I’ve been a member of the UKUUG for a couple of years know and I’m a great fan of their conferences. They always manage to get a good venue, a decent crowd and a lot of top notch speakers. I, on the other hand, have just about managed to get two GLLUGs up and running and almost had a coronary at each one. In an attempt to learn more about how the big boys plan and organise these kinds of events I’ve applied for a seat on the UKUUG council. Read on →

Traditionally there has always been two easily identifiable people in a tech start-up, the beard and the suit. I’m a beard, well a shaven one… which I guess makes me a chin… But I’m digressing. One of the great things about the ‘net is that it’s so easy to stroll in to someone else’s world. With people like Seth Godin and Hugh Macleod posting their thoughts (and a decent RSS aggregator) I can get an insight in to the marketing world. Read on →

When it comes to presenting information on the ‘Net PDF files do little but annoy me, fortunately I’m not alone in thinking PDFs in websites suck. I understand that you might need to have a very controlled form that people can print off. Fine, but take me to a HTML page with a link explaining what the PDF is for. And don’t even think about giving me important information in PDF format by default; HTML with a link to a higher quality version maybe. Read on →

I try to get to a lot of technical conferences, you meet cool people, you learn lots and (this is going to sound bad…) it gives you a chance to measure yourself against your peers who actually care about what they do. Not just the 9-5 people that don’t even own a home PC. In the next couple of months there’s a small torrent of events coming up and I’m going to see how many I can get to. Read on →

I always seem to have a huge pile of books to read and an inability to actually read them in any order. This months pile includes: Behind Closed Doors. I’m a big fan of the Pragmatic Programmers books and this one is no different. It covers the things that we’re thankful good managers already know and gives us something to throw at^Wto the bad ones. I’m most of the way through it and it’s a 7⁄10. Read on →

I like the PledgeBank site, it’s a great idea and it’s promoting some good causes (UK Digital Rights is one of them) but it was a pain to keep going back and reading the comments… If only we had a way of subscribing to the comments… maybe using a form of XML that has a number of specs… ;) After sending in a single email asking for RSS feeds of the comments and waiting no more then seven of our earth days they’ve added them. Read on →

Back in August I added Google adwords to the IE Plugins page. If at all possible I plan to keep the site advert free but the IE Plugins, with the possible exception of my blogs atom feed, are the biggest bandwidth consumers by a fair way. This was my first foray in to the world of Google ads and I’ve picked up some very useful information. Firstly adding adverts, and viewing the reports, is incredibly easy. Read on →

Ubuntu’s Jeff Waugh is going to be a very busy man. Before he even gets to the first O’Reilly EuroOSCON, which is being held in Amsterdam in October, he’s stopping off at a Gnome convention, LUG meetings and we’re hoping to get him out for an evening in London. Details are a bit slim at the moment, I don’t have a venue or a confirmed plan for the evening, but with a little luck we’ll get Jeff to talk about Ubuntu, Linux on the desktop and what it’s like being Debians agile sibling and then go for food and drink. Read on →

While sitting in the BBC backstage session at OpenTech I had an idea for an entry to the competition. Which I then forgot about. After an email from a friend recently asking if I’d done anything for it and pointing out I only had three days left I decided to have a coding day on Saturday and try and get a prototype working and submitted. And then the BBC Backstage competition deadline is extended! Read on →

As most of you ‘net savvy people know, the BBC has put a number of feeds online under the banner of BBC Backstage. While it’s nice to see organisations like the BBC offering this kind of data (and the front man, Ben Metcalfe seems a nice, and interesting guy) the initial release of one of the more interesting bits of data, the TV Anytime TV and radio data, only had a Java API available for using it. Read on →