Saturday, December 29, 2007

Miis for The Sopranos

Are you a fan of the Sopranos and the Nintendo Wii? Well, you can have your very own Soprano Mii!

You'll need to download the Mii Contest channel on your Wii first. Then go to the posting plaza and search for the Mii by its number.

These are the Mii numbers for the Sopranos characters;
Tony Soprano - 9576-3170-7808
Christopher Moltisanti - 9425-9802-3171
Silvio Dante - 7698-5483-7517
Paulie 'Walnuts' - 7857-3261-9685


Monday, July 30, 2007

New home for the BizTalk Script Adapter

The BizTalk Script Adapter has a new home at, my employer's website.

Download the BizTalk Script Adapter.

The Script Adapter used to be hosted on Got Dot Net. But Microsoft have ceased support for the site.

Thinkscape have been kind enough to host the adapter, and even better, they will be providing support and working on enhancements - and it's still free!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Don't believe the SOA hype, its a sequel

Why I continue to read articles on SOA I don't know, because more often than not the articles bug me. What bugs me? The hype that is whipped up around it.

One common theme around SOA is the benefits from reuse; if you have done something once, why do it again? Sounds logical... at first glance. This is the main driver for the hype; its an easy sell to an executive who doesn't understand technology. Everyone appreciates that doing a job once is cheaper than doing it twice.

However, if only it were that simple. A common mistake is to think that reuse is simple. In fact, with SOA, reuse is doubly hard than something that is commonly reused in IT; the API (application programming interface). How many times has your company produced a common API to be used throughout the organisation only to find barely a handful of projects actually making use of it; most having gone their own way because they found the API difficult to use, or doesn't include a feature they need, or the feature that they do need could be weeks away from being implemented, or that a new version of the API has just been released and they now have to recode their application to be compatible with it, or there are so many versions of the API in use it is difficult to support them all.

SOA is in the same boat as an API and suffers from all the same issues. But, it has an additional complication; whereas each application will have its own copy of an API, there will only be one instance of a SOA service. This causes issues such as competing for the resources of that service instance and that any downtime of the service instance means affecting every dependent application. What if your service is 99% reliable but the application wanting to use it needs 99.99% reliability? What if you need to take the service down for maintenance yet applications dependent upon it don't have the same maintenance window? How are you going to release a new version of the service and migrate existing applications across when the application teams refuse to change because it works perfectly well at the moment?

Well, reuse is certainly possible. We reuse things all the time in our work lives and home lives; but there are a whole bunch of things that we could reuse but we don't because it simply doesn't make sense. The same applies to software, and SOA. Jump in with your eyes wide open!

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Browsers Just Another OS

Interesting reading what Mozilla have planned for Firefox version 3.0 and beyond in this article for Firefox 3.0 Opens Door to Web Apps, Mozilla Says

It is becoming apparent that in order for online applications to go to the next level and truly be successful, they will require a much greater level of cooperation from the browsers. Coincidentally, I only just posted a comment on Michael Jung's blog on the problems that online applications must overcome, namely they are Internet connection dependent.

But if browsers are going to become more specialised and offer similar services that an operating system does, then aren't they just another operating system? And with that in mind, what is the point of downloading an operating system (a browser) to run on an operating system (Windows, Linux, Mac etc.)? Will browsers become THE operating system that runs on your computing device whether that be a PDA, smartphone, or PC?

And with that in mind again, and going off at a complete tangent, how exactly would that threaten Microsoft's monopoly Michael? They have beaten off many OS competitors over the years.