Changes to Tags in Tempo

2008-08-19 20:00:00 -0400

We need to make an adjustment to how Tempo handles tags in order to squash a bug that keeps popping up on some users. Basically, we’re only going to allow tags to contain letters, numbers, hyphen and underscore. Any other characters (like parentheses, +, and *) will be converted to underscores automatically.

If you enter sys+admin as one of your tags you will get sys_admin instead, which we think isn’t so bad, really. This change will be going into production tonight.

SQL Developer

2008-08-13 20:00:00 -0400

While I’m waiting for my Windows VM to reboot, just figured I’d mention that Oracle’s free tool SQL Developer totally rocks. And it supports MySQL for you geeks out there (POSTGRES 4EVA!!!!!)

It makes coding and testing complex PL/SQL fairly painless. It’s built on Java and runs on Mac OS X beautifully.


2008-07-30 20:00:00 -0400

We made a couple of maintenance updates to Tempo last night, and added in a couple of features that numerous users have been asking us for:

  • “Yesterday” date range selection, which we now use all the time.
  • Inclusion of locked status on time export, a flag that some use to track whether or not they’ve billed for an entry already.

2D Barcodes and

2008-07-27 20:00:00 -0400

Recently I met Alexis Rondeau, one of the two clever fellows that created the site The site allows you to create 2D barcodes, called Semapedia Tags, that link to information on Wikipedia. The idea is that you print a tag that links to information about a place or thing, then you stick that tag on the place or thing. Anyone with a 2D scanner program on their phone can then lookup the information at the site when they see the tag. Pretty cool! (I’m still trying to get the program for my Treo installed correctly.)

Anyway, I saw this on their blog and I had to share:

so you are on a bus stop and there is a barcode to download the bus schedule. Great Idea, not. The poster with the barcode takes a whole side of the bus stop, why not just print the time table, how often does that change? Why pay for anything like that. If the service behind the barcode would tell you exactly in realtime where the bus currently is located or tell you if any of your friends are on that bus, then we have something a printed time table cannot provide and is clearly more attractive. Haven’t seen any of the other ideas, but for starters, detect needs, find out what current medias don’t provide and so on.

Indeed! Always go for the simplest solution.

On why not videomail

2008-07-24 20:00:00 -0400

Warren Ellis wonders aloud why “videomail, in these broadband days of ours, has never made a bigger dent. Why I don’t get videomail in my inbox along with email.”

I’d say it’s because most of us see a camera pointed at us and we feel the need to act. It’s rather difficult for a lot of people to “be natural” when they are being filmed.

When most folks seem to be looking for ever faster, ever more seamless (and often literally asynchronous) communication, the last thing they want to do is “have to act” for a two minute videomail.