Jon Phipps’ not-an-NSDL blog

February 15, 2006

Yahoo! UI Library

Filed under: web design — Jon Phipps @ 12:50 pm

This looks very good…

Yahoo! User Interface Library

The Yahoo! User Interface Library is a set of utilities and controls, written in JavaScript, for building richly interactive web applications using techniques such as DOM scripting, HTML and AJAX. The UI Library Utilities facilitate the implementation of rich client-side features by enhancing and normalizing the developer’s interface to important elements of the browser infrastructure (such as events, in-page HTTP requests and the DOM). The Yahoo UI Library Controls produce visual, interactive user interface elements on the page with just a few lines of code and an included CSS file. All the components in the Yahoo! User Interface Library have been released as open source under a BSD license and are free for all uses.

Yahoo! UI Library.


February 10, 2006

Waterfall 2006 – International Conference on Sequential Development

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jon Phipps @ 5:28 pm

This is sure to be one of the best conferences of the year! The planned tutorials and workshops are awesome…

After years of being disparaged by some in the software development community, the waterfall process is back with a vengeance. You’ve always known a good waterfall-based process is the right way to develop software projects. Come to the Waterfall 2006 conference and see how a sequential development process can benefit your next project. Learn how slow, deliberate handoffs (with signatures!) between groups can slow the rate of change on any project so that development teams have more time to spend on anticipating user needs through big, upfront design.

Waterfall 2006 – International Conference on Sequential Development.

Oracle’s Open-Source Shopping Spree

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jon Phipps @ 3:50 pm

Just noted in passing from an article yesterday in BusinessWeek Online

Oracle is in talks to buy at least three open-source software companies in deals that could be valued at more than $600 million, BusinessWeek Online has learned… The largest of the three targets is Atlanta-based JBoss, which specializes in so-called middleware, the software that serves as a connection between disparate programs. … Also in Oracle’s crosshairs: closely held Zend, based in Cupertino, Calif. Zend’s PHP software language is one of the most prevalent on the Web, present in more than 18 million Web sites. … The third is Emeryville (Calif.)-based Sleepycat Software, which makes technology used in many of the open-source databases that handle reams of digital data. … talks with all three are advanced, say some of the people involved, who asked not to be identified.

Oracle’s Open-Source Shopping Spree.

February 9, 2006

ORM and VisioModeler

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jon Phipps @ 6:27 pm

If you’re a fan of Object Relational Modelling, well even if you’re not…

There once was a tool called InfoModeler that allowed you to design a graphical ORM by making factual statements about objects, properties and the relationships between them:

“[User] represents [Organisation] / [Organisation] is represented by [User]
 Each Organisation is represented by some User.
 It is possible that some User represents more than one Organisation
  and that some Organisation is represented by more than one User.”

It then built a data dictionary and translated the model and dictionary into a database schema. Visio bought the company shortly before they were purchased by Microsoft and InfoModeler briefly reappeared as VisioModeler before a relatively limited version of it was merged into the Visio product as the ORM template.

But Microsoft thankfully still has VisioModeler available for download as an “unsupported tool”. Every time I start to design persisted objects I reach for this tool. It’s not as useful as it once was and I can’t always directly use the database schemas it creates, but nothing else helps me really think through the relationships between objects and how that translates into the relationships between tables in a relational database in quite the same way.

Jon Udell: Further adventures in lightweight service composition

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jon Phipps @ 6:10 pm

Jon Udell has added OCLC’s xISBN service to an Ajaxified LibraryLookup script.

Jon Udell: Further adventures in lightweight service composition

…The next logical step was to add xISBN capability to the Greasemonkey-based version of LibraryLookup that’s shown (along with wishlist/library-availability notification) in the screencast Content, services, and the yin-yang of intermediation. In theory this should have been a snap. I already had a Greasemonkey script that was calling one service — the library catalog — using the keystone of AJAX, XMLHTTPRequest. How hard could it be to add a second service to this application?

Fairly hard but doable, as it turns out. I came to this from reading his InfoWorld column this week: The browser as orchestrator in which he points out that…

…Service composition in the browser can, and will, nicely complement service composition in the cloud…


Google Moon – Lunar Landing Sites

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jon Phipps @ 8:54 am

Google Moon – Lunar Landing Sites.

Zoom to maximum magnification for a really closeup look

Surrogate Primary Keys considered evil?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jon Phipps @ 8:48 am

Sometimes… Josh Berkus has some enlightening posts about the use of Surrogate Primary Keys in database design:

Primary Keyvil, Part I, Primary Keyvil, Part II, Primary Keyvil, Part III

Which I discovered by following this thread for a while:

Basically a surrogate key, in it’s most common incarnation, is the auto-incremented integer id that uniquely identifies a row in a table and is usually the primary key. It’s a surrogate when another column or combination of columns also uniquely identifies the row and is therefore the actual primary key. For instance a ‘user’ table that requires each user to have a unique login_name and then also assigns a unique user_id. The login_name is the actual primary key, the user_id is a surrogate.

I hadn’t thought about my frequent use of surrogate keys until now, and by extension the general acceptance of their necessity, even their requirement in many frameworks (like Ruby-on-Rails) and object-relational mappings.

Good wake-up call.

February 4, 2006

From BlogJet with a picture:

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jon Phipps @ 3:36 pm

From BlogJet with a picture:

Uncle Al

From RocketPost with a picture:

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jon Phipps @ 3:08 pm

From RocketPost with a picture:


Uncle Al

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