Archives / 2009 / March
  • Mix09: Overall thoughts

    As I mentioned during the conference, it suddenly seemed very silly to me to be blogging about the conference, when there was already plenty of that going on. I know I found it annoying that my RSS feeds were filled with posts about the same things, so there was little reason for me to add to that noise. But now that it's truly in the books, I think it's a good time to give my overall impression.

  • Mix09, not blogging

    I've decided that there's little reason to be blogging about Mix. It would just be noise. There are so many people already doing it that I don't feel I have much to add. Of course, I'll have my wrap up thoughts eventually.

  • Mix09, with Mac in tow

    This will be my third Mix now, and what a strange road it has been for me. The first one I went to on my own dime, sort of, in that the conference was free but travel was my thing. That was a perk of just having a book published. Then the conference got super popular. I didn't go in '07, but I did go last year, on my former employer's bill. It was pretty spectacular, and I hoped that I would have the chance to go again this year.

  • Message to the .NET world: Seriously, the UX does matter

    The new gig I started in December as the company's technical architect ("technical" to make the distinction that it's not "information architect") has been an interesting experience for me thus far. My experience at was excellent in so many ways, because the processes were entirely solid and my peers were rock stars without the ego. Getting laid-off from there sucked, but it also presented an opportunity to find something where I could lead processes and have that "enterprise" experience applied to a place that needs it.

  • First impressions using 17" MacBook Pro

    I'm really impressed with the new laptop (and for what it costs, I suppose one should). I was just shy of using my old one, the first Intel-based 15" MacBook Pro, for three straight years, but as we speak, the old one is getting a fresh install so Diana can use it. Even at three, it's still a lot easier to use than her newer Vista Dell.

    The thing that impressed me immediately is how solid it is. I've picked up and twisted the 13" and 15" models in the store, but I guess I still felt that the 17" just "had" to feel less solid. But it doesn't at all, it feels exactly the same. I give Apple a lot of credit for going to this machined solid block of aluminum. It makes a huge difference.

    Also impressive was the migration app that pulls all of your junk over the wire from your old comprooder. It apparently is even smart enough to set the ethernet port to cross-over. Nice. It took a little over an hour to move the 50 gigs worth of junk, and when it was done, everything (mostly) worked as it did before. My browsing history and bookmarks were all there, all of the apps I installed, etc. Even keyboard preferences made it over (important for Visual Studio users, of course). It was even smart enough not to copy over older versions of iPhoto and such. The only pain was the serial numbers, having to re-enter them for the pro apps, and having to deactivate CS3 before activating it on the new one.

    No heat issues at all. Fans idle silently at 2000 rpm, and there are no hot spots. Screen is beautiful, and I'm not getting all of the criticism toward the glossy screens. Four-finger swiping to activate Expose is sweet. Parallels screams giving it 2 of the 4 gigs to work with. Keyboard is a huge improvement. The size for the 17" isn't nearly as troublesome as I worried it might be.

    The battery, man, I don't even know what to make of that. I'm running in the better performance mode, using the better video processor, screen at full brightness, keyboard lights on, and it looks like it'll easily do five hours on a single charge. My guess is that you can easily get six or seven if you back off. I know Apple says eight, but honestly, I was hoping for five or more, and that seems easily achievable.

    I suppose I'll post more after I use it, but at this point I'm not honestly expecting much to be different than what I've experienced for the last three years. Yeah, I know these things aren't cheap, but considering the time I spend on it, it seems to me that it's worth the expense to buy something I like better.