Thursday, December 28, 2006

Google Gets Dirty, Takes Away Soap

Google has decide to discontinue access to their SOAP API. If you are already using it you can still continue to access it, but by not issuing new keys, they are effectively killing their support.

They've made a token effort by suggesting you use the AJAX API, but that is hardly the same thing as everyone knows. The AJAX API hardly even qualifies an a real API, it is more just a widget you can add to your pages.

The do have some other interesting APIs, but it seems like they are starting to close off access to their core data. Interesting to wonder what that might portend, eh?

Friday, December 15, 2006

Reality Check

Most of the time I don't give much credence to the talking heads in fields like technology. Basically to be competent in this field requires a commitment to be doing that fundamentally restrictions your ability to be talking. So it is generally okay to assume that if you are primarily a talker, you are not really a doer and everything you say needs careful scrutiny. On the other hand, there are those who don't particularly talk a lot and you know it is because they are getting stuff done. When they do open the kimono, it is best to pay attention. Especially when their views align with my own. ;-)
I don't see aspect-oriented programming escaping the "academic ghetto" any day soon, and if it does, it will be less pervasive than OO. When it works, aspect-oriented programming is elegant, but it's not clear how many applications significantly benefit from its use. Also, with AO, it appears difficult to integrate the necessary tools into an industrial-scale programming environment.
--Bjarne Stroustrup
A great example quote, from a Technology Review article, of someone bringing some practical reality to the world of technobabble. Personally, his use of "academic ghetto" about made me fall out of my chair I was laughing so hard. Truth is so much better than fiction.


Monday, December 11, 2006


Okay, so it takes a bit for me to get worked about some new-fangled technology being the relatively snobbish and sophisticated technocrat I am (ahem).  But from time to time, I come across something interesting and feel like spreading the word a little.

My newest discovery is a site called  It's sort of a hybrid mix of user ratings and feedback mashed up with content references and quick links.  At least, that's my view.  I'm sure if you check it out, you'll jump to your own set of conclusions.

What do you think about new navigation and content referencing schemes like this one?

Monday, December 04, 2006

Mirror in Motion

In the last few days I've had to spend a much larger than average percentage of time explaining how to design a system.  More specifically how to perform tasks of software architecture in a high-velocity way that is consumable by individual contributors.  Whenever I have a challenge of how to explain something complicated, I generally look for examples of how others have addressed similar opportunities.  Sometimes, what they have written mirrors aspects of my own thoughts which helps give me ideas for how to communicate my own ideas.

One such reading lately is about Microsoft Motion, which is an architecture approach being bandied about at Microsoft. I found the conclusion to be the clearest statement of the overlap with my own thinking:
This paper describes three rules for success in a partitioned-iteration strategy. They are as follows:
  1. Start with the low-hanging fruit, focusing on quick time-to-value.
  2. Leverage economy of small scale, focusing on agile processes.
  3. Centralize interoperability and decentralize implementation, focusing on reduced complexity through partitioning, and faster iteration through agility.
You can find out more about Motion Lite on MSDN. You can also check out some podcasts on Channel 9 here and here.  And lastly the Architecture Journal has an article about it here.

Watch for some upcoming posts on other overlapping subjects from the Architecture Journal coming soon.