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Archive for January, 2008

Heroes Happen {Here}

January 30, 2008 Leave a comment

Microsoft’s latest campaign to tie in with the ’08 Server Wave is entitled "Heroes Happen {Here}". It celebrates all the unsung heroes in the IT world – the DBAs, security boffins, UX devs etc. that keep our email running, keep our internet access open and do all those little IT jobs that everyone takes for granted.

When I first heard the title (back at MGX in the summer) I thought it was rubbish. Not only is it really bad grammar, but ‘Here’? Where exactly? And heroes don’t ‘happen’, they ‘do stuff’ – though admittedly Heroes Do Stuff {In Their IT Office} doesn’t have the same ring to it. The curly braces seem a little out of place too – not everyone’s a developer…

However, as I’ve found out more about the thought behind the campaign I’ve come to appreciate what it means. We all need IT that runs smoothly and there are some unsung heroes that need recognition and reward for it. I suppose the idea is that the reward is a new wave of technology – Windows Server, SQL Server and Visual Studio 2008. One part of the campaign that I’m still undecided on is the webcomic. I love the art style and the concept is pretty good – you can submit your own stories and it gets incorporated into what will allegedly become a ‘mystery or adventure‘. Some wonderful clichés to come, I’m sure, but hey – it’s a good RSS to subscribe too 🙂

Categories: Microsoft

First post from Vista

January 20, 2008 Leave a comment

At least, the first from Vista at home.

Having bought and finished building my lovely spangly new computer I also found myself able to install Vista on a personal machine for the first time. All went very smoothly, I was expecting it to be a pain (finding SATA drivers, the fact that it’s 64bit, poor performance – well, maybe not that as I’ve bought some rather nice kit) but actually I only ran into one problem – the wireless network card. I’m in the unenviable position of not having a wired internet connection in the room where my PC sits and my wireless card doesn’t have any 64 bit drivers. To aid anyone else looking for these on the internet, here are some search terms:

Linksys WMP55 AG Vista 64 bit driver

Right, now I’ve got their attention, here’s how I solved it: tell Vista it’s a Linksys Wireless A+G Notebook Adapter – choose ‘Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer’ when it asks you to browse for it and you’ll find that driver in the Linksys list. Windows Update says there’s a driver update now available but I’m scared to do it as everything’s running smoothly at the moment…

As for the rest of the PC, everything’s brill – people say Vista’s no good for games but I’m running Oblivion, Quake Wars, Battlefield 2 etc. at full quality and at top resolution and it’s really smooth. I guess it’s a big jump from the 2.8ghz P4/Geforce 6800 that I was using before but everything looks gorgeous. Haven’t got Crysis yet, I’m sure that’ll push it a bit 🙂

Categories: Computer and Internet

Lone Server

January 13, 2008 Leave a comment

Ok, I’m a) enough of a geek to find this interesting and b) enough of a Microsoftie to find this funny:

www.loneserver.com

Either way, I think it’s great that MS do the ‘eating your own dogfood’ thing in quite such public and exposed roles. The first scene in the alley reminded me of a pic I took in Seattle:

2003 in the bin

Categories: Uncategorized

Last.FM on Windows Mobile

January 10, 2008 Leave a comment

Fantastic news for any last.fm and Windows Mobile users out there (like me: http://www.last.fm/user/MI77) you can now scrobble tracks from your mobile device. Thanks to Jason Langridge for the link!

Seeing as I listen to music on my phone more than anywhere else (usually walking to work) this is something I’ve wanted to do for ages!

Now all I need to do is get the WMP team to add Played Count synchronisation to WMP Mobile, and (as I’ve mentioned before) get them to make the ‘A’ key work on my S620… I’m going to go out on a limb and say that I prefer WMP Mobile to the iPod interface. My opinion in general of the iPod is that it’s a great gadget but it has a horrible interface (not to mention iTunes). It may be personal preference, but I usually want to listen to a specific track, or queue up a few songs before I leave the house and while I’m on the way. Searching for  a specific song in WMP is easy:

Go into My Music and All Music (3 button presses, 2 of which are the same button):
image

Then start typing on the keypad – here S T I :
image

Brilliant. Finding a single song on the iPod is so hard! You can get a list of all the songs on the device, but scrolling through a few hundred, let along thousands of songs is a pain. Or you can filter by genre (most of my songs seem to be ‘Rock’, even James Taylor’s latest is classified as rock…), then artist and then album. I can’t remember what album most of my tracks are from, especially when I’ve ripped compilations and media player has assigned them the original album’s details…

Rant over, thanks for the link Jason, and everyone can keep track of my musical experiences here: http://www.last.fm/user/MI77

Categories: Windows Mobile