Friday, August 11, 2006


I am sitting at my kitchen table, wrapping up some work before I close up shop for the weekend, and I hear some rustling outside in the garden. I look out the window, and I see two strapping men sneaking around with laptops and they are stealing my wireless!!! What do I do about this? I decide to bring them some chairs and offer up a few beers, but they must pay me rent for my wireless - a trick off the diving board each.

Check out John Howes and Dan Mork's new blog and company site. They call themselves humanstuff, and that they are. They are driving around town, so lock up your wireless access and keep an eye out - but if you do see them, at least offer them a beer. I am not exactly sure what their company will sell, but they have already provided me with inspiration to bust out my keyboard and blog again :)

Good luck, Dan and John. Don't forget about us little guys when you go international and are stealing wireless in places like Bora Bora and Cairo.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Gemini Version 2.0

A while ago, I downloaded a free version of Gemini. Gemini is an issue tracking tool by Countersoft. I have been using Gemini locally for over a year, and I really dig it. In order to use Gemini in conjunction with a project team, you need to put it on an external facing web server, which requires a license. I had not used the tool in this capacity due to my company's use of SharePoint. However, as our project is in it's second year and our issue list was approaching 300 items (including all tasks, enhancements, and bugs), SharePoint just wasn't giving me the reporting options I needed to communicate our enhancement actual versus estimated time to my project sponsor. Finally, I decided to make the switch to a licensed version of Gemini. It was a bit of a pain to convert old Gemini issues over the the new version. I had to turn off some constraints in the database as the SQL schema between version 1.0 and 2.0 changed. The time investment was well worth it, though. Now I can quickly report on the changes made with each new release by using Gemini's Road Map and I have the ability to use SRS to report on time.

I couldn't receommend Gemini high enough. I do wonder how Team Systems may replace my need to use Gemini in upcoming projects, however. Have any of you used Team Systems in conjunction with web parts or web services for giving your clients a view into project status and issues, and allowing your project sponsors the ability to upload new issues or tasks?

Monday, April 24, 2006

The Coolest .Net User Group Around

I was very impressed with the WI .Net User Group and the event they hosted on Saturday. Besides being my first trip to Milwaukee, this was also my first time hearing each of the speakers present. I have been to many events, but this event is by far the best I have attended.

The biggest highlight for me on the speaker side was Scott Hanselman. Scott presented about the general coolness of open source software, and how we should all aspire to have great solutions rather than “accidental” code. In this context, Scott visited the subject of dasBlog. I have to admit that at the beginning of his presentation, I couldn’t care less about dasBlog, and by the end of his presentation I was formulating my data migration plan. He had me laughing and enjoying the command prompt – who would have thought?

Besides the slew of entertaining and informative out-of-town speakers, the guys running the whole show were friendly, welcoming, and a fun group of people. I was surprisingly invited to a pre-event party and an after-event dinner. I was showered with cool new software – including Office 2003 Professional and Resharper. The WI .Net User Group networks like crazy, and I got to meet a new set of technical peers who now feel like friends. I even considered throwing caution to the wind and staying an extra night in the city by the water, just so I wouldn’t have to miss out on a second of fun.

So now the challenge – how can the Minneapolis .Net user group top Milwaukee? ;)

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Road Trip :)

The snow has all melted - the birds are singing - what better time for a Road Trip?

A good friend, and past colleage of mine, Avonelle, suggested we hit the road for the Wisconsin Deeper into .Net event this coming Saturday.

I have never been to Milwaukee, and am especially looking forward to Julia Lerman and Scott Hanselman speak.

Who knows - with two girls in Milwaukee for the FIRST TIME, we might have to go LaVerne and Shirley on the city and hop on a brewery tour :) This is my prediction of what we will look like in two days time.