Amazon.com Widgets February 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam #26

By Nick at February 25, 2011 08:39
Filed Under: Delphi, Flotsam and Jetsam, Personal
  • Reader Paul Vandermyd kindly pointed out something that I had missed – that the individual downloads on GoogleCode download pages have download counts – and it seems 102 of you have kindly downloaded THTMLWriter 1,0 release.  But come on, people – don’t download it – pull it from the repository using Mercurial!  Anyway, now I have to figure out how to automate the uploading of the ZIP files with a 1.0 or 2.0 label on them, depending.
  • If you have Delphi XE then you have Version Insight – the feature that integrates Subversion (and potentially other SCM systems) right into the IDE.  I did a lot of work on that feature when I was at EMBT (well, actually, I did a lot of listening and suggesting; Dave Wilhelm did all the work….). The feature itself is derived from the MPL-based DelphiSVN project, and thus is itself an open source project.  As such , Uwe Schuster (who was actually involved in the pre-release development) has been updating the project, including starting in on support for git and Mercurial.  Sweet.  You can follow Uwe’s progress on his blog.
  • Sadly, if you go to my old Embarcadero blog you see this message: “This user has elected to delete their account and the content is no longer available.”  There was (if I do say so myself) a lot of good content there, and suffice it to say that despite the message, I didn’t choose to delete my blog.  Happily, much of the content lives on in the Google cache.  I’ll be trying to capture and republish as much of the good stuff as I can.
  • I’m beginning to wonder whether Simon Stuart is really a human being and not some sort of super-alien sent here from the planet Code-a-thon.  They guy is amazing -- “prolific” comes to mind.   If he’s not making Kinect work with Delphi he’s wrapping up the Twitter API in a Delphi component.   His latest project is one after my own heart – RADPlates.  I’m a strong believer that the Live Templates feature of the IDE is easily the most underappreciated and underutilized of the many features in RAD Studio.  Live Templates are really XML files, and RADPlates makes it easy to create Live Templates without the hassle of the XML stuff.  Highly recommended. 

THTMLWriter 1.0 Released

By Nick at February 21, 2011 05:33
Filed Under: Delphi
  • Okay – THMTLWriter is now an officially 1.0 product.  That means the following:
    • The default branch will now contain all updates to the 1.0 release – that is, bug fixes and doc updates.
    • The develop branch will the place where new development takes place – that is, any new features, developments, and updates.
    • I think that I’ve implemented the entire HTML 4.01 spec
    • Everything that can have a unit test does have a unit test.
    • I won’t change the interface until I release a 2.0 version.
    • I think there aren’t any more bugs or more things to do
    • The docs are not complete – I will continue to update the docs on the default branch.
  • Where is THTMLWriter 2.0 headed?  I’ll implement the HTML5 features as well as overload some additional methods with some of the commonly used default parameters.  That is, I’ll add more methods with the “typical” attributes as parameters so that you don’t have to do parameters yourself as much.
  • If you are actually using this thing, I’d love to hear from you. Google code doesn’t provide any way for me to tell if even one of you has pulled the code.  Winking smile

Flotsam and Jetsam #25

By Nick at February 19, 2011 06:25
Filed Under: Delphi, Flotsam and Jetsam

Flotsam and Jetsam #24

By Nick at February 11, 2011 07:36
Filed Under: Flotsam and Jetsam

Flotsam and Jetsam #23

By Nick at February 01, 2011 08:15
Filed Under: Delphi, Flotsam and Jetsam
  • Do you have TestComplete skills?  Do you know someone who has TestComplete skills? If so, we want to hire you. (Well, we don't necessarily want to hire you if you merely know someone with TestComplete skills, but you get the idea.  Money mouth)
  • StackOverflow Question of the Week:  What are the pros and cons of using interfaces in Delphi? Lot’s of good discussion and some nice answers.
  • THTMLWriter Update: I have finished and checked changes to fully support the <table> tag and its subordinate tags, including ensuring that they aren’t used out of order.  I have but three tags left (<dd>, <dl>, <dt>), and then I think I will be “done” in that I’ll declare it to be a “1.0” release.  At that point I’ll “freeze” the interface and won’t make any more changes to it.  Any subsequent additions will require a new interface at that point.  Your feedback gratefully accepted.  In addition, the IHTMLWriter interface now descends from ILoadSave to remove the duplication.
  • I hereby officially declare Hodges’ Law: “The first person in an argument to compare the software development process to building automobiles loses that argument.”
  • Danny Thorpe pointed me to this interesting article talking about using existing Wi-Fi connections to expand the coverage of a given network.  I’ve often wondered about this – that is, why don’t cell networks make it easy for people to expand their networks?  I’d be willing to bet that if you go to the mall, the Sprint Store (or the Verizon store, or the AT&T Store or the T-Mobile store) all have some sort of repeater or other type of device that ensure that their store has a five-bar signal.  (Who would buy a phone at the store where there is a weak phone signal?)   Why not put those all over the place?  Why not install them in office buildings, malls, airports, etc., where people are? Why not sell them (give them) to people to install in their homes?  Or why not make the phone able to call over any given WiFi network, allowing the phone to work even where there is no cell tower at all?  It seems to me that this is an unexplored and unexploited feature for cell network providers, and something that could drastically increase the already high value of a cell phone. Heck, I’d be willing to share some of my bandwidth with my neighbors to increase and improve the coverage in my neighborhood.
  • Another great argument about why unit-testing is so cool and powerful from Uncle Bob.

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