Access is Denied" Error Message Opening My Documents Folder On Old Hard Disk - Windows XP Security

I got an "Access is Denied" message when try to open the "My Documents" when my notebook died and I moved the hard disk onto my PC using a 2.5' hard disk enclosure.

The problem is that the "My Documents" folder has security settings that need to be changed if you want to access the folder from a different Windows install. To fix the security problem you need to turn off Simple File Sharing:

  • Click Start, and then click My Computer.
  • From Tools menu, click Folder Options, and then click the View tab.
  • Go to Advanced Settings and turn off the checkbox "Use simple file sharing (Recommended)" and click OK.
  • Right-click the problem folder and click Properties.
  • Click the Security tab and OK any Security message if one appears.
  • Click Advanced and then Owner tab.
  • In the Name list, click your user name you want to own the folder.
  • Click to select the "Replace owner on subcontainers and objects" check box and then OK.
  • Click Yes, for the security warning about granting full permission control
  • Click OK.

Read More

Dead Notebook - Retrieve data from notebook hard disk

I just had the misfortune of having my poor, hard working notebook die on me.

My gut feel is that it is the notebook motherboard. I am hoping and praying that this is the case as there is some stuff on the notebook hard disk that I really want to get back.

It turns out that there is hope. Since I was already looking at replacing the notebook, if I can get the hard disk data off, then I won't be so unhappy.

Read More

REST - Simple SOAP Alternative Overview

REST stands for Representational State Transfer and is used in distributed computing.

REST is a simple technique that is basically providing an XML document on the fly via HTTP. Clients using the information just need to be able to use the XML as they see fit, perhaps transforming it with XSLT or whatever.

SOAP obviously is a lot more involved with this, requiring SOAP servers and clients. SOAP also offers a lot more features.

Read More

Programming Competition Online With Prizes - topcoder.com Overview

TopCoder runs competitions pitting programmers against one another for prizes and chances to work on contracts with royalties. There is a competition run every week and a tournaments (online and on location) twice yearly.

TopCoder provides employers with access to the programmers who show top abilities in the programming competitions.

There is also a software component library (called Component Catalog) where you can gain access to code that has been created by the programmers in the competitions. Programmers involved in the development of these components receive royalties for their work.

Read More

JBoss Rules The New Drools Rules Engine Overview

Drools was bought by JBoss and released as JBoss Rules. Drools is a rules engine that use the ReteOO and is based on the Rete algorithm.

There are very expensive rules engines available, but JBoss Rules is open source. It doesn't provide some of the nicer features like a GUI editor for editing rules, but brings significant savings for those who are willing to forgo this.

Rules engines break out the logic rules and can sometimes allow changes to rules without need to modify the underlying code. Rules engines, in theory, allow non programmers to make changes to business logic without having to recompile the source code.

Read More

AJAX Hype - Should You Use AJAX And Javascript

AJAX. I don't know how this ever came to be a good idea. I haven't even looked into it in detail of AJAX, just the idea of lots of Javascript was enough to make me cringe and run for cover.

AJAX sounds like the stupidest idea ever to me. I don't want to know anything about AJAX. Javascript is a mess and a painful to deal with. Javascript to me has always been a necessary evil to achieve some of those features that you can't otherwise do with less painful technology. Sensible projects I have worked on always tried to limit the amount of Javascript required.

Google made AJAX successful and a major buzz word from what I can tell. But they had the creator of Javascript heading their team and probably lots of other smart Googlites. Mere mortals are going to have a lot more difficulty making a nice Javascript framework. Hackers will get in and turn it something resembling that yummy italian pasta dish.

Read More

Changing From Visual Basic (VB) to C#.NET Or Even C++

Programmers changing from Visual Basic (VB) to C# may have some problems. The amount of difficulty depends on the background of the programmer and their ability to pick new things up.

The .NET framework is an object oriented one (OO). If a VB programmer is coming from something like VB6, they are more likely to have problems than someone already using VB.NET and OO principles. Similarly a C# or C++ programmer is going to have an easier time using the .NET framework if they are already well versed in OO principles.

Switching between syntactic changes will not that difficult to get used to for a good programmer. After a short period of time, VB programmers will you will remember to add that pesky ; and C# and C++ programmers going back to VB will eventually remember to leave the ; off.

Read More

Problem Running Drupal cron.php On Server Host With Jailshell

I noticed recently that my cron.php setup was not working anymore on my Drupal websites.

Cron.php had not been called in a very long time and this turned out to be because lynx was not available from the Jailshell with my web hosting provider. wget did not work either and the curl script did not have access to the curl executable.

I started looking for an alternative and found a useful comment on the trusty Drupal site at this page

Read More