Friday, May 25, 2007

Why is this global declared...

That surprisingly is the first thing that popped into my head after reading this worse than failure entry...

You might ask "why".  Well, it made me remember this conversation I had with a developer about 15 or 16 years ago:

me: Why is this global declared - it isn't used.

them: because if you remove it, the program will crash.

me: you mean it won't compile because it really is used?

them: no, it compiles cleanly with or without it - but there must be a bug in the compiler because if you remove the global variable - the program segmentation faults and dumps core

me: do you understand what you have really done here?  You have a memory overwrite and you are just hiding it by having this big variable stuck in there - you have a bug in your code.

them: how could it be a bug in my code, my code runs - as long as the variable is defined.  it must be the compiler.


It was not a good day :) We spent the rest of the week removing unused globals and local stack variables - fixing memory overwrite after memory overwrite in the process.  They really blamed the compiler.

I miss my old C programming days, they were fun (really)...

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Been a while...

Been a while since I've posted. I've been out and about - traveling around, seeing some "interesting" sites and things:

Pink Dog 2

See, it does not get more "different" than that - yes, that is a giant, huge pink poodle:

Pink Dog 1

That was part of the Baltimore Kinetic Sculpture race. Went there with some friends

Yeah, I'm cool

over that weekend. Some of the floats were cool - but they all took a lot of work to put together. We were watching at the sand pit - an obstacle the human powered floats had to overcome. Big pile of sand - huge float - lots of people crowded around - what could go wrong? Only one 'accident' - when one of the floats bike tires just bent in half and then the rest of the float followed and bit the dust. Everyone else made it.

Next year, maybe we'll watch at the mud pit - not every float does that obstacle, but it could be fun...

I got to see an interesting "sign"

Who Let the dogs out

That one is from New York, it reminds me of this one from Vienna Austria:

Some things transcend language

The Austrian sign definitely conveys the meaning more clearly, but something about the New York sign is more "fun", if not universal in nature. I was in New York last week to present to my nieces (Liz) class and classmates. She is a teacher in Brooklyn at a local public school and it was career day. They pulled in a good cross section of people - from the Ambassador from Grenada, to Bank Business Development Managers, to an officer from the canine unit (complete with dog, one guess - only one guess as to who was the most popular career day person!), to a singer/dancer, to an agent from DHS (Department of Homeland Security), teachers, me, and so on. I got to do 3 30 minute talks - but I think what I'll be remembered most for will be the.....

Yoyo's. I will be remembered as the guy that gave half the school light up yoyo's right before lunch and then left really fast. Well, the teachers will remember me - this is Liz and me before the talks:

Liz and Uncle Tom

It was a good experience - the kids were all great, excited - good questions - an excellent day. Even got to do a small amount of sight seeing in New York before taking off:


But... The question for anyone that has made it this far is... Where am I now:

So, where am i

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Ok, why is this interesting

Sitting here, watching, things I see:

  • woman at bar
  • a band
  • a pregnant woman
  • a dog
  • man and baby at golden gate bridge
  • wedding
  • baby
  • pair kissing
  • humming bird
  • guy at a table
  • baby
  • you don't want to know...
  • audience
  • family shot
  • .... - neat idea.  Strange, but neat.  Oddly captivating.

Friday, May 04, 2007

They do have a sense of humor...

I've often wondered if the middle tier evangelists had a good sense of humor - or not.  I think I've found one that does.

I'm scheduling a meeting with someone and he wrote:

Ok, great - I will update you when I get more info.

Then let's block out 11:30-1:30 on Tuesday, for the moment..

I wrote back in a manner I do from time to time:

SQL> commit;
Statement processed.

Wondering if they would even know what that meant...  Obviously, they figured it out as this was their response:

yeah, but us middleware guys always have to go and complicate things:


    xaRes.start(xid, XAResource.TMNOFLAGS);
    stmt.executeUpdate("<SQL Statement>");
    xaRes.end(xid, XAResource.TMSUCCESS);
    ret = xaRes.prepare(xid);
    if (ret == XAResource.XA_OK)

       xaRes.commit(xid, false);
catch (XAException e)




I am easily amused and that made me laugh out loud...

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Very Neat Trick Part II

Thanks to Laurent Schneider - even cooler...

Wednesday, May 02, 2007


One terabyte.

For under $300 USD. 


Yes, I have my preorder in...