New Category: Quick Links

Just set up a new category for what I’ll call Quick Links. It will just contain stuff of interest that’s I’m too lazy to write something about! 🙂

So here we go with our first bunch:

  • Don’t annoy me with your crappy form field focus
    Cameron Adams improves on the code used to set the focus to the first form field on the page – it won’t do it if the user starts entering data first!
  • CSS Hacks and IE7
    Oh no… just when you thought you had it all mastered, along comes a new IE.
  • Calendar Candy
    Zimbra is a promising web-based email calendar app (nothing new there) but if you’ve ever gone through the pain of trying to share Outlook calendars without Exchange then this AXAJ-laced project might do the trick!

Great applications don’t do much

Venture Voice has published a podcast interview with Jason Fried of 37 Signals fame. Well worth a listen.

He uses the example of a builder who uses numerous tools to get his job done – he doesn’t use one multi-purpose tool. This translates well, not just into software development, but web development as well.

Instead of trying to be all things to all people, concentrate on being really good at something specific.

When you look at 37 Signals’ products (Basecamp, Backpack, TaDa List) you’ll see that they are very simple applications with limited feature sets. And that’s what makes them so popular.

I’ve seen it written elsewhere (can’t remember where, sorry) that Jason also said that each feature request was initially rejected by default, and had to make a really strong case for itself before it was considered for inclusion.

Food for thought…

A Tasty Site

Something important I learned at WE05 recently:

I heard these guys talking about something called delicious. Some social bookmarks thingy.

After some thought, I realised what they were talking about. I had always just read it literally: del dot icio dot you ess. Ahhh, delicious!

(Yep… I’m a bit slower than most)

iTunes? Not for me!

iPod nano
Originally uploaded by RockyShark.

Shouted myself an iPod Nano a few days ago – nice little device. Amazingly small considering it holds 4 gigabytes!

Been chasing Enigma’s Voyageur for a while and so I thought I’d give the iTunes Music store a go. Found the album easily enough, and at USD9.99 (or about $13 Aussie) it was pretty good value, to.

So I go through all the login yada yada to purchase it, and get to the point where I’m confirming my addess info. (It already appeared, as I’d entered it all when I registered the iPod.)

But alas, I could go no further. I was being told my State and Postcode were invalid. Which was kind of odd, as they weren’t. After all, I’m here!

Apparently, you have to live in the US to download music from iTunes. Why? What difference does it make where I am?

And if that’s the case, when the iPod is registered, why display the Music Store link in iTunes if I can’t use it? They make me go through the whole signing in process before giving me a cryptic error message, and then I have to waste another 5 minutes figuring out I’m not worthy to download their music because I live in another country!

Thanks Apple! :/

Edit: Apparently iTunes Music Store was release for Australia a few days after I posted this… Apple must have been reading this! (Well, I’ll take the credit anyway!)

Working on Multiple Projects

We’ve been struggling a bit of late with the sheer number of projects we have on at the moment – seems like I’m spending more time reviewing each project than doing anything else.

The other problem is that projects seem to be taking forever to get finished, as we’re trying to do a bit here, a bit there – spreading ourselves way too thin.

A new house, anyone?

My brother and sister-in-law are having a new house built at the moment, and it was something my brother-in-law said to me last week that got me thinking. He was commenting on how quickly the house is being built – the slab was only laid about 5 weeks ago and it’s not far from finished. What he didn’t mention was the 6 months they waited for the builder to actually start!

If you’ve ever built a house, you’ll know that there’s a lot of stuff you have to worry about before the builder can start. Tap fittings, door handles, carpet colour… there’s quite a list. And only after all these things have been arranged does the builder actually start. And once they do, they get stuck in and the house actually goes up very quickly.

So here’s my lesson:

I’m only going to work on a couple of websites at a time. That way we can devote more attention to each project, and actually get the job done much faster.

When new clients come on board, we can give the client a start date and a to-do list, and make sure they understand that everything must be checked off that list before we can start.

So the client might have to join a queue before their website gets started, but once we do actually start it should come together quite quickly, as we’ll have everything we need in front of us.

Anyone care to share their thoughts/experience?

Brekky with Tantek


Originally uploaded by Cam Pegg.

Breakfast with Tantek was quite interesting – I aways wondered how anyone would have found the box model hack, but when he explaned how and why he discovered it it sort of made sense. Sort of.

Anyway – here am at the far right in my Cowboys jersey (dark blue, yellow and white) and Tantek towards the left sitting by himself!