A week with the Nexus 7

A week ago I ordered and received a 16GB Nexus 7 bought directly through Google. Coming from a first generation iPad and series of Android 2.x phones, I was hopeful from Google’s presentation at I/O, but not quite certain their promises would exceed, let alone meet, my expectations. My phone, through little fault of Google’s and more fault of Samsung’s has been a less than optimal experience. My iPad has been a fantastic device for meetings, note taking and media. So how does the new Jelly Bean Android based Nexus 7 stack up against these prior experiences?

A week ago I ordered and received a 16GB Nexus 7 bought directly through Google. Coming from a first generation iPad and series of Android 2.x phones, I was hopeful from Google’s presentation at I/O, but not quite certain their promises would exceed, let alone meet, my expectations. My phone, through little fault of Google’s and more fault of Samsung’s has been a less than optimal experience. My iPad has been a fantastic device for meetings, note taking and media. So how does the new Jelly Bean Android based Nexus 7 stack up against these prior experiences?

Continue reading “A week with the Nexus 7”

WordCamp San Francisco, 2012

This year at WordCamp San Francisco, I’m giving a talk with Chuck Longanecker about how we at digital-telepathy used the power of WordPress to build, scale and sell an awesome SaaS product.

I’m up in San Francisco this weekend for WordCamp SF – the WordCamp of WordCamps. Its cool enough to be able to come up to the bay and attend this conference, but this year’s conference has a twist for me as I’ll be speaking at it! Come and see +Chuck Longanecker (or @barefootceo if you prefer the Twitterverse) and I talk about how we at digital-telepathy used WordPress to not only create full-blown SaaS application, but scaled it to a paid subscription revenue model and eventually sold it!

Come and see our talk at 5:20pm this Saturday and learn HOW WE BUILT AND GREW THE HELLO BAR WEB APPLICATION USING WORDPRESS.

Display Link – Make use of that iPad sitting on your desk

So, while working at home today I decided it would be great to have a third display (besides the laptop and 24″ monitor hooked up to it) so that I could monitor server performance, but not sacrifice my work area on the primary monitors. I have an iPad and I thought that there must be some way I could hook it up as a tertiary workspace area, so I did a little searching and found DisplayLink.

DisplayLink is a desktop server, iPad client software system that runs in the background and allows you to connect an iPad on the same wi-fi network as another monitor. This is nothing particularly new except for two major selling points 1) Its free and, more importantly, 2) it works without shutting of Aero in Windows 7! This is a major win for desktop extension software for the iPad as most others traditionally cost you at least $10 in the marketplace and they don’t work with Aero turned on. Without Aero on Windows 7 and Vista, the Windows interface slows down considerably, you lose previews, and everything in general looks like trash. With DisplayLink though, I’ve got my iPad sitting next to my laptop running a terminal screen with htop going and I’m able to keep working like normal on my other two screens.

Oh, and as an added bonus, the integration of the iPad as a monitor is really tight with the Windows OS. When you have the DisplayLink software running and linked with your iPad, the iPad just shows up as another display in your monitor configuration area and you can move it around and change how it’s linked (extended, duplicate, etc.). The monitor view on the iPad also does not hinder notifications and messages coming through on your iPad either – they just appear over the view like any other application.

Major win for DisplayLink!

Dresser Restoration

About a year and a half ago my wife and I decided to purchase a dresser. We were still living out of boxes and previously owned Rubbermaid stracking drawers in the closet. After a quick bit of Craigs List searching, we found a nice dresser we planned on eventually restoring to match the rest of our decor for a mere $40! Well, that dresser sat used, but un-restored in our bedroom until about two weeks ago when we decided to get to finally restoring it.

We weren’t really sure how long restoring a dresser would take, or how much effort was truly going to be involved in the process when we first started. Around 40 hours of labor and about $170 in equipment and new dresser hardware, here we are two weeks later and we’re finally finished. Let me tell you, if you want to restore a piece of furniture, a lot of hard labor is involved, but man, is it ever worth it! Continue reading “Dresser Restoration”

Welcome to Rackspace!

Just finished setting the site up on a new server of my own on Rackspace’s Cloud. The site is much speedier now (sorry Media Temple, but your Grid Server system really is too slow for my tastes). Now I’m running on a new stack for super speedy response time:

  • Ubuntu 10.04LTS
  • Apache 2.2 running PHP 5.3.2 via mod_php
  • MySQL 5.1.41
  • A basic Varnish caching layer running in front of Apache
  • nginx reverse proxy running in front of Varnish
Since I am also running both PHP 5.3.x and MySQL 5.1.x I am also running the latest version of WordPress (3.2 RC1 as of this posting). In conjunction with W3 Total Cache handling object, database, page caching and Varnish purging, the site is blazing fast!
So, now that I’ve got a working environment here that actually has some guts, I might be able to do something with it!

Hello world!

Hello world indeed! It’s been a long time since I’ve had any sort of personal web presence to speak of, but I’ve finally re-acquired my domain name from the squatters over at GoDaddy and I’m back!

There isn’t much here yet, but you can look forward to posts and articles sharing my knowledge and experience as a web developer and whatever else I think worthy of posting here. In the meantime, go checkout my about page if you’re interested in who I am or my projects section for work I’ve done and projects I’ve helped develop.