Just sharing some of my inconsequential lunch conversations with you... RSS  

Friday, November 30, 2007

Expression Blend SP1

Somasegar reported the release of Expression Blend SP1 which allows projects created in Blend to work in Visual Studio 2008. You can download it here.

Note this is Blend, not Blend2.

Microsoft Parallel Extensions to .NET Framework 3.5 December 2007 CTP

Here it is (PLINQ). Heard about it here.

ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions Release

Scott Guthrie has just announced the ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions release for the next week. It will include:

  • ASP.NET AJAX Improvements
  • ASP.NET Dynamic Data Support (scaffolding!)
  • ASP.NET Silverlight Support
  • ADO.NET Data Services (ADO.NET Entity Framework and Astoria)
Scott has also announced Silverlight 1.1 renaming to 2.0 (makes sense!) and releasing a beta on the first quarter of the next year, with:
  • WPF UI Framework: The current Silverlight Alpha release only includes basic controls support and a managed API for UI drawing. The next public Silverlight preview will add support for the higher level features of the WPF UI framework. These include: the extensible control framework model, layout manager support, two-way data-binding support, and control template and skinning support. The WPF UI Framework features in Silverlight will be a compatible subset of the WPF UI Framework features in last week's .NET Framework 3.5 release.

  • Rich Controls: Silverlight will deliver a rich set of controls that make building Rich Internet Applications much easier. The next Silverlight preview release will add support for core form controls (textbox, checkbox, radiobutton, etc), built-in layout management controls (StackPanel, Grid, etc), common functionality controls (TabControl, Slider, ScrollViewer, ProgressBar, etc) and data manipulation controls (DataGrid, etc).

  • Rich Networking Support: Silverlight will deliver rich networking support. The next Silverlight preview release will add support for REST, POX, RSS, and WS* communication. It will also add support for cross domain network access (so that Silverlight clients can access resources and data from any trusted source on the web).

  • Rich Base Class Library Support: Silverlight will include a rich .NET base class library of functionality (collections, IO, generics, threading, globalization, XML, local storage, etc). The next Silverlight preview release will also add built-in support for LINQ to XML and richer HTML DOM API integration.

Great news. Can't wait for the CTP.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Cleaning up my blog

My blog's had some annoying features:

  • too narrow to show code;
  • not a clear and simple design;
  • behind our corporate proxy some IE installations couldn't load it - as a matter of fact they could, but for some strange reason IE couldn't figure out that it was receiving a gzipped page;
  • on some strange planet alignments, some strange and uninvited artifacts just popped out;
I still have to:
  • setup label cloud
  • upload css for c# code highlighting
  • post a small image before each post
  • post a simple line after each post

Hope you like it.

Couldn't solve the problem with IE behind some my corporate proxy. Well, it worked whenever the proxy clears the version, but fails after the 2nd hit. Thank god for Firefox and Opera.

Self-service - a preview of a sure future

Today I went to a shopping to buy the remainder of my Christmas presents. When I was checking out at FNAC I've noticed a self-service checkout. As RFID is my present technology focus, I couldn't help to try the concept.

Here's how it works: we pass the products through the bar-code reader (yeap, barcode, not RFID), finalize the order, select the payment mode, pay and exit the store.

I exited the store explaining to my wife how this stuff might work, when the alarm sounded! The self-service wasn't quite as self serviced as we might think, the alarms were supposed to be taken from some girls that missed my checkout. So much for self-service...

My wife then told me the supermarket had an identical system, so I had to check it out. The only difference was a scale to check the height of the products - for security reasons. There was also the need of supervision - the system called her when my wife used the scales to arrange the bags. When item-level tagging hits the stores the process of self serviced checkout has much more that just RFID tags to wonder about.

I didn't find in either of the systems a way to guarantee that all product bar-codes where entered - it's probably a sampling checking. Just a system to guarantee they were put in the bag (the scale), and probably that they weren't swapped (by the weight). But then again, there is no such system on something we put on a pocket, is it?

When I got out I started to look for RFID tags. As expected all the products from FNAC and none from the supermarket had tags. It seems like stores like FNAC, with their higher value products, won't have to wait too long to automate the checkout process with RFID.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

LINQ for SQL other then SQL Server

A colleague of mine just sent us this link of LINQ with a provider for MySql, Oracle and PostgreSQL.

Adding it to Mono should probably be the best thing to do. And about Oracle, I was expecting them to issue their own LINQ implementation as they've done with ODP.NET. But I could be wrong, as ODP.NET aims for Oracle specialization, and LINQ lays on the opposite site: generalization....

Why do developers hate BPM?

in: infoq

John Raynolds asked recently the question: "Why do java developers hate BPM?"

BPM suites [...] rob you of your creativity [and] dictate to you how you will develop your application. BPM suites make programming boring. They force you to use point-and-click and drag-and-drop tools to design your process diagrams, data models and forms.

What's worse, they actually encourage Business People to model processes and design forms on their own...

Umm, not a great article to read when attending a BPM course as I am, is it? I can surely understand John's point of view, but we have to keep in mind that the goal of our industry is to fulfill our customer's business needs, not to do the things that we like. As much as this makes me sad.

I can also relate to most of the comments - for example, someone argues that none of the good BPM suites are freely available to developers. Yeap, I know, I'm using an expensive one...

The thing is: BPM can help us bridging the gap from business to developers - I hope. It's not the only answer, but one on which I have high hopes... Let's see how this works for my projects - I'll post (some of) my experience back here in 2 or 3 months.

Why isn't Rails adopted by the enterprise?

in: reddevnews

Obie Fernandez, an independent consultant specializing in the marketing and development of large-scale Web-based applications, and the editor of the Addison-Wesley Professional Ruby Series, argues:

I think there are many types of apps where Rails would not be your first choice as your main development environment, things like financial apps with large, complex domain models, for example. <update>And yet, if I were a practical enterprise architect, I would permit my Web group to work in Rails and consume other parts of my system that were written in harder languages by Web services.</update>

Obie correctly notice his quote wasn't complete. Now it is. Sorry about that, Obie :)

Great font for programming

Fonts for programming should be:

  • monospaced;
  • comfortable reading of extended text on-screen;
  • unambiguous (character for numeric zero and the letter 'O', character for numeric one and the letter 'l')
Here's a great font designed for programming:

Consolas is intended for use in programming environments and other circumstances where a monospaced font is specified. All characters have the same width, like old typewriters, making it a good choice for personal and business correspondence. Optimizing the font specifically for ClearType allowed a design with proportions closer to normal text than traditional monospaced fonts like Courier. This allows for more comfortable reading of extended text on-screen.

The package will change the default text face in Visual Studio to the Consolas family.

This package is only intended for licensed users of Microsoft Visual Studio 2005.

read about it from Hammett - he also posted his fonts and colors settings.

SilverLight Streaming

Here's a nice freebie for us all: Silverlight Streaming. The concept is simple: Microsoft gives us 4GB of free streaming, limited to 5 min. videos and a limited traffic, with no fees. If the monthly traffic limit is reached we are probably in a position to use the ad model to pay for the traffic itself. Nice way to start streaming without risks.

Thanks for the tip, José António.

Visual Studio 2008 has a safe mode!

Scott Guthrie has just posted about a /safemode switch on Visual Studio 2008 that disables addin loading. If you've updated your Visual Studio and it is crashing, here's a nice way to disable the addins:

"c:\program files\Microsoft Visual Studio 9.0\VC\devenv" /safemode

Architecture Journal Reader

Here's a great way to read the Architecture Journal.

Using Sandcastle to Generate Documentation

Here's a great howto about SandCastle. As an old NDoc user, I can't wait to finally start using the graphical interface - Sandcastle Help File Builder.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Sharps

The Sharps, a growing group of programming languages that build on top of the .NET Common Language Runtime (CLR), are referenced on this article by Mary Jo Foley.

Please note that these are the experimental languages - for instance IronPython and IronRuby were left out of this list.

Google copying a Microsoft model?

Here's an interesting post about Google embracing the SkyDrive Model. And yes, it seems like the Google marketing guys have just copied the SkyDrive statement.

Coding in blogs

Coding in blogs is hard. There are a bunch of strategies, like:

  • extending html with the tag - the wikipedia way
  • copy source as HTML - ok, if you've got no problem with the code it generates
  • online formatter - problem: the online formatter has to know your keywords, not your IDE
  • snapshot your code
This last one is really annoying, because you loose all the search and copy capabilities. One of the greatest advantages of posting into a community is to donate your code to be searched, indexed, consolidated, data-mined and copied, creating a network of value greater than the individual parts. And yes, this is unfortunately Scott Guthrie's choice, of all people. Argh...

F# on a more common usage scenario

Sometimes F# samples tend to be too much abstract. Here is a usage we can easier relate to.

[update] here's another link of the follow up.

Dealing with Memory Pressure problems in MOSS/WSS

Here's a great link about memory pressure problems in MOSS/WSS. It ends concluding:

In ASP.NET there are more or less 3 approaches for this:

1) Follow all the steps outlined above to ensure that your application only allocates the memory it really requires (this is the approach you always should follow first!)

2) Using the /3GB switch? - sorry this cannot be used with SharePoint!
Although this solution would allow ASP.NET to use around 1.8 GB of memory before running into memory pressure situation it cannot be used with SharePoint.
The following article explains why using the /3GB switch in SharePoint is not an option:

3) Switching to 64-bit architecture
In 64-bit architecture the virtual address space is no longer limited to 2 GB. This also means that memory fragmentation as discussed in the beginning of this article will not have the negative effects as in 32-bit architecture and the 800 MB limitation for ASP.NET does no longer exist.

Silverlight 1.1 Tools for Visual Studio 2008 available for download

Heard about it here:

A quick announcement -- an updated version of the Microsoft Silverlight 1.1 Tools Alpha for Visual Studio 2008 that works with the released version of Visual Studio 2008 is now available!

Visual Studio 2008 rocks!

Ok, lets face it, Vista SP1 is not significantly faster, but Visual Studio 2008 is. Things like starting the application and building projects are just a lot faster. It's about time Visual Studio can use more than one thread of executing.

Monitoring Power

Here's a nice post about monitoring power at home - in Portuguese. It makes a reference to RFXCOM - I'll have to follow this through.

One thing bothers me on this post: keeping 2 computers up 24h/day wasting 300Wh doesn't seem like a great way to save power. I'd probably try:

  • for the home automation controller, I'd try a low-power device over Linux; an if you can't find Linux support, an old laptop, from the time they didn't heat as much;
  • for the VPN, I'd try to wake-up on LAN - probably from the first device;

Monday, November 26, 2007

Was Mac OSX Leopard released before it was ready?

Tom's Guide thinks so. BSODs, Finder's data loss and some iMac returning reports. Looks like "growing pains", mixed with a new problem: to keep growing, Mac has to get to new users, users that won't be as loyal to Apple, that will rise the stress on MacOS and that won't shut up whenever they find problems.

And yes, I still want to buy a Mac. Go figure...

Turing and the Halting Problem

Petzold has just posted about it. He argues:

The association of Turing with the "halting problem" is an anachronism. Turing's original conception in his 1936 paper "On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem" was of machines that compute real numbers. Because real numbers (in general) have an infinite number of digits, these machines run forever. A machine that gets into a non-printing loop, or which enters a configuration that doesn't exist, will no longer compute digits of the real number and hence (in Turing's terms) is "unsatisfactory."

And continues:

As the concept of the Turing Machine was later generalized and applied to problems of computability, it became convenient to reformulate the machine. Instead of computing real numbers, these reformulated machines calculate a single value of a number-theoretic function and then halt. The satisfactory and unsatisfactory machines were swapped: In this new concept, machines that halted were "good" machines and machines that didn't halt were not.

I'll probably have to read his Annotated Turing to clear this out, I also holded this as true.

More of C# new goodies

Here's another great link showing lambda operator.

One thing that still amazes me is how people react to the trend we are observing. Some of the people I show this link rather use:

int val = Fold(
(int a, int b) { return a * b; },
1, 3, 5, 7, 9


int val = Fold((a, b) => a * b, 1, 3, 5, 7, 9);

Go figure...

Here's another sample from the same post (I've corrected the typo error as no integer squares to 5).

List list = new List {

List matches =
val => {
val = val * val;
return val != 9;

The resulting list should return {1, 2, 4, 5}.

Windows XP SP3, "10% performance boost" - so what?

bink.nu is reporting a ~10% performance boost vs. the same configuration running under Windows XP w/Service Pack 2. So what? When we jumped from native to managed code we experienced major performance degradation, and still we embraced the new model because it opened new paths for us. Let's just hope we won't have to wait for Vista's SP3 to recover some of the lost performance over the new stacks we got.

Visual Studio 2005/2008 Not Ready for Visual SourceSafe

in: infoq

Though often accused of being buggy or downright dangerous, Visual SourceSafe, or VSS, is still the most popular source control for Windows developers. This is why news that the recently released Visual Studio 2008 is not compatible with it comes as a shock.

Richard Berg warns,

If you plan to use VS 2008 with SourceSafe, make sure to pick up the Update CTP too. Without it, some features like "Open from Source Control" will not work at all.

He goes on to discuss a CTP for the patch that corrects the issue.

This is a Visual Studio 2005 update - the problems may arise on Studio 2008 after upgrades.

Types of Programmers

Jeff Atwood has just posted about it - this is a recurrent conversation on the blogosphere. Here is what he says:

Contrary to myth, there aren't fourteen types of programmers. There are really only two, as Ben Collins-Sussman reminds us.

There are two "classes" of programmers in the world of software development: I'm going to call them the 20% and the 80%.

The 20% folks are what many would call "alpha" programmers — the leaders, trailblazers, trendsetters, the kind of folks that places like Google and Fog Creek software are obsessed with hiring. These folks were the first ones to install Linux at home in the 90's; the people who write lisp compilers and learn Haskell on weekends "just for fun"; they actively participate in open source projects; they're always aware of the latest, coolest new trends in programming and tools.

The 80% folks make up the bulk of the software development industry. They're not stupid; they're merely vocational. They went to school, learned just enough Java/C#/C++, then got a job writing internal apps for banks, governments, travel firms, law firms, etc. The world usually never sees their software. They use whatever tools Microsoft hands down to them -- usally VS.NET if they’re doing C++, or maybe a GUI IDE like Eclipse or IntelliJ for Java development. They've never used Linux, and aren't very interested in it anyway. Many have never even used version control. If they have, it’s only whatever tool shipped in the Microsoft box (like SourceSafe), or some ancient thing handed down to them. They know exactly enough to get their job done, then go home on the weekend and forget about computers.

Summing all up: our industry depends on both, so lets all start writing for both of these worlds, ok?

Sunday, November 25, 2007

The Carnap Programming Language

Multi-core is a sure trend. Here's another one:

Carnap is a general purpose programming language for the next generation of many-core devices, many many-core systems and their applications. It introduces a process oriented programming model that allows programmers to separate the concerns: Carnap programs consist of data structures and the concurrent processes that act upon them.

§2 "The primitive process of a Carnap program is called an action. An action determines a local or shared state. Actions are assembled by construction to form the component processes of a program. Programs consist of concurrent processes that construct and interact via logically shared data structures and resources called Contexts.

§3 In this way the application programmer is able to separate concerns, reasoning separately about the two primary aspects of Carnap programs: potentially large scale data structures and the concurrent processes that act upon them.

§4 Contexts are named, type associative and statically typed.

read about it at LamdaTheUltimate.

Model-View-Controller, Model-View-Presenter, and Presentation-Abstraction-Control pattern

Here a great article about the Model-View-Controller, Model-View-Presenter, and Presentation-Abstraction-Control Patterns, written with an historical perspective.

read about it at myTechnobabble.

Code Generators: Can't live with them, can't live without them

Hollander has posted about his mixed emotions about code generators. Same here.

When I started working source handcrafting was the way to do it. Then I developed a believed in CASE megalithic development suites. Then those didn't work as expected and we all head back to the old code-from-scratch model. And a bunch of people stopped believing on code generators - some of them still refuse to use them until today.

As software grew in complexity we felt again the need for code generators. But we were afraid of the megalithic model, so tried the minimalist approach. I was one of many who tried writing code generators for very constrained and focused domains. And they worked very well when they were kept constrained. But code generators tend to get a live of their own - they are very cool to write - , and very soon they generated all of the application tiers. Not only an incredible increase on complexity, but even worst, complexity that has to be maintained and ported by yours truly!

This generation of code generators had another problem: they were not standard. We had to educate all the new comers to our projects - and generated code often tended to radical designing. And this wasn't a bright idea...

Today I rather use code generators maintained by others. I've dumped my generators for years and have been using NetTiers. I'm presently considering jumping to the Entity Framework, and haven't yet decided what to do with the presentation generators - I'll probably use the scaffolding capabilities in ASP.NET MVC. My point is: I'm hooked on code generators.

Will internal DSLs substitute code generators has we see it today? Probably not. Will the functional paradigm do it? Not likely.

Do code generators get us into trouble? Sometimes, yes. But it's hard to create a coherent and productive line of projects without them. We'll have to know when to use them and when to stay away from them. And hopefully future classes of code generators, tools and practices will help us
entering the industrialized era.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Leaving with a bang

Jay Bazuzi, once Development Lead for the C# Editor, is leaving Microsoft, and he wrote some surprisingly harsh parting words for his friends before he left; things like “OO isn’t a fad” and that “It’s OK to use someone else’s code”.

Here's what he argues Microsoft isn't doing:
  • Clearest code wins.
  • OO isn’t a fad
  • It’s OK to use someone else’s code
  • Design your problems away
  • Most importantly: we can do better.
in: infoq

Ackermann in F#

Ackermann is a recursive function with a tendency to generate large numbers like there's no tomorrow. I've decided to implement it on F# as a part of my learning process.

Here is my first attempt:

let rec ackermann m n =
if m = 0 then
n + 1
if n = 0 then
ackermann (m - 1) 1
ackermann (m - 1) (ackermann m (n - 1))

Ok, not as impressive as those great samples I've been browsing on the net, but still a challenge to write for an old curly brackets developer. Here's what I found hard:

  • tabs not allowed;
  • initially no brackets or BEGIN/END to create blocks (#light pragma) was a problem; surprising as it may seem, this was easily absorved - now I just love it (probably because I didn't have to code a syntactic analyser for F#);
  • parameters are still hard to code; not just to define, but also to push; no comma here - except for non F# CLR methods...
  • the error messages are not yet natural to me; ex: "found int -> int when expecting int * int"

I confess it took me a some try and error until I got it right - it kind of remember when I learned C back in 1988: try structure.member; doesn't compile? try structure->member; Thank god for the great IDE.

Then I've tried the pattern matching way of live.

let rec ackermann m n =
match m, n with
0, n -> n + 1
| m, 0 -> ackermann (m - 1) 1
| m, n -> ackermann (m - 1) (ackermann m (n - 1))

It seems more FSharpish, right? My next step could very well be a memoization approach, who knows. One thing's for sure: learning a new language is a lesson on humbleness - I feel like a total ignorant! :)


Here are my results (ok, the table comes from wikipedia):

m\n 0 1 2 3 4
0 1 2 3 4 5
1 2 3 4 5 6
2 3 5 7 9 11
3 5 13 29 61 125
4 13 Stack Fault
Stack Fault Stack Fault
Stack Fault
5 Stack Fault
Stack Fault Stack Fault Stack Fault Stack Fault

The results are not a complete surprise. What comes as a surprise to me is that both my cores were in use during the test. Is it possible?

Who Can Name the Bigger Number?

After yet another geek talk with the some younger old geeks (yeap, Diogo and Pita, again!...), the Ackermann function just dropped by. I was just googling about it when I stumbled uppon this great (and funny) essay: Who Can Name the Bigger Number?

The essay starts:

In an old joke, two noblemen vie to name the bigger number. The first, after ruminating for hours, triumphantly announces "Eighty-three!" The second, mightily impressed, replies "You win."

And continues saying:

The contest’s results are never quite what I’d hope. Once, a seventh-grade boy filled his card with a string of successive 9’s. Like many other big-number tyros, he sought to maximize his number by stuffing a 9 into every place value. Had he chosen easy-to-write 1’s rather than curvaceous 9’s, his number could have been millions of times bigger. He still would been decimated, though, by the girl he was up against, who wrote a string of 9’s followed by the superscript 999. Aha! An exponential: a number multiplied by itself 999 times. Noticing this innovation, I declared the girl’s victory without bothering to count the 9’s on the cards.

And about the Turing Machine goes on:
Set a tape head loose on a sequence of symbols, and it might stop eventually, or it might run forever—like the fabled programmer who gets stuck in the shower because the instructions on the shampoo bottle read "lather, rinse, repeat."

One of my favorites:
Indeed, one could define science as reason’s attempt to compensate for our inability to perceive big numbers.

Hilarious! Please take some time an read the essay. It's pilled with great stories, Computer Science references, gurus and concepts, lots of interesting data, and the writing is just fabulous.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Interviewing people

Every now and then I get to interview people. My interviews are based on a FreeMind diagram that acts kind of like a meta script.

I believe this kind of interview can give me a pretty good idea of the candidate's skills and attitude, but is probably not deep enough from the technical point of view.

I've found a site that can help me here. Well the purpose of the site seems to be helping candidates getting a great interview, but it still is a great resource for technical questions. The site is FEDIA.NET, and stands for Free EDucational Interview Answers on the NET.

Opera Mini rules!

Yeap, it happened again: Microsoft had announced a great browser. A browser that preserved the image of the webpage for accurate display on a mobile device and allowed you to zoom in on interesting parts of the webpage. It was called DeepFish and remains as a prototype.

Microsoft has promised, Opera has delivered. Here it is, and boy is the experience incredible. If it wasn't enough to having your web pages pre-processed on a remote server, now they shipped the DeepFish concept. And plenty more, taken from their site:

New in Opera Mini 4

Opera Link

Sync Your Digital Lifestyle

Now you can use Opera Link with Opera Mini 4 to synchronize your mobile phone Web links with the Web links on your computer. Simply log in to a My Opera account through your phone, to sync your bookmarks, or access them from any other browser by going to a Link Web page.

Opera Link

View Pages in Landscape mode

Want to view the Web on a wider screen? Just hit * # and flip your phone to the side to enjoy browsing in Landscape mode. Change your default view to landscape by turning "Landscape mode" on inside your Settings menu.*

Opera Link

Optimized for Blackberry Users

Opera Mini 4 offers "native BlackBerry menus" designed to invoke the same user-interface Blackberry users are used to on Blackberry devices. Now BlackBerry users can use Opera Mini in a more integrated way that looks and feels like a BlackBerry.

Opera Link

Give Your Phone A Mouse

Opera Mini now gives you a virtual mouse, so you can easily scroll in any direction. Move the mouse cursor towards what you want, and then it quickly snaps your view to the link or content.

Opera Link

Enhanced Small Screen Rendering

Opera's unique Small Screen Rendering feature, "Mobile View," lets you better enjoy web pages on the small screen. Fit any web page to width and Opera Mini 4 will adjust the page structure on the fly. Browse up and down without also having to worry about horizontal scrolling. Instead, scroll down a single column, perfectly resized for your phone.

Top features

Super Fast = Cheaper Browsing

Opera Mini 4 loads your requested web pages at over twice the speed of the other mobile browsers on the market. Because Opera Mini 4 compresses the data before sending it to your phone, your content is delivered faster and costs less to receive.

Opera Mini speed comparsion
Opera Link

Auto-sized for Your Phone's Screen

Opera Mini 4 dynamically changes the size of text and images, making it more convenient to read — so less scrolling is required to read content.

Opera Link

Power Scrolling Shortcuts

Scroll at warp speed using your phone keypad. Find your way around on the web pages quicker by using your phone’s number keys. Press 2 to go up, 4 to go left, 6 to go right and 8 to go down. Hitting 5 zooms you in and out.

Opera Link

Create Custom Search Shortcuts

Just like in Opera for your computer, you can create your own Web search from any search field on the Internet using Opera Mini 4. Simply click on the search field that you want to grab on a Web page and then choose "Create search" within your menu alternatives. Then you can enjoy making frequent searches without having to type in the site link again.

Opera Link

Suggested Start Points

When you go to a web page, Opera Mini 4 first shows you an overview of the page, and suggests where to begin your reading. Just click once and Opera Mini 4 will zoom quickly in on the content.

Opera Link

Quick Browsing Keystrokes

Take control over your viewing options with a few quick keystrokes. Just hit 1 to open the Context Menu, where you can turn on Small Screen Rendering (Mobile View) or reload the page.

Before you click on a link, focus the cursor on a link to check where the link will take you. You can then choose whether you want to open the linked page with images turned off. If you choose to browse with the images turned off, you can still choose to load these images in the page you are browsing by selecting "Load images." You can even load the image in its uncompressed, high-quality, original size by choosing "Open image."

Opera Link

Tools and support for web designers

We support web designers who want to make their websites look even better to those browsing with Opera Mini. In Opera Mini 4, we have included all of the cool CSS support that web designers need to make their web pages look pixel perfect on in the mobile web world.

*(Sorry, this feature is yet not supported on BlackBerry and some other devices.)

Yahoo pipes

Pipes is a powerful composition tool to aggregate, manipulate, and mashup content from around the web.

Like Unix pipes, simple commands can be combined together to create output that meets your needs:

  • combine many feeds into one, then sort, filter and translate it.
  • geocode your favorite feeds and browse the items on an interactive map.
  • power widgets/badges on your web site.
  • grab the output of any Pipes as RSS, JSON, KML, and other formats.

This is a great concept, unless when used for censorship. Please note that I'm not taking a side of Bellware and Kimble, just stating that this is just another way to break the net...

Office Live Documents

Sabeer Bhatia sold Hotmail to Microsoft in 1997 for around $400 million. After selling Hotmail, Sabeer tried new ventures but none of them were very successful. Now Sabeer has decided to challenge the cash cow (Microsoft Office) of the same company that made him a millionaire.

Today he has launched Office Live Documents [link not provided on the original post] - an online+offline Office suite of programs similar to Word, Excel and PowerPoint. Like Zoho Office and Google Docs, Live Documents lets you create, edit and share Office documents in the web browser. All your edits are automatically synchronized with all other copies of the documents.

And if you own a copy of Microsoft Office, you can download a Live Documents toolbar that makes it easy to upload documents from your Office programs to the Live Documents cloud (very similar to Office Live Workspace). Live Documents is done in Flex so should work on any system that has the Flash plug-in. Overall, Live Docs sounds like a good concept but they are definitely up against some heavyweights notably Google and Microsoft.

I've just registered for the beta program. Let the best win!

in: bink.nu

Microsoft Developers: Windows Server 2008 copies 45 Times Faster Than '03

Yeap, W2K8 another great report.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Mocking LINQ Queries

Osherove has just posted a sample using TypeMock.NET - apparently the only one for now that supports LINQ.

Deep Cloning

Whenever I read about complex deep copy approaches, I remember the simple is beautiful concept behind my way of deep copying: serializing and deserializing back. Yeap, only works for serializable objects, and probably not as efficient as other technics, but it can't get simpler than this :)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Screen Shot Gallery -- Windows® 1.x, 2.x, 3.x

Are you old enough to remember this old applications for Windows 1, 2 and 3?

Why do people insist on server sessions?

Some years ago I was asked to help to create a functional tests infrastructure on an web application project. I've started doing the preliminary tests using badboy, and soon aborted my mission. Why? All of the context between pages and flow was defined over server session, creating an unnecessary dependency over the session, hiding valuable data from the tests and creating dangerous side-effects and dependencies between parallel client sessions.

We are starting to discuss our next test automation tool - which will probably be Selenium. Our next discussion may be: will the interfaces need to be architected according to test automation requirements/limitations? And the answer will probably be positive.

Now that I think of it, the session was not the reason for failure - on some cases session can even help on these kind of platforms. Nevertheless, using session like there's no tomorrow is just a bad idea. We should define our interfaces in a clear way and isolated way, and sessions just mix everything on the same pool.

What do you do first?

What do you do first? The requirements or the design?

infoq posted:

Ryan Kinderman talked to some rails developers and asked them about their approach - do they do Bottom-up or Top-down TDD? He expected everyone to be starting from the top down - i.e. start with the requirements, write tests for those, and then build the system to satisfy those requirements and only those requirements (this is also known as Behavior Driven Development - BDD - do we have enough acronyms yet?!) What he found, to his surprise, is that almost everyone started from the bottom up:

  • The problem with the bottom-up approach is that it's difficult to really know how a component needs to be used by its clients until the clients are implemented. To consider how the clients will be implemented, the developer must also think about how those clients will be used by their clients. This thought process continues until we reach the summit of our mighty design! Hopefully, when the developer is done pondering, they can write a suite of tests for a component which directly solves the needs of its client components. In my experience, however, this is rarely the case. What really happens is that the lower-level components tend either to do too much, too little, or the right amount in a way that is awkward or complicated to make use of.

It's really not a surprise, once we think of it. But doesn't it somehow subvert the TDD pure practice?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

How to exclude your own visits from Google Analytics and ClustrMaps

Tiago has just posted about how to exclude your own visits from Google Analytics and ClustrMaps. This is an important operation for blogs like devcatharsis who have few hits, so the simple fact of checking if the posting is ok can influence the logs.

He, eh, I'm not a great fan of Adblock, so I've just installed it now and subscribed a filter. As a side-effect, I've stopped receiving Google AdSense. I'm not sure this is a good idea, advertising is not only one of the proven business-models around the internet, but can also be seen as the bridge between sites we often browse and businesses that relate to them. Does this make sense, aren't we also kind of breaking the net doing this?



PC Power Consumption, does it really matter?

More than 30 billion kilowatt-hours of energy is wasted because many of us simply forget to shut down our computers when we’re not using them. If we could just improve the efficiency of how we use our PCs, the savings in energy costs would be over $3 billion dollars! The CO2 emissions from just 15 computers are equivalent in energy terms to the gas consumption used by one car. Learn More About PC Power Consumption...

LocalCooling is a 100% Free power management tool from Uniblue Labs that allows users to optimize their energy savings in minutes and as a result reduce Greenhouse Gas emissions.

What does the local cooling application do?

Download the 100% Free LocalCooling Application and it automatically optimizes your PC's power consumption by using a more effective power save mode. You will be able to see your savings in real-time translated to more environmental terms such as how many trees and gallons of oil you have saved.

Local Cooling will:

  • Cut your energy bills.
  • Reduce the amount of Greenhouse Gas CO2 emissions as a result of your reduced PC power consumption.
  • Give you full control over your power mode settings.
  • Improve your overall computing experience and efficiency.
  • Show you in detail how much you have saved since installing the software.

Learn more about the LocalCooling Application and how it will help you save energy!

read it in: Hugo Ribeiro

Downloading Visual Studio 2008

Wrong timing, dudes! Who in hell's name had the silly idea of changing the MSDN downloader just now that VS2008 is coming? Cool, now the downloader is totally WEBished, so what? Here's my experience until now:

  1. My IE7 on vista just returned a fatal error.
  2. Tried it on a VM running XP, downloading to a share on the host. Downloaded 100%... and stopped, leaving the file open. Obviously the iso was not complete. And yes, I've checked it.
  3. I'm trying another go from the some VM. I'll tell you something about it tomorrow...
Yesterday's tomorrow is today, and it's here. Yuppie!

Debug Into the .NET Framework Source Code

Thank to Osherove I didn't miss this jewel in VS2K8:

Browsing the .NET Framework Library Source using Visual Studio

As I blogged a few weeks ago, we will be releasing a reference version of the .NET Framework library source code as part of this release. Visual Studio 2008 has built-in debugger support to automatically step-into and debug this code on demand (VS 2008 can pull down the source for the appropriate .NET Framework library file automatically for you). We are deploying the source servers to enable this right now, and will be publishing the steps to turn this feature on in the next few weeks.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Pair Programming vs. Code Reviews

Jeff Atwood as just posted his thoughts about Pair Programming vs. Code Reviews. And the double-checking of source code is not the only thing we gain.

I've never tried the classic XP pair programming. As dev lead I often do mentoring and code reviews. And it is one of the best way to learn new ways of work.

Whenever I can I invite myself to accompany other teams in order to learn as much as I can. It's a great way to drink new ideas, new technologies, new ways of work.

Why are these practices so positive? Because they promote communication, discussion, validation and knowledge sharing.

Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 shipped!

It's Christmas time! Here's the announcement, and the trial download.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Is Microsoft MVC replacing MonoRail?

Hammett has just posted about it:

And what happens to MonoRail? - you may ask. I’m not sure. I was really adamant that they should try to support all things that MonoRail support, but I’m not sure they are going for that. MonoRail 2.0 is pending their implementation. If the final MS MVC rocks, and provides so many things, I’d vote for forget the MR 2. If the final MS MVC has clearly something lacking, MR 2 could reuse the infrastructure and provide some nice extensions.

And goes on:

But surprisingly - at least to me - is how MS is approaching this framework. They are not in a rush, they are more concerned about getting it right than getting it done fast. My overall impression is that they are really crafting a framework. Dude, if I had the time and resources to do the same thing, Castle would be very different….
We cannot be surprised when someone comments on this post is:

Too bad you aren’t a part of that team. They make you any offers yet?

Not there yet

Ubuntu is a great OS. But Ubuntu keeps refusing to work on my crappy old hardware...

With 7.10, somethings work better. I can now finally setup my PCMICA SMC card without opening a bash shell! Yes, WPA. Cool. Of course when the connection drops, I still have to open a shell an restart the wlan1 device, but things are getting better. And yes, my other PCMCIA card, a Linksys, is still not supported... And yes, I had to do a text installation - on a separate CD!

This was the experience on an old Celeron - an old Toshiba Satellite. On another old desktop I have, the LiveCD just didn't work.

Finally I've tried it on another Toshiba - a Satellite Pro 4600, with an impressive PIII. The LiveCD works sometimes - most of the times Ubuntu just sets the wrong display mode and I have to restart until I can see anything.

The real problem is that, even when it works, XP is several times faster on my crappy old hardware - and yes, I've also tried Xubuntu. On new hardware, Ubuntu is a great OS.

TDD is not obvious

When I describe the TDD way of life, every now and then I get something like:

Uau, impressive. Do we have budget for all of this tests?

TDD is not intuitive for newcomers. I myself had the same doubts. But TDD pays off. Not only on quality, but on budget. The time you invest creating your tests before the implementation will be very important to help defining the problem, and easily recovered later with less effort correcting bugs.

Just give it a try.

Don't you just hate stupid software?

I've just bought an inexpensive Wireless LAN PCI Card to the remaining last server of my home datacenter. It is a TOPCOM Skyr@cer PCI 2101gmr, and comes with 3 impressive antennas.

I must admit: the 3 impressive antennas made me buy it. Yeap, read no review whatsoever, just went to MediaMarkt and got the cheaper card with lots of antennas. Not a bright idea, right?

The card works fine, with a little bug problem: SSID broadcast must be enabled! Not a security risk, nevertheless a pain in the ****. And the 3 independent antennas, each dedicated to TX, RX and whathever, just can't be as performant as my old PCMCIA cards...

Well, at least it was cheap...

Download Managers

As browsers download capabilities got better, and Firefox download add-ons flourish, people just don't feel like using stand-alone downloaders - remember good old GetRigth?

In my experience there is nothing like stand-alone download managers to pull files faster and to recover from communication failure and restarts.

Nowadays I'm using Free Download Manager. Here's what they say about FDM:

What is Free Download Manager? It is a powerful, easy-to-use and absolutely free download accelerator and manager. Moreover, FDM is 100% safe, open-source software distributed under GPL license.

Increase you download speedIncrease your download speed and resume broken downloads
FDM accelerates downloads by splitting files into sections and then downloading them simultaneously. As a result download speed increases up to 600%, or even more! FDM can also resume broken downloads so you needn`t start downloading from the beginning after casual interruption.
HTTP/FTP/BitTorrent supportHTTP/FTP/BitTorrent support new
FDM lets you download files and whole web sites from any remote server via HTTP, HTTPS and FTP.
You can also download files using BitTorrent protocol.
Flash video downloadFlash video download new
Download video from video sites, such as Youtube, Google Video, etc. The video can then be saved in native .flv format or converted to one of more popular video formats.
GNU General Public LicenseGNU General Public License new
Free download manager is now open source software released under GNU GPL.

Enjoy easy file sharingEnjoy easy file sharing new
A built-in Upload Manager lets you upload your files easily to share them with other people. Upload manager can be easily integrated with your system (Windows Explorer, Internet Explorer, Outlook Express).
Enjoy safer and more rewarding downloadingEnjoy safer and more rewarding downloading
You can read what other community members say about the file you are going to download, and also leave your own opinion about the file you downloaded. In this way FDM users are always warned against useless or malicious files.

In addition, Free Download Manager allows you to: adjust traffic usage; to organize and schedule downloads; download video from video sites; download whole web sites with HTML Spider; operate the program remotely, via the internet, and more!

For full features list, see the features section.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

How do we...

Marriage is a treaty on compromises. And the last week brought me a great chapter: networking equipment placing!

Here's the story: I wanted to place the networking gear on a central point on our flat. The problem is that the central point is... the hall, and for some strange mystery of nature, women just don't find Wireless Access Points, antennas, switches and ADSL routers sexy enough to be placed on the flat entrance. Even when they aren't noisy. Go figure.

On the other hand, women just love plants and flowers. Let's thank God for that!

So here's all that you need to do to place these on your hall:

  • Buy a buch of (dense) plants, and place them in the hall. She'll just love the idea. Garanteed!
  • Hide the networking gear behind the plants

PS: If you can still see the switch lights, you can always tell her this is your Christmas tree :)

Christmas will come earlier this year...

in: SantaClaus.net

Look for Visual Studio 2008 Downloads on Top Subscriber Downloads early next week

Visual Studio 2008 is anticipated out early next week, with availability for Subscribers. Check out the "Top Subscriber Downloads" area on http://msdn2.microsoft.com/subscriptions for VS 2008 downloads.

You will also be able to access these downloads by clicking on the Subscriber Downloads and Product Keys links that take you to all of your downloads.

We are using two different platforms to make these downloads available - to improve discoverability and reliability, and to balance demands on the systems.

You just have to love his blogging!

Here's Ayende at his best. I can certainly relate to him. Not at my blog (too diplomatic, I'm afraid), and clearly not at his high level of great throughput and quality, but professionally I sometimes tend wish to react like Ayende.

Now that I think of it, Ted Neward is even harder. Yes, definitely Ted - remember Ayende and Ted on the smack down on ORM?

How do I handle mail?

A friend of mine asked me how did I handle mail? Here's how:

  1. spam is now a non-issue - your provider, should it be gmail, hotmail or your organization, should have this problem sorted out. If this is not the case, let SpamBayes do the trick;
  2. still on spam: some people worry about spam-killers false-positives. Just don't. They're bound to appear, but it is simpler to recover the few false-positives from the junk folder then to cleanup you entire inbox;
  3. Borrowed from J.D. Meier: "Filter out everything that's not directly to you. To do so, create an inbox rule to remove everything that's not directly To or CC you. As an exception, I do let my immediate team aliases fall through"; in my case, I do something radical which is chabging the semantics of the message, I admit: I mark them as "Not Important";
  4. I don't have a "Waiting-Followup” neither a “Needs Response or Action" folder. For me this are views. Outlook just do it like no other;
  5. I arrange my mailbox simply by /, and most of my mail is assigned to the folders by the rules that I define. In me experience, projects have an inherent priority too.

My workflow is quite simple: I tend to prioritize the messages elected by my rules, manually catalog the untrapped ones, and to be honest, on work peaks, I just cannot read all thye content of the messages the rule sent to the bottom of the pile.

Here are other ways, collected by cameromoll:

Seems everyone else does, as well. Intel recently declared Fridays “Zero E-mail Fridays”:

E-mail isn’t forbidden, but everyone is encouraged to phone or meet face-to-face. The goal is more direct, free-flowing communication and better exchange of ideas, Intel principal engineer Nathan Zeldes says in a company blog post.

Tim Ferris, author of The 4-Hour Workweek, recommends checking email twice a day or less:

The fastest method I’ve found for controlling the e-mail impulse is to set up an autoresponder that indicates you will be checking e-mail twice per day or less…. My personal e-mail autoresponder limits me to once per day and indicates ‘I check e-mail once per day, often in the evening. If you need a response before tomorrow, please call me on my cell.’ My business e-mail autoresponder, on the other hand, gives me the option to check email once every 7-10 days.

Mike Davidson recently tried managing email overload by replying to every email using five sentences or less:

Every e-mail I send to anyone, regardless of subject or recipient, will be five sentences or less. Like a cinquain. Ideally, it would be a 160 character count like an SMS message, but since that would require an actual e-mail plug-in (viz. “work”), we’ll go with the much-easier-to-count concept of sentences instead.

Lastly, Keith Robinson, self-proclaimed GTD freak, uses a series of folders and sub-folders to process his inbox:

What I do is have a top level folder for my each of my main alternate addresses. Within these folders I’ve got sub folders broken down various ways, depending on the needs of the address…. I then have two top level folders for things that may need action. A “Waiting-Followup” folder for things I’m waiting on someone else for or things that aren’t urgent, and a “Needs Response or Action” folder for things I need to respond to.

Saving money!

Look, mom, I'm not the only lunatic that wants to save money! Here's Hanselman's contribution.

Yes I know, I'm really obsessed with logging data - I keep log my car logs since 1993! Sick!

Energy saving is my last data acquisition obsession. On 2005, I was spending 11,76 KW/h per day, and managed to lower my daily consumption to 5,48 KW/h!

Here's how I've managed to get such savings:

  • changed all lighting to power-saving lamps
  • turned off equipment I used to stand-by
  • moved my servers away from home into an ASP
  • only powered on my net appliances (router, WiFi AP) when needed
  • plugged out of the power socket equipment that still sucked up power turned off
  • changed the refrigerator for a more power effective unit - ok, the old refrigerator broke down, I (kind of) got lucky

To support some of these, I bought a watt meter and some remote operated power sockets.

Hope you too can save some money with this hits. And the planet we all live in...

Still disappointed after all these years

Arghh! After a great first experience with ubuntu 7.10 at the office, I've tried to run the LiveCD at home on an old Celeron. Cabummm!

It seems like an XP only machine... Didn't know that Celerons mate for live :)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Google Has Even Bigger Plans for Mobile Phones

If we were concerned about Microsoft regarding anti-trust, maybe we should all move some of our attention to Google. What next, buying a country and a seat on the United Nations Security Council?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Yet another ASP.NET MVC Framework Sample

Here it is, this time from Brad Abrams.

And still no CTP. What do we have to do to get our hands on the bits - except from joining Microsoft...

Quote of the day

During today's keynote, Prof. Michael Ten Hompel has quoted the great physicist Niels Bohr:

Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future.

If you think this is Bohr's only quote, think again:

The opposite of a fact is falsehood, but the opposite of one profound truth may very well be another profound truth.

An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made, in a narrow field.

How wonderful that we have met with a paradox. Now we have some hope of making progress.

No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical.

Two sorts of truth: trivialities, where opposites are obviously absurd, and profound truths, recognized by the fact that the opposite is also a profound truth.

Never express yourself more clearly than you are able to think.

We are all agreed that your theory is crazy. The question which divides us is whether it is crazy enough to have a chance of being correct. My own feeling is that it is not crazy enough.

If quantum mechanics hasn't profoundly shocked you, you haven't understood it yet.

Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it.

Don't you just love when Nobel Prices have great sense of humor?

The Internet of Things

The Internet of Things is the next step in "always on" communications, in which new technologies like RFID and smart computing promise a world of networked and interconnected devices that provide relevant content and information whatever the location of the user. Everything from tires to toothbrushes will be in communications range, heralding the dawn of a new era, one in which today’s Internet (of data and people) gives way to tomorrow’s Internet of Things.

Today I've attended to the first day of RFID 2007 - The next step to "The internet of things", a conference organized by UMIC, IAPMEI e Link Consulting.

The event brings to Portugal the greatest references of the world-wide panorama of RFID, and is inserted in the scope of the Portuguese Presidency of the European Union, appearing in the sequence of the diverse initiatives launched for the CE.

The conference goal is to discuss technology RFID in its diverse sources and impacts, the technological level, of business and the society. The convergence of diverse technological factors, an accented reduction of the implementation costs and existence of great projects, allows to foresee the appearance of a new technological revolution named as The Internet of Things.

RFID (Radio Frequency IDentification) is a technology that allows the identification through tags that store diverse information (ID, transaction information and state, etc) and pass then along a chain of (possibly decoupled) readers, turning them into meaningful information systems. This technology can have a truly transformational role in the enterprise processes, in particular related to logistic and the industrial production, but also with applications in other sectors as in health and combating counterfeiting.

The conference elected five goals:

  1. to increase the knowledge on topics related with RFID in the European Union;
  2. discuss of the implications in privacy terms and security;
  3. the generation and the reinforcement of the knowledge nets;
  4. promote scientific partnerships to contribute for the acceleration and progress of the RFID and the Internet of Things;
  5. identify to ideas for innovative projects of demonstration of the Internet of Things, as much the level of applications of business as of the use of the proper technology.
It was a great mix of envisioning, strategic, business and technological presentations, panels and discussions. Looking forward for day 2!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The best process for developing applications is...

I was earing an ARCast the other day, and the guy Jacobs was interviewing gave away this wonderful truth:

The best process for developing applications is common sense.

Isn't it terribly annoying when someone states the simple and obvious when you're expecting something else?... Mental note to self: use this great la palise truth the next time someone starts selling you another one you're not interested in.

User Stories and Use Cases

Advantages of User Stories for Requirements is a great post to start the User Stories vs Use Cases discussion. Here are another one, and yet another. From this later I've saved the link for this paper summarizing his use cases experience.

on::RFID "The next step to THE INTERNET OF THINGS" :: Conference Programme

Conference Programme

Thursday 15th November

Registration and reception of the participants


Opening of the Conference

Welcome address - Prof Alves Marques - Conference Organization
Opening by Portuguese Presidency – Minister of Science and Technology and Higher Education – Prof Mariano Gago

German representative from the preceding Presidency of the European Union

Welcome video address by Mrs Viviane Reding, Commissioner for Information Society and Media – presented by João Schwarz da Silva – Director of the Converged Networks and Services of the DG ISM

Keynote speech: Prof Michael ten Hompel - Director IML Fraunhofer – “RFID 2.0: The Next Step to the internet of Things”

Coffee break


Security and Privacy : Does Europe need new rules for RFID?

Moderator: Vasco Trigo

Kathryn Ratté – Counsel for international consumer protection in the Office for international affairs of the US FCT

Prof Reinhard Posch – President of the Executive Committee of ENISA – European Network and Information Security Agency

o David Hoffman - Intel – Chief Privacy Officer

o Peter Hustinx – EDPS – European Data Protection Supervisor

o Michael Donohue – CCed of OECD

o Emilie Barrau – Legal Advisor BEUC

13:15 – celebration of the 30 years of the bar code – GS1 Europe followed by a small pre-lunch cocktail

13: 25 - Lunch Break – buffet

Breakout sessions

The Market Drive I e II

Focus on business cases and models for RFID in areas such as:

  • Supply Chain Management
  • Retail
  • Specialized logistics
  • Health
  • Quality Control and Anti-Counterfeiting
  • Mobility and Transports
  • Forest , Agriculture and Environment
  • Transport Infrastructures


Comandante Ivo Silva (ANA), Dra Regina Duarte (OTLIS), Engº Manuel Cruz (ISQ/IBERLog), Engº Paulo Magalhães (Modelo Continente)

Speakers :

  • Andrew Price – responsible for RFID – IATA – “Airports and luggage”
  • Isabel Oliveira – Innovation – ANA – Portuguese Airport Authority – “Portuguese airports – RFID solutions”
  • Jean-Jacques Quisquater – Prof Cryptography UCL – “National Security and Security for Nationals - on electronic passports”
  • João Almeida - Link – “Lisboa Viva card and contactless card experience”
  • João Melo – CTT – “RFID Solutions in CTT – Correios de Portugal”
  • Kaj Nummila – VTT – “Forest – Indisputable key – towards RFID tracking in the forest industry”
  • Paulo Lopes – RFID Business Development manager - Sybase - “How can industry benefit from RFID – Throttleman goes RFID”
  • András Vilmos - STOLPAN – “The transition from barcode to RFID in a retail environment”
  • Antonia Voerste – METRO – The Future Store
  • John Garret – Tesco – “RFID from lab to live”
  • Mogens Bak – Project manager - DHL – “RFID in transportation and logistics - potential and status of adoption from an industry perspective”
  • Michael Scheferhoff - Lufthansa Technik – Programme manager RFID – “RFID approach and experience in the Lufthansa Technik Group”
  • Tim Gruver – Global Director of Technology for Microsoft Retail & Hospitality worldwide - Microsoft
  • Prof Anthony Furness – CTO - AIM-UK – “RFID a blessing or a curse for SMEs?”
  • Dr Joachim Schaper – VP EMEA Research – “The next step to the Internet of Things”
  • João Mira – Thales – “Improved Railway maintenance with RFID”
  • Georg Nentwig – Deutsche Post/DHL – “RFID SmartSensor Temperature - Temperature monitoring service along the supply chain”


Technology Innovation

Current work on RFID research projects and pilots

  • Tag Sensors and cost reduction (polymer and new materials)
  • Ubiquitous sensors and readers
  • RFID Information architectures
  • Smart Tags
  • The Middleware
  • Large scale Networks and information systems

Chairmen: Fernando Videira (Vodafone) / Prof Luís Magalhães (President of UMIC)


o Dr Alexander Zeier – Hasso Plattner Institute – “Integrating RFID Data in Enterprise Business Systems”

o Prof Rajkumar – Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) – “RFID technologies and beyond”

o Dr Ovidiu Vermesan – SINTEF – “Smart Systems on tags, the next generation devices for ubiquitous sensor networks”

o Dr Gerd Wolfram (CERP) - “The Future Roadmap for Research Projects”

o Waseem Sheik – Cisco – “Catalyzing adoption of RFID innovations across the extended supply chain”

o Florian Michahelles – ETH – Zurich - Opportunities for fighting counterfeit products with RFID technology

o Alexandra Brintrup – Cambridge Univ – “RFID in manufacturing: initial experiences in the BRIDGE project”

o Werner John –Fraunhofer IZM – “Requirements of common European Platform for complex RFID Applications”

o Klaus Rischmuller – ST Electronics – “Developing RFID chips and solutions in a complex environment”

o Jason Burke – SAS – Director – Health and Life Sciences Global Practice

o Markus Sprafke – Volkswagen – “The innovative strength of RFID in the processes of automotive industry”


Start of the first part of the parallel sessions


Coffee break


Start of the second part of the parallel sessions


End of the parallel sessions and the first day


Conference Dinner


Friday, 16th November


Governance of Resources - panel

Chairman : Secretary of state of Public Works and Telecomunications

Panel on the Governance aspects of the Internet of Things on themes such as:

  • Standards – Europe and beyond
  • Naming
  • Openness and neutrality of databases
  • Interoperability

Panel speakers

Bernard Benhamou - Keynote and moderator – PSIP – Senior Lecturer at Political Sciences Institute Parisand University of Paris I – “ A european perspective on the Object Naming Service”

Chris Adcock – President EPC Global

Lara Srivastava – ITU – new initiatives programme coordinator – “From ID to RFID: A numbers game?”

Kiritkumar Lathia – Chairman of ICT Standards Board - “Data Governance – Building trust”

Walter Weigel – Director General – ETSI – “Standards – Europe and Beyond”



Coffee break


Challenges and Actions – Mobilizing ideas - the next steps for RFID

Chairman and speaker: Prof Carlos Zorrinho – National Coordinator for the Lisbon Strategy and Technological Plan

Presentations of 4 selected ideas and Debate



  • Key note Speaker – Prof Sanjay Sarma – founder of Auto ID Labs - MIT –“RFID: Today and the Future”
  • Slovenia Representative
  • Closing speech by the Portuguese Presidency – Minister of the Economy Manuel Pinho


Lunch - Buffet

Development Catharsis :: Copyright 2006 Mário Romano