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Showing posts from September, 2005

So what would be your one question?

The Fox Show has been featuring interviews with the Southwest Fox speakers and other community members. Now every time I do an interview, I prepare a list of questions that deal with an upcoming session and their views on development, yada, yada, yada.

Now, although there is some advertising on the FoxShow, it's more to help cover costs than to make a million. In fact, in the last show, I made the point that if anyone in the FoxPro community wants to talk about a particular product, topic or just come on and tell me how wrong I am about everything, by all means please do. So it really is, similar to the Working Podcast, a community podcast.

So that said, I have an interview coming up with a member of the FoxTeam (KL) - and so now I'm asking you - what question do you want answered?

You can immediately dispense with the obvious ones: where is MS Marketing on VFP, when is VFP going to be in the CLR, etc- those are questions that have been asked and answered. And you can also s…

Fox Show #23: Interview with Craig Berntson

The latest FoxShow is up and features an interview with Craig Berntston, author, blogger, speaker and FoxPro developer. He talks about his Southwest Fox session on Coder to Developer and some of the recent showings at the PDC.

It also features a quick poll on when are you most creative.

Actually it ends up being one poll on when are you most creative and another on how do you get yourself creative?

Enjoy and send feedback to foxshow at gmail.com

The Joys of a HD Crash

I feel your pain, Alex.

Right after my last one, I've taken to running an XDrive backup on my Dev work and regular other updates otherwise. The big problem I always face is that FoxPro generates so many additional extra files that it's really easy to get a massive backup file for a fairly simple project.

I'm also posting my install keys to my TiddyWiki on my USB stick.


Alex Feldstein - Powered By Bloglines

That Darn Outlook PST (Chris Pirillo)

I'm with Chris on this one. Case in point: my server hard drive was getting close to full so I decided to clean up some stuff.

Removed about 10 GB of storage. Now I try to load up Outlook that runs with 4 different PSTs, NewsGator, Tasklineand the new Google and MSN search.

And wait....and wait...and wait...

So I cancel it out. It says "Newsgator is to blame" so I disable that.

Now I try again. and wait and wait and wait....

Makes me glad that I use gmail as my email backup and forward all emails there - at least I won't be completely OUT of pocket.

And all this after I've rebuilt my PSTs in the past 2 months.

I realize Chris notes that he was close to the 2GB limit - but me? I'm talking two or three PSTs that are under 500MB each. Maybe Outlook is still choking because of the TOTAL MB.

My big concern right now is that even though I use Newsgator online - what happens if these great posts disappear off the web? I always like to have them at least in archive …

Shedding Some Light: Tips on the VFP 9 SP1

Rick Schummer offers some tips on the VFP 9 SP1 installation as well as a reminder for testers:
"Making a post noting "the report designer is broken" just does not cut the mustard. Provide concise reproducible steps, code examples, observed behavior, detail what you expected to happen, your hardware configuration, and any additional notes you think are important."

Shedding Some Light: September 2005

Adding Columns in SQL SELECT statements

Andy Kramek has a great post describing different ways of adding non-table columns into a cursor result set with SQL and Visual FoxPro.

I use many of these approaches constantly. SQL Server veterans will be happy to know that they can use CAST in VFP now as well, reducing even more code portability between the two environments.



Adding Columns in SQL SELECT statements

The FoxShow #22 has an interview with Markus Egger

Episode (uh, issue, uh show) #22 of the FoxShow has been posted and includes a fairly long interview with Markus Egger , about a variety of things including Drew Speedie, the purpose of VFP Conversions, Southwest Fox and what's happening with EPS and Code magazine.

There was going to be a lot of other content but as you can see from the length of the show, it went on a bit (interview is almost 45 minutes).

Check it out on the site or subscribe via RSS.
The FoxShow

Speedie Memories:: Rest in Peace, Drew and Brent --

A variety of memories of Drew and Brent have been filling the web the past few days.

I often think of Drew when I think of frameworks and approaches, not just because of MaxFrame but because he had a great way of completely disagreeing with someone without making it personal - instead he made it humourous.

I remember he joked about possibly being put on a "do not invite" list for an Advisor conference after making negative comments about the Fox team's updates for the grid. His actual sessions were always packed with both attendees and information, and he was always there at other sessions, showing how much he was willing to give and still willing to learn more from others.

I appreciated so much when he would come into one of my sessions and participate through questions and comments, envigorating a room. It amazed me that even when at the back of a room, writing notes for his next session or supporting other users on new features in FoxPro, he was always aware of what…

Jon Udell: An interview with Amar Gandhi about Microsoft's new RSS platform

If you have not listened to his interview with Amar Gandhi about Microsoft's plans for RSS, you need to.

Key highlights:

- RSS Built into the OS with an Object model to access it
- Built in security that essentially sounds like one-click subscriptions are going to be problematic
- Future use within applications (RSS Calendar and RSS Contacts beware)

Jon Udell: An interview with Amar Gandhi about Microsoft's new RSS platform

Gmail Problems

Are you having problems with gMail?

While some of these comments seem to be related to logging on (which I've never had a problem with), I just experienced what I would consider to be kind of a major issue.

I sent three emails to my own other accounts this morning via gMail and none have arrived yet. Granted, this is the Internet and while many of us take instant speed for granted, there may be very many real reasons for the delay. (or, said with my conspiracy hat on, maybe other email systems are purposely delaying gmail mail as an attempt to discredit the service - if so, shame on them!)

However, no problems with receiving emails. Maybe it is a good thing to simply use your gmail account as a "backup" for inbound email.

Drew and Brent Speedie - Tragedy

I just heard the news and am shocked and saddened to learn of the tragic death of Drew Speedie and his son Brent, while on vacation at Yellowstone Park.

He was a regular fixture at FoxPro conferences, filling sessions with his humour, knowledge and joy of life. Brent and Drew's wife, Irene, attended many conferences with him.

My thoughts go out to Irene at this time. My life was certainly richer for knowing Drew.

Drew Speedie Tragedy - Visual FoxPro Wiki

Original Posting by Yag

Fox Show Interview with Steve Black: How to sell FoxPro

The most recent FoxShow has a great interview with Steve Black who hosts the Fox Wiki about a variety of topics, including his two sessions at Southwest Fox: "FoxPro's Dead- Now what do you say " - a guide to how to sell FoxPro to larger IT departments and companies as well as "Application Metadata".

We also got into a discussion about the evolution of the INTL Toolkit, a tool that really hasn't changed that much since its last VFP version back from over 10 years ago. Steve talks about why its architecture, using the Design Patterns found in Gamma and Helms book, has helped make it so easy to work with for advanced developers.

Definitely an interesting interview from one of the FoxPro community's best speakers.

The SPS Weblog - Project LINQ - Can it be done in VFP?

Craig's at it again.

Update: Here is a direct link to the white paper on LINQ.
The LINQ (Language INtegrated Query) project in Visual Studio (yet another reason to hold off upgrading until Orcas!) is all about making data access easy.

The idea?

dim smallCountries = select country from country in countries where population<1000000

And the result is a collection that can be accessed via any language.

Well, check out Craig's VOSQL: same results today. No need to wait.

As Craig points out, he hasn't seen LINQ in detail and has no idea as to the internals - but the basis for it is in the output.

The SPS Weblog - Project LINQ - Can it be done in VFP?

Microsoft Office 12.0 : Say Goodbye to the standard user interface

Wow - for years, the familiar File, Edit, View menu approach has become synonymous with the "Windows" and "Office" experience (even though it was pioneered by Apple, PARC, etc) and now in one swoop, MS has decided to do away with it (at least once version 12 comes out)

The slide show is linked about half-way down. Update: Direct Link

While I'm a big fan of "task-groups", I'm not sure how this user interface will fly. Why?

1. While every application is different, having a standard interface does make it easier to learn and train new users on. Menus are "complexity browsers" and while Office continues to try and make it easier to use, having spent the last 10 years convincing people that menus are good - to come around and say they are no longer there, may not be quite the best default option.

2. By grouping items into categories, it certainly helps improve the interface but if you look at the last slide (the "less-intimidating" Acce…

The SPS Weblog - Learning Visual FoxPro Videos

Craig,

You beat me to it!

Well, actually, I guess some of the FoxShow will be like an accompaniment to your videos.

However, kudos to Craig Boyd, for putting up some initial videos on "Learning Visual FoxPro". One of the new segments I'll start covering in the FoxShow this week are "what is ____" or "how does ____ work" and the first topic is "what is a database?"


Nothing like a rant on Backward compatibility

Nothing I like more than a good rant.

Basically: everyone should think about backward compatibility.

Rant aside, one great statement:
In this field of binaries, bits and data, one should design/create applications that are designed to last for decades, if not years. Something that should stand the test of time.

Amen to that!

Foxpro.catalyst :: FoxPro workBLOGS and more

MarkusEgger. The Wonderful World of Magazine Auditing

Markus opens up the hood under Code and other magazines' audits and it shows some very interesting numbers.

Visual Studio Magazine:
* 2001: 109,610 paid copies
* 2002: 106,066 paid copies
* 2003: 74,274 paid copies
* 2004: 38,294 paid copies

"So they are basically at a point where they lost two thirds of their paid readership. Ouch!" (from Markus)


What he noted excitedly was that Code Magazine was continually increasing - which is great news - it's a great magazine.

But what are people reading? if you're reading this, you're likely in the same boat I am - I have magazines that I still haven't gotten into but I'm getting the same great information online via Blogs, RSS and podcasts.

It must be quite a struggle for magazines these days - I think I'll ask Markus that when we get together for our FoxShow interview next week.


MarkusEgger.com - Development Blog

Calvin Hsia: : Creating a quick report from any cursor

Calvin made a post about using the CREATE REPORT xxx FROM command , a tool which I've used numerous times and is extremely handy for quick reports.

What Calvin didn't completely note was some of the added features with that.

CREATE REPORT dummy FROM test FORM - creates a form instead of a column based report - GREAT for coming with with screen output for single records

CREATE REPORT dummy FROM test FIELDS custno,custname,street, address - lets you specify exactly what fields and the order

CREATE REPORT dummy FROM test WIDTH - lets you even specify individual column widths

No - it's not a replacement for a good report writer but it is a good start.

But Calvin's post also discusses outputting it directly to HTML using the new VFP 9 Report Listener options. Very cool.


Calvin Hsia's WebLog : Creating a quick report from any cursor

The days of consistency are over - Signal vs. Noise (by 37signals)

Great post about how the changes in iTunes 5 show that the concept of consistent user interfaces does not have to be about colors and styles but more about the behavior. Best comment from Chris Mear:

"Consistency in the look is gone, yes. But consistency in the behaviour is here to stay, and this is what makes Apple so fab"

How consistent is your application?

How consistent is FoxPro for that matter? I'm personally getting peeved at the fact that my graphical radio buttons keep getting resized if they are less than 25 pixels in height and width.

The days of consistency are over - Signal vs. Noise (by 37signals)