Admin - Site Makeover

Under the cover of darkness, I've been working on a few Secret Projects*. You're looking at the latest and greatest of them. If you're on CodeSnipers, you've probably already noticed the makeover. Alright, it's less of a makeover and more of a razing and rebuilding from the ground up. Previously, we were using the base Drupal theme bluemarine and then I was poking around OSWD and was inspired by a few of the designs.

Yes, I notice there are a handful of oddities. If you have comments, notice functional oddities, or generally wish to ridicule or compliment the design, please feel free to drop me a note at webmaster at or comment here. Just to protect the innocent, only one of the other CodeSnipers saw this design before it was live...

* Most of the Secret Projects are prototypes and concepts of CaseySoftware projects, so keep an eye out.

New York PHP Conference and Expo

June 2006 Event to Feature Recognized Speakers and Exhibit Hall

NEW YORK – New York PHP, the leader in uniting business and community for open source, announces that it will host the New York PHP Conference & Expo, June 14 – 16, 2006. The conference, titled “The PHP Business Community,” will be held at The New Yorker Hotel in New York City. NYPHPCon 2006 will emphasize both business and technical sessions, giving the audience a chance to learn how to better implement PHP within their enterprise and current infrastructures.

“This conference is a chance for the business and technical sides of PHP to come together at a single event” says Hans Zaunere, President and Founder of New York PHP. “The New York PHP Community has already had a chance to hear many of the top speakers present on a regular basis – now this conference is a chance for the rest of the world to visit New York City and see them all under one roof.”

Live Clipboard

This week, Microsoft’s Ray Ozzie presented his Live Clipboard concept at eTech. I saw links to the announcement everywhere I looked for a day or so. At first, I wondered what all the fuss was about, and if the muted reaction on the BoS forum is anything to go by, I might not have been the only one.

I should have been paying more attention; this is very cool.

Apple Creates Evangelists

Everyone seems to be excited about Apple's move to reward the top contributors to their WebKit Open Source Project. They're giving out a dozen computers, five invitations to attend Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference 2006 on Apple's dime, and probably a bunch of other things we're not aware of at this point. Everyone seems to be surprised by this, but you're forgetting that Apple has always done this sort of stuff.

MSDN Channel 9 Interview with Gavin Bowman

In case any of our readers are interested in hearing a bit about the man himself, an interview with our very own Gavin Bowman is available on Channel 9 Shows » The MicroISV Show.

Check it out and enjoy.

CodeSnipers Community Idea: Deadbeats List

I've come across a recurring theme recently. First, there was our anonymous blogger who asked what to do about customers who don't pay, then there was a NYPHP thread about customers who don't pay, then I shared my experience with customers who don't pay. Does anyone else see a pattern?

In my personal case, the legal options are being pursued now, but I don't know about those other cases. There are numerous strategies available including not providing any code until payment, having a license not valid until payment, having a "you pay or we delete" clause, and all manner of related things. Of course, these all fail if you a) have to deliver any portion of the code and b) don't have access to the server.

As an advocate of the free market and of blogging, I have a proposal: A Deadbeats List. Local stores post the names and pictures of those who pass bad checks, the post office displays the Most Wanted list, and I think we can serve a vital role in providing this information to help others avoid these customers. I would propose listing information such as the company name, the individual(s) involved, the amount, the date the payment was due, and what the status of the payment is now.

While I will obviously speak with an attorney about this prior to starting any list, would anyone else be interested in participating?

New Feature: Anonymous Blog

After a bit of discussion with CodeSnipers lurkers, I've created a new feature:

The Anonymous Blog

Want to rant, ask a question, or just generally vent, but don't want the information showing up at your next annual review? Let us handle it for you. While there's no true anonymity on the web, we can make sure that your name is not attached to it. More than anything, it's up to you to rename individuals, companies, projects, etc which you talk about.

Drop me an email at contributor @ codesnipers and you'll get access to post whatever your heart desires until someone else requests access. All items must be posted "Rant" or "Open Question" whichever is more applicable.

Foul language, libel, sharing trade secrets, etc can't be tolerated and will be editted or deleted, but humorous stories about project mishaps, pointy-haired bosses, or gross misapplications of [buzz words, technology, HR rules, etc] are always welcome.

Squidoo: Enter the Lensmaster

So, Squidoo has moved from private to public beta and we're allowed to talk about it again. Does this mean anything to me? Is it any good? Is it important?

Bob Walsh clearly loves it, others aren't so sure. I logged in at the end of October, when the initial invitation came through, brimming with excitment. I clicked around a bit, tried building a lens, didn't really get it, got disappointed with the small number of modules on offer, and never went back.

This weekend I decided it was time for a second look.

Master Plan v0.2

CodeSnipers has been growing pleasantly over the past few months and I believe it's reaching a critical tipping point. After the holidays, there are going to be a series of announcements about new functionality, areas, and ideas that will be coming about in this little community. If all goes well, some of them may happen when they're announced.

Anyway, towards this goal, I'm looking for a few brave people to share their thoughts, bare their souls, and generally start a discussion with the community. I'm not looking for just any people, but people with particular skills:

First, I need a .htaccess/mod_rewrite wizard. I'm not looking for any work to be done, but just to get some questions answered and bounce some opinions around.

Top 10 Holiday Gifts for Geeks

Next to kids, out of all the categories you can wrap around groups of people, geeks have got to be the easiest to buy for. I wonder what would happen if like having age-appropriate ranges on toys there were geek-appropriate ratings on gadgets and goodies? We might see labels like, "For any cubicle penned techie", or "Object-Oriented Only", or maybe "Phor Phreaks".

Anyways, I've made a list of 10 uber cool gifts that I personally recommend for myself; i.e., if you've enjoyed my columns the last few months, consider sending any one of these items to me in gratitude.