Settling in for the holidays

And finally getting caught up!!!

Oh man, it's been a roller-coaster ride the past while but I think the worst is over (and the best is yet to come). Vista launches, SharePoint RTMs, new VMs, two sprints completed, new ScrumMaster duties on YAP [yet another project], new laptop, dogs and cats living together... mass hysteria! Tonight I'm finally taking a breather, just to get back on track this weekend with a bunch of stuff like posting crazy entries around everything that's been building in my own backlog.

A couple of things as I'm sifting through the rubble. I broke down and bought a new laptop. My Presario 4000 was good (it was aimed as a desktop replacement) and a year and a half ago it was. Fast, heavy, but impressive. Most impressive. Now it's all about Core 2 Duo and that so I snagged a Inspiron 9400 from Dell and couldn't be happier. It's an inch larger all around, but half as thin; 3lbs lighter; 100db quieter; and about the same price as I paid for my Compaq. 4-5 days of setting up and installing software and tools and I think it's good to go. I've already given one presentation on using NetTiers and CodeSmith with it (which was a bit of a joke trying to get used to the new keyboard so lots of typo's in the demo).

Secondly I saw that JetBrains has released their Omea Pro product for free now. I was using the free Reader but now have updated to the Pro. It's everything (mail, rss, newsgroups, tasks, etc.) all in one package and very well done. I gave up on RSS Bandit as it was just chewing up memory like there's no tommorow and Omea lets me flag things say in newsgroup threads so I don't have to read every thread out there. The uber cool thing? They're going open source so we'll get to see how the guys who created ReSharper write code. Very cool learning experience and a very cool tool that will hopefully grow when the community gets its hands on it (I would like to see a WPF version come out of that). Also there's a 2.5 EAP of ReSharper out you can grab, although it's a little buggy (as all EAPs have been with these guys) but looks like it's going to be killer when it releases.

BTW, if you really only want to subscribe to one blog to find cool (geek) stuff out there check out Jason Haley's Interesting Finds. He's recently (the last month or two) added short comments to the blog entries so it's a great feed to look at and keep on top of cool stuff he finds (most of which I consider cool as well) without having to subscribe to everyone on the planet.


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