Tag Archives: software engineering

Software Immitating Real Life Solutions: A Design Trap

On Monday, I wrote an extended post on calculators in which I mentioned a common software design pitfall. I wanted to talk about it in some more detail because it is a fairly interesting topic. Software calculators are excellent jumping … Continue reading

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On Optimization

Here is an interesting story that I got from one of the old-timers in our industry. The guy who told it to me used to be a COBOL developer back in the day when Cobol was the “bleeding edge” technology. … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged | 11 Comments

Small Programming Projects

Let me know if this has ever happened to you. Your boss walks up to you and tells you he has a tiny little, itsy, bitsy project for you. He wants you to build a small online application. Nay, a … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged | 8 Comments

Software Calcuators and UI Design

I noticed a very peculiar UI design pattern lately. Have you ever used a calculator program? I’m sure you did at least once in your life. Most operating systems ship with some sort of a calculator tool. Strangely enough, they … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged | 13 Comments

What is the point of explicit typing again?

I’m noticing that C# 3.0 has implicit type declarations which is actually a very interesting step to make this language look less like a cheap Java clone. It is a very neat feature that lets you declare your variables like … Continue reading

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Installation Wizards are not allways User Friendly

Installation wizards have their place. For example, when you are installing and configuring an operating system a wizard is your best friend. The design of the wizard is paramount as it is often the very first thing your user sees. … Continue reading

Posted in sysadmin notes | Tagged , , , | 13 Comments

DRM Software Industry Must be a Cash Cow

I realized something today – we are in the wrong industry guys! We should all be writing DRM software! I mean, at least in theory. I would never do it because I find the idea of DRM morally reprehensible and … Continue reading

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Designing a Tetris Clone: Part 1

Someone told me that Tetris was a “hello world” of game programming. I whole heartedly disagree. Tetris may not be an awfully complex game, but it sure as hell is not trivial. The whole concept of a “hello world” is … Continue reading

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The GTFO UI Design Philosophy

I present to you what I call the GTFO UI Design Philosophy. There are many books written on designing good user interfaces, appropriate methodologies, approaches and techniques. People talk about different UI paradigms, styles and etc. To me UI design … Continue reading

Posted in programming, technology | Tagged , | 13 Comments

MySQL: Find Duplicate Entries in a Table

Here is a little background for this issue. The database used to run on ancient copy of MySQL until very recently we upgraded it to 5.0. Not without some headaches of migrating the database, but it worked. Common problem we … Continue reading

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Should people adapt to computers?

There seems to be an interesting argument going lately. The topic that spurs this discussions is: “Should we expect people to adapt to complex user interfaces, or rather adapt user interfaces so that they are easy for people to use?” … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged | 10 Comments

Installation Methods and Usability: Apple Drag and Drop vs. Windows Wizard

I was really surprised by Ned Bachel’s rant on Apple’s installation procedure. To me this installation model appears not only very intuitive but also transparent: Double click on the .dmg file Drag the .app file to your Aplications folder ??? … Continue reading

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Why is Software so Expensive?

Today I stumbled upon this blog post, trying to justify why software prices are so overinflated these days. The author does make some valid points, I disagree with the general notion expressed in the post. While making software is not … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged | 13 Comments