Thursday, May 17, 2007

Technology Changes in My Life

Most people are familiar with the term "Spring Cleaning". It offers one an opportunity to throw out the old clutter and be open to something new. I've spent the past few days doing the same thing with assorted technology in my life. This includes:

  1. Reformatting my laptop's hard drive and reinstalling Windows XP from scratch. I've actually had to do this twice because of some problems the first time. Things had gotten so bad with the state of my Windows that my software development tool, Visual Studio 2005, was no longer working properly. Rebuilding everything from scratch is a looooooong process so this time, once I have a base system that I like, I'm going to back it up with Acronis.
  2. Moving my PocketPollster.com website to a new Windows server hosted by GoDaddy. The previous temporary site for PP was just pure HTML. The new one in the future will work with Microsoft's .Net technology. It's not done yet but I'm working on it! To test out the new functionality I built a simple .Net webpage to more quickly bring up the CKNW Audio Archive, something I access a lot. You can reach it here. It doesn't look fancy but there's actually a lot of coding under the hood to determine the correct hourly segment that needs to be accessed. In order for this page to work, you need to enable pop-ups. This is what you'll see - very simple, but also very effective:

The final thing I'm doing is forwarding all of my PocketPollster e-mail to my Gmail account. It's a new way [for me] of having all of my e-mail online but a transition I want to make.

3 comments:

nachtwache said...

Huh? Too much techno-lingo per me.
Ich spreche Deutsch.
Io parla italiano.
Je parlez francais.
No sprechen Techno :)
I get the gist, it amazes me, how people can do all these things!

PelaLusa said...

I suppose my posting is a bit lame but when I get deeply involved in technology it usually lasts for days at a time. During such periods I don't have any neat photos or interesting stories to tell people.

But I must say that everything is getting very streamlined for me technology-wise. I no longer have a local e-mail client (like Eudora or Thunderbird or Outlook). Instead, all of my e-mail (from several accounts) is being forwarded to Gmail. And Gmail is smart enough to know the original destination and can thus reply using the original e-mail address. In this way I can have an unlimited number of e-mail addresses for PocketPollster.com but I don't actually have any e-mail accounts with that site - it's all handled by Gmail.

Furthermore, I've installed a little icon in my system tray that notifies me when new e-mail has arrived. This means that I don't have to have a program open to constantly be checking for it, which is also very distracting.

I also have Skype running as an icon in the system tray. It is my telephone and messaging system of choice.

Finally, I can also run both of these apps on my little Pocket PC, which means that I can run my company pretty much as efficiently outside on a lawn chair as inside a big office.

This is all a very big change for me, as I've been doing things the "old way" since January 1995. So some old paradigms have to be broken by yours truly and there's a little discomfort in doing so, but I know that things will be better on the other side!

tori said...

Hi Robert: One thing about Gmail - people using Windows outlook or messenger will see your reply mail address as: "xxxx@gmail.com on behalf of xxx@pocketpollster.com"

I use my gmail address for e-subscriptions, e-newsletters and such, and I use my ISP address for everyone who is not in danger of spamming me... i.e. mail I really want to get :)

I too had everything going to and from Gmail, but I would get people asking me why I was replying "on behalf of" myself. I found it very annoying. I prefer to use my ISP. It still has an air of credibility and legitimacy.

But maybe that's just me.